Falun Gong refers to five sets of movements, which include physical exercise and meditation, that practitioners believe heighten their physical well-being, spirituality, and moral awareness.
Falun Gong motions are done to rotate the falun, a spinning body of energy said to be located at the lower abdomen. Followers believe that performing the exercises stimulates energy within the body and absorbs energy from the universe, which releases negative elements from the body and remedies abnormal conditions within the body.
Falun Gong stems from the Chinese tradition of qigong, an ancient tradition of exercise and meditation. The Falun Gong movement was formerly affiliated with the Qigong Research Association of China, a national federation of qigong groups. Li Hongzhi, the founder of Falun Gong, withdrew from the movement in 1992 because his Falun Gong practice had a more spiritual focus than the other groups, which focused primarily on physical well-being. Hongzhi fled China in 1996 and currently lives in New York. Falun means â€œlaw wheel,â€ and Gong means â€œthe cultivation of energy and capabilities.â€ Falun Gong is the name for the actual practice; its followers and practitioners typically were called Falun Dafa. However, Falun Gong has come to refer to both the practice and the movement.
The Falun Gong emblem is a mixture of Taoist and Buddhist symbols. In the centre is a swastika, or â€œwan,â€ surrounded by spinning swastikas and yin-yang signs. â€” Beliefnet.com