Between Good and Bad Thoughts During Experience Sharing
I noticed that while sharing experiences with fellow practitioners or reading articles regarding sharing experiences on Clearwisdom.net, when I discarded all my personal ideas, concepts, and understandings, and viewed all that they said from their angle to reflect on what they have said or experienced, I could immediately truly comprehend the actual meaning of what was said, and experience the other person's cultivation with remarkable success, and also the mercy of Dafa. I unconsciously began to compare and contrast where I had not done well. What I heard or saw were their outstanding points. At that moment I discovered that my thoughts were good and my expressions were also good. Generally, I could find where it was necessary to elevate myself and that was most beneficial.
As I hung on to my understandings and concepts (sometimes even to the extreme) or critical notions to share experiences with fellow practitioners or to read the articles of experience sharing from Clearwisdom.net, I frequently could not comprehend what the other party was saying, even to the extent of completely misunderstanding the other party. I even used my own concepts to subjectively judge that the other party had attachments and concluded that the attachments were the cause of the other party's wrong understandings and hence did not act within the Fa. At that juncture, I discovered my thoughts were wicked, and my mind had bad opinions of others and I despised the other party. What I displayed was displeasure with the other party and that the understanding of the other party had problems, or that the understanding was not sufficiently comprehensive. When I spoke, my voice carried an air of severe criticism. I even reckoned that my comments were good for the other party. It had not only prevented my own elevation, but also, assisted in strengthening my show-off mentality, argumentative mentality and jealousy. And these were precisely the factors that enabled the old forces and the evil to penetrate the gaps.
Sometimes, when I shared experiences with fellow practitioners, I would clearly see the concepts and understandings that did not coincide with the Fa principles to the extent of being in the extreme or of being erroneous. When I could stand and look at the problems from the angle of the other party and listened patiently and attentively, refraining from considering that the other party had such low understandings, my train of thought would become very distinct and clear. The Fa of Teacher would then manifest in my mind and at the same time I would be able to comprehend the possible underlying factors that developed into such understandings. I would then inform the other party of my understandings and we would revise our understandings of Teacher's lectures together. In that instance, I discovered that my intentions were compassionate as well as pure. The other party would often easily accept my comments and considered that sharing with me was beneficial.
When I saw the situations above, to only want to correct the concepts of the other party, or to consider that the other party's understanding was wrong and should not be recognized, I would then severely criticize, show impatience and refused to listen to the other party any further. I would very often interrupt the other person to quickly point out the other person's problem. I found that my thoughts were wicked. If the other party did not accept (often, under such circumstances, the other party was unlikely to accept) my comments, I did not search within myself to find the problem; whether I had placed myself above the other practitioner and blindly decided that the other party did not have my level of understanding, even to the extent of looking down upon the other party. I had completely lost the tolerant and good intentions of a practitioner.
Between Good and Bad Thoughts. Teacher has warned us: "your nature in the past was actually based on egotism and selfishness. From now on, whatever you do, you should consider others first" (From "Non-Omission in Buddha-Nature" in ESSENTIALS FOR FURTHER ADVANCEMENT). Our every thought manifests whether we have conformed to the standard of a practitioner. A practitioner does not only just aspire to discard attachments, but in every step of discarding the attachments to assimilate into the special universal principles of Zhen, Shan and Ren (Truthfulness, Compassion and Forbearance), and genuinely manifest the embodiment of the compassion of a practitioner, to achieve the benevolence and mercy of an enlightened being.