The Greatness of Tolerance
Today a small event made me appreciate the wonder of tolerance. Recently, a fellow practitioner in charge of certain Dafa projects was not as conscientious in doing Dafa work as he used to be. A considerable amount of his energy was devoted to his personal affairs and lots of money was spent on unworthy things, even on his personal issues. Through skimping and saving, practitioners had pooled that money together to cover the cost of printing Dafa materials. However, because of his bad state, the work was delayed.
What this fellow practitioner did deeply troubled me. Several times I had thought to talk to him in person "with a compassion that can melt steel," as Teacher had mentioned in "Explaining the Fa During the 2003 Lantern Festival at the U.S. West Fa Conference." However, when I saw him, I did not have the courage to do so. This was because of my fear. I was worried that when facing him, my benevolence would not be sufficient, and that my words would therefore have no effect on him. From one angle, I was tremendously worried about him, wondering if the evil had taken advantage of his loopholes. From another angle, I was quite angry about his unscrupulous spending of the money and blamed other practitioners for not having restricted his behavior. I was so annoyed that I lost my cool and didn't know what to do with him. Once I was unfriendly toward him and, as I expected, both of us were extremely embarrassed. After that incident, my regret grew intensely.
I met him again today. Before we met I told myself that I must be kind this time to make up for the previous mistake, but in my heart I knew this kindness was unnaturally forced. So I had to ask Teacher to help open my mind to understand how to do it. At that moment, I suddenly thought of the following two passages:
"In that case, do we also become so attached to his mistakes during this process and not let go in our hearts? If so, then you've become attached to it, and it turns out you're seeking things externally. Why can't you think about why you've seen his mistake? It's his mistake, but why do you feel so miserable in your heart? Is it because there's also something that you didn't do right? Why do you consider it such a big deal? When encountering problems in all situations, you should always cultivate yourself and examine yourself." (Lecture at West US Conference)
"Think about it, everyone: Human beings are destroying themselves with their selfishness and hypocrisy. Aren't they pitiful? They're selfish and hypocritical. When they do more and more wicked things, what they are facing is destruction. In contrast, what you're getting is something better and better. Don't you feel pity for them the higher up you are? ...so you should forgive them."
(Lecture at Fa-Conference in Canada)
Therefore, my heart was enlightened accordingly.
When I met him, my hospitality was completely natural. Obviously he was touched by my attitude. Anyway, his reaction made me realize that the power of kindness is tremendous. Thus the atmosphere immediately became harmonized. As we talked with each other, I realized immediately that he had spent money intended for Dafa materials on some personal things instead, but my reaction surprised me because it was as if I was looking upon a naughty child without anger or resentment. My heart had enlarged a great amount. I genuinely appreciated the greatness of tolerance.
Whether a person wants to act in accordance with the standard of a Dafa disciple totally depends upon one's own choice, since coercion cannot take a positive effect on one's heart. Personally, I believe that the power of benevolence is able to resolve any conflict among us. I'll point out problems with fellow practitioners. However, doing so should be completely out of consideration for their improvement and should not contain any personal feelings or notions. It should be meant to improve us as a whole body and to also enhance our endeavor in saving more sentient beings. Even if a fellow practitioner has not cultivated to a certain level, I'll treat him or her with kindness and benevolence rather than deny the person as I used to.
Clearwisdom.Net once published an article entitled "Essays on Cultivating Xinxing (1):
Attitude Toward Other Practitioners' Attachments," (see http://www.clearwisdom.net/emh/articles/2003/3/28/33895.html) in which the author of the article mentioned a question Teacher answered in the "Lecture at The Conference in Singapore":
"Question: I don't understand why certain Dafa cultivators do not assimilate to the Fa and lie.
Teacher: ...Letting you expose your weaknesses during frictions among one another is how I enable you to improve most rapidly. Nonetheless, as soon as you encounter a problem, you push it aside and point out others' shortcomings instead of examining yourselves. How can you cultivate, then? This is precisely the best way that I enable you to improve. So you must turn your mindset around. As to our students telling lies, there are indeed some people who exhibit poor xinxing. If you can help people like this, then point out [the problems] to them. But I think that it's still up to them to make real improvements. If they don't study the Fa themselves, no problem will be resolved. Put another way, however, improving themselves is their own business. If they fall behind and don't want to improve, it's they themselves who won't make it in cultivation."
It was emphasized that you "must turn your mindset around." The fellow practitioner said in the article that no problem should be an excuse for not cultivating ourselves and treating others with kindness. I think this fellow practitioner's view is very right, because a cultivator should always cultivate him or herself in any problem he or she encounters. Cultivation is a process of turning our mindsets around and stepping towards being a God from being a human.
The above is a bit of my personal understanding. Please point out anything improper.