Let Go of Ego to Become Part of the Whole
(Clearwisdom.net) Chuan (an assigned name) is an elderly practitioner. One day I met him by accident and asked him what he was doing. He replied, "I'm in charge of a group of practitioners on an engineering job." "How wonderful! A group of Dafa practitioners working together! They will cooperate well with one another and do a great job," I said. He said, "Just the opposite of what you said is true. Practitioners tend to look at others' weaknesses, thus creating a lot of conflicts."
He then gave me more details about how things were in his group. The group had been formed based on each practitioner's talent. As practitioners, they are enthusiastic about the work, willing to put in the time, don't care about the pay, and cooperate well in providing facts about Dafa to people. However, when it comes to working together, problems arise and conflicts are becoming very severe.
Many jobs depend on each one doing his part. It turns out that some did their part while others did not. Those that finished their work became very unhappy and said, "How come those who don't do their jobs get paid the same as those who do?" There was also a conflict between junior and senior staff. A junior staff person was paid 60 yuan a day, while a senior person was paid 100 yuan. Some junior staff members complained that senior staff passed on some of their jobs to them. When there was a lucrative job, there was the problem of whom to give it to. Those who did not get it would express their discontent. Following existing guidelines to assign jobs sometimes led to an imbalance in pay, with a simpler job getting paid more than a bigger job. When that happened, complaints flew, and some said, "Chuan is biased and his character is flawed."
Chuan was very tired of all this. He said, "There was a period when I felt that I could not take it anymore. When dealing with ordinary people, the practitioners look great. When they try to work together, however, they cannot cooperate at all. In fact, ordinary people do better in this regard."
Through sharing we came to a common understanding: practitioners expect other practitioners to be perfect or that they meet very high standards. Many held the idea: "We are all practitioners. How can you treat me like that? What right do you have to order me around? You may be in a leadership role, but as practitioners, we are equal." No one is willing to listen to others. There was a case where Chuan allowed an elderly but less skillful practitioner to work with two other practitioners as senior staff members so that he could get help. The two senior staff members raised the question, "We are all paid the same. Why should we help this person every day?" Chuan realized that the mismatch between the person's skills and his pay was affecting the work environment in a negative way. Hence, he asked this practitioner to work as a junior staff member. When it came to sharing, this person said, "I don't mind being a junior staff member. Obviouslyy, I only take on jobs suitable for junior workers, because that is the way I am paid." Another practitioner said to him, "What you just said makes you an ordinary person." He retorted, "Why are you targeting me? Doesn't what you are saying make you an ordinary person also?"
In this environment, everyone's character was being constantly tested. For ordinary people this is to be expected. For practitioners, it was not, because practitioners should understand the Dafa principles. They should look within themselves to improve their character and not blame others when there is a conflict.
It seems to me that after so many years of practice, fellow practitioners should understand the need to let go of their egos and work towards the common good of the whole group. However, this is not how always the case. Many are still holding on to their egos.
The above statements seem to be critical of fellow practitioners. Actually, I have a similar problem. Not long ago, a local practitioner asked me to participate in a Dafa activity. I said, "Why ask me to do it? Why should I cooperate with you?" He said, "Well, what would you like to do?" I replied, "I don't want to do anything. There is nothing I can do." He said, "If that is indeed so, you can send forth righteous thoughts." I replied, "I should do that because you said so? Even Master does not force me to do things." Later, I regretted following my demon-nature. One reason behind this was that I had formed a bad opinion of that person, thinking that he did not qualify to be a practitioner, so he should not be the one telling me what to do. This experience indicated that I had a strong ego and was holding onto human notions.
As fellow practitioners, when we encounter a problem, regardless of whether we are validating the Dafa principles or carrying out a daily job, we need to let go of our egos and not to argue with others or find faults with others but just to get things done the best we can.
Written on June 20, 2010