What is Behind the Words of Complaint and Accusation
(Clearwisdom.net) Words of complaint and accusation come across as cold and coarse. They are unkind, disrespectful, and can easily hurt another person. When someone speaks with a whiny or accusing tone of voice, conflicts are bound to arise even when there is no conflict, and gaps may be created where no gaps previously existed. Conflicts amongst practitioners and the lack of cooperation between us are the results of practitioners' complaints and accusations about one another. This creates an invisible gap that separates practitioners, and brings forth negative elements and obstacles for our cultivation, as well as our Fa validation. Teacher told us,
"Improvement for a cultivator definitely doesn't result from finger pointing, nor does it result from my criticism of you as your Master or from your pointing fingers at or criticizing each other. It comes from you cultivating yourself." ("Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles")
In fact, practitioners who are in this state of mind are frustrated as well. They know that this is an attachment and are trying hard to eliminate it. Because it isn't easy to uproot the attachment all at once, when these practitioners are involved in a conflict, words of complaint and accusation may resurface unconsciously. Actually, there is a substance behind these words, and it continuously supplies the energy. This substance is a deeply rooted deformed notion, or a stubborn way of thinking, namely, "enjoying looking for others' shortcomings."
A practitioner who always focuses on others with a critical eye searching for others' shortcomings, and doesn't look inward to find his own faults, is bound to be petty. If all he sees are other people's deficiencies, then his heart will be full of complaints and accusations. Therefore, as soon as this person is involved in a conflict, he will be unable to tolerate or understand others. On the other hand, if this person can see other people's qualities and search for his own inadequacies, he is bound to have a big heart and be in a state of peace.
There is a practitioner in our area who has been "looking more for others' strengths, and focusing less on others' deficiencies," in her cultivation. When she meets a practitioner, she first looks for the person's good qualities and uses that to measure against her own inadequacies. During experience-sharing conferences, she has often shared this with us, "When I work or share with other practitioners, I look at the practitioner with approval and think, 'This practitioner has cultivated well. She has done better in this regard than I have. I should quickly overcome my inadequacies and rectify myself according to the Fa.'" Recognizing other practitioners' good qualities has become a source of motivation for her to become more diligent. She often says, "When I look at fellow practitioners' positive qualities, my heart is filled with a gratefulness, and I become peaceful. My whole body feels comfortable, my wisdom increases, and I have more room in my heart. Even if the practitioner has a lot of shortcomings, I'm more capable of tolerating and understanding her." This practitioner has not only been strict with herself in this regard, but has also encouraged others to do better as well. Consequently, many conflicts amongst practitioners have been eliminated.
In order for a practitioner to completely eliminate words of complaint and accusation, he or she must change the habit of thinking with deformed notions, that is, habitually focusing on others' shortcomings. One should learn to look at other practitioners with approval, praise, and admiration. The habit of complaining and accusing will then have no roots, and these improper substances will be ineffective, and gradually eliminated. On the other hand, when the habit of "looking for others' good qualities" becomes a mechanism, one will discover that words of complaint and accusation will diminish, and they will be replaced by tolerance and understanding. Tolerance and understanding are the proper states of mind of a cultivator. And when we do point out other people's shortcomings and deficiencies with peace and calmness, they will gladly accept it.