Minghui Fahui | Seeing Others’ Strengths and Recognizing My Weaknesses
(Minghui.org) I began practicing Falun Dafa 16 years ago, but I still had not been able to look within during times of interpersonal conflicts until last year. In 2011, I studied the Fa diligently and cultivated earnestly, which gave me the ability to finally look within.
Cultivating and Rectifying My Field
My son is a young practitioner. I looked down on him, thinking that he read the Fa too fast, was not focused, always wanted to play, and did everything in a leisurely manner. Therefore, I often chastised him, which only helped him improve temporarily. If I ignored him, he didn't study the Fa at all. In the middle of group Fa study, he would suddenly put the book down and go to the restroom without letting me know. When others were reading the Fa, he would play and sometimes even interfere. His behavior bothered me and I was at a loss as to what to do. After graduating from elementary school, he went to a second-rate middle school. I felt that I had failed to educate him well and it almost affected my xinxing.
What on earth went wrong? I was deeply upset. One day when I was listening to Teacher’s Fa lectures, I suddenly enlightened that I lacked compassion toward my son. The root of the problem was that I wasn’t cultivating well. I only saw his shortcomings and measured him based on my personal standards. If he didn’t behave as I expected, I would get angry. Was I compassionate? Didn’t my son’s so-called shortcomings expose my own shortcomings? My own field wasn’t righteous. Thus my son’s field was not rectified. I looked outward instead of inward and always blamed him. How could the good results be good?
“It would be good if they could manage to search within themselves for the things that they have been able to find in others.” (“Essentials for Further Advancement, Dialogue with Time”)
When I finally enlightened to this Fa truth, I instantly felt my field becoming bright and clear. I decided to only look at others' strengths and search for my own shortcomings. Once I made this change, I felt that Teacher had eliminated much of the bad substance within me. From then on, I talked to my son with compassion in my heart. I no longer had problems helping him with his plan for studying and Fa study. As a result, he was transferred to the best class in his school.
My son now gets up at 5:00 a.m. He studies the Fa for 80 minutes and sends forth righteous thoughts at 6:00 a.m. When he is home alone, he often memorizes the Fa or reads the Minghui Weekly. He has truly improved and no longer fears facing hardships
Teacher’s words set a standard for Dafa practitioners. Teacher said:
“As your Master, I have never kept account of the wrong things you have done in your cultivation; I remember only the good things you have done and your accomplishments.” (“Pass the Deadly Test”)
I held wrong thoughts about two practitioners who are husband and wife. I thought that the husband wanted comfort and didn’t want to work. Instead, he relied on his wife’s pension. He used the excuse of doing the three things. The wife couldn't accept criticism. I always thought that the husband needed to go get a job whenever I heard about their tribulations. During a recent conversation, I once again told the husband that he should find a job. However, they both rejected the idea. Therefore, I searched inward and saw that I had deviated from the Fa. I didn’t think about their situation and didn't consider their difficulties. Rather, I always evaluated them with my own standards. My notions were not within the Fa, providing a loophole for the old forces.
Why did I always see this couple's shortcomings? I thought that he was lazy and could only convince me otherwise if he looked for a job. I thought that I was helping him to eliminate his laziness. In reality, I was trying to prove my conclusion. Besides, I was also uncomfortable with his wife’s shortcomings. Thus I wasn’t aware that I had deviated from the Fa. I always wanted to convince others. In fact, I subconsciously thought that I was better than others and was validating myself.
After looking within, I enlightened that the couple is already doing their best. They have to take care of their parents who were bedridden and their children whose health was poor. They also need to do the three things well. They are not rich but they still need to produce and distribute truth clarification materials. In fact, they are incredible. Even if they have the attachment of seeking comfort, they can eliminate it during cultivation. When I let go of my human notions, this fellow practitioner quickly realized his attachment to seeking comfort. We both improved in our cultivation.
The Importance of Examining Oneself
The Chinese character “Bi” (meaning “Compare”) actually has deep meaning. However, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) culture twisted its meaning into “fighting, competing, and taking advantage of the weaker.” Because of this proverb, I was once confused when I read Teacher’s poem “Solid Cultivation” in Hong Yin. I thought, “Isn’t cultivation about eliminating the attachment to wanting to fight? Why do we need to compare?” I suddenly became clear when I was reading the Chinese characters. The “Bi” character shows two people standing next to each other, each with his hands conjoined on his chest and bowing to the other person. I instantly realized that “Bi” is a depiction of cultivators respectfully gathering to study the Fa and also carries the meaning of cooperation.
How can we achieve “Compare in studying, compare in cultivating?” Our first thought must be about examining inward. Teacher said:
“When you meet with a conflict, it doesn’t matter whether you are in the right. You should be asking yourself, 'What on my part isn’t right in this situation? Might it really be that there is something wrong on my part?' You should all be thinking this way, with your first thought being to scrutinize yourself to try to find the problem. Whoever is not like this is not in fact a true cultivator of Dafa. It is a magical tool in our cultivation. This is a distinguishing feature of our Dafa disciples’ cultivation. Whatever it is that you encounter, the first thought should be to scrutinize yourself, and it’s called 'looking within.' (“What is a Dafa Disciple”)
A senior practitioner I know is a coordinator and responsible for several Falun Dafa projects. One day I received a letter explaining that two fellow practitioners that were part of our project had been arrested and that we had to temporarily halt our project. My first thought was about the severity of the situation. I also held some fear. I subsequently wrote to her and talked about the importance of safety and Fa study. On the surface, I was thinking of her, but I blamed her for not paying attention to the safety of our whole body, causing our fellow practitioners to be persecuted.
I thought that I did the right thing until another practitioner recommended an article about how the old forces used practitioners' loopholes and weaknesses. I was shocked. In the article, how the old forces interfere with and persecute practitioners was very similar to my notions. When a conflict arose, my first reaction was to find fault with others. After reading this article, I immediately adjusted my mindset and apologized to the senior practitioner. I also sent forth strong righteous thoughts to deny the persecution of all practitioners by the old forces. The senior practitioner also looked within. As a result, we cooperated well in exposing the evil and rescuing fellow practitioners.
Coordinators Should Be Like Rosin
In the past, I have always thought I didn’t have much attachment on the issue of interpersonal conflicts. After experiencing several tribulations, I found that I had the problem, just as Teacher mentioned in Zhuan Falun:
“Some people size themselves up with the fallen moral standard, and they think they’re better than other people. That’s because even the standard for measuring has changed.”
I always thought that I was better than others. All I saw was their shortcomings. It was difficult for me to see my own attachments. Therefore, the outcome was often not good. In our joint effort to rescue fellow practitioners, I seemed very dedicated. But the results were not good.
In order for practitioners to form a whole body, we came up with some strategies. However, it was not as easy as I thought. My attachment of complaining surfaced. I complained about fellow practitioners for not being diligent, or falling short in this or that. In addition, I even complained about the practitioners in Beijing not being responsible. Sometimes when things went smoothly, I would develop the attachment of joy and thought that I did a great job. When I was interfered with in a minor way, I doubted myself. When I encountered large interferences, I had the attachment of fear. One time I went to meet a fellow practitioner but didn't get to see him. On my way home, I had problems with my car. Later I realized that all these things happened because I had developed all kinds of human notions, including a show-off mentality, validating myself, fear, etc.
One day in a dream, Teacher hinted that the role of a coordinator was like the function of rosin in welding. Rosin is a primary component of flux, a material used in soldering. The main function of flux is to remove solder and oxides on the surface of the base material to be welded so that the surface is clean enough to prevent re-oxidation during the weld. It helps to reduce the surface tension and improve welding. The quality of flux directly affects the quality of the electronic products produced.
Although rosin may seem insignificant, it plays a very important role. I enlightened that a coordinator needs to let go self, assimilate into the Fa, and integrate into the whole body. In fact, coordination is indeed a self-cultivation process. It is the process of placing the Fa at the most important position, considering others first and being selfless. If we can coordinate based on the Fa, it is a god validating the Fa and saving sentient beings. Thus, it is very powerful. If we coordinate with human attachments, we would end up fighting among each other, which is arranged by the old forces.
After understanding the above Fa truth, I was able to let go of the attachment of achieving results when part of a project and was able to cultivate myself diligently. I consider others first and coordinate according to others' cultivation status. On the surface, the project might move forward slowly, but it is not slow at all. Every step is the xinxing improvement of all practitioners as a whole. In addition, I eliminated my attachment of looking down on others.
The above is my cultivation experience over the past year. Please point out anything inappropriate.