We Should Remember to Look Inward to Find the Fundamental Causes of Problems
(Minghui.org) I'd like to share my latest experience and understanding on looking inward for the fundamental causes of problems when conflicts surface.
When I Examined Others, It Turned Out to Be My Own Problem
Practitioner A recently came to my house and told my wife (a practitioner) that her satellite TV quit working and I was supposed to fix it. I was not home at the time. After my wife told me this, I became angry.
I had long formed negative notions about practitioner A: She has many human attachments, and in my opinion, she was not diligent. As a result, her family NTDTV signal was unstable. I made several repair trips to her house in the past, and now there were problems again. I even regretted installing the dish for her.
I suddenly had a thought: Why was I so upset? Was it time to look at myself? It dawned on me that my negative thought about her was a notion. She didn't do anything wrong. I felt irritated because I disliked her, which resulted in my thinking that everything she did was wrong.
My anger suddenly vanished. I felt so relieved. Looking back at myself a few minutes later, I was fooled by my negative notion.
Practitioner A was all smiles when I went to her house. She told me: Thanks for coming, but my nephew had fixed the trouble. He was a big fan of NTDTV.I later realized the repairing of the dish was not the real reason he came, as it was my human notion that needed repair work. After I fixed my intolerance, her dish was also fixed.
Honest Talks Let Others See Their Attachments
I attended a sharing meeting a few days ago, which was about cell phone usage and installing NTDTV dishes. I talked about my experiences while installing the dishes. I told people several stories of looking inside to find and solve problems. My talk was well received and I was happy.
Practitioner B also shared his story about installing NTDTV dishes. He was a man of few words. He said that he once had to climb a ladder to the roof of a seven-story building, carrying a satellite dish on his back. He was afraid of heights, and climbing the building was very scary for him.
Suddenly, his vision became blurred and he couldn't hear anything. He felt dizzy from heat exhaustion. With both hands tightly holding the ladder, he asked for Master’s help: Please help me to put NTDTV in for this family. This is their opportunity to learn the truth and be saved.
A moment later, his “heat exhaustion” symptoms vanished. He climbed up to the top and completed the installation.
I was deeply touched by his story. When danger hit him, his only concern was to save people, not his own safety. My story was about how I found my issues and improved my own cultivation. I felt ashamed of my selfishness.
Practitioner C spent much of his time using a cell phone to save people. He said, “If we looked inside only after a conflict has actually occurred, we have not been successful in avoiding the damage done by our effort.” He said he constantly recites Master’s teachings from memory. He's able to do projects with few human notions, and he seldom encounters troubles.
I took his comment as a criticism of me. I was telling everyone a few minutes ago how I could look inside when issues occurred. Now I felt worthless because his understanding was obviously at a higher level. I even felt somewhat jealous of him.However, I soon I realized my thought was not right.
Master told us: “...when running into a conflict, everyone should search inside themselves.” (“Teaching the Fa at the Western U.S. Fa Conference” 1999)
I knew I needed to re-examine myself for my own problem. I thought: Practitioner C pointed out my shortcoming, and he did this to better save people and validate the Fa. What’s wrong with that? I probably really needed to correct my moral character. Maybe I should sit up straight when reading the Fa. I should also spend more time memorizing it.
Practitioner D began to talk. She said, “If we don't have any human notions, aren’t we gods?” I thought she was targeting practitioner C’s position. Both of them have their point. It’s hard to tell who is right and who is wrong. I knew I needed to put in more effort reading the Fa.
Practitioner D spends a lot of time clarifying the facts to people with a cell phone. She is very articulate and smart. I enjoyed her stories and admired her understanding of the Fa. But I did not learn much from her.
After lunch, I asked the meeting coordinator to give me some feedback on what I said. He told me he thought my sharing was pretty good.
At the end of the meeting, I asked practitioner C what he thought of my sharing. He said: “I did not see anything wrong with your sharing.” After all, his sharing was not a criticism of me.
Practitioner E suggested that I read the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party. I asked, “Do you hear any Party culture in my sharing?” After pausing for a moment, he said he had mistaken me for somebody else.
When we sat down for dinner, a practitioner praised me as “famous.” I was not moved by that. Maybe she made the comment because of my attachment to fame.
Nearby I heard practitioners G asking practitioner H, “Did you find any issues during our work to install NTDTV dishes?” I was hoping that practitioner H would say something about my sharing. But he said nothing.
Realizing My Attachments
I thought about the meeting the following day, especially my own problems. I suddenly realized my issue: Behind my sharing, I found several mentalities, such as showing off, zealotry and self-validation. Master reminded me of these using the speeches of fellow practitioners.
In fact, practitioner C’s “criticism” reminded me to look into my own character problem. Practitioner D was a good speaker, and I enjoyed her talk. But later I also sensed some show-off and zealotry in what she said. From her sharing, I saw similar issues in myself.
When the coordinator said my sharing was “pretty good,” he was probably commenting on my ability to express myself, but that was validating myself, and not the Fa.
Master also arranged a conversation between practitioners G and H, so I could find my attachment. When practitioner E suggested that I read the Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party, I thought he mistook me for someone else, but he hadn't. Through practitioner E’s casual chat, Master told me that I have Party culture in my sharing: I exaggerated a detail in my story to showcase my accomplishment.
When practitioner F called me “famous,” I knew that Master was reminding me of my attachment to fame through her comment. Practitioner B’s simple story made me see my problem.
My Wife Changes After I Shared My Shortcomings with Her
After I found my problem, my mind became peaceful. That evening, I shared my understandings with my wife. Before I left home, she gently reminded me: “Please remember to close the book case.”
I was surprised at her tone. In the past, whenever I forgot to do something, she always criticized me with anger in her voice. But I didn't hear any anger this time. I said, “You've changed.”
She smiled and said, “Your sharing made me think about my own issues.” I was so touched by her sincerity that I was in tears.
I've never heard her say anything like that before. In the past, I kept reminding her to be more diligent and improve her cultivation. But she seldom listened. This time when I talked about my own attachments, she saw her own shortcomings.
Indeed, when we share our experiences and feelings without human attachments, others will see their own issues.
When practitioners in the past talked about Master’s hints through a third person, I did not think this could happen to me. Now I clearly see Master has been constantly reminding me.
Please correct me if anything I said was incorrect.