On Coordination Work
(Minghui.org) I would like to first express my gratitude to fellow practitioners who have been involved in coordination duties. We know that these are not easy tasks.
Coordinators not only need to assist local practitioners in carrying out the three things—our major responsibilities indicated by Master—but we also need to cultivate ourselves well.
Most coordinators work very hard, hoping to assist Master as much as possible. In order to better carry out our duties, we need to take some time to look inward for our shortcomings to ensure continuous improvement. As such, I would like to share my reflections about “validating self,” a mistake some of us have made unknowingly.
“Validating Self” is Rooted in Egotism and Selfishness from the Old Universe
Master taught us,
“I also want to tell you that your nature in the past was actually based on egotism and selfishness. From now on, whatever you do, you should consider others first, so as to attain the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism. So from now on, whatever you do or whatever you say, you must consider others—or even future generations—along with Dafa’s eternal stability.” (“Non-Omission in Buddha-Nature,” from Essentials for Further Advancement)
The root cause of validating self—selfishness—discerns the old and new universes. “Validating the Fa” or “validating self” is not a minor issue. It is a fundamental one that can have a stronger and more negative impact on our cultivation than many other attachments.
Despite our hearts for safeguarding the Fa, we sometimes may cause damage unknowingly.
I close my eyes and doze offto sever all troubles hereUpon waking, endless things come alongNeither heaven nor earth canblock my road of Fa-rectificationBut disciples' human hearts can(“Troubles,” from Hong Yin III)
Whenever I recall Master's poem, I feel pain and regret from the bottom of my heart. His other articles, both before and after the start of the persecution, remind us repeatedly to return to our true nature. The coordinators of various projects are usually influential leaders. Their words and behavior often affect fellow practitioners as a whole. The conduct of some coordinators, manipulated by the old forces due to their human notions, has resulted in harmful consequences. To stop this kind of damaging behavior, the Minghui website has published various Editorials & Notices, including, “Are You a Cultivator?” “Giving Speeches Amounts to Disrupting the Fa,” and “Starting Point.”
Many of us were shocked to learn the severity of these situations. But some practitioners find these notices hard to understand if they are in the midst of the situations these notices target.
The problems pointed out by Minghui deserve serious consideration from all of us, especially project coordinators. One troubled coordinator can affect a large group of practitioners.
Attachment to Enlightenment in Cultivation
Once a practitioner said to me, “I don't think you have the heart of validating yourself any more.” I replied, “Not really. It is very difficult for any life that has not fully harmonized with Dafa not to validate self.”
The heart of validating self may be easy to spot in practitioners who have strong and straightforward personalities, but it is much more hidden in those with more mild personalities. Although our goal is to eliminate all attachments, practitioners first need to accommodate and complement one another in Dafa work, and in the cultivation process.
Besides the aforementioned manifestations of “validating self,” another hidden attachment is that of our own enlightenment in cultivation, which is probably the least noticeable to us and the people around us. Even those who have fully enlightened should not be attached to their own understandings, let alone those of us who are still cultivating.
In coordination work, we should realize that teamwork is different from individuals validating the Fa. We should not conduct coordination work based on our own understandings of the Fa. This is equivalent to a drop of water changing the tides of the ocean.
For example, some coordinators apply a leadership style similar to ordinary people in carrying out Dafa coordination work, which may hinder fellow practitioners’ ability to work creatively and independently. Master pointed this out long ago in “It is not a Job, but Cultivation Practice” (Essentials for Further Advancement). Why have we not listened and followed?
Master has indicated explicitly the relationship between the Fa and our own opinions. Although sharing understandings is acceptable, coordinators should be more mindful of expressing their opinions as opposed to following the Fa closely. Only if we study the Fa well, can we do coordination work well.
When we quote Master's words in our communication, sometimes we use them to prove that we are right, or even mix Master's words with our own words. For example, there was a local coordinator who was a strong speaker. Fellow practitioners admired him for his understanding of the Fa, and some practitioners often sought him out for cultivation advice. This coordinator also enjoyed giving advice based on his own understanding of the Fa. Eventually, some local practitioners began regarding him as superior to others, and he was later arrested and imprisoned. After being released, this practitioner was unable to return to doing Dafa coordination work for an extended period of time.
Another coordinator, who was known to many local practitioners, was said to be a spy for a while, and he was bothered by it. He felt mistreated, despite all the Dafa work he had done. He then turned his mind to Fa study and looked inward for his own attachments. He found that he had a strong intention of validating self.
I hope we will learn lessons from positive perspectives.
The Relationship Between Master and Self
What has influenced me the most in my cultivation since 1994 is what Master said,
“One must maintain a righteous mind.” (Zhuan Falun)
“...you should consider others first, so as to attain the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism.” (“Non-Omission in Buddha-Nature,” from Essentials for Further Advancement)
These lines are so important that I consider them the premise of my Dafa coordination work, and the premise to be a qualified cultivator.
I used to be stuck in my own understanding of the Fa, and I liked to talk about my “unique” interpretations. Looking back, I realize that my “unique” interpretations were generated by the distorted notions of beings in other spaces that I invited through my heart of validating self. Yet I didn't recognize this mindset because I was enjoying myself. Now that I am clear-headed, I would never dream of interpreting the Fa with my own understandings. I constantly remind myself to maintain a righteous mind, as everything comes from Dafa.
It is also important to keep humility in mind. Yet, this is really beyond the human notion of humbleness, since it is unconditional respect for Master and the Fa from the bottom of Dafa practitioners' hearts. Everything we do and every decision we make should be based on the Fa and Dafa work, regardless of our personal gains and losses.
I couldn't help but shed tears when thinking of the trouble we have caused Master due to our mistakes. A voice arose from within me, crying, “Practitioners who are coordinators, please let us work diligently together to help accomplish what Master has planned to do!”