Pointing Out Shortcomings with Kindness and Good Intentions
(Minghui.org) I have been involved in media projects since I emigrated to the United States from China. I find that when there are conflicts or different views among practitioners, they may be treated in two ways.
Some practitioners keep silent because they are afraid to point out the other person's problem. They think that by being frank and open, it makes the other person unhappy. However, since the conflict causes trouble or hurt, he or she may complain to others. This results in even more deep-seated problems.
Other practitioners believe that the direct approach resolves the issue. However, these practitioners may still harbor bad feelings and thus they don't keep their emotions in check, they complain and lack good intentions.
Talking about the refusal to point out any problems also comes from selfishness, because one tries to protect oneself instead of the other person.
Accusations and resentment displayed when pointing out others' shortcomings, is the attachment to fame, self-interest, emotions being harmed, all of which are based on selfishness.
“I often say this: When a person talks to someone else, if he points out that person’s shortcomings or tells him something without attaching any of his own notions, the other person will be moved to tears. If you don’t have any personal agenda, don’t seek to gain anything, don’t even want to protect yourself, truly mean well, and are thinking about the other person, then that person will really see your heart—no matter what kind of person he is.” (Teaching the Fa at the Conference in Singapore)
I realized that we should cultivate ourselves well in order to cooperate well with one another. We should not develop resentment because of troubles or the harm that others bring. We also should not accommodate the attachments of others out of self protection.
We should point out shortcomings with kind intentions, and truly think it would benefit the other person to have better cooperation. We should disregard his/her attitude. Only by forming an environment that is conducive to mutual trust, can we work together and succeed in whatever we try to accomplish.
“If everyone could do this, that would be the best. When a person can't recognize an issue, of course it's not wrong for him to point it out. But when you point something out, it must be done with kind intentions. You are cultivating compassion, so you must have kind intentions.” (Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles)
There are some problems that may be caused by misunderstanding between practitioners. If pointing them out in person, there is an opportunity to resolve the conflict; whereas talking behind ones back only makes the conflict more complex, and also causes a loophole in one's mind. Of course we must remember Master's words, “But when you point something out, it must be done with kind intentions.” (Teaching the Fa in the City of Los Angeles)