My Thoughts on Eliminating Resentment
(Minghui.org) The team leader criticized me at a recent group meeting for not doing my job his way and not doing my job well. I thought that his accusation was unfair, and that I had been doing everything pretty well. I developed resentment toward him. Although I restrained my anger at the meeting, the feeling of resentment haunted me for a long time. I looked inward for my attachments, and had some thoughts about it. I would like to share my understandings regarding this issue.
I thought that I could forbear being wronged. But looking deeply inward, I found I had resentment and complaints about the team leader. Why? Was it because I was attached to money? No, I am not. Do I have attachments to fame? Not really.
Looking deeper, I saw that I was competitive and didn't want to yield. I thought my way was fine, and that I could finish the job well using my way. His way was sometimes unnecessary.
This is an attachment to one's self.
“...whatever you do, 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)
I found that I was attached to my own thoughts and my own understandings at my level. I value my own method too much, and this is self-centered. I don't consider others. When a conflict comes along, it is a chance for me to cultivate and improve.
How should I cultivate and improve? Master said:
“When another God proposes an idea, they aren't eager to reject it, and they aren't eager to express their own ideas and they don't believe that their own ideas are good. Instead, they look at what the end result of the other God's proposed approach will be. The paths are different--everyone's path is different--and the truths that beings validate and enlighten to in the Fa are different, too, but the results might very well be the same. That's why they look at the results, and if the result of a God's idea can achieve the goal, if it can truly achieve it, then all of them will go along with it. That's how Gods think. Also, if there's something lacking in it they'll unconditionally and quietly supplement it to make things more complete and perfect. That's how they handle things.” (“Teaching the Fa at the 2002 Fa Conference in Philadelphia, U.S.A.”)
I asked myself if the team leader's method and my method would reach the same goal. The answer was “yes.” So, why was I insisting on my method? It is totally unnecessary. If I was not attached to self and did the job his way, there would not be any conflict and it would have been supportive of him. Wouldn't that be wonderful?
I realized that being attached to self is unnecessary. It not only brings damage to my work, but also makes me uncomfortable. When I decided to give up my attachments and follow the team leader's orders, I felt calm and comfortable in my heart.
In general, resentment is based on some attachments. If you are attached to fame, then you would hate those who damage your fame. If you are attached to money, you would hate those who make you lose money. If you are attached to sentimentality, then you would hate those who don't treat you nicely as you expected. If you are attached to your ideas, approaches, or opinions, you would hate the people who don't agree with you.
To eliminate the resentment, one needs to find one's attachments. If I can really “attain the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism,” I would not have conflicts with others. If I really prioritize others, I would not have resentment or complaints. If I don't have any pursuits or attachments, there would be no reason for me to hold a grudge against anyone.
I gave more thought to this issue. Who else do I complain about? My wife. She is not nice to my mother. A few years ago, she asked my mother to move out of the house, and forced her to go back to her old house. I have since held resentment. I found that I was hurt in two ways. The first was due to the sentimentality I have toward my mother. I am a good son. I cannot forbear my wife's attitude toward my mother. The second is the sentimentality I have toward my wife. I thought she didn't treat me as she should because she treats my mother like that.
I had another thought. My wife should treat my parents nicely. But I now think, treating my parents nicely is my job, and I should not impose this notion on my wife. I cannot control her thoughts or manage her life. How can I change her heart, if she does not want to change? I can only tell her the principles. It is up to her whether she listens. It is useless for me to be attached to it. I thus gave up the idea I imposed on my wife, because it is useless.
Expecting my wife to treat my mother and me nicely is a pursuit of sentimentality. Frankly, it is also selfish. Everyone has his or her own fate, and all the relationships, good or bad, are preordained. This is not something one can solve by fighting.
What I want is goodness for other people. Master asked us to prioritize others. So, what I look for is “the righteous Enlightenment of selflessness and altruism” and the state of no desire and no attachment. There is nothing else. My wife's behavior should not affect me. When I started thinking like this, the complaints in my heart disappeared.
When the complaints were gone, I recalled all kinds of good things my wife has done for me. To pay her back, I should be nice to her and take care of her unconditionally. This is what I should do.
I found that only if one has no desire or attachment, and fully prioritizes others, will one have true and pure compassion. If you have pursuits, how can you prioritize others, and how can you have real compassion?
These are my personal understandings. Please correct me if I said anything wrong.