Fellow Practitioners Are a Mirror for My Shortcomings
(Minghui.org) Fellow practitioners are a mirror for my shortcomings. When I see problems in others, I should not complain or worry. Rather, I should use this as an opportunity to improve in cultivation. It took me a long time to come to this understanding after stumbling many times.
Exposing My Attachments to Showing Off and Jealousy
Bei is a young, pretty, and capable fellow practitioner. She would come up with unique solutions to problems that were often better than the ideas already presented. Everyone thinks she is smart. On the other hand, practitioner Jing is a bit careless in how she does things. Bei would keep a close eye on Jing for fear that she would make mistakes. I thought to myself, “Bei is showing off.” Sometimes I had the feeling that, before Bei opened her mouth, I knew she was going to correct me and, indeed, that was the case.
Once I did the exercises with Bei. I put my arms down because they hurt too much. She smiled and I reacted without thinking, “Why are you smiling? Why do you keep looking at everyone else?” She was embarrassed. For quite some time, I was unhappy with her habit of showing off, and I could not help showing my displeasure.
From her words and expressions, I thought she was very opinionated. Then I realized I had the same problem. When people said that I was cold and hard to get along with, I did not think I was wrong. However, Bei showed me that I had many faults I was unaware of.
I was also very jealous of Bei's abilities. She could recite all the poems in Hong Yin by heart, yet I could only remember a few of them. I thought to myself, “She only knows the words but not the inner meaning.” In reality, it was because I was jealous.
Bei's problems were a reflection of my faults, many of which I had not noticed before.
Looking Within through an Elderly Practitioner's Problems
I spend a lot of time with an elderly practitioner and see a lot of his problems, such as making mistakes when reading the Fa, not doing the exercises in sync, doing things carelessly, sitting on a chair to read the Fa instead of sitting cross legged, and being attached to certain foods.
I looked down on him because of these shortcomings. For the past six months, he had health problems such as leg pain and a toothache. I thought these were caused by his complacency in cultivation.
One day I suddenly realized that, instead of sending righteous thoughts to help him, I was giving the old forces an excuse to persecute him. How could I be so unkind? His faults were a reminder and a test for me. If my heart was not moved, he might get better.
I also have similar problems. I sometimes cannot wake up on time to do the exercises. I especially disliked doing the second exercise because it was too hard. I have an attachment for my favorite foods, too. He doesn't like to sit cross legged. Although I can sit cross legged for over an hour, sometimes I become complacent and put my legs down.
My biggest problem is that I want to change others. I would get anxious when he made mistakes and didn't want to assign him any tasks. Later on I thought I should be more tolerant and, amazingly, he made fewer mistakes.
Looking down on others and wanting to change them is an attachment to self. I'm not validating the Fa; I'm only showing how capable I am. I realized I should not use human means to change others.
Controlling My Attachment to Lust
My husband is also a practitioner. We treasure our relationship, but I feel that I have strong feelings for him. I try to contain my sentiments, but it is not easy. Once I saw a couple being affectionate with each other in public and it brought out my attachment to lust. My eyes started to itch and I understood it was caused by my attachment.
I had a few stumbles this year in cultivation. On a few occasions when I went astray, it was the help of fellow practitioners that got me through. We studied the Fa and sent righteous thoughts together.
I'm deeply grateful to fellow practitioners for their help. I also thank Master for arranging for these practitioners to remind me and watch over me.