Truly Having Consideration for Others
(Minghui.org) Master Li (the founder of Falun Dafa) teaches us to always consider others whenever we encounter a problem, and that we should look at any situation from the other person’s perspective.
“As practitioners, you will suddenly come across conflicts. What should you do? You should always maintain a compassionate and calm heart. Then, when you run into a problem, you will be able to do well because it gives you some room as a buffer. You should always be benevolent and kind to others and consider others when doing anything. Whenever you encounter a problem, you should first consider whether others can put up with this matter or if it will hurt anyone. In doing so, there will not be any problems. Therefore, in cultivation, you should follow a higher and higher standard for yourself.” (Lecture Four, Zhuan Falun)
It’s considered normal behavior to bargain for a lower price. Many shop owners will automatically remove a fraction of the price even before buyers start bargaining. I always insist on paying the entire amount and tell them that it’s not easy for them to make a profit. Some shop owners told me that they have to take a percentage off, because people just won’t pay it. Some said that shoppers will bargain for a few yuan. In order to keep their customers, they had to take to remove the fraction. Some said to me, “You are a good person. You even pay the fraction of dimes and cents.” Others told me, “I’ve never met a person like you who would pay the fraction.” I told them, “I’m a Falun Dafa practitioner. I should not take advantage of you.”
When buying things for the work unit, I always remind the cashier not to write down on the receipt more than I paid. Once I went to a shopping mall to buy things. I went to the cashier to issue receipts. When I just started to say whether I could verify the amount written on the receipt, the cashier immediately said, “Don’t worry about it. It will only be more, not less.” When I told her that I wanted to verify it because I was afraid that she might write down more than what I paid, the cashier said in surprise, “How could there be such a person like you?”
Not Competing for Fame and Self-Interest at Work
I took the civil service examination in 1997 and one year later I was given a position. With my master’s degree, I was qualified to hold a sub-section level position. However, I was listed at the staff member level, which meant my salary was tens of yuan less per month as well as fewer benefits. The leader in the work unit thought that I might be angry and asked the office director to talk to me. I told the director, “Master taught us to take gain and personal interests lightly and always consider others first. Please let the leader know that I am okay with this and not to worry.” The office director was surprised and then said happily, “That’s good! That’s good.”
There was a last chance to purchase apartments in our work unit in 1998. There were only twelve apartments available which were not enough for more than 40 employees. I remembered that I’m a Dafa practitioner and I already had an apartment although it was a little far from work. I decided not to compete for an apartment.
When it came time for promoting people to department-level positions, there were several people qualified for limited positions. People were told to register first to compete for the positions. I was the only one with a master's degree in my work unit, which put me ahead of the others. I knew that I should not compete so I didn’t register for any positions and I gave up this opportunity.
A leader in the work unit was secretly reported to the supervisors. During the investigation, several people in our work unit were asked to privately give their opinions. When I was asked, I said, “If one doesn’t do anything, one does not make mistakes. Those who do more, have more chances to make a mistake. One should be judged objectively. Did he intend to do good for the work unit?” A few years later, during a staff assessment meeting, that leader said that I never said anything bad about others and that I was a decent person.
When I was arrested and detained because I clarified the truth, the police told me that I was highly praised by my supervisors as a good person in my work unit. Several of my colleagues wanted to visit me in the detention center.
Kindly Treat Others While Detained
In 2010, I was arrested and was put in a detention center. Space was tight – the cell was only 20 meters square, but more than 10 and even 20 persons were detained in it. The cell was dirty, dark, and humid. We had to sit on the floor and work during the day and we slept on the floor at night. People had to sleep side-by-side or back to back. They often quarreled with each other for every centimeter.
Such a small space could add a lot of pressure. During an “interrogation” at the police station, a policeman asked, “Losing your freedom is uncomfortable, isn’t it?” I answered, “Of course it’s uncomfortable! Who wants to lose their freedom?” But I reminded myself that I was a Dafa practitioner. I tried to keep my thoughts compassionate and peaceful. I kept reminding myself of Master’s teaching to be a good person no matter where one was, to do things for the sake of others, and to be kind to others.
One needed money to purchase daily necessities such as tableware, toothpaste, toothbrushes, toilet paper, washing powder, hair shampoo, etc. Some detainees didn’t have money and so they stole others’ things. When I saw this, I purchased daily necessities for them until their family members sent them money. Afterward, the thefts stopped. A detainee who was mute was often caught and imprisoned because of stealing. She lost contact with her family for several months, so I bought her necessities.
Another younger mute was detained in a nearby cell. The older mute who I helped felt that I was a good person and asked me to help the younger mute as well. When the others in the cell heard this, they all advised me not to help that younger mute. I thought it’s hard for disabled people nowadays. Master taught us to be considerate of others. So, I purchased the necessities for the younger mute as well.
In order to calm the tense atmosphere in our small cell, I often told the detainees about Dafa’s principles. I told them that many people felt they were blessed and had issues resolved after remembering and sincerely saying, “Falun Dafa is good! Truthfulness-Benevolence-Forbearance is good!”. Soon, everyone in the cell knew that Falun Dafa is good. Gradually there were fewer quarrels in our cell and the atmosphere became harmonious.
One night, when everyone was asleep, the head of the inmates had a big quarrel with another inmate who had connections with the police. Everyone woke up. No one wanted to intervene to avoid offending them. I listened to their quarrel but I still didn’t understand why they were angry. Since everyone needed some sleep because we worked hard during the daytime, I casually said, “Take a step back and enjoy the open sea and the broad sky.” Unexpectedly, the two of them immediately stopped arguing and went to bed.
The inmates were forced to do slave labor. To increase production, there was competition among the cells. This forced the detainees to work harder and the daily quotas were constantly raised. The guards’ bonus was linked to production. Those who could not complete the quota would be beaten the next morning. The detainees were afraid of being beaten and sometimes worked all night to meet the quota, forgoing sleep. I advised the guard in charge not to beat people. I pointed out that beating others causes one to lose virtue. The power of kindness was huge. Force cannot change one’s heart but kindness can. Gradually, the police stopped beating those who did not complete the task. Our cell was No.1 in production.
My Family Becomes Harmonious
My father was diagnosed with advanced cancer in 2007. Family members accompanied him to a big hospital in Shanghai for confirmation and medical treatment. One of the checks was to do a full-body fluoroscopy, which the doctor said would be harmful. I told the others that I would accompany him to do the test since I was a practitioner and it would not harm me. My father was hospitalized for nearly a month and most of the medical expenses were not covered by insurance. I took care of the bill which was tens of thousands of yuan. When my father died, he left about 60,000 yuan. When my mother asked me how to deal with it, I told her that I would not take any of it. My two younger sisters refused as well.
In 2016, my mother told me that she had two valuable real estate properties. She wanted to settle the inheritance while she was still alive in case there were disputes after she died. I told her that I gave up my part of the inheritance and she could give the money to my two younger sisters. To reassure her, I gave her my written statement.
My husband has one older brother and his family is not doing well financially. My parents-in-law often help them and even bought them an apartment. I didn’t complain. I even encouraged my husband to help his brother. My parents-in-law felt it was fair to give us some money to purchase an apartment, but we refused. When I was persecuted and detained, my brother-in-law and sister-in-law stayed at my home and took care of my child. They helped us through that difficult time.
My brother-in-law and I accompanied my mother-in-law to go back to their rural hometown to pay our respects to our ancestors. My mother-in-law purchased a lot of paper money and other items. That morning, I asked my brother-in-law to take it to the car. I didn’t open the trunk to check before we left. When we stopped at the village entrance, my mother-in-law found some things were missing. My brother-in-law admitted that he forgot to place the items in the trunk. My mother-in-law criticized him in front of the entire family which greatly embarrassed him. Master taught us to look inward whenever we encounter conflicts. I immediately said that it was my fault because I should have checked before we left. The others said that the supplies could be purchased in the local village store. My mother-in-law calmed down.
After that storm subsided, a relative told me that her two daughters-in-law had a bad relationship with the rest of the family. They always blamed others when encountering problems, and it would be really nice if they could act like me. I told her that Master taught us to always think of others and to look inward when encountering conflicts. Be tolerant! Be kind to others. She asked me to talk to her daughter-in-law about Falun Dafa’s principles.
After I started practicing, I used the guiding principles of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance, instead of always demanding that others be nice to me. Instead, I was nice to them. My family witnessed my positive changes and were happy I practiced Falun Dafa. When I was persecuted, they all helped me and no one in my family had bad thoughts about Dafa.
Looking back over my over 20 years of cultivation I deeply appreciate Master and Dafa. I have changed from a selfish person to one who always places others first.