Author Topic: Qualities we recognise!  (Read 12398 times)

Dorje Pakmo

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #15 on: July 05, 2012, 09:25:25 AM »
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You know what's funny? I find people in the Dharma are generally more harsh and critical about each other than those who are not in the Dharma. There is always that undue expectation that in the Dharma center, everyone's got to be the smiling and haloed Bodhisattva. However, I do notice that there are those that use their critical views (of people) to help them overcome their problems and there are those that use it to further their own aims or to hide their own flaws.

I admit that I am also very critical of almost everybody in the Dharma center and I have noticed people who are critical about me too. As a result, I have become self-conscious of my criticism and I try to temper it by recognizing their good qualities as well. Every time I start to criticize someone, I will do my best to recall the good qualities of that person. I am not always successful with this but i do try. I think remembering the good qualities of others and not just hen pecking or focussing on the bad qualities is a good habit to develop.

Dear Big Uncle,
I agree with you that people in the Dharma are generally more harsh and critical about each other than those who are not in the Dharma. I think it is because people in Dharma care enough to speak up when we see our Dharma brothers or sisters doing something wrong, even if it risks them not liking us.
However, we must bear in mind that everyone has a different level of acceptance and tolerance. It is really good that we care, but we must also check deep into ourselves first whether or not we are setting a good example before pointing out the short comings of others. Every individual have different point of view due their upbringing, and to the way things are shaped and formed around them, it doesn’t necessary means an action is wrong or right. It may seem wrong to us, but to the person doing it, in his / her situation, it may be right.

Being too critical and fast to fault will turn people off. This is especially so if we are a senior in a Dharma centre. An example is that maybe we keep reminding a junior to be more mindful, to be less angersome, to be less irritable, to be responsible etc etc, and after lecturing this or that person, we ourselves go around doing EXACTLY the things we told him / her not to. What kind of example is that? The junior may think, and hence start to lose respect and have doubt for that particular senior who may be in charge of nurturing him / her. And maybe because of this, may even leave the Dharma centre, or worse, the Dharma. This is something we do not want happening in a Dharma centre. After all, those who check themselves into a Dharma centre recognize that they have problems and need help.

Focusing on good qualities I feel is more important than picking on bad qualities. We have the right to remind if we see something wrong, scold if we need to, and shout when we are desperate provided all is done with a good and pure motivation to help the other person. But I personally think we should reserve all harsh methods of advise, unless or until it is really necessary.
DORJE PAKMO

Ensapa

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #16 on: July 06, 2012, 11:04:24 AM »
You know what's funny? I find people in the Dharma are generally more harsh and critical about each other than those who are not in the Dharma. There is always that undue expectation that in the Dharma center, everyone's got to be the smiling and haloed Bodhisattva. However, I do notice that there are those that use their critical views (of people) to help them overcome their problems and there are those that use it to further their own aims or to hide their own flaws.

I admit that I am also very critical of almost everybody in the Dharma center and I have noticed people who are critical about me too. As a result, I have become self-conscious of my criticism and I try to temper it by recognizing their good qualities as well. Every time I start to criticize someone, I will do my best to recall the good qualities of that person. I am not always successful with this but i do try. I think remembering the good qualities of others and not just hen pecking or focussing on the bad qualities is a good habit to develop.

Sometimes, people in the Dharma are more critical of others because of their own insecurities that get exposed as they realize more and more people know what is going on. Being critical of others' flaws is just a way to distract others from our own flaws in the long run. In judging the mistakes of others, we do not need to focus on our own or rather, we just dont focus on our own mistakes and flaws. That is at least what I have noticed how my mind works. In the end nothing gets fixed and I cannot progress in my Dharma practice. Somehow, it becomes more of a superiority complex thing that became harmful to me. It was my kind Lama who woke me up from this delusion. With that said, in the 50 verses of Guru devotion, we have:

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44. Be diligent in all your actions, (alert and) mindful never to forget (your word of honour). If fellow-disciples transgress (what is proper) in their behaviour, correct each other in a friendly manner.

So we can see and observe the weaknesses of others but at the same time we have to provide friendly reminders and feedbacks so that they may improve instead of reveling in their weakness. It may mot always be easy to accept friendly reminders or harsh reminders from fellow Dharma brothers and sisters but if not, how can we improve? Who else would be so kind as to remind us of our mistakes and on where else should we patch up if not for them? we cannot depend on the Guru alone to do this. Sometimes, before i feel like criticizing, i recollect my own weaknesses, and since i have them, i have no right to judge or criticize other people until i fix mine and find a solution. If I am not in the same situation as that person, what right do i have to judge them?

My tendency to judge others stopped when i reflected on my own weaknesses, although they do come back when others trigger unhappy feelings in me. I guess that is something that I need to work at.

Positive Change

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #17 on: July 07, 2012, 09:37:43 AM »
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You know what's funny? I find people in the Dharma are generally more harsh and critical about each other than those who are not in the Dharma. There is always that undue expectation that in the Dharma center, everyone's got to be the smiling and haloed Bodhisattva. However, I do notice that there are those that use their critical views (of people) to help them overcome their problems and there are those that use it to further their own aims or to hide their own flaws.

I admit that I am also very critical of almost everybody in the Dharma center and I have noticed people who are critical about me too. As a result, I have become self-conscious of my criticism and I try to temper it by recognizing their good qualities as well. Every time I start to criticize someone, I will do my best to recall the good qualities of that person. I am not always successful with this but i do try. I think remembering the good qualities of others and not just hen pecking or focussing on the bad qualities is a good habit to develop.

Dear Big Uncle,
I agree with you that people in the Dharma are generally more harsh and critical about each other than those who are not in the Dharma. I think it is because people in Dharma care enough to speak up when we see our Dharma brothers or sisters doing something wrong, even if it risks them not liking us.
However, we must bear in mind that everyone has a different level of acceptance and tolerance. It is really good that we care, but we must also check deep into ourselves first whether or not we are setting a good example before pointing out the short comings of others. Every individual have different point of view due their upbringing, and to the way things are shaped and formed around them, it doesn’t necessary means an action is wrong or right. It may seem wrong to us, but to the person doing it, in his / her situation, it may be right.

Being too critical and fast to fault will turn people off. This is especially so if we are a senior in a Dharma centre. An example is that maybe we keep reminding a junior to be more mindful, to be less angersome, to be less irritable, to be responsible etc etc, and after lecturing this or that person, we ourselves go around doing EXACTLY the things we told him / her not to. What kind of example is that? The junior may think, and hence start to lose respect and have doubt for that particular senior who may be in charge of nurturing him / her. And maybe because of this, may even leave the Dharma centre, or worse, the Dharma. This is something we do not want happening in a Dharma centre. After all, those who check themselves into a Dharma centre recognize that they have problems and need help.

Focusing on good qualities I feel is more important than picking on bad qualities. We have the right to remind if we see something wrong, scold if we need to, and shout when we are desperate provided all is done with a good and pure motivation to help the other person. But I personally think we should reserve all harsh methods of advise, unless or until it is really necessary.

I agree with both of you here. Sometimes it may seem a little intimidating to outsiders looking in when using blunt"frankness" in the hopes of making someone see within themselves is applied. It does not always work as these methods often used by qualified teachers are, I believe, "designed" to push one's buttons to give rise to certain emotions or feelings... However, as a lay person employing such methods, one may not have the necessary tools to counter or appease the deluge when it occurs and hence it would be counter productive.

There always has to be a solution to a problem. If we continue to spark a problem without having the "fire extinguisher" at hand is very dangerous. I see this often in Dharma centers whereby the students employ the methods of the teachers without first understanding or knowing how to address the issues when the "flood gates" open so to speak.

I believe, we are all a package of good and bad habits... more often bad of course but there is some good in everybody. We just need to see it for what it is. I prescribe to seeing the good in everyone and when honesty is required within the context of curbing rudeness then I believe that is a good method at least for my limited understanding.

Once again, we can only recognise the qualities we ourselves have... so remember to take a step back when someone actually pisses us off, hurts us or causes some form of negativity... because that very same emotion could have arisen from your own actions and hence we recognise it for what it is. It is the classic phrase from the parable of Mary Magdelene: "Let the sinless man among you be the first to throw a stone at her."

hope rainbow

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #18 on: July 07, 2012, 12:34:42 PM »
Sometimes it may seem a little intimidating to outsiders looking in when using blunt"frankness" in the hopes of making someone see within themselves is applied. It does not always work as these methods often used by qualified teachers are, I believe, "designed" to push one's buttons to give rise to certain emotions or feelings... However, as a lay person employing such methods, one may not have the necessary tools to counter or appease the deluge when it occurs and hence it would be counter productive.

There always has to be a solution to a problem. If we continue to spark a problem without having the "fire extinguisher" at hand is very dangerous. I see this often in Dharma centers whereby the students employ the methods of the teachers without first understanding or knowing how to address the issues when the "flood gates" open so to speak.

I believe, we are all a package of good and bad habits... more often bad of course but there is some good in everybody. We just need to see it for what it is. I prescribe to seeing the good in everyone and when honesty is required within the context of curbing rudeness then I believe that is a good method at least for my limited understanding.

Once again, we can only recognise the qualities we ourselves have... so remember to take a step back when someone actually pisses us off, hurts us or causes some form of negativity... because that very same emotion could have arisen from your own actions and hence we recognise it for what it is. It is the classic phrase from the parable of Mary Magdelene: "Let the sinless man among you be the first to throw a stone at her."

PA, indeed I have seen methods in Dharma Center being rather wrath and exposing.
Methods used by enlightened beings may be similar, but, as you said, one needs something near to omnipotence to deal with an open Pandora's box.

In the corporate / secular world, people are being dealt with differently so as to pretend to the best efficiency, best marketing in order to turn up a profit.

In a Dharma Center, even if the best efficiency is found using people at their best skills, it is of very little use, for the efficiency of a Dharma center is not measured at how well things run but how much the students have transformed.
This may mean for the students to be challenged out of their usual roles, being assigned on tasks that they are not used to, or being treated in ways that may be challenging.

Ensapa

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #19 on: July 07, 2012, 02:22:49 PM »

PA, indeed I have seen methods in Dharma Center being rather wrath and exposing.
Methods used by enlightened beings may be similar, but, as you said, one needs something near to omnipotence to deal with an open Pandora's box.

In the corporate / secular world, people are being dealt with differently so as to pretend to the best efficiency, best marketing in order to turn up a profit.

In a Dharma Center, even if the best efficiency is found using people at their best skills, it is of very little use, for the efficiency of a Dharma center is not measured at how well things run but how much the students have transformed.
This may mean for the students to be challenged out of their usual roles, being assigned on tasks that they are not used to, or being treated in ways that may be challenging.

For me, the best efficiency that can be measured and seen in a Dharma center is whether or not the members are able to apply Buddhist principles and philosophy into their daily lives and how they interact with people or deal with situations. Are they kind when talking to other members? Do they use the savage ways of the corporate world to deal with problems within the Dharma center, or do they still use those same methods of brown nosing the boss at the expense of the colleagues to get a promotion? Do they act in selfish ways that damage others? Do they laugh and put down fellow members who have made mistakes and have fallen, or do they speak kindly of them and support them and get them back on track to repairing their samaya or reputation in the center? All of these tiny actions reflect the application of Dharma in their daily lives, and people who observe the presence of such qualities will be drawn and attracted to the Dharma center and a Dharma center whose members lack such qualities will repel people from joining the center and being part of the sangha there.

There is a point when hope rainbow mentioned about the Dharma students being able to do work that they would normally hate, because it means how much of themselves that they are willing to give up in order to do the Dharma and to benefit and serve others. Dharma is all about serving others and if there is a gauge for the effectiveness of a Dharma center, that should be it.

Midakpa

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #20 on: July 07, 2012, 03:35:44 PM »
Among the eighteen commitments of the mind-training practice mentioned by Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche in "Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand", there is one about not speaking about others' defects. In fact, according to Pabongka Rinpoche, we should not think of others at all. That is, we should analyse our own faults and not look into the faults of others at all. He says that "Otherwise you will only look for faults in your fellow practitioners, the members of your monastic college, or the monks in your house at college, etc; you will then naturally find fault even in buddhas. Do not attribute faults to others, for if you do, you will ignore people, belittle them, and so on all the more". ("Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand", 2006, Day 19, p. 267).

I always try to remember these words whenever I catch myself criticising others. It is important to be mindful not to hurt others with our speech and not to judge them. Another method I use is to remember Mother Teresa's words, "If you judge people, you have no time to love them."

A famous Theravadain monk wrote in a book "How to Overcome Your Difficulties" that "there are various ways to correct a person if he is wrong. By criticising, blaming and shouting at him publicly, you cannot correct him. You must know how to correct him without humiliating him. Many people make more enemies by criticising others. If you can tell him kindly, with the intention of correcting him, he will certainly listen to you and some day he will thank you for your guidance and kindness. "

"Whenever you express your views regarding certain matters, always try to use words which would not hurt the feelings of others. There are various ways to express your views gently, politely, or even diplomatically."  ...

"You should not lose your temper when your faults are pointed out. You may think that by showing your temper and shouting at others you can suppress or overcome your shortcomings. It is a false and wrong attitude to adopt."

"Cultivate tolerance for tolerance helps you to avoid hasty judgements, to sympathise with other people's troubles, to avoid capricious criticism and to realise that even the finest human being is not infallible. The weakness you find in your neighbours can be found in your own self."


bambi

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Re: Qualities we recognise!
« Reply #21 on: July 11, 2012, 09:35:05 AM »
I have seen people who use wrathful ways to help someone but do remember that many of us are not that skillful yet and it tends to backfire. When it does, people will hate or leave the Dharma center. How can you scold me when you are also acting the same way?

In the secular world, we tend to be 'ok' if our superior scold us but I don't think someone else have the authority especially those only know how to criticize and judge people.

Instead of someone being harsh thinking that they can change the person, shouldn't it be in a kinder way? Just like some who wants to be pampered with kind words like a mother to her child? Whether these people have their own flaws or not, it gives nobody the right to use their critical views of others. And so do we...  ;D