PureInsight | August 29, 2005
[PureInsight.org] In this morning's statistics class, the professor gave us back the test with the results and told us two students got a full 100 points on the test. The American girl sitting behind me admired those two students and said, "Neat!"
I naturally thought of what Teacher said about westerners' attitude towards other people's accomplishments. I thought, "The westerners are indeed not as jealous as Chinese people."
In the afternoon I was working on the computer in the computer lab when I met a Chinese girl I know named Lily. She said hi and left the lab. Then a Chinese girl in red (let's call her R) approached another Chinese girl sitting in front of me (let's call her F) and asked her, "Was that Lily who has just left?"
F replied, "Yes. She is pretty."
R asked, "You think she is pretty?"
F said, "Yes. She is one of the ten most beautiful Chinese women in our city. Top ten!" F's reply might seem like a compliment, but the sarcasm in her voice said plainly that she was very jealous of Lily.
R laughed and said, "Oh, if she is considered pretty, there is no ugly woman in this city."
F didn't reply, but she looked very pleased.
I immediately thought, "This is exactly like what Teacher said in Zhuan Falun." Whether Lily is truly pretty or not is another story. It is because she had been named one of the ten most beautiful Chinese women in our area that she suffered from harsh criticism. This story truly illustrates the severe degree of jealousy among people from China.
On second thought, why did I witness these two incidents on the same day? I began to search inward seriously and I discovered that I, too, had a strong hidden attachment to jealousy. Since my childhood, I have been very competitive and enjoyed showing off my accomplishments. I have a very strong attachment to fame and self-interest. If a schoolteacher showed that he was partial to another student in my presence, I would stop at nothing to show my strengths before the schoolteacher in order to win higher praise. But on the surface I would act completely nonchalant and generous. How does my behavior different from F who praised Lily on the surface but is in fact extremely jealous of her?
It is true that we have the same problems when we see others' weaknesses or flaws. Wei Zheng from the Tang Dynasty said, "Other people are mirrors that reflect our own flaws." This is a great piece of advice.
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2003/2/6/20345.html