A Perfect Divine Enterprise: Part 2 – Criticism

Enterprises lead by students of Sri Chinmoy are called “Divine Enterprises”. The workers always try to be in a good consciousness and maintain harmony among themselves. Sometimes it is good to remember what Sri Chinmoy himself wrote about this special kind of devoted service to mankind. Many of his quotes have been collected and published in a book called “A Perfect Divine Enterprise” (The Manifestation-Glow Press, Jamaica, New York, 2003). As it is now out of print we are regularly publishing excerpts from this book for your inspiration in this blog.

How can I not criticise others and what can I do when others criticise me?
SRI CHINMOY: When somebody criticises you, think of that person as an insect or worm and feel that you are the strongest and largest elephant. Since you are larger than the largest, you do not have to pay any attention to a little insect or worm. So, when others criticise you, you have to convince yourself that you are infinitely stronger than the criticism that you are getting. When you are inspired to criticise someone, immediately feel that what is disturbing you in the other person is some weakness that he/she has. Feel that the wrong thing that he or she is doing arises out of some deplorable weakness. Then, try to feel that your criticism of the other person is only increasing his or her weakness and making it worse.

Also, you have to feel that your criticism is causing all kinds of ailments inside the other person. Then try to pull these ailments into your own system – into your hands and legs or head. Immediately you will say, “My God, it is so painful, so painful!” Then you will see how much suffering you are causing that person. Or imagine that your words of criticism are like an arrow that you have hurled at the other person, and now his/her entire being is bleeding. When you see him/her bleeding, your sympathetic oneness will make you feel miserable. It is the same kind of sympathetic oneness that Lord Buddha felt when he picked up the bird that had been wounded with an arrow. When you identify yourself with the other person’s suffering. you will feel, “No matter how imperfect and useless he/she is, I have no right to cause this kind of suffering in him/her. I have come into the world to establish my oneness with others and not to destroy others with my criticism.” Then your heart of oneness will make you stop criticising the other person. These ideas I am giving you are very practical.

Here is still another way. Each time you criticise someone, feel that you have created a black spot on the moon of his/her heart. By diminishing the beauty of his/her heart’s inner moon, you can never get real joy. Also, you have to feel that if your criticise him/her, he/she also will criticise you and ruin the beauty of your inner moon. By destroying one another’s inner beauty, neither one of you can be happy. So, you have to feel that your happiness can come only with the other person’s happiness; it has to be simultaneous. If you do not darken his/her moon, he/she will not darken yours, and both of you will be happy.

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