This Moment of Anger is Brought to You By:

i am out of poetry today.

My cells are singed.

i am drained and hollow.

Sometimes, the naked animal nature within me lashes out. Am i to accommodate this nature? Subdue it? Embrace it? Overcome it? Out-think it? Meditate on it? Pray for help with it?

The conflict among spiritual traditions over how to approach anger is quite startling, when you look into it. Most Western traditions believe righteous anger has a place, a vital place, in our efforts to protect what is precious to us. Because anger can be cloaked in sacrament, it has been used to perpetrate some of organized religion's most grievous sins.

Pacifist traditions work to completely vanquish anger. Although Buddhism believes anger is based in delusional states, Buddhist teachings sometimes discuss recognizing and battling demons, whatever form they may take. i once asked a Buddhist teacher once if it was permissible for Buddhists to have enemies.

"Of course," she answered. She went on to say that, in the same way we battle the Three Poisons (Greed, Hatred and Delusion is one varation. Another is Attachment, Aversion and Ignorance) in ourselves, we must confront them in others. It was not quite a complete answer to my question; but then, this teacher was usually careful to never give a complete answer.

i am not sure what has aggrieved me more: my control over my anger, or the anger itself.

What about you?

--Mr. Gobley


Rob said...

Anger seems to be a most useful tool. It's just a matter of making sure that you're using anger and it's not the anger that is using YOU.

I think it would be interesting to write a book on the millions of shades of anger. I can just imagine some page halfway through the book:

467. Anger at government ineptitude.

468. Anger at public officials that you voted for who do the opposite of what you wanted them to do.

469. Anger at elected officials who use the phrase, "for the children".

Then, later on:

942. Anger at computer software that is overly leaden with features — except the one, simple feature that you need to complete your task.

943. Anger at computer software that always asks you "are you sure you want to do this?" when you are bloody damned sure you want to, but never asks when you really aren't sure.

944. Anger at computer software that can remember a value you typed into a form eight months ago, but can't remember that you press "continue with what I was doing" to the virus update alert every single day.

Sigh. It would be a weighty tome.

karen said...

I live off the dirt and depend on the truth of people who mean what the say. All we've been getting lately is the passing of the Buck and the Eddie Murphy rant, *It wasn't me*. Have you heard that tape? It creates self-doubt, creates a helplessness that saps energy, creates distrust for anyone you deal with. You know what you hear, know what you see... but, are told, "No,this is how it is..."

People have forgotten how to take responsibility for their actions and for their given word. People who should know better. It creates in me a *Life Sucks* attitude, whispering in my ear to give up, when my spirit has no backing up mechanism. Consequently...

I get stuck often, fuming and ranting at (today it's you). That's my release for anger. Someone to lend a shoulder, an ear. i've never called anyone an evil, foul name... I wish I could. There is something inside of my soul that won't let me. i wonder why?

Alison said...

As a mother, I often think anger is my greatest transgression. It is natural to get frustrated with a two year old who is merely acting like a two year old, but I am always dissapointed in myself when I let my anger show toward my son. He is allowed to throw tantrums because he doesn't know any better. I am not. If I yell back or stomp out of the room - generally acting like a two year old myself - we both lose. I think this behavior in myself is worse than any other 'sin' I may have committed in my past, and I think it's important to recognize that. Releasing your anger may feel good, but it feels better to take a deep breath and say, "I love you," instead. So that's what I do.

Now, if I could just master the same attitude with work frustrations, I'd have it made.

Charlie (Colorado) said...

"May I live in safety.
May I be happy.
May I be healthy.
May I live with ease."

First, practice metta and karuna with one's self.