When a desire with attachment is thwarted or denied, it turns to anger. Anger arises from dissatisfaction, from not getting what you want or getting what you don’t want, from the expectation unfulfilled. You become more and more attached to your expected outcome and when it doesn’t arrive you get angry. You seek wholeness, completion, and happiness in the fulfillment of desire with attachment and are constantly in dissatisfaction. Dissatisfaction is the main form of suffering. Dissatisfaction and anger arise from feeling limited, betrayed, from not speaking up, from being pushed around, by not being seen or heard, by being passive and feeling futility. It starts as resentment. Resentment turns into frustration. Frustration turns into anger and becomes rage when not addressed.
Anger can take on many faces. Some you see as anger and some are more subtle. You think; That person rubs me the wrong way, You roll your eyes, make a sharp remark, you think he’s a thorn in my side, you have a tantrum, feel bitterness, suspicion, hatred, envy, resentment, criticism, annoyance, animosity, sullenness, gruffness, rage, grudges, and you have arguments.
However much you think we are provoked, your anger is always your own creation.
An angry person is just an empowered sad person. Anger holds great energy as opposed to depression which holds no energy, just sadness. Desire, anger and expectation can be a source of energy, strength and motivation. But what is your honest motivation, from what source is this energy arising, and in what form is it expressing itself? This energy can hold personal glory, personal gain, a tangle of pure and impure impulses, a commotion of motives and reactions. Anger’s motivation is generally dissonant and confused. Anger destroys discrimination. It can catch you and you can get lost in it.
Anger and rage, when positively channeled can create great change. They become perverted when filled with judgment. It can be a powerful energy of dissatisfaction. When suppressed or resisted or expressed in negative ways, it can be extremely damaging. Dharma, that which upholds our evolution, should be our motivation, our strength, and the source of energy and motivation.
When we get angry we have 3 choices; 1) let it out, 2) suppress it 3) stop/look/feel/accept.
If we let it out, it adds to the dissonance of the world. It creates negative consequences.
If we suppress it, it’ll become dense and fester. We get an ulcer.
Create mindfulness, a space that brings discrimination.
Stop- don’t act or react. The sooner we can be conscious of anger’s point of arising, of recognizing this type of energy inside us, the easier it is to watch it and allow it to wash through us without reacting. First- Catch our self in the experience- Train our self to notice initial arising. Develop neutrality. Recognize it.
Look- Gain Insight. Watch it. Be neutral and allow the energy to move through us. Witness it and don’t get lost in it. This way this energy does not get stuck. No one is harmed, including us. The more we see anger, experience it as an energy in motion, and gain insight into its initial arising, the more we can stop letting it out or suppressing it, which both create suffering. Be honest. We are creating our anger, not someone outside us. We must develop the awareness that we are not the victims of what’s happening. We are being presented with an opportunity to free ourselves from our normal state of angry reactivity. See what triggers us.
Feel- Remember it is only being created within us by us, never outside. When we become available to feel it, it will come more into balance. Anger is an active, energetic emotion. Feel its energy. Move our body, breathe deeply, journal it. Witness it and feel it but do not let it out onto others or into situations. Allow the inner eruption to happen within so we can look at it and feel it and let the energy pass through. If we can do this we will be left with strength and empowerment without negative consequences.
Allow- By feeling it and allowing it to move through us, we are not accumulating it or creating negativity. Watching it and feeling it and allowing it to pass through is freedom. When we resist something, that resistance creates suffering. Resistance holds energy in place and stops its flow. By being in acceptance, we create the circumstances for the energy of anger to move, to flow through us. If necessary, express it creatively, not onto someone.
The awareness that is created through this process of feeling and accepting helps dissipate the anger and moves it out of our system. We neither suppress the energy nor let it out on someone or something. We simply, through this 4 step process, allow the energy to pass through with awareness.
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