Where does anger come from?
Anger tends to come out when one is hurt. Anger comes out to protect you from feeling hurt. It masks your hurt. If you feel hurt, your reaction is usually to get angry at the one who hurt you. It’s protective that way.
We also know how destructive and damaging anger can be. If it takes control over you, it might lead you to say things that seriously damage a relationship. It can lead you to do very hurtful things to others. “You hurt me, so I’ll hurt you even more,” the anger says.
Anger can feel incredibly righteous and satisfying. It can feel extremely alluring to succumb to the anger, and give it reign. As you get angry, you never ever once question the anger. It becomes the thing that is True. And anything that opposes it is purely false, evil, wrong.
You feel that the anger is the solution. It is the right thing to do. This single-mindedness is really ironic.
A lot of possibilities can happen once you get angry. Let’s say you manage to exact your revenge. You have delivered justice, and set the world straight. You have brought back order in this universe ….then what? You’re still hurt. Your feeling of hurt doesn’t go away no matter how “right” you set the world. No matter the justice you deliver to the evil ones, you’re still hurt. After you finish your crusade, you’ll find yourself back where you were before you started. Only now you see the path labeled “This will make everything right”, and you know what happens if you go down that road.
Or maybe you’re completely powerless to deliver the justice. Maybe you’re angry at a figure that is more powerful than you. And attempting to exact revenge will only hurt you even more, because you’re weak. But you can’t let go of this sense that tells you right from wrong, the anger. So you remain angry, and bide your time. Until the day comes where you have turned the tables, and you hold the power, then you can set things right. Or so you think.
Going down this road, you’ll hide your anger for a long time. This hiding the anger is repression. Don’t we know by now what repression does? Repressing anger is possibly the most damaging of all. You can’t hide your anger. Ever. It will come out in veeery ugly ways. It will hurt the ones you love, even if they’re not the ones you’re angry at. It will kill you from the inside. It will take away your health, and end your life earlier than otherwise. Repressed anger is like a fire within you, burning your insides everyday. You never let the rain touch it. You keep the fire burning, but you never let it out, it will dissipate if you do. Then what happens is only you get burned. And you get burned for a loooong time. And usually no one will ever help you, because no one has a clue you’re holding back so much anger.
This story of repressed anger is extremely common, and it makes me so sad I almost always want to cry when I see it. It’s extremely tragic. It’s like a curse. Whoever hurt you when you were too powerless to do anything about it had cursed you, and repressed rage is the curse.
So what do you do?
You feel hurt. Remember: Anger masks hurt. Behind anger, there is hurt. So you relax your anger, and feel hurt. Feel all the hurt you have inside you. Don’t try to protect the hurt, or “make it right”, or expedite the process of healing. None of that. Just sit, do nothing, and feel as hurt as you feel. Don’t force the hurt to end, let it end when it wants to end. It will end when it’s meant to end. You just sit there, and feel it. Listen to the hurt, it will complain to you, it will tell you things. You just listen patiently and hold it with compassion. That is all you do.
If you do that, one day you’ll see you have no anger left. I hope you find yourself there one day, I want more and more people to be free of this curse.
Whenever you get angry, remember it will solve nothing for you. Remember that a hurt Little One is hiding behind the beast, go listen to what it wants to say, and sit with it with compassion. It doesn’t want to fight, really. It just wants to feel better. You can help it by being there for it, and listen to it. No one else will.