Featured Articles

Daily Connect: Anger control?

Yesterday, the AP published a story about a man who, when viewing Bristol Palin's routine on Dancing with the Stars, was so enraged by her performance that he took a shotgun to the television and blew a big 'o hole in it

Although the story seems a bit surreal - ending in a night-long standoff with a SWAT team - the rage that was triggered - uncontrollable, immediate, violent - is one many of us have probably experienced and most of us have certainly had to confront either in an other or in ourselves.

One of my first  real breakthroughs with meditation occurred when I began to notice a very large gap between my emotions and their attachment to reality. That is, no matter how exceptionally intense I felt, I could reside in a space that did not immediately presume correlation between my experience of emotion and the actual truth of my experience. It's easy to agree that just because you feel a certain way about the world, it may not actually be the case, but it's a completely different thing to actually reside in a space that can experience the intensity of an emotion but not immediately react to it. This story reminds me of the importance that space has in the delay - if not outright elimination - of the immediacy of action in response to an unpleasant feeling.

With the inevitable and imminent holiday season ahead of us, these emotions are more prevalent, more in-your-face, than usual. So, if sitting next to your Uncle Fred and discussing politics while eating turkey is mooooore than guaranteed to ruffle your feathers, remember the gap and the wisdom of simply doing nothing. After Thanksgiving, however, consider moseying on down to IDP and really exploring the wisdom and ickiness of anger with Ethan Nichtern in a 4-week series to which it is explicitly devoted: Anger: Demon, Friend or Weapon? Home study (podcasts to listen to at your leisure) available too. Happy Thursday.

Quote of the Day:

“I would not look upon anger as something foreign to me that I have to fight...I have to deal with my anger with care, with love, with tenderness, with nonviolence.”  - Thich Nhat Hanh

Vote for this article to appear in the Recommended list.

Site developed by the IDP and Genalo Designs.