Sunday, September 28, 2008

Anger

What is accomplished in anger outbursts? I have struggled with a bad temper since I was young. I believe that it is getting better, but I know that I still have my spurts. I was in the airport yesterday in Atlanta and watched a mad chew an airport worker out about another worker standing by. He called the lady a witch as she walked away and then proceeded to rip his tag off his luggage, throw it on the ground, and walk off. Whenever I witness blow ups, I feel like I witness immaturity. Am I wrong? Are there times to blow up? I know Jesus blew up in the temple one day with righteous anger over people using the temple of God wrongly. People may take advantage of you if you never blow up, but it seems that much more gets done with a soft answer that turns away wrath.

3 comments:

Jewda said...

I think there are appropriate times to blow up, but only if you do it properly. Name calling probably isn't a good thing. But I tell you what, if someone gets in Sarah's face, I'll blow up. Also, if you listen to Christian rock while trying to sleep, my mom will blow up.

Seda said...

Anger is our body saying, "You matter. You are not helpless." It's a valuable response, and something we should listen to and respect. And sometimes it can lead to effective violent action. But mostly blowups just cause pain and more pain.

It seems to me that the most effective actions typically occur when the anger is transformed into unconditional love that speaks truth to power and resists violence with 'indomitable will' and compassion. Then you have Gandhi leading the Salt March, or Martin Luther King marching to Selma, or Julia Butterfly Hill living in a tree for two years to save its life.

I think the real answer is not to put your anger down, or lay it aside, or guilt-trip yourself for it. It's in embracing it, and then unraveling it into unconditional love and nonviolent resistance.

David Carrel said...

Yes, I agree with both of you. There is a time for it and a time to use it for good.