By Brian Kane 10/17/2012
Yi Ren Qigong can teach the practitioner how to deal with both inner and outer conflicts in a way that is productive and not destructive. I have noticed recently that these conflicts can make a person grow spiritually, but not if they are met with hostility and anger.
Being aware of my own detrimental anger I noticed that there seems to be a formula that creates anger. This formula is when unmet expectations cause frustration which leads to anger. In life, there are only two things that are certain: you were one day conceived and will one day die. If one lives his or her life knowing that there are many things we cannot control and that goals and accomplishments are important, but they do not fully define us, then a person can live in and appreciate the present more: a concept I wrote about last week often referred to as mindfulness.
It is not healthy to act on our anger with verbal or physical altercation, but to identify the source and alleviate the source—to think about the solution and not obsess about the problem. A friend of mine said to me recently, “Life throws it, and we have to learn how to catch it.” This reminded me of pushing hands (a Taichi exercise) in which you are learning to synch up with your partner’s unique physical and bio-rhythmic motion, instead of trying to oppose your partner’s energy. In essence, you are trying to use both negative and positive energy to create a feeling of productive oneness.
I present the reader with a challenge: the next time either an internal thought, a tough situation you find yourself in or an external force—such as a different person trying to antagonize you–either intentionally or unintentionally, causes you to be angry, instead of acting on that anger with harsh words or violence, try to counteract your anger with positive thoughts of love and compassion. To do so, will alleviate your anger, it will transform the energy of anger into something more useful and even more powerful.
The acclaimed spiritual guru Thich Nhat Hanh, in 1995 during a conversation with Ram Dass, stated about anger:
“When you are angry, you are not lucid. You may say things or you may do things that can be very destructive. That is why it is better to use other forms of energy, like the energy of compassion, the energy of understanding…”
Thich Nhat Hanh also believes that loving kindness is us but anger is also us. So the loving kindness part of us should try to take care of the angry part of us like a mother cares for a baby.
Several situations this past week have caused me to get very angry. However, touching on my recent revelations pertaining to the importance of mindfulness, I discovered that the worst way to react to a hostile person or situation is with your own hostility, your own anger. In fact, in two cases in which a person was being passive-aggressive with me, instead of trying to use insidious hostility on that person, I asked the individual how he was doing. Almost instantly, his anger was transformed into gratitude for my thoughtful question and sincere feeling of empathy. He also felt grateful for my empathy generated by understanding why he was angry and a showing of compassion and appreciation for this person’s being, including not just his anger, but the person’s good qualities as well. I have challenged myself to continue to use this technique of diffusing my own anger and the anger of others.
Below is a video of the insightful discussion between Ram Dass and Thich Nhat Hanh. Have a great week, all, and be passionate about transforming your anger into more useful energies.