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G-d, I hate being angry.

I mean, I just hate it. I hate the way it feels in my body, I hate the adrenaline, I hate the way my brain circles around & around the thing I'm angry about, unable to let go of it and think of something else. When I get angry when I'm fighting (in the professional teaching/learning self-defense sense) I can do something about it -- defend myself -- and it goes through my body and dissipates. When I'm angry personally, though, there doesn't seem to be any way to process the emotion.

Writing this it occurs to me that 'hate' and 'anger' are clearly not the same emotion for me, which I find somewhat surprising. But hate feels like a mental judgement, whereas anger is something my body decides.

But now I am distracted both by a rush of physical exhaustion & the need to get ready to take my husband to his appointment with an orthopedist, so --


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 29th, 2009 02:36 am (UTC)
I have a terrible relationship with anger.

I think it came from growing up with my mom, and all of her predispositions for fits of anger that she only realized and dealt with long after I went to college. But I learned quickly as a child that, if I got angry back, I would lose. The only way to "win" was to be dispassionate in the face of rage. It would only make her angrier, and that allowed me to win the game.

The thing is, anger unexpressed, for me, often translated itself into self-loathing. I've done an awful lot of thinking about the relationship between the two, especially over the course of the last three years, and it's interesting to think how, once I started allowing my anger to exist, I started recovering an awful lot of my sanity.

Anger can work for you, and does have its place. That concept still terrifies me a bit, but I know that accepting it helped me out.
Jan. 29th, 2009 06:08 pm (UTC)
Yeah... I have that same distinction and I really really hate it when I'm angry and can't do anything about it... *sighs*
Jan. 29th, 2009 06:35 pm (UTC)
One of my favorite pithy Zen stories involves a beefy grizzled samurai (hereafter Sam) type going up to a Zen Master (hereafter Zemmy) and demanding, "Hey, tell me the nature of heaven and hell."

Zemmy ignores him at first--he's all meditative at the time--and after the demand gets repeated with more irritation, responds by refusing, and then insulting the fellow. I don't know, he says his shogun dresses him funny or whatever. Pushes all his buttons hard is the upshot.

Sam's face gets red. Veins on his forehead and temples and neck bulge. There might be a very faint warning tingle in his left arm. Steam shoots out his ears, and in a zippy flash he has his sword out and raised up to cut Zemmy right in half, because, how dare he.

"That's hell," Zemmy says.

As mandated by federal guidelines in these kinds of stories, Sam has a moment of clarity that rocks him right back on his heels. He's seeing his own investment in his anger, how he's reacting to and feeding it, etc etc, and it all goes away, leaving just clarity and deep gratitude at the understanding.

"That's heaven," Zemmy concludes. A "the more you know!" splash screen appears.
Jan. 31st, 2009 06:02 pm (UTC)
Oh yes. Nothing useful to add, but yes. I think I still get anger and hate confused, though. I'm getting better at letting anger go, but it's taking a long, long time and it's horrible!

An another note, hope you and your husband are feeling a bit better today.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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