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Anger

Why is Enlightenment so desirable?

Because it is the end of suffering.

What kind of suffering?

The suffering based on the imagination of and identification with a vulnerable “I”. For example: anxiety, guilt, hurry, feelings of oppression, feelings of inadequacy, stubbornness, greed, fear of the future. It is the suffering associated with the seven chief features of false personality.

What about anger?

Anger is a natural reaction to unpleasantness or dislike. Look at dogs setting up their boundaries around one another. That is anger.

Anger is not a negative emotion of false personality. It can serve as fuel and fodder to negative emotions of false personality but in its original manifestation it is not.

First, different people react to the same stimulus differently. What may be unpleasant to me is not for you.

Second, the amount and intensity of anger depends directly on a person’s temperament. This is well known in traditional medicine which is based on “the elements”; and is completely ignored by modern medicine or psychology. It also depends of various personality traits that modern psychology is either oblivious to or confused about, such as body type and others. A choleric person will experience much more anger than a phlegmatic one.

Spiritual teachings and religions are usually biased against anger. No wonder, anger is unpleasant to anyone. But anger is not a sign of weakness of any kind, as long it does not become fuel for false personality.

On the other hand, on a purely psychological level, those who want to control have to control other people’s anger first of all. In the fight against tyranny anger is an asset. Nothing can change without anger to spark a revolution. But if unchecked it can also become fuel for tyranny itself. Fire is not an easy element to understand, accept or master.

The notion that anger is a flaw is false and is bad psychology. Much of that attitude comes from religious bias. They see a saint or yogi or guru sitting immovable like a pumpkin and equate that with Spiritual Realization. That is a superficial assumption.

Ramana and Nisargadatta are a great pair to exemplify this. Ramana looks like a phlegmatic, a “water” type of person. Barely any anger. And if angry no one ever sees it. Nisargadatta is a choleric, a “fire” type of person. Impatient and angry at anything that he did not like.

What is noteworthy however, is that if the identification with “I” is no longer present anger does not linger. It no longer becomes fuel for false personality’s negative emotions. There is an eruption, it subsides as soon as the stimulus becomes absent and that is the end of the story.

Also noteworthy is that some people’s education and natural traits give them the ability to control anger at the root or some time after, and while it can be important during preparatory spiritual work, and useful in social situations, it does not equate with Spiritual Realization.

Nothing Wrong Anymore - non-duality Advaita pointers