Anger is an emotion that’s despised in our culture. If you were taught from an early age to feel shame around having anger or expressing it, you may have pushed it underground. Anger is an emotion that few people want to own. The fear of being rejected or ostracised for honestly owning anger is huge. The fear of the loss of identity as a ‘nice person’ can be too high a price to pay for living authentically.
These fears lead to the erroneous conclusion that anger is a problem. Far from being a negative emotion, anger is a gift. It’s a powerful energy for change that often goes unrecognized both personally and collectively. The repression of anger, casting it into the shadow, which eventually causes it to erupt like a volcano is the problem.
A people trained from birth to believe anger is bad, and who won’t allow themselves to feel it are easy to control. There is such a taboo on anger that some would rather get sick and die than get angry. This taboo can be particularly strong in people who identify themselves as being spiritual or who regard themselves as being too enlightened to get angry.
It’s not always easy to spot when anger that’s suppressed or repressed is sabotaging your life. There are many disguises for anger. Anger can come out sideways in:
• Passive-aggressive behaviour (that you may be unconscious of or think people won’t notice)
• Sarcastic comments
• Having accidents
• Being late
• Alcohol and substance abuse
• Behavioural addictions – Sex, shopping, debting, gambling etc.
• Getting sick
• And many other ways…
So-called affairs are sometimes the result of anger towards a partner that’s repressed rather than openly expressed and worked through.
It’s not possible to suppress one emotion without suppressing others. In suppressing anger you’ll suppress love and joy too. If you ever feel a bit flat, crabby or impatient, if life’s a bit humdrum or your sex drive’s declining, tune into your body and ask yourself “What am I angry about?” Don’t answer this with your mind. Let your body speak, and pay attention to the answer.
Anger redeemed is power. In having the courage to face the demon of your own anger you’ll unleash a power within you that you never knew existed. Experience a feeling of deep inner peace and freedom. Develop a sense of mastery and self-confidence in your life.
Sometimes men come for Tantra massage who have repressed and suppressed so much anger that their body is numb, no longer capable of feeling. What’s not acknowledged in the emotional body will find a way to express itself in the physical body.