[HealthDharma] Turning Suffering Inside Out, chapter seven, part two

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  • Kokuu
    Treeleaf Priest
    • Nov 2012
    • 6750

    [HealthDharma] Turning Suffering Inside Out, chapter seven, part two

    Dear all

    This week we will look at the second part of chapter seven, p108-116 (from ‘Uncurbed in Eternal Glory’ to the chapter end)

    Darlene starts off this section with what I think is some really good advice based on her own experience:

    What seemed after a while to be most satisfying for me in dealing with my anger was holding the feeling without judging it, feeling it in my body, staying in it for as long as it lasted, then watching it change of its own accord into something else. I found after doing this for some time that real spaciousness developed around the angry thoughts and feelings themselves.
    She notes that the problem, as she sees it, is not the anger itself, but how we express it, and talks about how she learned to direct that angry energy in more helpful ways.
    Darlene speaks of an earlier view she had that anger was the result of not being able to deal with pain and that it would subside as she learned to do that. However, later she began to see anger as an entirely normal human emotion and a release valve for tension. She relates one story of how, after frustration of not being able to get the lid off of a jam jar because of her arthritis, she ended up smashing into the wall and happily watched the jam drip down the paintwork!

    Darlene narrates a time when she used her anger during a frustrating phone call with a business who had failed her, and notes how it enabled her to connect with the customer service representative and the supervisor through being entirely honest and in touch with her feelings. I am not sure I would 100% recommend that in the UK but you never know!


    Question prompts:

    1. What is you relationship with anger? How do you deal with anger and other strong emotions? Has that changed over time?

    2. Can you recall a time when anger has allowed you to make a connection rather than push someone away? What was the difference in that case?


    Wishing you a healthful week.

    Gassho
    Kokuu
    -sattoday/lah-

  • Kaitan
    Member
    • Mar 2023
    • 440

    #2
    This was a fun chapter! And the more I read this book the more intimate it feels. It has helped to connect some dots on my daily life and how I cope (or try) with anger. To be honest I kinda clueless on how to handle anger because I thought she was going to put examples like doing sports or high intensity activities, but given her health condition I guess she did the best she could.

    1. What is you relationship with anger? How do you deal with anger and other strong emotions? Has that changed over time?
    It is quite complex to discuss the evolution of anger throughout my life, definitely not easy to handle strong emotions. Only for the last maybe 6 months I started to become more aware of the anger, as I've previously mentioned. That's probably a good way to start addressing it.

    2. Can you recall a time when anger has allowed you to make a connection rather than push someone away? What was the difference in that case?

    I remember back in COVID I had a very unfortunate invasion of mice inside my room while I was in the Netherlands. I was living at the top floor of a house mostly made of wood therefore during winter mice tended to go back to that place and got me by surprise. It was a difficult situation I was shouting turning the lights making noise. Then my roommate downstairs got annoyed by that and got very angry at me and I responded furiously given his lack of understanding. I didn't apologize nor tried to explain anything, I let things take its course, let the situation be explained by itself. Afterwards he understood what was going on and since then we became closer friends.
    It was a bit hard to recall a situation of making connection through anger, but Darlene's examples helped with this one, I'm glad how humbling they are.

    Gasshō

    stlah

    ​​​Kaitan
    Kaitan - 界探 - Realm searcher
    Formerly known as "Bernal"

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    • Alina
      Member
      • Jul 2023
      • 141

      #3
      1. What is you relationship with anger? How do you deal with anger and other strong emotions? Has that changed over time?
      For most of my life I was afraid to show my anger, afraid of other's reactions to it. But I grew tired of carrying on like that, so I learned to express it in a clear, direct way that has helped me to deal with people who were treating me unfairly. I don't smash jam jars against the walls, I speak in a very direct and cold way and don't let the other person "off the hook" until I am sure they've heard me.

      2. Can you recall a time when anger has allowed you to make a connection rather than push someone away? What was the difference in that case?
      What I described above has had 2 outcomes, some treat me with more respect from that moment on (and distance, which has been good, they were being too nosy) and with another person it led to a lot of conversations and healing and we are closer now, in a big part thanks to them being willing to listen to me in spite of the anger surrounding the delivery of my message.


      Gassho
      Alina
      stlah

      Comment

      • Tairin
        Member
        • Feb 2016
        • 2725

        #4
        Well I must say that I feel this second half of the chapter was a little pointless and self indulgent. Sure, we need to learn to deal with our anger but her stories and examples didn’t seem like the sort of positive message I’d expect. I am disappointed with what I read.

        1. What is you relationship with anger? How do you deal with anger and other strong emotions? Has that changed over time?

        I covered this in the previous post. The short version is that I have a poor history where anger is concerned. Dealing with it is part of what brought me to this practice Through Zen I feel I have gained a better understanding of my own anger and what generally has fuelled it.

        2. Can you recall a time when anger has allowed you to make a connection rather than push someone away? What was the difference in that case?

        No not really. What I have seen is that sometimes reflecting on my anger helps me see how my behaviour might have been perceived by others and may help me build bridges by being contrite and apologetic.


        Tairin
        Sat today and lah
        泰林 - Tai Rin - Peaceful Woods

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