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Anger - A Tool of Destruction or a Boon?

8 February, 2019

, emotional health

Anger and Emotions

Every living person has emotions, and emotions are the symbol of life.  No one should try to rationalize or philosophize about it. One of the manifestations of emotions is Anger. Anger is probably the most real of all human emotions. Anger alone depicts the mood of a person at that time, and hence it is a part of human nature. It should not be considered as a nature of humankind but is just an outburst of the behavior. A certain degree of Anger is normal and healthy.  Since Anger is an outburst, the corrective step should, therefore, be “the control.” Control on the tongue, control on the self that one should not hurt others, as one might be doing so in the state of angriness. No words should be uttered which might be regretted at a later stage. Words are the most potent weapon God has given to humanity. Anger usually manifests with harsh words, especially, to our near and dear ones. Anger is unavoidable, and there can never be an escape route from Anger. Everyone gets angry at one or the other times, as emotions play an essential role in life and no one can be emotionless.

Anger is generated, because of our expectations. We expect something for self from others, and if not received, the failure of such desire is converted into Anger. Closer the people are, more the expectation is, whereas with strangers, as there is no or little expectation, there is no anger. For example, if one calls a stranger at odd hours due to some urgent work/information, the caller will be courteous and may use soft words like sorry for calling at such an odd hour, etc., but under the similar situation with own dear ones, anger may develop if call not picked up or time is taken in answering the call, resulting in shouting or expressing the anger in any other form  as to why we took so much time etc. We take our people for granted and want them to behave or live in a way that makes us happy. If this does not happen, it becomes a cause for anger, as the emotions are stirred and expectations have gone up.

Anger and Frustration:

Thwarted desires make one angry. A call irritates you when you are busy doing something of interest, watching an interesting program, or some interesting event is keeping you engaged. Someone visits you when you don’t want to meet, and that makes you angry. It happens because at such times the life is at a flow in a particular direction and the flow is broken or obstructed. This emotional disturbance gives rise to frustration which is also a kind of Anger, and when one can’t do anything about it, more frustration is generated and such situation, if remain uncontrolled,  is developed into depression causing serious health problems.

Anger & Control Management:

The most interesting and satisfying inference of anger is that Anger under control, can be used for the benefit to the society and largely even for the world.  During the Ramayana period, Lord Rama, who was emotionally heartbroken because of the abduction of Sita by Ravana, got angry but this anger was controlled anger and so channelized into the right thinking, resulted into the ultimate destruction of  Ravana, a huge benefit to the society; a victory of Right over Wrong. However, similar anger under an uncontrolled situation, manifests into doing wrong or senseless things, as Anger hampers the power of right thinking. The clear example again is that of Ravana who not only destroyed himself, his Kingdom and all his near and dear ones, just because he did not think rationally or channelize anger into the right direction by controlling it, when his sister Supernka narrated the insult borne to her by Rama. If the anger of Ravana at that time could have been subsided and proper thought would have been given, the entire history would have changed.

Anger & Positivity:

Anger, jealousy, greed, and desires, by themselves, are not good or bad in absolute terms and are always related to the cause. Though these traits by themselves are considered bad but can be utilized for better purposes if properly controlled & channelized. For example the Anger, jealousy & desire of Rani Kekayi, who, on finding that  King Dashrath is making Rama as the King of Ayodhya and not her Son, Bharat, got angry, jealous and greedy and emotions dominated  over her and  under the influence of these,  asked the fulfillment of  three boons given by King Dashratha long time back.. Accordingly, Rama was sent to the forests for 14 years. This anger, jealousy, desire, and selfishness, however, became a Boon for the entire mankind. Ravan was killed and SATYUG, The Rule of Truth, prevailed. An unwitting result. Thus in such situations, even the saying that “one should not get angry” becomes a farce,  Apparent display of the outburst of Anger, etc may be very wrong deed but ultimately may prove a Boon to the entire society. Selfish anger is bad, but anger which brings, howsoever unintentionally it may be, beneficial end for the welfare for the society or the world is always good. This type of Anger never burnt the heart but burns the negative feelings one carries within oneself. This generation of anger creates a force and power within oneself and always leads to a positive result. Take the case of Saint TULSIDAS who loved his wife to the extreme, but when once severely rebuked by her, left home carrying such Anger in the heart and went to jungles for meditating. The result was that this TULSIDAS, a great worshiper and devotee, created the most respected epic RAMAYANA.

Take another case of that of Mahatma Gandhi, who, out of the fit of anger, when thrown out of Railways 1st class compartment on racial grounds, in South Africa took a vow to eradicate apartheid in free India. This anger was not against any person, and he did not retaliate on any person by abusing or pelting stones or destroying Railway property or creating an awkward display of anger, but against the system of apartheid, which made the men act, in the way, they acted. This was the Positive energy which diverted anger toward removing apartheid, becoming the main cause of the freedom struggle that lead to freedom in India. The result of such anger is before the world, making the anger and revenge into positive energy to achieve great things in life. STRENGTH & ENERGY are the basic ingredients. Anger is energy, and if not properly utilized and spent on small causes, it is like wasting it; but if used for greater causes becomes the Strength. Therefore some thinking is required in this direction that this form of energy so generated due to righteous Anger is utilized in eradicating an irritating system.

Sublimation of Anger:

Sublimation of anger is also an expression, which is, saying or doing things through words or deeds without giving any thought to the rightness of the action. It is wrong, and it is like doing what animals do. If one hits a dog and dog gets angry, he bites or bark. Sublimation is to use your judgment to transforming and channelizing the feelings into a higher or better cause.

So many times it is observed people do not get angry for the right reason or cause and that too is bad. If a man is beating a child or something wrong happening somewhere and if one doesn’t get angry is certainly wrong. It does not amount to that you are ‘Sadhu,’ a saint; it means you are also bad. In such cases, Anger is right and thus getting angry, and directing this righteous anger for higher or better cause is always good for the self and the society. Thus such SUBLIMATION; i.e., expression of Anger is good as it has been expressed for the welfare of yourself and to the society.

Righteous Anger:

It requires wisdom to know what is good or bad; if wisdom is not used and one gets angry, just for the sake of anger, the society sets him right through the prevailing laws or norms set by them. However if this anger is against some crime, poverty or injustice then it is a Right Anger and is good one. The energy so generated by this Anger is used to combat the evil causes and thus leads to improving the social conditions. People in general, appreciate such anger and follow in fulfilling the cause. History is full of such display of the power of Positive Anger, like Bhagat Singh and other freedom fighters, the Social Reformers, and Saints.

A worth noticing fact is that in Hindu scriptures generally the Gods are shown as carrying weapons. This is, however, is not a symbol of Anger or not to cause a havoc, rather symbolizes the intention of doing good to the society, a good use, whereas an Asurs (bad influences) hold similar weapons, to cause harm to the people. It is, therefore, true that anger of a wise person is beneficial to the society as it generates positive energy in the world bringing good but the same weapon, when it falls in the hands of foolish people causes destruction.


 It is wrong to say that one should not get angry- Selfish anger is bad, but anger for the welfare of society, the world is not bad. This Anger creates energy in oneself to change what is wrong; it is a positive one.  Sacred mythological scriptures of Hindu mythology such as Puranas, Upanishads and other respected books are full of such examples. The primary emphasis is that the Anger, a natural phenomenon of human life is not always bad and if channelized into the right direction, it proves a boon to humankind and society.


by esteemed Samarth Member, Shri Ramesh C. Srivastava, Jaipur

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