Embracing Anger on the Spiritual Path
Author: Nanice Ellis
Anger sparks the courage to overcome disempowering circumstances and motivates us to take a stand, speak our truth, set boundaries, and even put an end to negative relationships.
According to many spiritual practices, if we want to attain spiritual awakening, we must avoid anger and other “low vibration” emotions. However, this is deceptively untrue, and, in fact, before we are fully awake, overriding anger can actually be a spiritual bypass that keeps us asleep. Here’s why...
Along with self-awareness and other key elements, spiritual awakening requires self-empowerment, and this includes being fully responsible for our lives, expressing our real selves, and speaking our truth. Furthermore, feelings of victimhood and powerlessness demonstrate the areas of life where we are most asleep. In fact, if you feel stuck or stagnant on your spiritual path, there is a good chance you’re experiencing disempowerment in one or more ways.
So, if spiritual awakening requires self-empowerment, how do we get from disempowered to empowered? No worries - life offers unlimited opportunities, and, in fact, until we are fully awake, it is common to find ourselves in situations and relationships that provoke feelings of powerlessness; not as karma or punishment, but, rather, as catalysts for self-empowerment.
Sooner or later, due to increasing intensity, disempowering situations and relationships become intolerable - the moment we cannot take anymore is the moment we claim our power. Nonetheless, it is often incredibly difficult to go from powerless to empowered. Fortunately, nature provides a “fail-safe switch” for self-empowerment. Anger to the rescue!
Anger sparks the courage to overcome disempowering circumstances and motivates us to take a stand, speak our truth, set boundaries, and even put an end to negative relationships; giving us no other choice, anger becomes a bridge from disempowered to empowered, and, consequently, from asleep to awake. Hence, this is how anger plays a pivotal role in awakening and why suppressing anger can keep us asleep.
What about Love?
No doubt, choosing love and forgiveness over anger allows us to evolve, however, if you feel powerless in a challenging situation or relationship, choosing love in lieu of anger could suppress self-expression and perpetuate disempowerment. If you are on the path to awakening, there comes the point when you cannot avoid self-empowerment, and this means that you cannot spiritually bypass anger by choosing love for another. In fact, in the process of self-empowerment, you must choose love for yourself first and foremost.
Anger is best expressed and processed by communicating your feelings and speaking your truth in the disempowering relationship or situation that’s causing anger, but, if that’s not possible, talking to a supportive friend or counselor is the next best thing. You might also express and process anger by joining a boxing class, hitting a pillow, screaming in private, or doing some type of physical movement. If you spent a lifetime suppressing anger, it could feel overwhelming at first, so give yourself time and space to process anger through to resolution.
Since anger is a secondary emotion (a reaction to deeper emotions), when you process anger, other emotions will likely surface, but, keep in mind, the more you embrace all your emotions, the more conscious and awake you will become.
Most importantly, take appropriate, empowering actions, but don’t confuse self-empowerment with getting even. Although it’s normal to fantasize about revenge, it’s probably best not to act on it.
By holding a space for anger, listening to its wisdom and partaking in self-empowering actions, anger can take you on a journey from unconscious and powerless to conscious and empowered, but anger is only a bridge and not the destination. Indeed, from a fully awake state, you will discover that you don’t need anger to be empowered, and as a natural by-product of higher consciousness, anger naturally dissolves.
From a God’s Eye View, the person or people responsible for invoking your anger are actually serving you on your journey to awakening. So, one day, don’t be surprised if anger naturally morphs into forgiveness and forgiveness transforms into gratitude.
Being spiritually awake doesn’t suddenly make you a saint nor do you need to be a saint to awaken, and, contrary to popular myth, you don’t lose your humanity. Once spiritually awake, you are consciously empowered and free, but you are still you!
You are love, you are light, and all is well!
In grace & gratitude,
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