Monday, May 25, 2009

More about anger and forgiveness

This is an article I found in the and I wanted to share it with you. It's written by Kathy McAnany and it's part of a series of articles she wrote about forgiveness.

In my last article I touched on the fact that we have a choice about how we respond to other people’s anger and that keeping yourself in a state of anger causes you more harm than it does the other person. I also touched on forgiveness and how forgiveness is the solution to freeing yourself from the bondage of the past.

I want to clarify that forgiveness does not mean condoning abuse from other people. Abuse is never okay in any form. Forgiveness is about letting go. It is about a very deep letting go; and is not always easy. It is sometimes much easier to stay in the feelings of hurt, anger, and resentment. Sometimes we feel our anger and resentment is justified, and why should we forgive the other person. We might feel that they don’t deserve our forgiveness.

However, one important thing to remember is that forgiveness is really for us. We are doing it for our self, so that we may have peace of mind. When we are consumed with anger and resentment we cannot move forward because as I’ve mentioned before, the energy is bound up in the anger and resentment.

It is also okay to feel angry. Some forms of religion and spirituality teach that anger is never okay. I disagree with this. I think it is appropriate to feel anger when someone has abused you or has crossed your boundaries.

Anger is an important emotion because it tells us when somebody has crossed our boundaries. Our anger is telling us that this is not okay. Without anger we would have no way of knowing when somebody has crossed the line. Our anger can propel us to take action and do something about it (whatever the violation may be) in a constructive way.
What is not okay is to hold on to that anger an let it turn into rage or resentment. It’s okay to feel anger. But to let it continue and have it become a state of mind is harmful. So allow yourself to feel the anger. Do something about it in a constructive way if the situation calls for it. Then let it go.

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