Regarding anger

Buddhist ethical conduct including the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).
Richkierich
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Regarding anger

Post by Richkierich » Sun Sep 04, 2016 5:52 am

Greetings, I have been practicing meditation for close to a year now and find myself not going anywhere. Some days it feels good or feels like I'm doing it right, some days my mind is just so agitated, full of thoughts and emotions. But i understand I am just an observer and should just let things be, seeing the mind just as it is and not judging it.

I have been having some problems with anger, I have watched on YouTube about the Four Noble Truths, namely identifying the cause of suffering and then cessation of suffering. Tried practicing in daily life, sometimes I could let the emotions be and it will go off on its own, sometimes I couldn't, in other words, i see the anger thoughts coming, the angry feeling coming, and just couldn't let the emotions be without reacting, sometimes if I see it longer and try to breathe in to soften the emotions, often I get thoughts of me telling myself to do something like "bang the table" or "shout at him", sometimes it is so strong and I just gave in and do what the mind tells and regret later on.

Just scary, I didn't know this was the process of anger in the mind. It is only now I see it happening by phases, just sometimes the desire to react overcomes me. Are there any suggestions I could follow to help me cope with letting go? :thanks:

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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Sep 04, 2016 7:31 am

Read the entire section on loving-kindness meditation in the Visuddhimagga (The Path of Purification) starting at p 291, but especially the section on getting rid of resentment starting on p 293.
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cjmacie
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by cjmacie » Sun Sep 04, 2016 11:33 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Read the entire section on loving-kindness meditation in the Visuddhimagga (The Path of Purification) starting at p 291, but especially the section on getting rid of resentment starting on p 293.
1) Good suggestion. Commonly, metta instruction these days goes right into the protocol of well-wishing phrases for self and a series of others, but this method, nowhere found in the Sutta-s, comes from the Visuddimagga (and the Vimuttimagga, perhaps even the Patisambhidamagga many centuries prior). But, these books clearly focus on dealing with certain hindrances – notably anger/resentment and impatience -- BEFORE specifically cultivating the brahmaviharas; perhaps because such hindrances, when unrecognized and/or repressed, can block progress in cultivating metta.

2) I would suggest, though, citing locations in the Visuddhimagga by Chapter and Paragraph numbers primarily, and by page numbers only with specification of exactly which edition is used. That's because people may have any of several editions of the Visuddhimagga, though almost all are Nanamoli's translation and stem from some "BPS" version; the pagination, however, varies, often widely, across these various editions and reprints.

For instance, I have two versions: one digital (same as the one pointed to above), and a hard-copy edition, and in the latter, Chapter IX, Paragraph 1 is found on page 321 – same passage as on p. 291 in the digital one.

And again, the new "Manual of Insight" translation of Mahasi's Burmese "vipassana shu ni kyan” uses (as per the bibliography):
"Nanamoli, Bhikku, trans 1991. The Path of Purification: Visuddhimagga. Onalaska: BPS Pariyatti Editions."
This is yet another "BPS" edition, but when the translators here cite a quotation as on page "605", in my copies, that passage occurs on page 609 (digital edition), and on page 679 (hard-copy edition). Fortunately, they also cite in the form "Vism 18.1", i.e. Chapter 18, Paragraph 1.

And yet a further complication: when one goes to the Pali version (digital CST 4.0), they number the paragraph/sections consecutively, across chapters, from 1 to 896, not resetting at 1 in each chapter. So the 1st paragraph/section in Chapter 18 is numbered "662".

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Bhikkhu Pesala
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by Bhikkhu Pesala » Sun Sep 04, 2016 12:40 pm

cjmacie wrote:I would suggest, though, citing locations in the Visuddhimagga by Chapter and Paragraph numbers primarily, and by page numbers only with specification of exactly which edition is used.
I provided a link to a PDF download of "The Path of Purification," which is the edition that I cited.
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Richkierich
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by Richkierich » Mon Sep 05, 2016 12:12 am

Thank you Bhante

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cjmacie
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by cjmacie » Mon Sep 05, 2016 1:47 am

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:
cjmacie wrote:I would suggest, though, citing locations in the Visuddhimagga by Chapter and Paragraph numbers primarily, and by page numbers only with specification of exactly which edition is used.
I provided a link to a PDF download of "The Path of Purification," which is the edition that I cited.
And proper bibliographical reference would be:
Chapter IX, Section 1ff (1-76) "Lovingkindness" (p. 291 in one edition),
Chapter IX, Sections 14-39 "[Getting Rid of Resentment]" (pp. 293-301 in that edition).

Chapter IX ("Brahmavihára-niddesa") covers all four Brhamavihara-s, in about 33 pages (sections 1-124). The initial part, on Metta, takes 19 pages, of which a full 9 pages — nearly half -- is devoted to dealing with resentment. That is to say, the Commentarial treatment of metta addresses, directly and in depth, what Richkierich's questions brought up in the OP of this thread – as Bhikkhu Pesala pointed out.

Richkierich
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by Richkierich » Mon Sep 05, 2016 7:10 am

cjmacie wrote:
Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:
cjmacie wrote:I would suggest, though, citing locations in the Visuddhimagga by Chapter and Paragraph numbers primarily, and by page numbers only with specification of exactly which edition is used.
I provided a link to a PDF download of "The Path of Purification," which is the edition that I cited.
And proper bibliographical reference would be:
Chapter IX, Section 1ff (1-76) "Lovingkindness" (p. 291 in one edition),
Chapter IX, Sections 14-39 "[Getting Rid of Resentment]" (pp. 293-301 in that edition).

Chapter IX ("Brahmavihára-niddesa") covers all four Brhamavihara-s, in about 33 pages (sections 1-124). The initial part, on Metta, takes 19 pages, of which a full 9 pages — nearly half -- is devoted to dealing with resentment. That is to say, the Commentarial treatment of metta addresses, directly and in depth, what Richkierich's questions brought up in the OP of this thread – as Bhikkhu Pesala pointed out.
Much thanks Cjmacie :)

pegembara
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by pegembara » Mon Sep 05, 2016 8:27 am

The Answer to Anger & Aggression is Patience(Khanti)
The Buddhist teachings tell us that patience is the antidote to anger and aggression. When we feel aggression in all its many forms—resentment, bitterness, being very critical, complaining and so forth—we can apply the different practices we’ve been given and all the good advice we’ve heard and given to other people. But those often don’t seem to help us. That’s why this teaching about patience caught my interest a few years ago, because it’s so hard to know what to do when one feels anger and aggression.

When we’re feeling aggressive—and in some sense this would apply to any strong feeling—there’s an enormous pregnant quality that pulls us in the direction of wanting to get some resolution. It hurts so much to feel the aggression that we want it to be resolved.

So what do we usually do? We do exactly what is going to escalate the aggression and the suffering. We strike out; we hit back. Something hurts our feelings, and initially there is some softness there—if you’re fast, you can catch it—but usually you don’t even realize there is any softness. You find yourself in the middle of a hot, noisy, pulsating, wanting-to-just-get-even-with-someone state of mind: it has a very hard quality to it. With your words or your actions, in order to escape the pain of aggression, you create more aggression and pain.

Patience has a lot to do with getting smart at that point and just waiting: not speaking or doing anything. On the other hand, it also means being completely and totally honest with yourself about the fact that you’re furious. You’re not suppressing anything—patience has nothing to do with suppression. In fact, it has everything to do with a gentle, honest relationship with yourself. If you wait and don’t feed your discursive thought, you can be honest about the fact that you’re angry. But at the same time you can continue to let go of the internal dialogue. In that dialogue you are blaming and criticizing, and then probably feeling guilty and beating yourself up for doing that. It’s torturous, because you feel bad about being so angry at the same time that you really are extremely angry, and you can’t drop it. It’s painful to experience such awful confusion. Still, you just wait and remain patient with your confusion and the pain that comes with it.

When you begin to investigate, you notice, for one thing, that whenever there is pain of any kind—the pain of aggression, grieving, loss, irritation, resentment, jealousy, indigestion, physical pain—if you really look into that, you can find out for yourself that behind the pain there is always something we are attached to. There is always something we’re holding on to.

Pema Chodron
And what is right speech? Abstaining from lying, from divisive speech, from abusive speech, & from idle chatter: This is called right speech.

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Aloka
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by Aloka » Mon Sep 05, 2016 1:45 pm

pegembara wrote: Pema Chodron
It might be worth noting that Pema Chodron is a Tibetan Buddhist nun and not a Theravada teacher.

This is an excellent talk which I attended myself which might be helpful. Its from Ajahn Amaro, abbot of Amaravati Monastery UK:

"I am a Buddhist, why am I so angry?"

http://www.amaravati.org/audio/i-am-a-b ... -so-angry/

:anjali:
Last edited by Aloka on Mon Sep 05, 2016 2:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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bodom
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by bodom » Mon Sep 05, 2016 2:16 pm

From Nyantilokas The Buddhas Path to Deliverence:
THE FOUR DIVINE ABODES
or
THE FOUR BOUNDLESS STATES


DN 33:

There are four boundless states, O brethren:
Herein the monk with all-embracing kindness …
with compassion …with altruistic joy … with equa-
nimity pervades first one direction, then the second,
then the third, then the fourth, above, below, around,
in every quarter. And identifying himself with all, he
pervades the entire universe with all-embracing kind-
ness, with compassion, with altruistic joy, with equa-
nimity, with heart grown great, wide, deep, boundless,
free from wrath and anger.

DEVELOPMENT OF ALL-EMBRACING KINDNESS

Before taking up this exercise, the beginner should,
according to Vism IX,2, first of all consider the evil conse-
quences of hatred and the blessing of all-embracing kindness. For as long as one has not understood the evil consequences of a thing, so long one will not be able to overcome it. Similarly one cannot reach a noble state of mind before first understanding its blessing.

As it is said:


AN 3:55:

Because of hate, overwhelmed and fettered in
mind by hate, one leads an evil life in bodily deeds,
words, and thoughts, and understands according to
reality neither one’s own welfare, nor the welfare of
others, nor the welfare of both. If, however, hatred
is overcome, one leads no evil life, neither in basket deeds, words, or thoughts, and one knows according
to reality one’s own welfare, the welfare of others, and
the welfare of both.

AN 11:16:

If, O monks, the liberation of heart by all-embracing
kindness has been cultivated and developed, made
one’s vehicle and foundation, is firmly established,
brought to greatness and full perfection, one may
expect eleven blessings: One sleeps peacefully; awakes
peacefully; has no evil dreams; is dear to humans; is
dear to spirits; heavenly beings protect one; fire, poi-
son, and weapons cannot do any harm; the scattered
mind becomes composed; one’s features brighten up;
one will have an untroubled death; and if one does not
penetrate higher, one will be reborn in the Brahma-
world.

In Vibh XIII,643 it is said: “But how does the monk
whose mind is filled with all-embracing kindness pervade
one direction? Just as, at the sight of a dear and agreeable person, one may feel kindness, just so does he pervade with his kindness all living beings.”


Pts II,130:

In five ways the liberation of heart by all-embracing
kindness is practised with unspecified extension: “May
all beings be free from hate, oppression, and anxiety;
may they pass their life in happiness! May all living
beings … all creatures … all individuals … all those
included in personal existence be free from hate,
oppression, and anxiety; may they pass their life in
happiness!”

Snp 145:

“May all beings live in happiness and peace. And may
their hearts be filled with joy and with delight!”

According to Vism IX,4–8, at the outset one should not
direct one’s kindness to a very dear person or to an indiffer-ent person, also not to an enemy, or to a person of the other sex. First of all, one should begin with oneself: “Let me be happy, free from suffering!” Or: “Let me be free from hate, oppression, and anxiety! Let me lead a life in happiness!”Thereafter one should think: “Just as I love happiness and detest suffering, and as I wish to live and not to die, just so it is with other beings!”


SN 3:8:

Whatever quarter of the world I searched through,
I found no one whom I loved better than myself. Just
so to all others their self is most dear. Thus, wishing
well to all, one should do harm to none.

At first, therefore, one should direct the all-embracing
kindness to oneself, then to one’s venerable teacher or a
similar person, and think of his pure life, his insight, etc.,
and say to oneself: “Let this good and noble being be happy and free from suffering.” Thereupon one should direct one’s kindness to a dear friend, then to an indifferent person, then to an enemy.

If, however, resentment should arise when thinking of
the enemy, then one should revert and concentrate one’s
kindness on the above-mentioned persons. However, should the monk, even after attaining the jh±na, still feel resentment against the enemy, then he should remember the simile of the saw, etc. (see next text).


MN 21:

If, O monks, robbers or highwaymen should use
a double-handled saw to cut your limbs and joints,
whoever gives way to anger would not be follow-
ing my advice. For thus should you train yourselves:
“Undisturbed shall our mind remain, no evil words
shall escape our lips; friendly and full of sympathy
shall we remain, with heart full of love, free from any
hidden malice. And we shall penetrate those persons
with loving thoughts, wide, deep, boundless, freed
from anger and hatred.”

SN 7:2:

Whoso repays hatred with hatred,
Is worse than he who hated first.
Who to the hater shows no hate
Is the one who wins the arduous fight.
A blessing will he be to both,
Himself and the other too,
Who, seeing others full of wrath,
Remains composed and clear in mind.

AN 7:60:

The hater does not grasp the good,
Nor does he wish to see the truth,
For gloom and darkness reign supreme,
When hatred overpowers a man.
And if the hater puts the brake,
With difficulty or with ease,
If then his outburst comes to end,
He suffers from the fire within.
His looks his agitation show;
It’s like the smoke of smould’ring fire.
From it again may hate-fire burst
And set ablaze the world of men.
He knows no shame, no moral dread,
Is lacking tact whenever he speaks,
And overpowered by his hate,
He nowhere any refuge finds.
Oneself is everyone’s best friend,
Himself does everyone love most,
And yet in rage one kills oneself,
Made blind by various vanities.
Who others does deprive of life,
Who to his own life puts an end,
With hatred filled and overpowered,
Is unaware what he commits.
Thus, of this hate there may become
A deadly fetter quite concealed.
Break it to pieces, self-controlled,
With insight, wisdom, energy!
Just as the man who can see clear
Subdues his evil tendency,
So you should practise all good things
That no resentment may arise.
Redeemed from hate and from despair,
And rid of greed, from envy free,
The tamed ones have discarded hate
And reach Nibbana, free from taint.

Should the meditator, in spite of all his exertions, not
yet be able to subdue his grudge, then he should reflect
on certain noble qualities of his enemy and take no notice
of anything evil in him. But should he still not be able to
master his grudge, then he should remember the words of
the Buddha.


AN 5:161:

There are, O monks, five means of overcoming
hatred, whereby the anger that has arisen in a monk
may be overcome. And which are these?
To a person against whom hatred might arise, one
should develop all-embracing kindness … compassion
… equanimity … or one should not pay him any atten-
tion … or one should picture to oneself the law of the
ownership of karma, i.e. that this person too is the
owner and heir of his deeds, that he is sprung from
them, that his deeds are his refuge, and that he will
have his wholesome and unwholesome deeds as his
inheritance. In this way the monk may overcome his
hatred.

The following verses, quoted at Vism IX,22, are apparently from the Sutta Pitaka, source as yet untraced.

If in your domain the foe
Has hurt you, has offended you,
Why do you torture your own mind,
Which lies not in the foe’s domain?
Your kin, kindly disposed to you,
You one time weeping left behind,
Why don’t you leave your foe the hate
That brings you so much misery?
You’re truly playing with this hate,
Which brings to ruin, with all its roots,
The moral life you wish to lead,
Can there exist a greater fool?
Because someone has done you harm,
You fly into a rage and wrath!
But why then, after all, will you
Yourself commit such evil deeds?
If somebody, to worry you,
Has done you some unpleasant thing,
Why do you worry then yourself
And thereby satisfy his wish?
If you in rage and wrath should do
To him some evil thing or not,
In any case you will torment
Yourself with pain that’s born of hate.
If, out of rage and wrath, your foe
Should ever do you any harm,
Why do you imitate his deeds
And cherish hatred in your heart?
That wrath and hate through which the foe
Has done you some unpleasant thing,
That hate, indeed, you should destroy!
Why should you worry without cause?
As moment after moment all
Will vanish, so will vanish too
Those five groups that have done you harm.
Who is it then you’re angry with?
If one man hates another man,
Whom does he hate if not himself!
You are the cause of your own pain,
Why do you hate the other man?

Thus, the monk should ask himself against whom or what he actually feels hatred, whether against the corporeality group, the feeling group, the perception group, the mental forma-tions group, or the consciousness group, as in the ultimate sense no self is to be found.

An almost infallible means to overcome ill-feeling towards the enemy is to present him with a gift or to exchange gifts with him. Still another means is to consider that the enemy in former births might have been a near relation of oneself.
As it is said:


SN 15:14–19:

Not easy is it, O monks, to find any being that, at
some time in this long round of rebirths, has not been
your mother or father, or brother or sister, or son or
daughter.

The Hymn of Love

Snp 143–52 and Khp IX:

Whoever is intent on his own welfare
After he once has seen the tranquil realm,
He should be capable, upright, straight, and
amenable,
Of gentle manners, without any pride;
Should be content and satisfied with little,
Not over-busy, moderate in living,
Calm in his senses, and endowed with wisdom,
Not being loud and greedy in the houses.
He should not commit the slightest wrong,
For which wise brothers may rebuke him.
May all live joyful and in safety,
And may their hearts be filled with happiness!
Whatever beings there exist,
Should they be weak, or strong, or otherwise,
All, whether long, short, thick, or thin,
Or great, small, or medium size,
Invisible or visible,
Those that live near and those that live afar,
Those that are born or search for birth,
May all be filled with happiness in heart!
No one should ever hurt another,
Despise another for whatever reason,
And never should in wrath and hatred
One wish another person pain.
Just as a mother her own child,
Her only son, protects with all her might,
Just so one may towards all that live
Develop one’s mind in boundless kindness.
Thus toward all the world one should
Unfold one’s mind with all-embracing
kindness,
Above, below and round about,
Without depression, hate, and angry feeling.
Whether one stands, goes, sits, or lies,
As long as one is free from sloth and languor,
One may unfold this contemplation,
Which they call a divine abode.
Whoever, avoiding evil views,
Possesses virtue and clear understanding,
Has given up all sensuous greed,
Never enters any mother’s womb again.

It 27:

This was uttered by the Blessed One, the Holy One.
Thus have I heard:
Whatever, O monks, there are of worldly and meri-
torious things, all these are not worth one sixteenth of
the liberation of the heart by all-embracing kindness.
The liberation of the heart by all-embracing kindness
radiates and shines, surpassing all.
As the light of all the stars is not one sixteenth of
the moonlight, but the light of the moon, while radi-
ating and shining, surpasses them all, just so whatever
there are of worldly and meritorious things, all these
are not worth one sixteenth of the liberation of the
heart by all-embracing kindness. The liberation of the
heart by all-embracing kindness radiates and shines,
surpassing all.

As in autumn, in the last month of the rainy season,
in a clear and cloudless sky the sun rises in the firma-
ment and dispels the darkness of the whole universal
space, just so whatever there are of worldly and meri-
torious things, all these are not worth one sixteenth of
the liberation of the heart by all-embracing kindness.
The liberation of the heart by all-embracing kindness
radiates and shines, surpassing all.
:namaste:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With no struggling, no thinking,
the mind, still,
will see cause and effect
vanishing in the Void.
Attached to nothing, letting go:
Know that this is the way
to allay all stress.

- Upasika Kee Nanayan

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L.N.
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by L.N. » Mon Sep 05, 2016 4:01 pm

Richkierich wrote:Greetings, I have been practicing meditation for close to a year now and find myself not going anywhere. Some days it feels good or feels like I'm doing it right, some days my mind is just so agitated, full of thoughts and emotions. But i understand I am just an observer and should just let things be, seeing the mind just as it is and not judging it.
Richkierich, it sounds to me as if your meditation practice very much is going somewhere. The experience you describe when you sit is normal, and your year-long perseverance is commendable. My unsolicited advice, in case it is helpful, is this: do not be discouraged. Sometimes there is agitation. Sometimes thoughts arise. Some days good feelings are present. But all of this has the same underlying characteristic: it is changing, and it is impermanent. All of these occurrences which seem to you to be lack of progress are, instead, the very fuel of progress. And the fact that you state that your practice is to observe and not judge suggests to me that you are making significant progress in each moment when you have an equanimous awareness of all of that which you have described.
Richkierich wrote:I have been having some problems with anger, I have watched on YouTube about the Four Noble Truths, namely identifying the cause of suffering and then cessation of suffering. Tried practicing in daily life, sometimes I could let the emotions be and it will go off on its own, sometimes I couldn't, in other words, i see the anger thoughts coming, the angry feeling coming, and just couldn't let the emotions be without reacting, sometimes if I see it longer and try to breathe in to soften the emotions, often I get thoughts of me telling myself to do something like "bang the table" or "shout at him", sometimes it is so strong and I just gave in and do what the mind tells and regret later on.

Just scary, I didn't know this was the process of anger in the mind. It is only now I see it happening by phases, just sometimes the desire to react overcomes me. Are there any suggestions I could follow to help me cope with letting go?
Please do not beat yourself up after you become angry. Anger will arise, especially if that has been your well-established habit of mind. Anger is not me, not mine, not self. It's like a storm cloud moving in front of the sun. It will not be there forever, and worrying about it will not make any difference. But with anger within oneself, when we attend to in inappropriately, worrying about it, beating ourselves up about it, trying to defeat it, fighting with it, then we create so much extra kamma.

Step one to coping with letting go is to continue your admirable practice of "seeing it happening by phases." When anger arises, continue to be mindful in this way. Observe again, here is anger arising. You may still be overcome. Or maybe not. Please do not beat yourself up about it. Please be kind and patient with yourself, understanding that these deep habits are difficult to work through. Everything in your post suggests to me that you are progressing. Please be encouraged, and be kind to yourself. Metta
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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L.N.
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by L.N. » Mon Sep 05, 2016 4:41 pm

Aloka wrote:It might be worth noting that Pema Chodron is a Tibetan Buddhist nun and not a Theravada teacher.
Yes. However, she teaches wonderful Dhamma as well. "When you begin to investigate, you notice, for one thing, that whenever there is pain of any kind—the pain of aggression, grieving, loss, irritation, resentment, jealousy, indigestion, physical pain—if you really look into that, you can find out for yourself that behind the pain there is always something we are attached to. There is always something we’re holding on to." :anjali:
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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Aloka
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by Aloka » Mon Sep 05, 2016 5:20 pm

L.N. wrote:
Aloka wrote:It might be worth noting that Pema Chodron is a Tibetan Buddhist nun and not a Theravada teacher.
Yes. However, she teaches wonderful Dhamma as well.
I didn't criticise her teaching methods, L.N. I was simply pointing out that she's a Tibetan Buddhist nun for anyone who isn't familiar with Tibetan Buddhism. (Which I practised myself for a long time). I'm also one of the few women posting in this forum, so I certainly don't have anything against nuns. However, I do get rather weary of some of the men here wanting to correct me all the time.

:anjali:

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L.N.
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Re: Regarding anger

Post by L.N. » Mon Sep 05, 2016 7:56 pm

Aloka wrote:I didn't criticise her teaching methods, L.N. I was simply pointing out that she's a Tibetan Buddhist nun for anyone who isn't familiar with Tibetan Buddhism. (Which I practised myself for a long time). I'm also one of the few women posting in this forum, so I certainly don't have anything against nuns. However, I do get rather weary of some of the men here wanting to correct me all the time.
I did not think you criticized her teachings, nor did I intend to correct you (regardless of whether I am a man or a woman). Thank you for your helpful comments here and elsewhere.
:anjali:
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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Re: Regarding anger

Post by spacenick » Mon Sep 05, 2016 9:08 pm

Before you start doing any kind of loving-kindness practices, or trying to "fix" the anger, fully accept the anger. This is a typical mistake by many practitioners, and is coming always from the same initial blindness (avijja): I am someone experiencing some emotion out there.

Face the dragon. Whole-bodily feel the pain and awesome power of anger.

This is your kamma coming right at your face, there's something extremely important to be understood here, you need to pause. Not just "fix it". Doing loving-kindness and all that won't fix the issue in the long run, it simply puts ointment on it. Read stuff by Ajahn Sumedho on anger and difficult emotions, it's been very helpful for me. You aren't doing anything wrong. This is just the truth of kamma being displayed under the spotlight, right for you to see.

There's no guilt to be had, you're simply reaping the fruits of your past actions. Some identified-with self acted with the intention to harm in the past, and now you are identifying with the results of that. Put distance between the anger and you. Detach. This isn't you nor yours - if it was, you could stop it!

Stop the sankharaming (identifying with) the anger arising. Deconstruct experience in terms of Dhamma: body (where does it hurt), sensations (it is obviously unpleasant), mood (how does the mind feel?), thoughts (what's the internal dialogue doing? what's the quality of the internal voice? is it shouting? Look how it makes the whole situation worse). Bring up the recollection that Anything That Has Come to Be Will Come to An End.

Let it pass. Notice the cessation, and the bodily bliss that comes from not having "moved".

Khanti is gonna be your best ally here. And Right Speech & Right Action, essentials if anger arises in daily life around other people (restraint! restraint!)

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