This story is one of the best explanations I’ve come across. Enjoy!
A Hindu saint who was visiting river Ganges to take a bath found a group of family members on the banks, shouting in anger at each other.
He turned to his disciples, smiled and asked, ‘Why do people shout in anger at each other?’
His disciples thought for a while and one of them said, ‘Because when we lose our calm we shout.’
‘But why should you shout when the other person is just next to you?’ asked the saint. ‘Can you just as well tell him what you have to say in a soft manner?’
When some of the answers did not satisfied the others the saint finally explained, ‘When two people are angry at each other, their hearts distance a lot. To cover that distance they must shout to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the stronger they will have to shout to hear each other to cover that great distance.
‘What happens when two people fall in love? They don’t shout at each other but talk softly because their hearts are very close. The distance between them is either nonexistent or very small.’
The saint continued, ‘When they love each other even more, what happens? They do not speak, only whisper and they get even closer to each other in their love. Finally they even need not whisper, they only look at each other and that’s all. That is how close two people are when they love each other.’
He looked at his disciples and said, ‘So when you argue do not let your hearts get distant. Do not say words that distance each other more, Or else there will come a day when the distance is so great that you will not find the path to return.’
So What Is Anger?
Anger can be defined in many ways: from a loss of calmness, displeasure or irritation, to hostility or rage. When anger takes control, it is nearly impossible to focus on anything except that which has made us angry. Feelings of anger might dissipate after a few moments, linger for a day or take hold for months or years. Sadly, many people lead lives of one volatile encounter after another and don’t know why or how to overcome anger.
“When you have a long history with anger, when you’ve put a lot of emotional energy into that anger, you’ve imprinted a pattern in your brain that’s hard to break.”
Ref— Transforming Anger, Childre and Rozman, 2003.
Anger often starts off as something small and builds. You’re impatient, irritation grows, judgment leads to blame and now you’re angry. Justified or not, the anger causes incoherence in your heart rhythms that activates stress hormones. Research has shown one five-minute episode of anger is so stressful it impairs your immune system for more than six hours.
The Quest to Overcome Anger
Eliminating anger and the longstanding habits that allow anger to trigger can be hard at first. How do you deal with your challenges in life? If you feel you can’t control your anger? Our physical, emotional and mental vitality are intrinsically linked. The human heart has intelligence all its own that you can tap into to overcome anger, stress and much more.
HeartMath is a comprehensive system based on two decades of research, resulting in techniques, technology and online programmes that provide clear, concise methods for reducing stress and creating a deeper, richer experience of life.
HeartMath techniques have been proven effective in breaking the cycle of anger and all of its consequences. The techniques are very easy to learn and are based on extensive scientific research that has revealed how the heart and the brain communicate.
“Search your heart,” the saying goes, for therein lies the answer. Heart intelligence, we now know, is a resource that not only can help us overcome anger, but can guide us in transforming our entire lives as well and the process can be scientifically monitored.
“In recent years, neuroscientists have made an exciting discovery. They’ve found that the heart has its own independent nervous system – a complex system referred to as ‘the brain in the heart.’ The heart’s intrinsic brain and nervous system relay information back to the brain in the cranium, creating a two-way communication system between heart and brain.”
Ref.— The HeartMath Solution, Childre and Martin, 1999.