ANGER

By Fr Jim Cogley


There are numerous books available on the subject of anger. Their titles reflect a certain bias that makes their effectiveness quite suspect. Some examples are, Beating Anger, Anger Control, Overcoming Anger and Anger Management. All of these reflect the age-old belief that anger has a ‘D’ in front so that it spells ‘Danger’ and so needs to be controlled and handled carefully. Most of us have had many negative experiences with anger and it is difficult to think of it in any other manner. Yet anger is simply an emotion that in turn is energy that can be used for good or bad; destructively of constructively. Anger is a healthy emotion that we are born with and it can serve a good purpose, but as we journey through childhood it becomes conditioned out of us, or even more true to say repressed into us. Various surveys show that anger is the emotion that most of us are very uncomfortable with. We don’t like ourselves when we are angry and we feel uncomfortable when someone else expresses his or her anger. Why does this particular emotion need to be outlawed so much?