This is not a superficial essay which provides easy tips so you can escape Anger, if you are looking for that kind of stuff, then you came to the wrong place.
The way I see it, there are two things that these so called spiritual circles have completely demonized. One is Anger and the other one is Judgement. I’ll only jump into the topic of Anger for now.
I for one don’t subscribe to the “spiritual romanticism” which seems to be a trend within the new age and alternative media circles. In my eyes it is taken to an extreme degree, as in a method to try to escape the pain that living in this cesspool of a world can bring. It is understandable to a degree that people seek to get rid of that pain, it’s not something orgasmic by any means.
Oftentimes Anger is seen as something destructive, even sadistic. Yes it can become a toxic aspect and consume everything around it, there have been and there are people walking the planet who are consumed by this toxic expression and they even drag others down. Perhaps the most common example would be The Powers That Be.
But Anger can be legitimate (at least a large portion is, I suspect). Think about a child who happens to be born into a very neurotic family who forces him/her to do things and conform to norms which kill the healthy rebelliousness and creativity within the child. It is only natural that the child will develop a very legitimate hatred towards the family. Later on the individual in question finds himself/herself at a critical point, yes there is this legitimate Anger, but the established institutions will promote all kinds of methods to pacify this Anger. The individual is then confronted by forces which seem to be far more powerful than him/her, if this person tries to fight those forces then it is very likely that failure will follow and in this current system the idea of survival is being shoved down our throats every passing hour, so it is very likely that the Angry individual comes face to face with the idea and the probability of his/her own demise.
Since this person can’t express that anger towards anyone (even if the targets deserve it) then he/she will project this Anger towards himself/herself. At first this Anger will be nothing more than a burning desire being frustrated, but eventually it will become poison because the person in question doesn’t know how to sublimate it and maybe he/she doesn’t even have available channels to express it. At this critical point Anger can transform into Sadism which can be projected inwardly or it can also be directed at beings which are weaker than the individual in question. There are various degrees to this, from the strict parent to the abusive one.
Ideally there should be available Knowledge which provides ideas as to how transmute this Anger. Sadly most suggestions found within modern society are idiotic ideas which only serve to mask this Anger for a while, from stupid Life Coaching to medications… and then there are these so called spiritual disciplines which fail to provide a proper distillation of the human psyche and you end up seeing people who are desperate to eradicate their mind because someone who is always smiling told them that the root of their suffering is their very mind.
Firstly there should be methods which explore how a person can develop such destructive anger. Thankfully there are a number of those available, two of them being existential psychology and psychoanalysis (when applied properly, of course). When the person understands that not all of his Anger is the result of some boogeyman idea promoted by society, but a legitimate force, he/she can proceed to refine it and find healthy ways of expression and sublimation.
A sublimated Anger can result in a force which seeks to destroy the lies build by TPTB and neurotic societies. The idea of destruction is not a 100% toxic, like Anger, it has healthy elements. This sublimated Anger can lead to the pursuit of Truth and Truth can be a destructive force which shatters the Lie. This in turn can give place to proven or new creative processes to regain sanity and to truly improve the human condition.
Now all this can bring another type of suffering which to me seems to be rooted in Compassion rather than the suffering brought by an Empty Life. You are aware of the pathological forces pushing down your fellow humans and of the creative possibilities. You try to communicate your new discoveries to those who are suffering the symptoms of an Empty Life, only to be rejected and ridiculed.
This is another crucial point, Will and Courage are required so you don’t fall into another toxic loop. If you are not Vigilant enough, you could find yourself in a situation which Erich Fromm described brilliantly… oh and I’ll add a quote by Ayn Rand, which I may be taking out of context since I haven’t read her works and I know she’s a controversial figure:
The thinking child is not antisocial (he is, in fact, the only type of child – or adult – fit for social relationships). When he develops his first values and conscious convictions, particularly as he approaches adolescence, he feels an intense desire to share them with a friend who would understand him; if frustrated, he feels an acute sense of loneliness. (Loneliness is specifically the experience of this type of child – or adult; it is the experience of those who have something to offer. The emotion that drives conformists to “belong” is not loneliness, but fear – the fear of intellectual independence and responsibility. The thinking child seeks equals; the conformist seeks protectors.) — Ayn Rand
The sick individual finds himself at home with all other similarly sick individuals. The whole culture is geared to this kind of pathology. The result is that the average individual does not experience the separateness and isolation the fully schizophrenic person feels. He feels at ease among those who suffer from the same deformation; in fact, it is the fully sane person who feels isolated in the insane society — and he may suffer so much from the incapacity to communicate that it is he who may become psychotic. — Erich Fromm
Now on the other hand it’s also important to get acquainted with the idea of Letting Go. As I said Anger can also be toxic and many people on this planet embody the toxic aspects of Anger. Think of someone who gets furious because someone talks nasty things about his persona or about his family, such anger can only be destructive and in fact, it is quite stupid. It only leads to dead ends. I figure it is important to understand why and how this kind of Anger arises so then you can practice methods which focus on getting rid of this toxicity.
The trick comes when you have to decide when to use a peaceful aspect of your very Self or when to use a Fiery aspect.
Not an easy task, especially when you have to live in a world like ours where insanity is the norm.