I felt angry this afternoon. Nothing big. Nothing major. Someone said something and the swift lightening of rage struck my heart. For ten minutes. OK, maybe more.
You know how it is. You feel misunderstood. You feel like you couldn’t communicate something. You feel unheard. You feel inadequate. You feel like the other person is inadequate. It happens to all of us.
I’m not usually angry. In fact, anger rarely rears its rear hooves and snorts like a buck in the forest. If it does rise, it usually doesn’t last long.
Did you know there is a secret way to tame the wild beast? Lean close. I shall share it with you now.
You head outside in nature. First, you walk. You walk wherever your feet decide to lead, without allowing the Mind to perpetuate a story of why the person is absolutely wrong and you’re absolutely right or why you’re absolutely wrong and the person is absolutely right. (Depending on whether you’re a person who projects your anger outward or inward. OK, sometimes we do both.)
Every time the Mind starts its crazy raging litany, curve your mouth upward in a smile and feel your feet against the earth. Sweep your eyes across the landscape, looking for interesting sights. Breathe deeply. When the angry feeling rises again, repeat. Smile slightly, sweep eyes across the landscape, breathe, feel your feet.
Oh my! you think. Look at the angle of that dying white fungus. Oh my! you think, look at the clouds in the sky. Oh my, you think, look at that pretty poplar fuzzy-flower.
After awhile, you notice that you’re really not quite so angry. (This is Nature’s answer to counting to ten.) Now comes the second part.
Find a good place to sit on the earth. Maybe lean against a tree. Simply sit and breathe. Allow your eyes to softly take in the forest floor, the trees, the spring greenery. Let the eyes decide where they want to look. If angry thoughts arise–you know the routine. Back to simply being present.
If you’re still feeling particularly bothered, try this. Every time the thoughts start the crucifixion of yourself or the other person again, imagine green light-energy coming up through the roots of the earth and entering your body. As soon as your inner ranting dialogue has ceased, you can continue simply being present in the landscape, softly surveying nature. If it starts again, simply imagine the green root-light filling your body. Imagine leaves sprouting out of your head.
Aren’t you feeling much more relaxed now? It’s a half hour later–or maybe an hour–and you’re suddenly not so angry. In fact, much of the anger has simply–poof!–disappeared. Gone.
If you like, softly turn your thoughts toward the angry situation. If you feel anger arising in your body, imagine the green light of the forest entering into the anger, dissolving the edges. If you like, you can now look at the situation more rationally. You can now move from a place of action, rather than re-action.
OK, we’re not really that angry any more, are we? Nature hath come to the rescue once again! Isn’t she such a help? Isn’t she the best counselor in the world?
As for me, strangely enough…I can barely remember why I was angry!