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The False Notion Of An Emotional Hierarchy

July 28, 2020

The False Notion Of An Emotional Hierarchy

"Are you mad?"

The question of our anger comes up often. In the past, my gut reaction was to instinctively say "No."

Anger, in my conditioned mind, was a bad thing. Something to be avoided, lest it overtake me. 

At the root of anger is suffering. This is true of our anger, and that of our loved ones. 

Emotions are not experiences to resist or deny. Resisting these feelings will often bury them deeper and deeper into your subconscious. Soon you may be behaving in ways that you seemingly cannot help. It's because the feelings have gone underground. 

Someone may inquire as to your emotional state, and you'd like them to know that you're just fine.

But. Maybe you aren't fine.

You are suffering.

Suffering, and anger are not things that need to be buried -- but rather cleansed and fully felt, and shared.

The monk Thich Nanh Hanh has a very useful framework for how to share this with others. Bring it to the light of day. It's like this: 

1. Darling, I am angry. I am suffering

2. I am doing my best

3. Please help me

Your feelings, whatever they are, are totally valid. 

Emotions, like anger, have purpose. Choose to ride them, and to fully experience them for a more vibrant life. 

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