Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Anger and such

Today you'll just have to put up with my wandering thoughts. I do. You can too.

Someone recently had me re-examining "anger." You know who you are.

I started with Thich Nhat Hahn. He is an interesting man. A Vietanamese Buddhist monk. Martin Luther KIng, Jr. submitted his name for a Nobel prize years ago.

Hahn wrote what he calls his foureteen Precepts of Tiep Hien Buddhism. Do a Google on Tiep Hien and you'll get the gist of it. Its worth the time. Anyway, here is what he says about "anger":

"Do not maintain anger or hatred. As soon as anger and hatred arise, practice meditation on compassion in order to deeply understand the persons who have caused anger and hatred. Learn to look at other beings with the eyes of compassion."

There have been times in my life when I'd be "practicing meditation" for great periods of my life. Now then, that being said, I guess I come off as sounding angry when I write. I'm not. If I am I let folks know. I am guilty of saying what is on my mind with no consideration. I just blurt out words. I also suspect that there are at least two other factors.

First, I act very authoritative. Sometimes I feel like I'm channeling "Cliff Clavin" (Cheers tv sitcom) and that can be good and BAD. I know a little bit about a lot of things. It's probably a mechanism of over-compensation. When I was younger I was often accused of being ignorant and having others tell me I was wrong. I learned to gather facts and cover my ass.

Second, if I "sound" angry it's a defense mechanism. I learned early on the best defense is a good offense. Lots of my life was lived in an arguementative frame of mind. When your father is an attorney there are times when you feel like your life is in constant "cross examination." That's my excuse and I'm sticking too it. Want to make something of it?

That previous sentence is offten the key. I write something that I find "humorous" and others miss my humor. I honestly finde life pretty funny and full of mistakes that make no sense.

When I was in the hospital years ago (my bout with Staph Aureus) and they cut the infection out they had me on a morphine drip. It was supposed to lessen the pain. I was pressing the button like a deranged rat in a psychology lab experiment. I kept telling the nurses that it wasn't helping. After hours of this I asked what the "wet spot" under the bed was. It was my morphine dripping onto the carpet! There was a small nick in the delivery line. Three nurses were very "apologetic" saying things like "that's never happened before."

The point I'm trying to make is that I might have been really angry about that. I was hurting pretty bad and hope to never feel that way again. But I ended up laughing about it saying that my carpet was a "flying carpet." I don't think the nurses caught my statement. Of course you do, right? I make bad jokes. ASk my wife. She'll grimmace.

Yeah, I get angry but when I do I try to let folks know.

By the way, I'm angry right now with the actions/inactions/bad decisions of certain politicians; I'm angry with one of my neighbors for letting his dog run through the neighborhood at all hours. She's a puppy and black as night. At night when she darts across the road in front of a car she's almost impossible to see. One of the teenagers around her is going to hurt her. I'm angry with a few talking heads on television for making general statements that are not true. I'm also angry that I can't play the guitar.

What's on your list?