Quaker Universalist Conversations

“Kindling for Anger”

Shantideva says a lot about our mindset. The mindset of friend and foe. Like and dislike. For me and against me. And how that very mechanism of buying so tightly into this notion of the good people and the bad people—the ones that I like and the ones I don’t like—and how we get so invested in this and how this is “the kindling” or “the fuel” for anger and aggression to escalate.

Don't Bite the Hook, by Pema Chödrön

Excerpted from Don’t Bite the Hook: Finding Freedom from Anger, Resentment, and Other Destructive Emotions, by Pema Chödrön.

Shantideva was a famous scholar and yogi of India in the 8th century.

Comments

I must get hold of this book. Thanks for posting. I suffer terribly from this way of thinking even though I reject it intellectually, philosophically and spiritually – entirely. Of course I blame my mother. Everything she says and thinks about is rank with extreme prejudice. Nothing she says is plain, considered or inquiring. But blaming her is no use. No use. I must get the book and see her less. Is that a wicked thing to do, see less of one’s mother because the encounters are so deeply upsetting? Is it a valid response? I think of nuns and monks and believe they retreat for a reason.

Friend Katy writes: “Is that a wicked thing to do, see less of one’s mother because the encounters are so deeply upsetting? “

My personal leading is to let go gently when seeking a healing connection with someone isn’t succeeding.

A pastor decades ago advised me (only partly tongue in cheek) to pray: “God bless and keep you, far from me.”

Blessings,
Mike