Crying Baby Named Anger

Written by Gede Prama

It is very rare to have clean, clear and dignified spiritual dialogue on youtube.  One of those that is very rare is the dialogue between Ram Dass and HH Thich Nhat Hanh in 1995. The most beautiful part of this dialogue is when Ram Dass asks about healing anger.  The advanced meditation practitioner HH Thich Nhat Hanh has an amazing answer.

“Anger is a sign that there is a part of us inside that is crying. And the practice of compassionate mindfulness (compassion) is a very loving mother whom calming this crying baby.”  When listening to this answer, Ram Dass was amazed: “The most brilliant intellectual presentation on anger that I have ever heard”.

As an information, the late Ram Dass is a professor of psychology from Harvard University who retired at a very young age.  Then studied spirituality in India.  He has a spiritual heritage in the form of many spiritual disciples around the world.  It was understandable that Ram Dass was amazed, especially since many people saw anger as a demon that needs to be destroyed.

In fact, anger is part of the inner garden of the soul.  Borrowing from HH Thich Nhat Hanh, beautiful flowers are made from materials that are not always beautiful (read: sun, rain, fertile soil, gardeners, etc.).  Anger is also similar, it is made of materials that come from outside anger.  From an injured childhood, a school filled with many dangers, to a stressful workplace.

When the gardener takes out the organic waste, he is also throwing away material that will bloom into beautiful flowers.  When a person is very energized to get rid of anger within, actually he is also throwing away the potential enlightenment that is within.  Mainly because enlightenment does not throw anger away, but smiles at anger.

Meditation teachers who embrace beautifully with holistic science like HH Thich Nhat Hanh is very rare.  Only few people can combine simplicity with depth, as HH Thich Nhat Hanh did.  Notice his beautiful approach to meditation: “Inhale, I am space. Exhale, I am free.”

The enlightened mind is like space.  Which can give a place for anything to grow.  Including making room for anger.  It’s as simple as space in this realm that makes room for darkness, demons, dark energies and etc.  As soon as a person’s mind is as large as space, there he/she is actually have attain liberation.

HH Thich Nhat Hanh’s practical language is “interbeings”.  Behind the anger of others is our mistake.  Behind our anger lies our failure to train the mind.  In short, nothing in nature stands alone.  Everything is related.  Destroying an element like anger not only does not heal, it can also creates imbalance.

That is why, in meditation classes friends are often guided like this: “Take a break from all inner conflicts. Share a beautiful smile. Especially because everything is a dance of the same perfection.”  That’s how to heal anger holistically.  Like a crying baby, once she is hugged beautifully, her cries will slowly disappeared.  Anger is also similar.  Good luck in practicing to all friends.

Photo by Luiza Braun on unsplash

About the author

Gede Prama

Gede Prama started his spiritual journey through a dialogue with his symbolic Guru in a village at the north of Bali. The journey is then being enriched with his experiences of studying abroad, his meetings with the world greatest spiritual Gurus: His Holiness Dalai Lama, The Venerable Thich Nhat Hanh, as well as Professor Karen Armstrong; and also being deepened by his intense meditation practices.

Despite the fact that he was once a CEO of a large corporation with thousand of employees, and was traveling abroad frequently for the purpose of teaching, yet, being deeply moved by the Bali bombing incident in 2002, he then decided to leave everything and went back to his home island.
He has never leave Bali for the past few years. In fact, he rarely leaves the silence of the forest where he lives, except for the purpose of teaching at the sacred sites within Bali.

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