Rage, Hate, Anger, Mindfulness

“Rage is not holy. Hate can never be pure.”

I just read these words in the eulogy for one of the three Israeli teenagers killed a few days ago.

It triggered something in me that I have nursed and pondered over for the best part of twenty years, when R. Canvasser said to me that anger is a secondary emotion.

I thought about it and turned it over and examined it, and somehow I knew there was a truth in there, but I couldn’t get at it.

I knew and know that anger is like a clenched fist. It requires energy to keep a clenched fist closed. I understood that to continue to exist into the future, one cannot go on with a clenched fist.


Recently, I have been going to mindfulness classes. The story of how I came to be going to them is for another time, but let me say that I wasn’t actively seeking for a class to go to.

And it is not as though I am a stranger to the idea or even the practise of mindfulness.

But these classes brought me into focus and gave me the means to make a concerto out of a noise.

And one of the essential things that I learned is that one can only be mindful by being in one’s body.

I thought I knew that. And to some extent I did and to some extent I experienced it. But not like I was able to with the benefit of the practise in the classes.

So now I understand perhaps what R. Canvasser meant about anger being a secondary emotion. I would say that anger is like rage or hate. You have to travel out of your body to feel them. It’s as simple as that.

Perhaps I am the last one to know that. After all, we have the phrase,

He was beside himself with anger.


  1. dapplegrey says:

    You put this so well, and you’re so right that it seems obvious but until you realise it and experience it in practice, it’s not. You’re certainly not the last one to know it! I think I discover more every day about just how far I am away from myself. It’s never ending. But what a process of discovery. …


    1. You know, when I was writing it and I got to the end, I added the little bit at the end about me being the last to know – and I almost stopped myself and wanted to delete it all – fear of exposure and ridicule and then I thought – 4*&$! it. So I am glad it resonated with you. Thank you for the support.


  2. So very true – “And one of the essential things that I learned is that one can only be mindful by being in one’s body.” Hope you’ll post more on your mindful discoveries.


  3. seeker says:

    I don’t we will ever understand a “holy war” for nothing is holy in war. As for mindfulness, it’s used loosely nowadays that sometimes the meaning is lost. True enough that mindfulness starts from oneself. As for being angry, I must say I seldom get angry. When that happens “I am beside myself”. Your quote is very true.


    1. Thanks for your comment. When I started the mindfulness practise, I noticed that my ‘me’ is sometimes physically some distance (maybe a foot or so) in front of my physical body like a projection of my forward-facing description of myself.


      1. seeker says:

        You are on the right path. Eventually, the me, mine and I will still be there and I have hardly effect on you. Then you can objectively. Mindfulness is a great way to meditate.


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