Wednesday is Question and Answer Day on the blog…a time for exploring many of the questions that people have recently asked about the nine Conversations with God books and the New Spirituality. Here’s this week’s entry…
Topic: How can anger be “positive”?
Question asked by: Beth L.
Question: Hi Neale ~ How could anger really be a positive emotion? I can’t see it, except maybe in a “Righteous Indignation” sort of way. Very few people have this emotion ‘authentically’ in their lives. (Isn’t Anger just another manifestation of Fear and isn’t Fear something we want to alleviate?)
I was taught to go within and trust feelings over emotion. I’d hate to EMOTE all over someone with my anger.
Thank you Neale!
Keep shining your light in the darkeness.
Beth in MN.
Neale’s Response: Dear Beth…What a wonderful question! Thanks for asking it!
Anger is one of the Five Natural Emotions. These are…
…grief, anger, envy, fear, and love. And within these, also, there are two final levels: love and fear.
While the five natural emotions include love and fear, these two are the basis of all emotions. The other three of the five natural emotions are outgrowths of these two.
Ultimately, all thoughts are sponsored by love or fear. This is the great polarity. This is the primal duality. Everything, ultimately, breaks down to one of these. All thoughts, ideas, concepts, understandings, decisions, choices, and actions are based in one of these. And, in the end, there is really only one.
In truth, love is all there is. Even fear is an outgrowth of love, and when used effectively, expresses love. You may ask, “Fear expresses love?” And the answer is, in its highest form, yes. Everything expresses love, when the expression is in its highest form. Does the parent who saves the child from being killed in traffic express fear, or love?
“Well, both, I suppose,” you might say. “Fear for the child s life, and love — enough to risk one s own life to save the child.”
Precisely. And so here we see that fear in its highest form becomes love . . . is love . . . expressed as fear.
Similarly, moving up the scale of natural emotions, grief, anger, and envy are all some form of fear, which, in turn, is some form of love.
One things leads to another. Do you see?
The problem comes in when any of the five natural emotions become distorted. Then they become grotesque, and not recognizable at all as outgrowths of love, much less as God, which is what Absolute Love is.
I’ve heard of the five natural emotions before — from my wonderful association with Dr. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. She taught me about them.
Grief is a natural emotion. It s that part of you which allows you to say goodbye when you don t want to say goodbye; to express — push out, propel — the sadness within you at the experience of any kind of loss. It could be the loss of a loved one, or the loss of a contact lens.
When you are allowed to express your grief, you get rid of it. Children who are allowed to be sad when they are sad feel very healthy about sadness when they are adults, and therefore usually move through their sadness very quickly.
Children who are told, There, there, don’t cry, have a hard time crying as adults. After all, they ve been told all their life not to do that. So they repress their grief.
Grief that is continually repressed becomes chronic depression, a very unnatural emotion. People have killed because of chronic depression. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Anger is a natural emotion. It is the tool you have which allows you to say, “No, thank you.” It does not have to be abusive, and it never has to be damaging to another.
When children are allowed to express their anger, they bring a very healthy attitude about it to their adult years, and therefore usually move through their anger very quickly.
Children who are made to feel that their anger is not okay — that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn t even experience it — will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with their anger as adults.
Anger that is continually repressed becomes rage, a very unnatural emotion.
People have killed because of rage. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Envy is a natural emotion. It is the emotion that makes a five-year-old wish he could reach the doorknob the way his sister can — or ride that bike. Envy is the natural emotion that makes you want to do it again; to try harder; to continue striving until you succeed. It is very healthy to be envious, very natural. When children are allowed to express their envy, they bring a very healthy attitude about it to their adult years, and therefore usually move through their envy very quickly.
Children who are made to feel that envy is not okay — that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn t even experience it — will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with their envy as adults.
Envy that is continually repressed becomes jealousy, a very unnatural emotion. People have killed because of jealousy. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Fear is a natural emotion. All babies are born with only two fears: the fear of falling, and the fear of loud noises. All other fears are learned responses, brought to the child by its environment, taught to the child by its parents. The purpose of natural fear is to build in a bit of caution. Caution is a tool that helps keep the body alive. It is an outgrowth of love. Love of Self.
Children who are made to feel that fear is not okay — that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn t even experience it — will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with their fear as adults.
Fear that is continually repressed becomes panic, a very unnatural emotion. People have killed because of panic. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
Love is a natural emotion. When it is allowed to be expressed, and received, by a child, normally and naturally, without limitation or condition, inhibition or embarrassment, it does not require anything more. For the joy of love expressed and received in this way is sufficient unto itself. Yet love which has been conditioned, limited, warped by rules and regulations, rituals and restrictions, controlled, manipulated, and withheld, becomes unnatural.
Children who are made to feel that their natural love is not okay — that it is wrong to express it, and, in fact, that they shouldn’t even experience it — will have a difficult time appropriately dealing with love as adults.
Love that is continually repressed becomes possessiveness, a very unnatural emotion. People have killed because of possessiveness. Wars have started, nations have fallen.
And so it is that the natural emotions, when repressed, produce unnatural reactions and responses. And most natural emotions are repressed in most people. Yet these are your friends. These are your gifts. These are your divine tools, with which to craft your experience. You are given these tools at birth. They are to help you negotiate life.
Anger is a wonderful emotion, Beth! It lets us express — that is, push out — negative energy that has built up inside of us. It is not anger that is the problem, but how we express it; what we use it for. If we use it for damaging or hurting others, that expression would be non-beneficial (obviously). Yet if we use anger to alter a situation which is hurting ourselves or others, that would be extremely beneficial. So we see, then, that anger itself is not the issue, but rather, the way in which it is expressed and used.
I hope this helps you better understand this gift of anger that God has given us, one of the Five Natural Emotions.
(Ask Neale may be accessed on a daily basis in the Messengers’ Circle at Neale’s personal website: www.nealedonaldwalsch.com. Each week Neale selects a question from those posted there and publishes it in this blog.)