Social injustice, racial injustice, economic injustice, environmental injustice, in their myriad expressions have ripped open the facade of normalcy for most people in the world.
Anger and rage pour through this raw open wound, and finds its expression in the form of persistent protests from some people. Even among those that do take some personal action against atrocities, nothing diminishes the anger.
This anger is at the same time laced with deep sadness and considerable hopelessness, even though there is a deep yearning and determination for fundamental change.
Anger, if channeled in the right way, is a potent agent of positive change.
We’ve seen this time and again in the lives of some of the greatest change makers in the world. Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr, Nelson Mandela and others like them helped bring and end to injustice of one form or another not through war and violence, but through non-violent civil disobedience.
Those were great agents of positive change in the world. But what about us?
We are but ordinary people, or so we think about ourselves. We feel rage about injustice in its varied forms, and cannot experience a world in which there is equality, freedom, and peace.
For most of us, if we are honest, this anger, this rage is impotent. We rant and rave in our echo chambers. We may find tactical temporary relief in spot actions here and there. But life’s movements will numb this down. Until another outrageous act happens which causes us to fly into anger and rage again. And that cycle repeats.
This is impotent anger, useless rage.
How can you channel anger so it becomes a potent agent of positive change?
I am not expert on these matters. I don’t know the ins and outs of the lives of the great positive change makers. I am not deeply knowledgeable in these matters, and I am not a keen intellectual to construct great arguments.But I see patterns. I listen deeply to life. My heart whispers from silence.
From this, I wanted to share a framework with you, that I believe will help you transmute impotent anger into positive change.
And it is not about going out into the world and changing this and that in it, but rather to go within, to go inside yourself so that you can first build that foundation within, that will help you become that force for change that you really want to be.
Here it is.
Anger without guidance
Is a live bomb
Ready to blow
What you need in life
Is a framework that
Can help anger and passion
Get channeled into
Positive, lasting action
What is this framework?
It is CHI:
How does CHI help?
Compassion towards yourself and
Compassion towards others
Reminds us that we all have fears
We all have aspirations
We all have our weaknesses
None of us is perfect
All of us can change
And practiced this way
Softens judgments that feed anger
Weakens your biases and prejudices
Helps you not to take it all personally
Fosters the spirit of forgiveness
Anchors you in not hurting anyone
Humility is the recognition
That we are not as big
As our ego makes it out to be
That we in fact don’t know
Way more about way more matters
Than we actually do
That beyond the confines
Of our desires and clinging
Of our aversions and resistance
There is a great big orchestration
Called the world, the Universe
In which our minuscule experiences
Unfold and are experienced
That we are but a small part
Of the wholeness called life
That even as you may be small
Your expression is that of life itself
Integrity tells us that
We have to be impeccable
With our thoughts, words and actions
We have to be truthful
Striving to find the truth in all matters
Not going with just our assumptions
And opinions and feelings alone
Integrity means not lying
To ourselves, our family
To the community of humanity at large
And not spreading untruths
Integrity implies recognizing
And working from the fact that
What may be denied to another person
May be denied to you too sometime
That in its essence
You and I are not separate
That what you do to me
You do to the life
And thus to yourself
One of these aspects without the other two
Wouldn’t be adequate
But meshed together as equal aspects
That function as a harmonious framework
Compassion, Humility and Integrity
Can offer the exact clarity and focus
The strength, the courage and wisdom
That can direct and transmute anger
Into the potent force of change
That is needed in the world
Without the guiding force of CHI
Compassion, Humility and Integrity
Anger borne and held within
Ineffective at the least
Or be destructive at the worst
You tell me dear One
Experiencing the chaos we do
During these times
How is anger alone
The solution for anything?
CHI is the alchemical agent
That can transmute
Into potent change
What are you doing now
To cultivate this CHI?
What worth is your anger
What was that, that Gandhi is said to have shared about making change?
“Be the change you wish to see in this world!”
What is the fundamental arc of that change needed in you?
Your own inner cultivation of CHI.
What is the one simple way to facilitate this inner cultivation?
Cultivate peace. Peace is where clarity, wisdom, strength, courage, and creativity exist in their pristine form. Exactly those ingredients through which your anger can transform into potent change.
Feeling peaceful doesn’t numb down your participation in life and in the world. The pursuit of peace is not an escape from life’s ills.
A foundation of peace makes you come alive as a potent force of change that the world yearns for.
It is not that through your anger, you will help usher in peace in the world. Rather, it is that through your cultivation of peace, that your anger will transmute into a force that helps usher in the right changes in the world.
We offer an excellent resource for you to aid in the cultivation of your peace within. Join us in The Peace Practice each weekday for free, for 15-minutes, in a simple, live, online meditation, to help you cultivate your foundation of peace.