Amma’s stories on managing anger and other emotions – Part 1 (15 stories)

1.  Same roses, but …

[Amma:   In God’s creation, there is perfect harmony and it is the human mind that brings disharmony. People’s different mindsets and emotional surges make them see things differently.

Once, two people visited a rose garden.

Large and beautiful roses were in full bloom there.

When the first person saw the roses,  he was lost in the thoughts of his girlfriend. ‘How nice will it be if I offer this flower to her? How happy will she become?’ With such pappy thoughts he enjoyed the sight of the flowers.

On the other hand, the second person felt very upset upon seeing the roses. He thought, ‘How many such flowers have I offered to my girlfriend? And still she eloped with somebody else!’

He plucked some of the roses and trampled them under his feet, surcharged in anger.

2. Like the patient in ICU…

[Amma:   In order to receive God’s/ Guru’s grace, first of all we should have our own inner grace to become qualified to be the recipient of the grace.  Emotions like anger and hatred prevent us from receiving the grace. Satsang is very valuable. Being in the company of holy kindles noble qualities in us.]

Amma narrated the following real incidence:

Once an American lady devotee of Amma wanted to visit Amritapuri and spend a few days in the company of Amma in the Ashram. She saved money over a couple of years for this purpose and finally made the trip to India and landed in Amritapuri. At the earliest opportunity, she came for Amma’s darshan  and was coming in the queue.

When she reached closer to Amma, Amma could notice that her face looked forlorn; even after getting Amma’s hug (which she was eagerly looking forward to all along) and getting the prasad from Amma’s hands, there  was no joy on her face.

For the next few days, she was coming to Amma and sitting close to her but she continued to remain depressed , sad and pained. Amma asked her why she was so.

The lady replied: “Amma, When I came for darshan after my arrival, as I was coming closer to you I noticed that my neighbor was sitting next to you; Amma, you know pretty well about her; you know how antagonistic she is against me and how much trouble she gave to me in my life; she even filed a legal case against me. I could not tolerate such an evil person sitting close to Amma and enjoying Amma’s company. I felt so angry; I felt angry on Amma too”

Amma advised the lady to get rid of her jealousy and hatred so as to derive the joy of being with Amma. In order to comfort her Amma said to her: “You see, only extremely serious patients are admitted into an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and are kept directly under doctors vigilance and care all the 24 hours.  A patient in the general ward does not require such a constant attention of doctors. Likewise, your neighbor needed an active treatment by Amma. That’s why I kept her close to me”. This statement could console the lady to some extent!

[After narrating this incidence, Amma continued jocularly:  “From now, Ashramites will start talking about those people who are closely around Amma most of the times — ‘They are all like patients in ICU!’ Don’t talk like that! I gave the ICU patient example only for consoling the lady and it is not applicable to all!”]

3.   Delaying the response

Amma: “A physical wound caused by you may heal, but a wound caused by angry words would take quite a long time to heal. One approach to expressing anger could be to treat the target person of your anger as your own child. With our child, even though we may get angry, the anger would not be venomous not would it last long.

“Another approach is to consciously delay our response when we are provoked. Instead of reacting with anger on face, we can write down our feelings and emotions in a piece of paper. That would really prove to be a good emotional outlet for us and we may feel far less relieved by doing so. Once our initial and immediate reaction is curtailed, we get an opportunity to cool down and then review the matter in a more objective manner. At that point of time, we may not really feel the same intensity of anger and we could even appreciate the offender’s action.”

Amma narrated the following story to explain this:

“Once a famous professor gave a lecture at a gathering. The next day, he received a letter from one of his audience. It mentioned that what the professor lectured that day had a few mistakes and adivised the professor to avoid such mistakes in his next lectures.

“The professor became very angry. He felt ‘I am such a knowledgeable and experienced person in this field; I am so much respected and people throng to my lectures to hear what I say; how dare this person find fault with me! What an arrogance! No. I cannot allow this to happen’.

“The professor thought of filing a defamation suite against this person; he even wanted to engage thugs and give a physical beating to that critic!

He took a piece of paper and wrote a very strongly worded reply to the person. Unfortunately, before he could post it, the time for that day’s mail was over. The professor kept that letter beside his bed so that he can remember to post it early next morning.

Next morning, when he woke up, he felt like reading his letter once before posting it. After going through it, the professor felt that the letter was too harsh; he sat down to rewrite it to make it more sober. As he was about to post it, he thought “If my mind could change so much over a day, why not I postpone sending this letter for another day and make a fresh review tomorrow?” He retained the letter on his table.

The next day, the professor re-read the letter that he had received from the critic and also his re-written reply. He now felt “Oh! The mistakes that this person found in my lecture are true indeed; why should I write negatively to him then? I should actually be thankful to him for bringing my slips to my notice”. He sat down to write a fresh letter thanking the person for pointing out his mistakes; he invited the person for lunch in a restaurant as he wished to meet him in person.

The other person obliged. It was actually a woman and as they met and talked to each other they developed liking for each other. Soon, it blossomed into love; the professor proposed to her and she accepted; soon they got married!

4.  Misguided anger -1

Amma: When we truly understand that it is only one Atman that exists and its effulgence shines through all the living beings, then there will not be any reason to hate someone. Many times we may hate others and develop anger on them because of misguided assumptions; when truth dawns, we may realize that how foolish it was to get angry.

Once a boat was travelling fast from east to west in a lake.  Suddenly the boat man noticed that another boat was moving from east to west ahead of him. The movement of the other boat was slow, but it was such that if it did not stop, it would cut into the course of his boat leading to a collision.

The boat man stood up and waved towards the other boat which was at a distance. He did gestures asking the other to stop or turn direction so that collision would not occur. However, nothing happened. The other boat kept moving slowly and steadily towards west. As the boats started nearing each other, the boatman shouted at top of his voice “Hey! Who is there? Don’t you see that you are sailing dangerously close?Listen to me; turn your direction immediately!”

But nothing happened. The boatman became very furious. He started showering abusive and filthy words of curse towards whosoever was on the other boat. At the same time, he did his best to slow down his own boat and just managed to stop the collision. The boats just touched each other. Full of anger the boatman jumped into the other boat, crying “You idiot! Are you blind? Where are you hiding yourself? Come on, I will hit you and kill you right now for having caused such an emergency to my precious boat!”

He searched here and there. He peeped into the other boat’s cabin but no one was really there. Then it dawned to him that the boat had somehow got unleashed from the shore and started sailing and drifting in the lake by the blow of wind. His anger instantly subdued. He started laughing for having shouted so much abusive words towards a non-existing boatman!

5. Misguided anger – 2

[Amma: “Nothing is insignificant in God’s creation. A plane will not fly if the engine is in repair. The plane will not also fly if a small vital screw is missing. This human birth is rare and we should not abuse our body. We should not do- self condemnation and develop a lowly negative opinion about ourselves.”]

Once people from all walks of life visited their king in the palace on his birthday. Every one carried some gift for the king according to their capacity or means. A poor farmer from a nearby village also went to greet the king on his birth day. He carried a basketful of cereals and vegetables that he grew in his land as gift to the king.

The king too was very benevolent.  He made sure that everyone who came to see him was given a gift back. The king was caring enough to give the most appropriate gift to each person based on his need and stature.

The farmer in his heart that if the king could gift him a horse, it would be very beneficial to him.  However, the king presented him with a donkey.

The farmer was very disappointed in receiving the donkey. Several other farmers too received donkeys as gifts.  “What is the use of this slow and sluggish donkey? Now the king has added a burden to me; I have to feed this donkey too now in addition to feeding my family”.

Next day was the weekly market day. He loaded his farm produce over the donkey’s back. He also sat over it. The donkey walked very slowly and the farmer became very impatient. He beat the donkey to move faster. He thought, “If only had the king given me a horse, I would have reached the market by this time”.

When he reached the market, several fellow farmers noticed his donkey. They said “Hey! You have got a nice looking donkey! It looks strong too!”  The former remained nonplussed. “Oh! The king gave me this as gift and I am now burdened. He eats so much and walks so slow. I think I will become bankrupt one day by virtue of feeding him.”

The farmer continued to remain very happy with his donkey.  He did not give enough food to it and soon it started becoming thin and weak.

When it was time to go and sell his produce in the market, the farmer again loaded the donkey with his harvest and also sat over it. The donkey having become very weak could not even move. The farmer got down and started beating the donkey and forced it to move forward. He walked along side, beating and cursing the donkey again and again. Several people who saw him on the way said, “Poor thing! Don’t beat is like this; it will die”. The former replied contemptuously “I will be really happy if he dies.”

Starving and beaten severely, the donkey died one day.  During the next visit to the market, the poor farmer had to carry the entire load of his produce for selling on his head and walk alone. The journey was very tiring. He had to stop in between several times to unburden himself. By the time he reached the market it was past 11 AM. The market normally remained open from 8 AM to 11 AM. So, when he reached there, everyone was already packing off.  He could not sell his produce at all.

Fellow farmers asked him why he was late and what happened to his donkey. He said, “Oh! At last he died saving me from the burden of taking care of him”.  Others said, “But you see, it was helpful to you in previous weeks to bring your produce here and sell them. If you had taken proper care of it, it would have benefited you immensely. All the other farmers who got donkeys as gifts from the king are really making the best use of their donkeys and they are indeed prospering in their lives!”

[Amma:  “In this story, the donkey represents our own body and mental faculty. Any negative self-image and consequent self-hatred and self-condemnation can only lead to more suffering.  God has given us this birth as human being and we should make best use of it and not condemn and abuse it.”]

(Amma Onam Satsang – Monday 4/9/17)

6.  Where is the enjoyment?

Amma:  Peace of mind really means mind not wandering around behind unnecessary things.  It is the nature of mind to wander around with thoughts. By associating ourselves with thoughts like envy, hatred, finding fault, criticizing others and so on that we give strength to evil thoughts and in this process, we lose our peace of mind. Awareness is required to watch our thoughts and arresting them. The bird can fly above our head alright, but we should not allow it to sit on our head and build a nest there!

Once a very rich woman went to attend a famous music concert. The artist was an extremely accomplished and popular. It was not easy to get tickets. She spend quite some money to get a first class ticket so that she can sit in the front row and enjoy the program.

The program was about to start. The rich lady, comfortably seated, looked around to see which are the other VIPs sitting in the first class. Suddenly she was shocked to see there a woman whom she knew of. That woman was from a lowly class and she was the daughter of her erstwhile servant maid. The woman still had impoverished looks and her dress was rather shabby.  Seeing this, the rich lady got mentally disturbed: ‘How come this woman of a low class, the daughter of my servant maid could come to attend to this concert, that too sitting in the first class area which is really meant for rich connoisseurs like me? What a disgrace!’

Such a disturbing thought came rising again and again in her mind.  She would frequently look at the side of the woman and throw a contemptuous look.

Suddenly, she heard a thunderous applause and then playing of National Anthem.  Then only she realized that the concert was over! Her entire mind was so occupied by the negative thoughts about the poor woman throughout the music concert that she could not even enjoy a single moment of it!

(Monday beach Satsang 22/8/2016)

7.  Being in the present

Once a Businessman, whose business was not running profitably was rather mentally disturbed about his status. One evening, he went to a Shopping Mall. He wanted to relax for a while, sat in a restaurant in the mall and ordered an ice cream. As he started eating it, he thought “I have this nagging headache since last night and it is not going away. It must be due to a stomach upset. It must be due to the food I ate last night at a cheap food joint. Perhaps some lizard has fallen into the food or the food had been poisoned by lizard droppings.  That’s why this head ache is not going away…”

Just then he saw a very rich man alighting from a costly foreign car. He was extremely well dressed in suits and was wearing a costly watch and diamond rings. He was going in for shopping.

Seeing him, the business man thought, “Ah! Man! How rich this fellow is! He must be from an aristocratic family and making millions! See my condition. Right from childhood, I suffered in poverty; my parents did not bequeath me any money or property. I struggled hard all my life and my business is now in bad shape. I am really worried as to where I will end up tomorrow. When will I make enough money? Will I ever be able to become a rich man like this fellow?”

Thus his mind was crowded with thoughts of the past and the future. Suddenly he noticed that the ice-cream cup was empty. He realized that he had eaten it up without enjoying even a spoonful of it!

Amma:  We should learn to live in the present and enjoy what we have in hand. Lamenting about the past or worrying about the future will not in any way help to change the present moment.

(Friday Satsang 09/09/2016)

8.  Don’t try to escape from unpleasant situations!

Amma: Acceptance is an important qualification that a Spiritual aspirant has to develop. Do not try to escape from unpleasant situations; you may end up with more difficulty than what you would have escaped!

Once a person relaxing at home got a phone call from one of his relatives. The caller was a retired Colonel in the army, who said that he was on his way to meet him at home for a chitchat; the colonel was a very boring person, who would reel out his past war experiences for hours if he caught hold of a hapless listener. Since this person had already heard the colonel’s stories umpteen times in the past, he was in no mood to meet the visitor and waste his time listening to him.

He thought “Let me escape from the colonel this time. It is better I sneak out from the back door of my house and take the shortcut to reach the main road so that I need not encounter him”.  Unfortunately, while he was going through the shortcut, the colonel was too coming to his house through the short cut. Seeing him, the colonel greeted “Oh! Good after noon! It is so nice of you to come all the way to receive me en route! Okay let us walk further and I can narrate to you some of my life experiences during war time….”

The man had no alternative but to smile sheepishly and walk along. He thought, ‘The sun is very hot today and there is no shade nearby. In my hurry to escape from him, I forgot to take the umbrella too. If I had patiently stayed at home, at least we will be under a shade. I am feeling very thirsty. At home, I could have had a glass of water or soft drink from the fridge to appease my thirst. Now I have to walk in this hot sun listening to these stories; Had I been at home, at least I could have relaxed in the sofa and pretend to listen to his stories and diverted my mind elsewhere. Now I have to suffer doubly on account of my foolish impulse to escape from this colonel!’

(Friday Satsang 04/08/2017)

9. Consoling others

Once a lady came to know that the husband of a woman in the neighboring house died. She heard wailing and crying from the adjacent house. She went to the house, sat close to the woman who lost her husband and started consoling her. The widowed woman was crying uncontrollably.  The lady, in a very dignified tone, started consoling the grieving woman saying, “Please gather yourself; What is born has to die one day. That is the law of nature. You know, the physical body made of five elements only perishes and the Atman that reside inside is indestructible; Atman is never born nor will die”. The widowed woman listened to these words of wisdom from Vedanta and to a little extent it helped her to gather herself.

After a couple of months, the lady’s husband fell sick and died unexpectedly. She started crying so loud that the entire people in the street gathered into her house. Now the widowed neighboring woman came and sat adjacent to the wailing lady. She said, “Madam, while I am sorry that you lost your husband, I am rather surprised to see you crying so loud; hardly a few months back when my husband died, you taught me so much Vedanta about Atman being imperishable and that only the body dies! How come you are so much immersed in grief now?”

Pat came the lady’s reply: “That day, it was YOUR husband who died. Today, it is MY husband”.

Amma:  It is the attachment to me and mine that causes grief.

(Friday Satsang 09/09/2016)

10. Showing anger or getting things done – Which is better?

Amma:  It is the nature of life that things are bound to happen contrary to our expectations or liking.  Most of us will get very unhappy at such a situation. We will lose our self-control and show our displeasure to others around us. It will only result in others, who are normally nice to people, to react adversely towards us on account of our behavior.

In an airport, the time came for a plane bound for New York to depart. People were waiting impatiently in a queue in order to board the plane. Suddenly an announcement came in the airport speakers: “The 10AM flight scheduled for New York gets cancelled due to an unforeseen problem in the engine; we regret for the inconvenience caused to the passengers…..”

Hearing it, there was lot of commotion amidst the passengers waiting in the queue. A businessman who was to travel in the flight got very agitated. he rushed to the Service Counter and started shouting at the person manning the counter: “Hello, do you know that I will be losing millions of dollars worth of business if I am not going to be present in the meeting scheduled for tomorrow at New York? Who will compensate me for this loss? I am going to sue you and your Air Service for a huge sum for having cancelled this flight at the last minute.We will meet in the court; Okay?”

The counter staff tried his best to give some reply politely to this angry businessman, but he was in no mood to listen. He shouted “No; no. I don’t want any explanation. Do you know who I am? I am not going to stop till I get you removed from this post”. He banged the counter table with his fist and then stormed out.

The next person standing in the counter then approached the counter staff with a smiling face. “Good evening! Sorry to trouble you amidst all the tension you are facing now. Ca you do me a small favor? There is really an urgent need for me to attend a crucial meeting at New York tomorrow. I will be extremely thankful if you could suggest me some alternative travel plan so that I somehow reach New York before tomorrow morning”.

The counter clerk looked into his computer and said “There is just one seat available in a flight going to Washington scheduled to start in the next 30 minutes. If you take it, there is a connecting flight to New York at 5 AM tomorrow morning”.

“Oh! Wonderful! Will you please book that seat for me? I am extremely thankful for this gesture. I will not forget this help from you in my lifetime” said the passenger.

The fact is that both the travellers were scheduled to attend the same meeting. Due to the impatience and anger of the first passenger, he lost the opportunity to make the journey; on the other hand, the second traveller could get a seat in the alternative flight only because he was patient and spoke nicely with the counter clerk thereby creating positive vibes in the clerk to extend a timely help to him.

Amma: It is the capacity to keep mental balance and face the situations with equanimity that is far more important than our brilliance or abilities  in bringing success in our life always.

11.  The count of nails

Once there was an Ashram where lots of people visited daily. There was a Brahmachari living there as an inmate, who was well known for his short tempered-ness. The responsibilty of handling the reception of visitors to the ashram had been given to him. He used to get irritated and angry with visitors even on petty matters.

The Guru was aware of this weakness of the disciple. He thought of an idea to change this behavior of short tempered-ness from the disciple. He called the disciples and handed over to him a packet of nails. He said, “Each time you get angry with any visitor, you must immediately strike a nail on the trunk of the banyan tree at the front of the Ashram; at each night you should count how many nails you have inserted there on that day”. The disciple agreed.

From the next day, the disciple started striking one nail at each time he got angry with visitors.At the end of the day, when he counted, there were some two hundred nails. There were about thousand visitors to the ashram that day and the disciple had behaved angrily with some two hundred of them! The disciple felt bad about his weakness. The next day, the disciple tried his best to control his anger; that night, when he counted the nails he had inserted that day, the count was a hundred and fifty.

Gradually, day by day, there was perceptible improvement in the disciple’s behavior. Over a period of time, there were days when not even a single nail was striken on the trunk of the tree!

The disciple went to the Guru, reported the status and asked, “Maharaj, what should I do hereafter?”

“That’s good. Just because you developed awareness about your weakness and behaved with self control, you could bring about such a change in your behavior. Now start doing this. At each instance when you consciously control your anger, go and pluck out one nail each from the tree’s trunk and take a count”.

From the next day onwards, on each time anger rose up in his mind and he succeeded in controlling it,  he ran to the Banyan tree and pulled out one nail.

After several days, the disciple noticed that he had plucked out all the nails from the tree’s trunk! He felt happy that he had attained full success in controlling his mind from anger. He went to the guru and reported the matter, “Guruji, Nowadays, I don’t get angry on anyone; whenever anger rises up in my mind, I am able to watch it myself. I am able to smile and laugh with people and deal with them very friendly nowadays; because of it, I am able to enjoy peace of mind”.

The guru took the disciple along with him and went to the banyan tree. He pointed out the trunk to the disciple and said, “My son, just look closely at the trunk; even after removing the nails, don’t you notice the tiny hole marks that were caused by the striking of the nails on to the trunk? Likewise, in the minds of all the people on whom you had expressed anger, you would have created a wound. Even if those woulds got dried over time, the marks, the impressions of them would not go easily and remain for a long time. A wound caused by a sharp knife can get healed, but not the wounds caused by sharp words. The hurt of those sharp, angry words would keep lingering in them for quite long. That’s why, we should be extremely careful in uttering every word towards others”.

[Amma: “In our life, knowingly or unknowingly, we cause hurt in the heart of other people through our actions and words. There is no way to turn back the time and cancel what we did in the past.Whatever we do out of carelessness and egotism cause pain and sorrow to others as well as to us. That’s why it is very important to develop discrimination in out minds. When selfishness and ego rise up their ugly heads inside us, we should consciously control our minds. Only the person who does every activity wakefully and carefully will be able to enjoy peace and happiness in life”.]

(Tamil Matruvani May 2017)

12.  Buying free!

[Amma: “If somebody abuses you, you must laugh knowing that it is their mental vasanas (inbuilt tendencies) that come out this way. Actually, you should appreciate them. You should try not to utter anything against them. You should also try to develop an attitude of not nurturing hatred or negative thoughts about them. Only if you don’t react to their anger, you can go deeper inside yourself”.]

Once a guru advised his student to practice self-restraint for three years. He told him that he should not react to anyone who insult him. Further he should give some money to the person who abuses him.

The disciple followed this advice in letter and spirit. Whenever he received insult or abuse or angry verbal deluge, he was paying money to the person who did it.

After practicing this discipline for three years, he came back and fell at the feet of his guru.

The guru felt very pleased with his disciple. He said, “Now you can go to the World of Wisdom and attain spiritual knowledge”. The disciple left and reached the entrance of the ‘World of Wisdom’. An old wise man was guarding the gate. He had the habit of scolding anyone who attempted to pass through the gate. As the disciple attempt to enter into the gate, the Old wise man started abusing him in a verbal tirade. Hearing it, the disciple laughed.

“Why are you laughing?” asked the old man.

“Actually, for the past three years, I had to pay money to those who abused me, as per the instructions given by my guru. From today, my guru has freed me from this commitment and you are giving me your abuses free of cost! When I thought about it, I could not control my laugh!”

The wise man too laughed along with him and said, “I can now permit you inside. You are quite fit enough to enter the World of Wisdom!”

(Source: Arul Mozhigal-6  Tamil)

13. Belated Remorse

Once a person bought a new car. He was so proud of it and was extremely possessive about it.  One day, as he went to the garage to take his car, he was shocked to see his little son playing with a hammer there. His son was breaking the car’s glasses and also denting its surface with the hammer as a matter of child play.

The man felt extremely outraged to see his brand new car getting damaged right in front of his eyes. He rushed towards his little boy, grabbed him and pushed him forcefully away in uncontrollable anger. The boy fell over a lafe stone and his fingers got crushed between the stone and the hammer in his hand.  The boy started crying aloud in pain and was bleeding profusely from his hand.

The father was rattled to see this happening. He immediately took the son to the hospital. The son was rushed to the operation theater.

After a long, tension filled wait, the doctor came out and said, “The impact on his fingers was so strong that the bones have crushed considerably. We had no option but to remove three fingers from his hand. Sorry about that”.

The man cried uncontrollably. After the boy was shifted to bed, the man sat beside his son and kept crying. The boy hugged his father and said, “Papa! I am extremely sorry that I damaged the car. Please don’t feel bad; You can get it repaired, no?”. Then looking at his bandaged hand, he asked innocently, “How long will it take for my fingers to grow again, Dad?

[Amma: “There are certain things in life that can be set right. But damage caused to others through expression of anger is extremely difficult to set right”.]


14. Handling Anger

[Amma narrated a real life story about an ashramite in one of her satsangs as below:]

One day, a group of Ashramites came and met Amma to complain about a western woman who too was a resident of the Ashram. “Amma, this woman is extremely rude with others; she has uncontrollable anger and at times she hits other people too. None of us could bear with her severe mood swings. We just cannot work with her any more; Amma, we request you to send her out of the Ashram”.

Amma called the western woman right away and said to her, “Why do you behave so angrily with others? Don’t you know that this Ashram is supposed to be a place for peace and dedicated seva? What is troubling you?”

The woman said, “Amma, I am unable to control my anger because of an incidence that happened in my young age. My father and mother had an abusive relationship. My father was an extremely angry person; One day, out of rage, he shot my mother right in front of my eyes and killed her. I swooned and I was then admitted in the hospital. On account of this incidence, I became very depressed and had to be on medication.  I underwent a very tough life of growing up afterward. I have been in constant mental turmoil; I could not love any person; I have absolutely no desire to live. In fact, only after seeing Amma, I saw some meaning in living. If Amma too abandons me, I will simply commit suicide”.

She narrated all these in front of those who complained about her. Hearing this, all of them were in tears and they agreed to bear with her somehow or other so that she can continue to live in Ashram. Amma said to her, “My daughter, you have seen the evil effect of your father’s anger and how it has damaged others’ lives. Should you not learn a lesson from his life and correct your fault? What is the point in living a similar life like your father by hating others and behaving angrily with others? Don’t you think you have to change your attitude to get peace in life?”

The woman listened to it patiently. She said, “Amma, I will try my best to correct myself”.

[After narrating this incidence, Amma added that over a period of time, a slow but gradual change in behavior is taking place in that woman.]

15.  Medicine for curing anger

Once a woman was talking to her friend. “Practically every day when my husband returns from office, invariably, we get into some argument and fighting.  Is there any way I can avoid it?”

Her friend said, “Don’t worry. I have a medicine for it. When the husband returns from office and starts any argument with you, you have to take a mouthful of this medicine and retain it in your mouth without swallowing. That’s all”. After giving this instruction, she gave a bottle of the medicine to her friend.

That evening, after her husband returned from office and started an irritating issue to argue with her, she immediately took a mouthful of the medicine and retained it in her mouth. After a while, the husband became peaceful. She then swallowed the medicine and proceeded with her chores.

For next couple of days, she did the same thing. It was really a wonder. She went to meet her friend and said, “What a wonderful medicine you have given! For the past few days after I started taking this medicine regularly, there has been no fight between us! If you can tell me the ingredients of this medicine, I will prepare it at my home myself”.

Her friend said, “Sure I will. But wait for 6 months”.

Six months passed. There was no longer any fight between the couples in those days. Peace and mutual love returned in them. The woman happened to meet her friend again and shared the good news to her.

This time the friend said, “It is now the time for me to reveal the secret of the medicine. It is just plain water with no ingredients! When you took this water-medicine in your mouth and retained it, you were unable to talk. Since there was no counter argument, your husband too became peaceful. Since your husband became cool, your anger too got subsided. That is the secret!”

[Amma: “When we get angry, we should not speak whatever that comes in our mouth.  We should not  go about implementing any decision that we take when we are in the grip of anger. Anger is like a wound in our mind. We should give time for it to dry.”]

(Source: Amritam Gamaya – Malayalam – Vol 1)

[To continue reading  little stories of Amma under the same topic, you can proceed to:  Amma’s stories on managing anger and other emotions – Part 2 ]