In my previous post, I asserted the importance of acknowledging anger as vital to our health and central to self-knowledge (emotional literacy). But it is complicated. How do I honor my anger but still create more compassion in myself and in the world? Until recently, these felt like mutually exclusive mindsets. I'm only now beginning to reconcile my internal split--between the positives and negatives of my Midwestern upbringing. I'm relearning a spirituality without succumbing to a little-girl piety. My piousness may have looked good to my neighbors but it also repressed and distorted my true spirit.
With time, I gain more perspective on the pendulum swings of my inner journey. If I was the overly sweet girl who lacked basic self-knowledge and assertiveness, I grew into a tough woman who lost track of the tenderness in myself (for more on this, see my recent review of the movie “Wall-e). I see this same split or swing in others. The challenge is to both allow anger while not becoming overwhelmed or obsessed by it. An Olympian task! Still, to live fulfilling lives where we nurture ourselves and others, we must learn to walk this razor-edge.