Fargazing isn’t about never getting angry. It’s not about getting walked all over in the name of pacifism or new-agey, peace-n-loveness… It’s about making choices for what’s best for you. It’s not about other people or outward acts of kindness or changing the world–it’s about changing YOUR life. Of course, if changing your life inspires you to go out and change the world, more power to you! I, for one, would love to make some sort of lasting positive changes… But that’s something else. Fargazing is finding peace within yourself so you can stop focusing on today’s negativity and start focusing on tomorrow’s endless possibilities.
That being said, fargazing is not anti-anger.
Anger is often construed as a wholly negative emotion. It’s very true that anger can be destructive, and that’s what I’d call Toxic Anger. Toxic Anger is learned, habitual, and utterly self-damaging. Toxic Anger is mean-spirited and painful and holds you back when you want to be moving forward. Toxic Anger is a choice, and it’s not a helpful one.
If someone hurts you, it’s natural to be angry. If they wrong your child, it’s natural to be LIVID. Anger is a completely reasonable response to a lot of bad situations, and it can be very productive. Anger can lead to action and positive change, or it can provide the impetus to remove yourself from a hazardous relationship or environment.
Anger is like a fire: it can cleanse, or it can devour. You have to control the flames and be prepared to extinguish them when the time is right.
So push aside Toxic Anger. Learn to let it go before it can poison your mind and heart. But don’t be afraid to feel anger altogether! Experience anger, let it serve its purpose and purge the negative feelings and pain from your “soul” (in quotations because it’s meant figuratively and not as a religious or spiritual term). Just extinguish it before it rages beyond your control. And never let it smolder overnight, or it might burn the house down while you’re sleeping.
…What? I love extended metaphors. 😉
Things have happened to me that will always haunt me. I may not ever stop looking over my shoulder or cringing at an unexpected touch, but I refuse to let those past experiences negatively color my future. I was angry when they happened, and for a very, very, VERY long time after… And I just can’t allow myself to be angry anymore.
Have I forgiven the men who caused me this pain? Not at all. Not in the slightest. I will NEVER forgive them… But I’m not holding onto the anger. Forgiving would mean learning to love them again, and I can’t do that. I just… no longer hate them. Because hatred is toxic, you see, and it weighs me down, and I’ve got so many great things left to accomplish! I can’t keep holding on to this worthless baggage.
It was good that I was angry in the beginning, and even good that I was angry for a long time, because I needed that in order to seek out help, to overcome, and to want to help others who have experienced this. I needed that anger to help me recognize that it’s an epidemic and that specific action needs to be taken. We can’t continue to be silent victims if it means prolonging the risk to others… So the anger was productive in a lot of ways. I just think that productive phase ended a long while back, and I’m not quite finished being angry… And what’s it getting me? At this point, absolutely nothing. It’s just negativity that I’ve been choosing to accept, and now, I’m choosing to let it go.
Anger isn’t a bad thing, and you don’t have to deny angry responses in order to have a healthy inner self. In fact, denying anger altogether is probably not very healthy… But Toxic Anger is DEFINITELY unhealthy.
Do yourself a favor, and begin to let it go–right now. Every moment spent in anger is a moment lost.
On a Side Note:
I had another triumph tonight, which blew my mind. An event occurred (details aren’t important) that, two weeks ago, would have had me angry, sobbing, feeling hopeless and miserable… And I wasn’t happy, of course, but I didn’t even have a flash of anger. No self-pity, just some unhappiness that it happened that was almost instantly replaced by productive thoughts on how to remedy the situation. I am not crippled with self-pity or doubt, and, for that, I am so very grateful. Keeping this blog is helping give me the reminders and motivation I need to keep up this process, and it’s so gratifying to see my life genuinely changing for the better as a result.