“Making efforts to be people, who not simply ‘react;’ instead, in patience and gentleness, seek to ‘respond!’”
(Based on 2 Cor 3:15-4:1,3-6 and Mt 5:20-26 – Thursday of the 10th Week in Ordinary Time)
Sinbad the Sailor is a fictional character.
His tales are mostly voyage stories – fantastic adventure stories through the seas of Africa and South Asia.
One of the tales narrates of how Sinbad and his sailors landed on an island.
On arriving, they saw coconuts, high up on the trees; which could very well quench their thirst and satisfy their hunger.
But these coconuts were far beyond their reach.
However, they noticed a large number of monkeys on the branches of the trees.
Soon enough, Sinbad and his men, began to throw stones and sticks up at the apes.
This enraged the monkeys and they began to seize the coconuts…
… and hurl them down at the men on the ground.
This was exactly what Sinbad and his men wanted!
They got the monkeys so angry…
… that they gave in to satisfy the needs of those who made them angry!
This is exactly what anger does…
… we play ourselves, into the hands of those who cause us to lose our temper!
We end up “reacting”…
… than “responding”!
The Gospel of the day is a teaching by Jesus on this very important concern of Christian Life: Anger.
Killing is considered to be a serious evil in every society and every way of life
Killing in its basic form is usually considered only in the sense of the physical body.
But the Lord today presents a higher perspective in the understanding of killing…
“You have heard that it was said to the men of old, ‘You shall not kill’; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment’. But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be liable to the judgment….” (Mt 5: 21)
The Lord expands the understanding of killing beyond the physical body…
A person engages in killing… if, by anger…
… the social standing of the other person is upset
… the emotional state of the other person is wounded
… the spiritual balance of the other person is disturbed
We could understand anger from various perspectives…
- Anger as Quick temper
Prov 15:18 says, “An ill-tempered man stirs up strife…”
It is said that speak when one is angry, one makes the best speech that would be regretted much!
Quick temper sometimes…
…. forms part of our temperament
… comes even unknowingly
… is instigated by other’s actions
Yet, in all this, one ought to…
… rise quickly from remaining in the state of anger.
… become conscious of the occasions which can excite anger
… see that the temper is not fed or nurtured or intensified
- Anger which leads to stubbornness
Eph 4:26: “…. do not let the sun to set on your anger”
Sometimes, the anger within is allowed to grow so much…
…that we get habituated to getting angry for even tiny and trivial matters
…that we lose our peace of mind, and sometimes even become indifferent
…that we choose not to budge from our position or viewpoint and remain adamant
Yet, we need to make efforts…
… to try to overcome our ego and self mentality and seek to make amends with the person
… to lower oneself in humility (even if we are right) and ease the situation of annoyance
Anger needs to be sanctified…channelled in the proper way!
One may feel a ‘just’ anger at….
… the immense corruption in the world and even in religious circles
… the forces of evil that seem to root away even faint traces of hope
… the indifferent and unchanging attitudes and temperaments of people which is sickening.
Yet… even these ought to get channelled properly
… even these ought to be routed in the right manner
Yes… even our just anger needs to be sanctified and purified in the burning furnace of God’s Love.
Anger is indeed a major tendency that is a cause of distress for many of us.
Anger is indeed a prime inclination that is a root of sin for many of us.
There are moments, when anger captures us and we throw ourselves into people…
… throw words which are not appropriate
… throw emotions that would cause shame and guilt later
… throw actions and deeds that would cause pain and injury
Let us make genuine, practical and realistic efforts in the fight to sanctify and purify our anger.
… it is painstaking
… it requires deeper attempts
… it requires committed determination!
But the Lord assures His Grace to help us and His Love to encourage us!
Let us make efforts to be people, who not simply “react”…
… instead, in patience and gentleness, seek to “respond!”
God Bless! Live Jesus!
Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism:
This truly human knowledge of God’s Son expressed the divine life of his person.
“The human nature of God’s Son, not by itself but by its union with the Word, knew and showed forth in itself everything that pertains to God.”
Such is first of all the case with the intimate and immediate knowledge that the Son of God made man has of his Father.
The Son in his human knowledge also showed the divine penetration he had into the secret thoughts of human hearts.
By its union to the divine wisdom in the person of the Word incarnate, Christ enjoyed in his human knowledge the fullness of understanding of the eternal plans he had come to reveal.
What he admitted to not knowing in this area, he elsewhere declared himself not sent to reveal (Cf. CCC # 473-474)