Anger is a natural reactive mechanism against events or circumstances that are not favourable. Without going further into the literal definition of anger, let us take it to our hearts as a human being, to decide whether it is good or bad. Within the encompassment of our emotional manifestations, anger is one of them. It is stress amalgamated with frustration, in order to produce a response that enforces us to do something about a situation that appears to be disorderly or wrong in our eyes. It is an undeniably significant gift offered by nature, and it is safe to say that it has probably been a mechanism that allows us to survive during the course of hostile evolution. Perhaps it is a good thing, but is it necessary for us humans to continue possessing such a primitive characteristic, despite that we have, to a great extent, been distinguished from the primitive world already? I believe that there is a very good reason why we are labelled as, ‘civilians’. We are bound by our moral codes, and for many centuries, we have accustomed ourselves to the ways of humanly lives. Anger has proven itself, in the social context, to be futile and has caused much upheaval. In addition to that, it also damages physical well-being, although being much ignored by the hustle and bustle of modern life.
If one were to argue this from a religious point of view, I might as well resign from this debate already. However, I will abide by my argument and continue to object the purpose of being ‘angry’. Let us take a journey back in time, to the early 1900’s when a war erupted, and consumed many innocent lives – the First World War. If we take some time to consider the causes of the First World War, we can see that the catalyst that instigated the First World War was ‘anger’. What if Austria Hungary held back just a little bit and regained her composure, would such a catastrophic event emerge and annihilate the lives of many beyond recuperation? It merely needed the relinquishment of anger to prevent the First World War, but no one cared and tension cultivated to produce another world scale war. Tell me now; is anger as ‘good’ as it sounded previously?
If one were to argue that ‘anger’ is good from a spiritual point of view, I will give an effort into arguing back along the tangent. From such a young age, I have read a numerous number of books with regards to deities such as Poseidon, Hera and so on. One thing that I have always noticed, one thing that never fails to evoke fear in a child is the end result of a deity’s anger. If I were to ask this question: ‘What happens when Poseidon gets angry?’ to just any first grade child around the corner, they would say ‘big storm’ and the pinnacle of destruction. What happens when that giant octopus in folk tales get angry? It creates whirlpools that draw sailors into them; not only to mention those sadistic witches. As far as anger goes, it never finishes with a happy ending.
Let’s take the word ‘anger’ away from both the social or spiritual context, and place it in a biological concept. Anger is a form of stress. It is induced as a result of exposure to a stressful stimulus. As suggested by psychologist Selye (1976) and his widely recognized theory of stress (General Adaptation Syndrome or G.A.S), anger as a by product of stress can directly lead to several problematic side effects. Psychologists following the G.A.S theory have dedicated much effort into investigating the nature of stress and the scope of possibilities of which health issues can emerge. Within the period of 10 to 20 years, psychiatrists had realized the negative potential of stress, demonstrated through research, the worsening of cancerous conditions, spontaneous presence of cold/flu, and the downward spiral of immune response.
In summation, in whichever context you wish to categorize ‘anger’ under, it is irrefutable that it can result alongside many disparaging consequences. Perhaps those out there are right. Certainly, it must have helped us as primates to survive through such a vicious journey of evolution, however one must take into account the cliché that is repeated over and over again: ‘Don’t dwell in the past and get a move on’. From experience, as corny and cheesy (with more cheese on top), as it sounds, it is certainly applicable to most situations that revolve around the issues of life. Such is the same with anger; it is mechanism that assisted us in the past with survival and we are grateful, but for now, it is an entirely different story. We simply don’t need it. Just be happy.