“Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart.”
— Corrie ten Boom (1892–1983)
Withholding forgiveness, even to the point of a delay, to entertain bitterness on the patio of sullenness, is to take a poison of choice. That poison is anger. The antidote for anger is forgiveness.
Unforgiveness is the act of the will to engage in and journey with anger.
To hold to anger, notwithstanding how passive it is, is a bad and poisonous choice. We may know this by the adverse consequences that play out because of our anger. Anger is the choice to surrender control and to allow the possibilities for undesirable consequences. Anger tricks us into believing we have control when actually we don’t.
Anger is self-indulgence; it’s the choice taken to become self-righteous.
Utilising Old-Fashioned Transactional Analysis
Understanding the archetypal ego states of transactional analysis (child, adult, and parent) helps us resist anger – to know its limited usefulness in the mode of what would otherwise be loving, communicative relationships.
When we react emotionally in our child states and we parent the other person’s child and they parent our child and so on and so forth anger is propagated.
The only solution is to revert back to our adult state every single time, and this is done by simply doing it time after time, even when to respond in anger seems the only just response. If we believe by faith that anger only leads to evil, and that a patient response is a better bet, we have much better chances of getting our relational transactions right.
Resolving to Not Get Angry
If we are able to work on ourselves, in the mode of learning from our relational transactions with others, we will quickly deduce that resolving to not get angry is a wise character development investment.
If we have restrained our anger and we are able to reason with ourselves the paucity of good things that come from anger, we can see that everyone benefits – not least us, ourselves – when we keep our cool.
No matter how much we think anger is out of our control it is still a choice. When we commit to deal with our anger – both instinctive and latent anger – we are on a journey toward the most intrinsic blessing.
Unforgiveness is the act of the will to engage in and journey with anger. The antidote for anger is forgiveness. To forgive is to maximise our real control over our destiny.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.