Anger. Recently, many people have been asking me what to do about the anger they are feeling inside themselves. Anger is at the top of my list of the three causes that bring Parkinson’s symptoms to the diagnosable surface. I have expressed it as: “1. Qi and Blood Deficiency, which is caused by emotional stress, anger, frustration, and resentment.” Part of Parkinson’s recovery requires letting go of anger. You know, that precious anger that you feel you have the right to hold, to nurture, and to call your own…that anger that, ultimately, you turn on yourself. Yes, THAT anger. You need to send it on its way.
Anger is like drinking milk that is beyond its expiration date and has gone sour. Stay with me on this one. You went to the grocery store yesterday and bought a quart of milk. Your mind was wandering and you did not look at the expiration date. You got home and threw away the receipt which went out with the garbage and was taken away early this morning. You open the milk, pour a glass, and it is sour and disgusting and starts to make you sick. You look at the expiration date and it was two weeks ago.
Anger. Here it comes. You are angry at the manufacturer for having expired milk on the shelf. You are angry at the stocking person at the store who left it on the shelf. You are angry at the cashier because she took your money when the milk was expired. Ultimately, you turn the anger on yourself because you should have checked the date and you should not have thrown out the receipt, and there will be no justice after you have been wronged.
And, whose fault is this? In the end, you decide this is your fault because you were not perfect, you could have prevented the situation, you were asleep at the switch, and now you have sour milk. At this point, you have two choices: 1. Continue to drink the milk; or 2. Let it go…throw it away.
If you continue to drink the milk, who is harmed? The manufacturer? The stocking person? The cashier? No. Only you. But you continue drinking the milk and harming yourself because it is your milk and you paid for it and you never will get your money back. And this is why anger is like drinking milk that is beyond its expiration date and has gone sour. You are the only one who is harmed if you do not let it go.
So, look inside yourself and visit where the anger comes from. It could be current events or events from long ago. The bottom line is this: holding onto your anger only hurts you! Forgiveness is a gift you can give yourself to help let go of anger. That’s right, a gift you can give yourself.
Whoever it is that made you angry, forgive them. By the act of forgiveness, you are taking away the power they have over you. You are giving away the negative emotions that are destroying your health and feeding your Parkinson’s. Forgiveness does not “let the person off the hook.” Whatever it is that they did to have you hanging onto anger all this time, they will have to live with themselves throughout life, and after.
However, by giving forgiveness, you release their hold on you, and you throw away the anger. Forgiveness is like saying, “I am giving back this negativity because I do not want it anymore.” And you become free from the anger attached to the words or events that caused the anger in the first place.
Cause 1 of the causes that bring Parkinson’s symptoms to the diagnosable surface: “1. Qi and Blood Deficiency, which is caused by emotional stress, anger, frustration, and resentment.” Look at some descriptive phases for anger:
“His blood was boiling.”
“Steam was coming out of her ears.”
“His face was red with rage.”
“If looks could kill, her glare would have killed me.”
When I look at these descriptive phrases for anger, one word comes to mind: TOXIC. Anger is toxic. It is why anger negatively impacts the liver and leads to “Qi (your life energy) and Blood Deficiency.” If your blood is boiling so much that steam is coming out of your ears, it is unreasonable to believe that a weakened Parkinson’s liver getting fed impulses from a low-energy Parkinson’s brain is any match for your anger.
Give yourself the gift of forgiveness and let go of the anger. The anger is literally eating you up alive and it fuels your Parkinson’s. You will be amazed at the shift in your emotions when you say, “Okay, instead of choosing to be angry, I am choosing to be compassionate (first for myself, and then for the other person), and I am offering the gift of forgiveness from my heart.”
You will feel the shift from physical and emotional turmoil to spiritual calm and peace. It is a lovely transformation, and one that I highly recommend.
If the milk is sour, be compassionate to yourself and let it go…throw it away. And smile.
You are worth it!!!
All my best,
WOW. Thank you for this I had an appointment with my neurologist yesterday who was very negative about any of the therapies I am trying for myself stating that they do not help me with my Parkinsons only the medication can do that. I am working hard today to let go if my anger and in comes your email. I am also working on finding a new neurologist not an easy thing to do but I will do it.
Please post what area you live in, maybe one of us can help you locate a new neuro.
Good stuff on forgiveness, Howard, and letting go of blame, especially towards the self. And if this doesn’t dissipate it, isn’t it also healthy to express the anger constructively, ie at an inanimate object, rather than bottle it up as we’ve done for so long?
Anger, in my books, is a tragic expression of a yearning for love, compassion and understanding. So how much more life serving can I be than, when anger stirs, to hold myself tenderly and with love? Surely, as I am connected to all life, I serve more ably when I am immersed in love.
And I can see that self-forgiveness could lead to cleansing grief…
OMG — Howard has been supporting me about forgiveness and the release of anger for the last 18+ months. I didn’t see my anger until this moment. I’m working on cleaning this up — right now.
OMG! Thanks Howard for your diligence, and especially THIS blog.
Hi Penny, to clarify, I only have seen anger as useful if it leads to grief and self-acceptance. And I’m hearing Howard say with PD this may not be the best path.
So well said Howard.I have been working hard on this one and getting good results.Especially with clearing the associated resentment.Can also recall times when I have been shaking or sick with anger!
thanks Howard for the reminder about how anger leads to dis-ease (any).this is another good example just like the sack of potatoes..
love to all
Thanks Howard for another perfect analogy…….Nothing is worth getting that upset over yet anger is a natural response. I can think of times in the past when I definitely let things go. Thanks for the reminder!
Thank you Howard.
This information is so important.
A month prior to meeting Howard and commencing “The Recipe” I had the good fortune of being guided through a session based on the book The Journey by Branden Bays. At the completion I felt overwhelming forgiveness toward a particular family member. I didn’t know the entire reason but the feeling was so strong and freeing and healing. The whole picture became crystal clear in the midst of The Recipe. I’m certain the forgiveness cleared the way for that to happen. If you take whatever path facilitates forgiveness in your heart, you will find incredible rewards.
Thanks Howard for your d escription of anger and how it brings parkinson’s symptoms. When we dont forgive, we nurture our anger dont we. Then it does its damage. Thanks Howard for your insight. I am eager to meet you during your seminars.
Okay, guilty as charged, but working on this now. 🙂 Thank you!
About 30 years ago, a boyfriend said to me,”You are the angriest person I know”. And you know what? That REALLY made me mad! I thought that was ridiculous and insulting! Even the fact that my response to his statement was a huge flare of anger could not make me see that, Yes, I had a real problem with anger. I always had a justification~why it was right for me to be angry. Somehow, I thought the world needed my anger to show just where everybody else was screwing up! And though other people could see my short fuse getting ready to blow, I actually thought I was fine. absolutely fine.
Frustration, irritation, full force anger~I had them all. I believe the research about our brains forming pathways as circuits wire together. I just got angrier and angrier as time went on, and
with less and less provocation~though I can say this only in hindsight~ as if anger had become my default mode. Really, just about everything pissed me off, though I tried not to show it. Often I just stewed inside, thinking my angry thoughts, as if everybody around me couldn’t feel the temperature in the room go up! I fooled no one but myself! I have to laugh as I write this because it was just so difficult for me to admit that I was angry since I considered anger to be a terrible character flaw.
It wasn’t until I started doing the Recipe for Recovery and reading about how anger was contributing to my symptoms that I started to be more honest in my self assessment. It was only because the stakes were so high: If I wanted to stop shaking, I was going to have to stop drinking the spoiled milk! It was not about being critical of myself, blaming myself or being wrong. It was about Recovery.
There are still times when I find my irritability threshold is low, or I feel frustrated, or I am angry. But now I really recognize the toxic load. I think,” My poor liver is being hurt by this. I am allowing myself to get way out of balance.” The medical Qigong for the Liver in the Recipe works really well for me, returning me to a neutral state.
When being healthy became the most important thing to me, it was much easier to be honest about anger in my life. The trick for me was in recognizing anger in its many forms rather than trying to deny it.
the guy who thought I was the angriest person he’d ever met? he was probably right.
Thankfully, I am not so angry these days.
Thanks for bringing up the topic, Howard! It feels remarkably good to admit what a rage~aholic I was!
Thank you all for your kind words and for sharing your stories and insights. I am hopeful that when you read this post, take a look at my anger issues I have discussed in previous posts (particularly about needing to adopt my “Okay” attitude of acceptance to fight the chronic anger), and read Marie’s comment above, you will realize that two people who admittedly had struggled with the anger issue throughout adult life have fully recovered from Parkinson’s using the Recipe. If we could do it, you can do it. Imagine freeing yourself from stress and tension and anxiety and anger and frustration. Imagine filling your heart with happiness and joy and love and compassion and contentment and forgiveness and gratitude. “OKAY!” Stop imagining it and make it happen.
With gratitude, blessings, and love,