Friday, October 9, 2009

Awareness of Our Weak Temper

Hoping to control my frustrations, last night I called my Indian brother on the other side of the world at 2:30 AM, my time, because I could not quiet my thoughts so I could sleep. I was really frustrated because the outcome of my actions, instead of making me closer to people, were separating me from them. My conscience was calm and happy, but I kept asking myself, why when I do everything by myself to solve a problem, am I relegated outside the community? I was not seeking to be recognized, but simply seeking to be accepted as a part of the community.

I knew last night that I had to calm my frustrations so that I would not become angry and violent in thought or action. I knew that if I did not, I would lose my temper if presented with the same problem again. Yes, I know myself very well. Facing the problem again will make me lose my temper. So I was advised to take my time, to be patient and wait for the true outcome of the problem, so I would be capable of seeing the others' point of view. And maybe I needed to understand that the people who had to correct the problem were not comfortable with their solution, or had frustrations too, and that the truth will come in the end. My positive action will lead me to be seen as a respected member of the group.

I decided to listen to the advice and went to sleep at 4AM, hoping that in a day or two a good answer would come and help me smooth my frustrations. The next day I woke up at 8:30, late, but ready to face my duties and be worthy of satisfying my needs. I took a minute to shower and jumped into my car. In front of the steering wheel I keep a little piece of a native´s Oaxaca carpet. I saw a piece of thread hanging out of the carpet, so as anyone might do, I pulled it and it broke very easy. Immediately, my mind realized how weak is the control of our emotions, especially when we are frustrated. An anger comes out flashing like the mighty thunder. This control in me is as weak as that thread.

It does not take a big force to control our emotions. It is the awareness of our weakness in controlling our temper that is important. I realized that I am capable of not becoming angry, and this awareness can prevent me from the foolishness of becoming angry, which doesn’t solve anything. And knowing that after frustration there is a possibility of violence, we can control ourselves and restrain the violence.

Immediately, I took the orange thread and placed it around my wrist like young kids do today. I said to myself, "this is a symbol of your weakness and you should wear it when facing frustration as a tool for controlling your anger and to avoid violence."

Now I believe that to become nonviolent, we all can use a thread, to remember how weak our control is from frustration to anger. Maybe everybody knows that already, but we have to be aware of it always, anyway.

Fernando Ferrara

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