RELEASING ANGER AND RESENTMENT


CHAPLAIN PAUL G. DURBIN, Ph.D.

 

 

Robert's Case History: 

Calm and Relaxed for Stress Management: 

Warm Light of Healing: 

Finger Response for Therapy:

Breaking Through Shells with Additional Suggestion for Overcoming Impotence: 

Restoring Health:

The feeling of anger is an emotion which is familiar to each of us. It is a feeling that each of us experiences from time to time and is often justified. I am not saying that you ought not get angry, or be resentful because these are human emotions and therefore OK. It becomes a problem for us by how we react to the anger and whether we control the anger or the anger controls us. St. Paul had great insight when he wrote to the Ephesians (4:24) "Be angry and yet do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger."

Something happened to you and you felt angry about it. Perhaps you have held on to it for years so that it has become resentment. The Simonton's in their book Getting Well Again, writes, "Resentment is not the same as anger. Anger is generally a single, relatively short-lived emotion, whereas resentment is a long-term process... No matter how justified those feelings may have been when the experience first occurred, continuing to carry them has tremendous physical and emotional cost." The only change to that statement I would make is that resentment is anger that is prolonged and continues well beyond the initial experience.

The resentment may have been brought on by childhood abuse, an illness, a financial setback, a broken marriage, a broken friendship, an accident, and the anger continues to affect you in the present. To continue to react with anger leads to a mind that becomes fatigued by the constant physical, emotional, and spiritual drain of that inner conflict. The human heart, mind, and body cannot carry the heavy weight of prolonged or excessive resentment and anger without making the person ill.

Think of the external changes which take place when you get angry: a reddening of the skin of the face, a widening or tightening of the jaw, clenching of the fist and tremor of the voice. Now a good actor can conceal some, if not all these external manifestation, but one cannot stop the effect of the internal changes.

Internally, when a person becomes angry, the muscles of the stomach and intestinal area squeezes down and can cause the digestive tract to become so spastic that one may experience mild to severe abnormal pains. The heart rate increases markedly during anger, blood thickens, blood pressure rises rapidly, and arteries and vessels squeeze down. The worst that can happen is a heart attack or stroke.

In a newspaper article, Paul Roeburn writes that people with heart disease more than double their risk of a heart attack when they get angry, and the danger last for two hours. "Others studies have shown that anger increase the heart rate, boost high blood pressure and encourages the clogging of arteries. But this is the first controlled study to find that anger can be an immediate trigger of a heart attach," said Dr. Murray Mittleman.

"Despite the public's impression that outbursts of anger can trigger heart attacks, there hasn't been any scientific evidence to support this. Most physicians thought it was coincidence." said Mittleman. The study was based on 1,122 men and 501 women who had survived heart attacks. It was found that their risks were about 2.3 times higher during the two hours after they got angry. Mittleman said that people who remain calm during emotional conflicts might be able to reduce their risk of a heart attack.

When the suffering man of the Old Testament, Job lost his property, his family, and his health, he became angry with God for his misfortune. Job expressed his anger to God before his friends. The response was, "You can't question God." Job was not afraid to ask "Why?" Nor was he willing to stop with that question, for he struggles through the questions to a greater faith. Those who cannot comprehend why one suffers beyond anything they could deserve will find Job thinking their thoughts.

If I need to ask you a questions, but I cannot trust you to accept my question, then I have built a barrier between you and me. I feel that the same thing is true when I have a question for God, but cannot trust him to accept my question. It I cannot trust God to accept my question, how can I trust God to accept me? It is as we are able to trust God to accept us with our questions that we can get beyond the questions to a greater faith.

Let go of your anger and resentment so that your anger no longer controls you. As long as you are angry with a person that person has power over you. To be released from anger and resentment, you need to learn to forgive and release resentment.

A good technique for releasing anger and resentment is to imagine the person you feel angry toward in a chair sitting in front of you. Say to that person, "I forgive you for ". Following the forgiving exercise, imagine good things happening to that person. Say to that person, "May life's riches blessing to be yours." You may find this difficult to do, but keep doing it until you have released the resentment. The purpose of this exercise is to relieve the individuals of the burden of their anger.

(1) Robert's Case History: Following ulcer surgery, a 32 year old school teacher who I will call "Robert", was referred to me by his doctor for stress management. He reported his problems were tension, nervousness, anxiety, being bored, and lack of energy. During our first session, I asked Robert for his definition of stress. He answered with a description of how he felt. I told him that was common to describe how stress makes us feel instead of a definition. Perhaps the best answer I have ever received was from a woman who responded, "Stress is anything that throws the normal out of balance."

I told Robert that the effect of stress depends on how we react to it rather than the event or experience. I went over several stress management techniques which will be in the chapter on stress management. We concluded the session with a hypnotic induction, progressive relaxation and used a stress reduction and healing script with him.

(2) Calm and Relaxed for Stress Management: As you lie there deeply relaxed, you can let the words "calm and relaxed" repeat themselves in your mind, slowly, softly, soothingly, over and over...calm and relaxed...Now let the words "calm and relaxed" flow down, out of your mind and throughout your entire body, as if they are flowing in your bloodstream, to all parts of your body...and wherever those words flow, feeling a strengthening taking pace, as if those words are being absorbed by every cell in your body...strengthening, nourishing, calming, soothing...feeling stronger and more confident with every passing moment, with every breath that you inhale...Allow the words "calm and relaxed" to flow throughout your body, feeling and strengthening your body and your mind...Realizing within yourself that you are now using your own resources to strengthen yourself, enabling you to remain strong and calm even when under stress. All that I'm doing is helping you learn how to focus your concentration for your own benefit...And now that you are aware of your ability to strengthen and nourish yourself, this process can continue even when you are not aware of it,...just as an underground river continues to flow, strong and sure, even when you are standing on the ground and are unaware of it;...just as a flower continues to grow even though you can't see the growth from moment to moment...And the growth and strengthening within you continues to develop...Increasing your self-confidence, self-appreciation, and self-worth. Now allow yourself to experience the freedom to make healthy changes in your life style and accept the opportunity for the future to be different from the past as you progressively improve in all areas of your life.

(3) Warm Light of Healing: Imagine, now, that hovering over your body is a globe of bright light; a sphere of warm energy that sends out rays of warmth and healing that penetrates every fiber of your being. You can feel the warmth spreading throughout the totality of your body/spirit/mind...This sphere of light and warmth and healing has been sent to you from God who created and maintains the universe...These rays are warming you, healing you, penetrating and joining with all that is you...Now imagine that these deeply warmly relaxing rays are tapping the powers of the universe and are healing and soothing your spirit, mind, and body. Imagine also, that the sphere itself slowly descends upon and into your being, merging with and becoming part of every aspect of your being, such that now the rays radiate outward from you, forming a glowing shield, encircling your essence. It is warming, relaxing, and healing at the deepest level of your being. [Suggestions for relaxation, calmness, and quietness were continually repeated. Post-hypnotic suggestions for calmness, and quietness were continually repeated.] During the third session, Robert told me that he was having difficulty in maintaining an erection. He would have an erection until he tried to enter, then his penis would wilt. During therapy that day, we did the finger response technique.

(4) Finger Response for Therapy: You are relaxed and at ease now, and you continue to feel calm, relaxed and peaceful as I talk to you. You are experiencing the wonderful sensations that relaxation brings to you. You are relaxed and comfortable. In fact, you're becoming more relaxed with each breath you take. With each sound that you hear, you become more and more relaxed. You become more relaxed as you are experiencing a wonderful peace of mind.

There are some questions which I would like to ask you. Now, these questions can be answered "yes" or "no", I will go no further unless I feel it is important to discuss an area with you to remove any blocks to your subconscious. This will be done only with you consent.

I am going to ask you some questions which can be answered either "yes" or "no"". Your subconscious mind is able to answer each question I ask you. You may take a mental journey and let your subconscious respond to the questions.

Your subconscious mind is controlling the fingers of your hand. I request that your subconscious mind pick out a "yes" finger, and that finger is becoming very light. In fact, it is lighter than air and just wants to float up. Don't resist it, don't assist it, just let it drift up. The "yes" finger is beginning to rise. That's good, your first finger of your right hand is the "yes" finger. Now just let your finger float back down, and as it does, you become twice as relaxed.

Now, allow your subconscious mind to pick out a "no" finger. Now, just let the "no" finger began to rise. Your subconscious mind is causing your "no" finger to rise. That's good. Your first finger of your left hand is the "no" finger. Now, just let your finger float back down, and as it does, you become twice as relaxed.

Your subconscious mind is controlling your "yes" finger and your "no" finger. Let us being with the questions and just let your subconscious answer "yes" or "no".

1. Is there some emotional reason for your problem? yes .

2. Have you gone through some experience in the past that is causing? yes .

3. Are you identifying with someone else, perhaps a parent or other significant other who? no .

4. Are you using the problem to punish yourself? no .

5. Is this problem related to guilt feeling yes .

6. Are you using the problem to punish someone else? yes .

7. Is there any conflict concerning sex that contributes to your problem? no . 8. Is this a relationship problem? yes .

9. Do you experience this problem when you are angry? yes .

10. Do you experience this problem when you feel stress and tension? yes .

11. Is it OK with your subconscious mind to get rid of these problems? yes .

As you will see later, I missed the most important answer to those questions as I focused on question #5 concerning his answer, "Yes" in regards to guilt. The majority of erection problems I have dealt with were the result of guilt feelings over some mistake or supposed mistake in the past. But, as you will see, that is not always true.

I worked with Robert for about five months with significant improvement in his health and handling of stress, but no progress with his impotence. One day, Robert came in very mad. Robert said that no matter what he said, his son would take the opposite view. Robert reported that he was most upset because his wife took his son's side in the argument. "It is always like that," he said.

While he talked, I realized that I had missed two important responses to the finger responses to the finger response questions. He had responded "Yes" to the question, "Are you punishing someone else?" "No" to the question, "Are you using this to punish yourself?" and "Yes" to the question, "Is this a relationship problem?" I had failed to recognize that the problem was connected with his feeling toward his wife because he had always idealized that relationship during our sessions. During the hypnotic session, he said that he was angry with his wife for always siding with their son and impotence was his way of punishing her. I had him to visualize his wife sitting in the chair across from him and he was to tell her about his feelings. I then asked him if he could forgive her and he told her that he would forgive her and would she forgive him. He forgave and was forgiven. I then had him picture good things happening to his wife. I then told Robert a healing story about breaking through shells.

(5) Breaking Through Shells with Additional Suggestion for Overcoming Impotence: 

A few years ago, the cover of the April issue of the religious publication, Daily Word showed a fluffy golden chick that had just stepped out of a broken shell. As this was the Easter edition, several people wrote Daily Word saying that they did not think the cover was religious enough for the occasion. Yet, I wonder if there is anything more religious than a broken shell and a new life rising out of it.

Is there a shell you need to break through today? (You may mention the shell by name.) Sometimes these shells are caused by physical limitation, sometimes emotional limitations, sometimes spiritual limitations and sometimes a combination of any or all three.

The fertilized egg begins to develop a baby chick. By an inner action, growth, and development, the chick begins to grow. It begins to pick at it shell until it breaks and the chick is freed. We have within our mind the ability to grow and develop beyond what we had thought possible. By your mental unfolding, you can leave your hurts, disappointments and failures behind and break through your shell.

Think again of the chick breaking out of its shell: a soft, helpless chick begins to pick at the fixed and rigid limits of its world and keeps picking until the limits give way and it is able to stand erect and free. If a little chick can break through such a shell, you can break through your shell. Tonight or tomorrow night, when you began to touch and fondle your wife and are being touched and fondled by her, you respond appropriately and enjoy your time with her. Visualize your penis erect, visualize yourself and your wife enjoying foreplay. As you penetrate your penis remains hard and stiff. You go through sex act in a loving manner which brings satisfaction to you and your wife. It is a good experience and you break through your shell.

Robert was scheduled for a session in one week. About two days later, I saw Robert at a local shopping center. When he saw me a big smile came over his face. He said, "First time in two years." I did not have to ask him what he meant.

After the next session, we terminated counseling. He was handling stress appropriately and now understood that by punishing his wife, he was punishing himself. By forgiving his wife and being forgiven, he was now free to enjoy sex. About six months later, he returned with the impatience problem and same cause. He still reverts to old patterns when he subconsciously needs to punish her. Using the same and similar techniques, he is able to overcome his anger and is moving on to a more joyful life. I concluded the last session with a healing script.  

(6) Restoring Health: The suggestion and instructions that I'm telling you now are going into the storehouse of your mind and your own mind can cause them to began working immediately in your body...

Even though you are not consciously aware of it, the healing processes of your body continues functioning at all time...They are continuously nourishing tissues, strengthening muscles, repairing cells, keeping your body temperature stabilized, keeping your heart pumping and causing your blood to continue circulating, cleansing waste material and impurities out of your body through the normal, natural processes of your elimination system, and conducting many other activities...

Those processes are continuously working to keep your body healthy and strong...They are normal and natural...They keep functioning twenty-four hours a day, causing all organs, all glands, all cells, all atoms and molecules of your body to work properly...

Scientists have found that each cell of your body performs functions that the world's most outstanding chemists, scientists, and physicians have not been able to duplicate...And those activities in your body are guided and directed by your subconscious mind...Imprints, impressions, thoughts and ideas have been going into your mind ever since you came into existence, and your mind operates form the accumulation of all the information that is stored there, whether the information is correct or is incorrect.

If the information is incorrect, your mind can review it and understand it now from a more knowledgeable, more mature point of view, and can restore your body to perfect health...This means that your own mind can cause your body processes to function properly and produce healing energies that heal your body perfectly...And you can help your mind to produce proper healing energies by thinking pleasant...uplifting thoughts about yourself, and by imagining yourself as being healthy and strong...That causes your mind to activate the processes of your body to renew and rejuvenate every atom, every cell, every organ to include your sexual organs so that they function properly.

The fact that your mind controls your body is not something new...Thomas Edison did research on that subject many years ago, and he discovered that "Every cell of the body thinks." He learned that every cell of the body has a mind and receives directions from the subconscious mind...And the Bible says the same thing: It says, "As we think in our heart, so are we." In other works, thoughts and ideas, impressions and imprints made in our mind cause our body to respond, and they can cause us to be sick or healthy, depending on the way our mind has received the information...That's the reason our mind can generate the heading chemistry needed in your body, to restore, heal, rebuild, and strengthen your body...

Your subconscious mind has the power to direct the cells to send healing energy through your body and restore your body to health...

The strongest force of energy your body possesses is your own mind...and when you have been experiencing illness or disease or any kind of physical handicap, it is possible for change either in body, mind or spirit. Your body may be transformed into a healthy body by renewing your mind with thoughts and ideas of health, confidence, happiness and love...That's one of the meanings of the verse in the Bible that says, "You can be transformed by the renewing of your mind." That is what you are doing now...Letting your mind work for you so that you have healthy thoughts and a healthy body...