Anger

76. (Also in VII.vi.1) An old man said, “Anger arises in four different situations. Firstly through greed when either paying or receiving money, secondly through loving one’s own opinion and defending it even when to anyone else it doesn’t seem to be either very good or very bad, thirdly when wanting to be promoted to high honour, and lastly when wishing to be thought of as a teacher wiser than anyone else. Anger also causes confusion through four human attitudes, dislike of your neighbour, envy, contempt, character assassination. Likewise the remedy for this passion lies in four areas, firstly in the heart, then in the facial expression, thirdly in the tongue, fourthly in actions. For if you are able to suffer evil without letting it enter into the heart it won’t show in your face. If however it shows in your face guard your tongue so that you say nothing. But if you do say something take care that you quickly apologise so that it does not develop into deeds. Human beings attacked by the passion of anger fall into three categories. Anyone who is harmed or injured and forgives has the nature of Christ. Anyone who does nobody any harm and therefore suffers no harm has the nature of Adam. But whoever harms others or injures them or slanders them or seeks revenge has the nature of the devil.

De Vitis Patrum, Book III, Text 76

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