Averting Anger

Anger is placed in the nature of the human being to keep harm away and to enable us to take revenge when we are harmed. Anger is the heat that spreads when something provokes one’s anger, it makes the blood boil to take revenge, and may even cause fever. The main reason for anger is usually arrogance. What is detested is excessive anger, as it disturbs one’s soundness, makes imbalanced and immoderate, such that a person starts to make wrong decisions.

The cure for anger according to the ahadith of the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, is to change your state. If you are talking, be silent. If you are standing, sit down. If you are sitting you should lie down in order to calm yourself. If possible it is best to leave the location you are in to move away from the person that has made you angry. You should also reflect on the excellence of repressing anger, for Allah has praised the one who represses their anger. All praises and glory be to Him who says:

“Those who repress anger and forgive other people, verily Allah loves the good-doers” (Surah Ali Imran 3:134)

Remember also that everything that is happening to you may be a result of a sin that you have committed, that it is all predestined and that matters will become easier for you. You should also be careful not to act out of anger or to punish anyone when you are angry. This will ensure that any punishment is equal to the offense and not equal to your anger. A man was brought to ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul ‘Aziz, who ‘Umar was angry at. He told him, “If I was not angry at you, I would have beaten you.” And let him go.

There are many ahadith regarding anger. Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, said:

“A man came to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and said, ‘Advise me!’ He said, ‘Do not get angry!’ The man kept repeating his request and the Prophet continued to reply, ‘Do not get angry!’.” (Recorded in al-Bukhari)

The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

“The strong is not the one who overcomes people by his strength, but the strong is the one who controls himself whilst in anger”. (Recorded in al-Buhkari and Muslim)

It is also reported that Sulayman ibn Sard, may Allah be pleased with him, said: “I was sitting with the Prophet, peace and blessings fo Allah be upon him, and two men were cursing each other, the face of one of them was red and swollen (because of his anger). Thereafter the Prophet, peace be upon him, said:

“I know a word which if he says, what he feels will be gone. If he says ‘I seek refuge in Allah from the cursed Shaitan’ what he feels will be gone.” (Recorded in al-Bukhari and Muslim)  


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