The occasional irritation is a cross I still bear, echoes of bouts of sometimes incandescent anger in earlier years. Because anger is habit forming, and certainly not commensurate with participating rationally in the world, nor with inner wellbeing. It takes long years of effort to step back and move beyond this reinforced negative response.
In the Agni Yoga teachings there is the concept of imperil – “the poison resulting from irritability”, actually deposited in the nervous system. Imperil manifests as ‘spiritual wasting’, reinforcing the ego and blocking higher energies of soul/spirit. So the ego is irritable, and not amenable to its own higher faculties. And the thought forms created have a poisonous quality.
This useful concept seems quite consistent with my own experience. Imperil is one of the great blockages to our own development and to our own mindfulness.
In this age of apparent domination by ego in the media and politics, it would seem that mass imperil is actually putting our societies in peril, which is actually the meaning of the word.
I am indebted to John Rasmussen’s article “I don’t want to separate anyone from anyone” in The Beacon magazine, April-June 2018 for reminding me of this concept of imperil.
Featured image is of the painting Lotus by Nicholas Roerich, with Helena Roerich transmitter of the agni yoga teachings.