"Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned."
"You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger."
On one occasion, the Buddha was invited by the Brahmin Bharadvaja for alms to his house. As invited, the Buddha visited the house of the Brahmin. Instead of entertaining Him, the Brahmin poured forth a torrent of abuse with the filthiest of words. The Buddha politely inquired:
"Do visitors come to your house, good Brahmin?"
"Yes," he replied.
"What do you do when they come?"
"Oh, we prepare a sumptuous feast."
"What do you if they refuse to receive the meal?"
"Why, we gladly partake of them ourselves."
"Well, good Brahmin, you have invited me for alms and entertained me with abuse which I decline to accept. So now it belongs to you." From the Akkosa Sutta
The Buddha did not retaliate but politely gave back what the Brahmin had given Him. Retaliate not, the Buddha advised. "Hatred does not cease through hatred but through love alone they cease."
The Buddha explained to skeptics how he was able to maintain his compassion.
One day the Buddha was walking through a village. A very angry and rude young man came up and began insulting him. "You have no right teaching others," he shouted. "You are as stupid as everyone else. You are nothing but a fake!"
The Buddha was not upset by these insults. Instead he asked the young man, "Tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong?"
The young man was surprised to be asked such a strange question and answered, "It would belong to me, because I bought the gift."
The Buddha smiled and said, "That is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger. If you become angry with me and I do not get insulted, then the anger falls back on you. You are then the only one who becomes unhappy, not me. All you have done is hurt yourself.
"If you want to stop hurting yourself, you must get rid of your anger and become loving instead. When you hate others, you yourself become unhappy. But when you love others, everyone is happy."
The young man listened closely to these wise words of the Buddha. "You are right, O Blessed One," he said. "Please teach me the path of love. I wish to become your follower."
The Buddha answered kindly, "Of course. I teach anyone who truly wants to learn. Come with me."
"Anger will never disappear so
long as thoughts of resentment are
cherished in the mind. Anger will
disappear just as soon as thoughts
of resentment are forgotten."
""He abused me, he beat me, he defeated me, he robbed me!" In those who harbor such thoughts hatred is not appeased.
"He abused me, he beat me, he defeated me, he robbed me!" In those who do not harbor such thoughts hatred is appeased.
Hatreds never cease through hatred in this world; through love alone they cease. This is an eternal law."
"Unruly beings are as unlimited as space
They cannot possibly all be overcome,
But if I overcome thoughts of anger alone
This will be equivalent to vanquishing all foes."