How does Sir Francis Bacon advocate anger management in his essay entitled "Of Anger"?

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tinicraw | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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Sir Francis Bacon's "Of Anger" gives to men suggestions about how to "give law unto himself." In other words, his essay discusses anger management through self-mastery or self-governance. (His audience is not women or children, by the way, because he mentions that these are not capable of controlling their anger.) The first piece of advice Bacon gives is that meditation should be a part of every man's day because "men must not turn to bees." By turning into bees, Bacon is referring to the impulsive character of bees to sting when easily provoked; therefore, he encourages self-mastery by not being one who gets offended easily and stings quickly. Then Bacon says that men must understand that when angered, "they must seem rather to be above the injury, than below it." Basically, he advocates that a man must not be reactive as to show that he has been injured. Finally, men must be sensitive to the hurt that they feel, as well as the hurt that they may cause when becoming angry. Men must be aware of "picking out circumstances of contempt," or, be conscious of picking their battles intelligently rather than making every instance a fight.


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