Anger is one of the evil whispers of Shaytan, which leads to so many evils and tragedies, of which only Allah knows their full extent. For this reason Islam has a great deal to say about this bad characteristic, and the Prophet(saws) described cures for this ' ' disease ' ' and ways to limit its effects, among which are the following:
Seeking refuge with Allah from the Shaytan:
Sulayman ibn Sard said: ' ' I was sitting with the Prophet(saws), and two men were slandering one another. One of them was red in the face, and the veins on his neck were standing out. The Prophet(saws) said, ‘I know a word which, if he were to say it, what he feels would go away. If he said “I seek refuge with Allah from the Shaytan, ” what he feels(i. e., his anger) would go away. ’ ' '(Reported by al - Bukhari, al - Fath, 6/337) The Prophet(saws) said: ' ' If a man gets angry and says, ‘I seek refuge with Allah, ’ his anger will go away. ' '(Saheeh al - Jaami‘ al - Sagheer, no. 695)
The Messenger of Allah(saws) said: ' ' If any of you becomes angry, let him keep silent. ' '(Reported by Imam Ahmad, al - Musnad, 1/329; see also Sahih al - Jaami‘, 693,4027) This is because in most cases, the angry person loses self control and could utter words of kufr(from which we seek refuge with Allah), or curses, or the word of divorce(talaaq) which would destroy his home, or words of slander which would bring him the enmity and hatred of others. So, in short, keeping silent is the solution which helps one to avoid all that.
The Messenger of Allah(saws) said: ' ' If any of you becomes angry and he is standing, let him sit down, so his anger will go away; if it does not go away, let him lie down. ' ' Among the benefits of this advice given by the Prophet(saws) is the fact that it prevents the angry person from going out of control, because he could strike out and injure someone, or even kill - as we will find out shortly - or he could destroy possessions and so on. Sitting down makes it less likely that he will become overexcited, and lying down makes it even less likely that he will do something crazy or harmful. Al - ‘Allaamah al - Khattaabi, may Allah have mercy on him, said in his commentary on Aboo Daawood: ' ' One who is standing is in a position to strike and destroy, while the one who is sitting is less likely to do that, and the one who is lying down can do neither. It is possible that the Prophet(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) told the angry person to sit down or lie down so
that he would not do something that he would later regret. And Allah knows best. ' '(Sunan Abee Daawood, with Ma‘aalim al - Sunan, 5/141)
Following the advice of the Prophet(saws):
Abu Hurayrah, reported that a man said to the Prophet(saws), ' ' Advise me. ' ' He said, ' ' Do not become angry. ' ' The man repeated his request several times, and each time the Prophet(saws) told him, ' ' Do not become angry. According to another report, the man said: ' ' I thought about what the Prophet(saws) said, and I realized that anger combines all kinds of evil. ' '(Musnad Ahmad, 5/373) Do not become angry and Paradise will be yours(a saheeh hadeeth, see Saheeh al - Jaam‘, 7374. Ibn Hajr attributed it to al - Tabaraanee, see al - Fath 4/465): Remembering what Allah has promised to the righteous(muttaqeen) who keep away from the causes of anger and struggle within themselves to control it, is one of the most effective ways of extinguishing the flames of anger. One of the ahaadeeth that describe the great reward for doing this is: ' ' Whoever controls his anger at the time when he has the means to act upon it, Allah will fill his
heart with contentment on the Day of Resurrection. ' ' Another great reward is described in the Prophet’s(saws) words: ' ' Whoever controls his anger at the time when he has the means to act upon it, Allah will call him before all of mankind on the Day of Resurrection, and will let him choose of the Hoor al - ‘Ayn whoever he wants. ' '
Knowing the high status and advantages offered to those who control themselves:
The Messenger of Allah(saws) said: ' ' The strong man is not the one who can overpower others(in wrestling); rather, the strong man is the one who controls himself when he gets angry. ' '(Reported by Ahmad, 2/236; the hadeeth is agreed upon). The greater the anger, the higher the status of the one who controls himself. The Prophet(saws) said: ' ' The strongest man is the one who, when he gets angry and his face reddens and his hackles rise, is able to defeat his anger. ' ' Anas reported that the Prophet(saws) passed by some people who were wrestling. He asked, ' ' What is this? ' ' They said: ' ' So - and - so is the strongest, he can beat anybody. ' ' The Prophet(saws) said, ' ' Shall I not tell you who is even stronger then him? The man who, when he is mistreated by another, controls his anger, has defeated his own Shaytan and the Shaytan of the one who made him angry. ' '(Reported by al - Bazzaar, and Ibn Hajr said its
isnaad is saheeh. Al - Fath, 10/519)
Following the Prophet’s(saws) example in the case of anger:
The Prophet (saws) is our leader and has set the highest example in this matter, as is recorded in a number of ahaadeeth. One of the most famous was reported by Anas, may Allah be pleased with him, who said: ''I was walking with the Messenger of Allah (saws), and he was wearing a Najraanee cloak with a rough collar. A Bedouin came and seized him roughly by the edge of his cloak, and I saw the marks left on his neck by the collar. Then the Bedouin ordered him to give him some of the wealth of Allaah that he had. The Prophet (saws) turned to him and smiled, then ordered that he should be given something.'' Another way in which we can follow the example of the Prophet (saws) is by making our anger for the sake of Allah, when His rights are violated. This is the kind of anger which is praiseworthy. So the Prophet (saws) became angry when he was told about the imam who was putting people off the prayer by making it too long.