The history of the Desert Fathers and Mothers and of other reputed seekers of peace suggests the very opposite. It suggests that conviction and conflict go hand in hand. If you go to slay dragons, you should be prepared to find them angry. . . .

These are not antique insights, lost to us over time. They are as perennial as the human yearning for peace. In May Sarton's book Journal of a Solitude, a writer of the last century records her experiences living by herself in a New Hampshire farmhouse. "Now I hope to break through into the rocky depths, to the matrix itself. There is violence there and anger never resolved." To this all the hermits of the desert nod their heads in recognition.

Garret Keizer, The Enigma of Anger