Only My Opinions

Jealousy – An Inferiority Complex

People are very deep, complicated and have unlimited needs. The unlimited needs are what causes each person to create many relationships with different people, things and situations, all of them with the intention to address one form of happiness or another. The many relationships create situations from which we believe we could find happiness.  The only reason we ever related to others is to derive some happiness the relationship.

We share happiness with others whenever we help them to be happy in their lives while they help also us in return. We help them to perceive themselves and their life situations in ways that are more empowering, as well as help them to realise the happiness they have already succeeded to create in their lives. This enabling is simply to enhance their confidence in their own ability to create their happiness in every situation of their lives.

Sometimes in our relationships we get confront by intricate issues that complicate our ability to relate to each other. One of them is Jealousy. Jealousy is a deep-seated problem in many relationships. In fact, there is no relationship that never gets to be confronted with issues of jealousy in one form or another, and how we choose to deal with it, tends to determine how it would always be resolved or even, whether it ever emerges as a problem in a relationship or not.

Jealousy is a feeling of inferiority by which one person perceives themselves to be incapable of realising the same happiness that they see another person enjoying; whether it is a partner who believes someone else is making their partner happier that they themselves do, or a member of the family who believes the success of the other diminishes their own value in the family.

Sometimes the feeling of jealousy becomes passive, in which case our outlook on life becomes that of not having what it takes to be happy and always assuming the attitude of being undeserving and feeling sorry for ourselves. In its more active expressions, jealousy becomes an undertone in our relationships where we do what we can to disable someone whom we perceive to be succeeding where we feel unable to succeed ourselves. We talk them down; deny them feedback or withhold our complements for the good things they do; get other people to talk negatively about them as if to discourage them from the good they are doing; essential creating so many illusions around that person that it becomes difficult for them to see the happiness that they are creating for themselves, and possibly even begin to lose confidence in their own ability to make themselves happy.

The feeling of inferiority that causes jealousy is a result of our beliefs in inequality. We tend to believe that one person is luckier than we are; more favored and successful enough to have all that they need, which we believe we do not have or are not capable of. However, the differences we perceive as someone being better or worse are only situational, and in that way, inequality is not real, but a made-up thing. Even success itself has to be put into context instead of being a general thing. All people are the same in their essence – in their potential to realise any form of happiness that they may conceive in their minds and will for themselves.

Situations of life are like someone who has all the money they need in the world, who falls ill and is then hospitalized until it later emerges that they have an organ failure and would have to wait for someone to donate an organ that might help them to continue to live. The patient might need to be helped with basic things such as being fed through a drip, being washed and dressed, going to the toilet, and spend a long time in hospital, connected to a machine that would help to support their lives.

The patient may see other people go about doing things that they themselves are struggling to do, and it is in such cases that many people begin to appreciate those basic things about life, which we often ignore and even neglect while pursuing other things that we regard as more important.

In a different situation, in another part of the world, another person has no money and no idea what to eat or where to sleep for the night. They see themselves as a failure that has no way of realising the happiness that others can enjoy. However, every morning they wake up; get themselves off the floor where they slept; run to a rubbish bin or soup kitchen to find something to eat and maybe occasionally, sit down somewhere in a public park and appreciate the fact that, even without all the other things they need, they still have their health, which enables them to keep trying everyday to see if they could succeed somehow.

One person has a lot of money, but not the health with which to enjoy physical life. The other person has not much by way of possessions in life, but only the basic health that enables them to enjoy even a dry crust of bread. The person in hospital may finally get an organ transplant and go on to live a better and even more appreciative life having money and good health. The poor person in the street may also get an opportunity to make a lot of money, maybe win a lottery or be found by a talent scout who helps them turn around their lives; something they would appreciate very much because of the suffering they would have lived through.

The question then becomes: which of the two people is better or worse off than the other? None of them is. Each of them has the same and equal potential to achieve or be in a situation that the other finds themselves in. The only difference is the time when each of them would get an ‘opportunity’ to be in each situation.

Our jealousy is caused by our inability to look for evidence of our own successes in our own situations, based on what our current issues in life are, but instead, viewing our lives now, in terms of what other people are or have in the current situations of their lives. We may not have exactly what the other person has right now, simply because life presents different challenges to us at different times of our lives, and the ‘tools’ in the form of the people and things that we need to resolve them, would always differ from those required by other people in resolving their own. For someone who has fallen into a hole the challenge is how to get out of it, which makes certain people, tools and skills necessary. However, for someone who has to fish, a different set of people, skills and tools is required. One who fell into a hole may later have to go fishing after being rescued, and the one who was fishing earlier may accidentally fall into a manhole.

To see our equality with all people, we need to perceive ourselves broadly and not only what we are at a particular time and situation. It is only when we view their totality that we get to see who we are now to be something they are already experiencing, that they will experience or have already experienced in the past. To then view another person as superior or inferior is a choice to view what they are being at a particular time and place and exclude the totality of who they truly are.  This equality of opportunity is what we generally refer to as justice or karma – which is essentially a guarantee that in our oneness and sameness, everyone will get what everyone else has – at a different time and place.

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