jeal·ous·y /ˈjeləsē/ : Feeling resentment against someone because of that person’s success or advantages.
In yoga, the yamas and niyamas are moral and ethical observances or guidelines for conduct towards ourselves and others. There is one yama in particular called aparigraha, which disavows envy, jealousy and unhealthy competitiveness. Jealousy can be a big part of one’s life but what most people don’t realize is that jealousy is merely fear in disguise. Terrible things happen when jealousy is involved on both the physical and energetic level. So pay attention to jealous feelings and turn that negative energy into positive vibes by realizing and strengthening your self worth.
Being jealous of someone else means that you somehow feel inadequate or not good enough. When you indulge those feelings, you are giving up your own power and wasting useful energy that could instead be channeled into manifesting your own success. Let’s also note that jealousy can be felt even if you’re smiling and “acting” nice. If the recipients of your jealous feelings are in tune and sensitive to energy, it will push them away from you. This could be detrimental to a relationship, be it a friendly exchange or a deep committed partnership. Practice letting go of the voice in your head that says you need something that someone else has or the one that makes you wish failure on someone else. Instead, focus on each moment at hand and do what you love to do. Start a new project, make a list of your goals or go out and connect with nature. Someone once described jealousy as a knife turned inward causing self-induced pain and suffering.
Jealousy doesn’t benefit anyone and it causes a wide array of physical problems as well. “Jealousy is a complex emotional mix of fear, stress and anger,” says Dr Jane Flemming, a London-based GP. “These three states trigger the fight-or-flight response, usually in quite an intense way. Someone in the grip of jealousy will suffer raised blood pressure, heart-rate and adrenalin levels, weakened immunity, anxiety and probably insomnia.” Yoga helps to minimize the stress response in the body, but what good does it do us if we are practicing harmful thinking?
“Jealousy means that we desire to be what someone else is, or to have what someone else has. Rather than finding who we are, we look at someone else and say, ‘I want to be that.’ Aparigraha, in its essence, helps us discover our own selves so that we no longer feel the need to covet what someone else has, or be what someone else is.” – Aadil Palkhivala