Jealousy vs Envy – Dispelling New Age Myths #1

First in this series inspecting and dispelling myths propagated by the New Age we will look at one of many “sinful” words and ask whether they’re actually as bad as purported. This word, and evil emotion, is JEALOUSY.

One thing to keep in mind for this and other installments of this series is that English is a limited language in terms of its variety of words and the way it is taught further limits our access to that limited pool available to us. For example, the Spanish have 11 words for the different types of “love” where we only have one – causing much confusion and preventing friends from saying “I love you” when the Spanish can simply use the word “amistad.” We have this same scenario around the concept and feeling of jealousy and we forget its very similar companion, envy. There is a deadly confusion between these two which has caused untold damage to peoples’ lives over the centuries and is currently being used as a prohibition in New Age teachings to beat people around the head with. The confusion spurs from The Ten Commandments of the Bible, “Thou Shalt Not Covet.” The term “covet” is a very general translation and is open to interpretation, and has been twisted by the powers-that-be to prohibit any kind of want of another’s life circumstances or riches.

Another aspect of this series to remember is the conviction of the author that our natural feelings are to be respected as they comprise the inviolable Individual, and as a result we should want for more in life rather than settle for what we have. When most people say “jealous” it is a reprimand, such as “You’re being jealous that I’m talking to other men” or “you won’t talk to that person because you’re jealous of them.” At times, this reprimand is justified yet often it is not. It is borne of the confusion between “jealousy” and “envy” that this sword lash of psychic violence stems from as “jealousy” simply means wanting what another person has! Have you ever watched someone freestyle rap in front of your eyes, a master guitar player entrancing a whole crowd, or a great speaker keeping an audience engaged and in hysterics without missing a beat? Ever want to be that great? That’s jealousy and it’s perfectly healthy – it demands that we find something greater within ourselves. Envy, on the other hand, demands “You have that and only I should have it!” It’s the archetype of Veruca Salt in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. A spoiled brat who wants what she wants, and now, without any concern for others, and always with the mind of having it better than everyone around her. Whatever others have is a challenge to this person’s very identity, so they must either take it and deprive the other of it, or have something even better to diminish the ego of that other person.

So when you or someone else expresses a desire to have something that another possesses, hold off judgement and inspect where that drive is really coming from? Are you or that other expressing a healthy desire to become more of oneself or simply have a better life?

The New Age has opened many people up to alternative ways of looking at the world, but they have continued the Judeo-Christian stigma of Original Sin by marking any seemingly negative thoughts and emotions as “negative” which will either result in further damnation to future Karma or “blocking the flow of abundance” so that you remain poor and unfulfilled. As we’ll explore further in this series, some of these thoughts and emotions we’ve been told are “negative” are actually quite positive when used correctly, when the right attitude is applied, and will actually lead you to the elusive promised goals of the New Age – release from the Karmic cycle and abundance. Jealousy is one of these thoughts/emotions. It comes with its own power that propels us forward to achievement and glory.