Their question is what is the meaning of envy and why do we feel envious? Feelings may have a rational meaning, a logic, we can define feelings in accordance with the dictionary but, feelings, themselves do not have any meaning. The human derives the meaning of everything from the head and the feelings arise in the heart; from the head he weaves and from the heart, he wears or gets trapped in the net woven by the mind.
So, envy is such a feeling that for a woman to live without envy is almost impossible. The man gets blind by work or lust and the woman gets blind in envy. All her feelings arise on the basis of envy. The reason for this envy could be the fact that the lady dedicates herself completely, for a male, its difficult to dedicate himself to the extent a lady does. She does everything out of envy.
So, when a lady or a person dedicates everything, she believes that her sacrifice, everything that she gave up for, she becomes possessive. So, whenever someone takes even a bit from it, she feels envious. So, ego is the seed of envy which is watered by the water of desires.
This is how the tree of envy grows and bears the fruits of expectations. Humans grow hope from envy. If there is no hope, there is no envy. In English, there are 2 words- jealousy and envy. There is competition or competitiveness where you compare yourself with others to progress. Envy is when you feel envious about what the other person has. Whenever selfishness arises in human mind, envy becomes stronger.. Everyone has felt envy at some point or the other. Feeling envious does not mean that you are a low level human being.
So, it does not mean that you have not reached high level or you cannot reach that state. So, when you feel envious, a self-destructive human will flow with that feeling and is not able to come out of that feeling. And the person, who has risen up to a state, questions himself whenever he feels envious about his stature and why do I have this feeling? He can question himself about his feeling and with whom is he feeling envious?
So, when you are envious, you lose your own entity because you are now only thinking about the other person and looking at yourself from their perspective. When you start questioning the others’ fate or destiny, you forget what the other has earned, he will reap its benefit. Then the human starts thinking that I would prefer throwing it away or giving it to a dog rather than giving it to another.
Whatever is in my plate is my earning and the others should not even look at it; this is envy or a feeling of ego and nothing else. And no human exists who has never had the feelings of envy. In this world, we have defined love in a wrong way. We believe that love is the need for the other. More the need, more the love. This is a conception of the humans.
When someone asks the other if they love them, they are actually asking if they need them. If another person does not remember you even once in the day, does not mean that they do not love you. We naturally remember someone we need. But, this is not the definition of love; that is the definition of caging a bird. Like, we cage a parrot or bird with the promise of feeding it in a silver bowl and allow it to do anything in the cage but do not allow it to be free. So the seed of envy is Ego. This is the ego because we feel that we have become something significant but in this infinite universe, none of us has a significant existence.
The day you accept the fact that whatever is destined for you will definitely come to you and the others will get whatever is destined for them, you rise above the ego. If a bias exists, it exists because that person has earned it. The day you accept this completely that I am responsible for my own Karma, and the others are responsible for theirs na tad bhasayate suryo na sasanko na pavakah yad gatva na nivartante tad dhama paramam mama…Bhagavad Gita 15.6 Such is my abode, Arjun, that one who reaches there does not return. It is such a big universe that neither humans nor the ants or animals have any significance. None of the human’s achievements, their property, money, grandeur etc. have any significance.
So, rising above the ego does not mean that you lower yourself so much that everyone bullies you; that is foolishness. Rising above the ego does not mean that you do not care for yourself; rising above the ego means you realize that your dedication to the fact that your happiness and joy lies in the happiness and joy of others’ becomes strong, this feeling becomes stable enough for you to believe that your course should be the one chosen by God.
Moreover, this is not easy, simple or convenient and requires a lot of practice. sanaih sanair uparamed buddhya dhrti-grhitaya atma-samstham manah krtva na kincid api cintayet..Bhagavad Gita 6.25 Lord Krishna says to Arjun: The human can only control the intellect and the equanimity gradually. Then he is able to concentrate. na kincid api cintayet Then he does not think about other things. Then only he becomes stable in his feelings. If you feel envious, do not consider yourself bad but acknowledge the feeling of envy and the reason behind it.
Do not fight with yourself Do not think that you should not feel like this and do not console yourself about it. Rather acknowledge the feeling and contemplate the reason behind it. Once you learn to converse with the mind, it becomes silent. The one with a silent mind is in Samadhi. Whenever you have a negative feeling, do not fight yourself, do not think that even after being so religious, you have this feeling. na tad asti prthivyam va divi devesu va punah There is no being in three worlds, which is freed from the three modes of material nature.
sattvam prakrti-jair muktam yad ebhih syat tribhir gunaih…Bhagavad Gita 18.40 The properties of Sattava, Rajas and Tamas will continue to exist in the world, no human is untouched by them. Each human is touched by these at one point or another. However much you take care of yourself, you may still fall ill but falling ill does not mean that you were not careful. Likewise, are your feelings, so whenever you experience negative emotions, you can cure your emotions by questioning them and the reason behind them.
The moment you question your mind, the mind is bound to rise above the noise and tell you the actual reason. Just like when you are on a crowded road, you think that everyone is in so much of hurry, similarly, when your mind is making noise, you become fatigued. The difference between a positive and negative feeling is that the negative thoughts cause discomfiture. Love can also be negative. In love, you may become possessive. So, the basic difference between a positive and a negative feeling is only that the negative emotion causes you unrest or discomfiture.
This causes you to feel uneasy and you start seeing everything as forlorn. When you are in a positive feeling like competitiveness, you experience only a slight envy but it gives you happiness; so, this is the basic difference. So, ask yourself the feeling you experience. So, next time whenever you pick a fight with your spouse, after a while, in the argument, ask them to wait for you to get your notebook and write down your feelings and believe me the fight will be over right there as the other person will say that they cannot fight with such an intellectual person. I hope I answered your question.