Jealousy is another canker that consumes man. It is nothing but petty-mindedness. Even educated people and Sannyasins are not free from this terrible scourge. All restlessness and fighting between one community and another, one man and another, one nation and another, are due to this evil quality. The heart of a jealous man burns actually when he sees his neighbor in a more prosperous condition. The same is the case with nations and communities. Jealousy can be eradicated by developing the opposite quality, viz., nobility or magnanimity. Pride should be removed by developing humility. Hypocrisy should be removed by developing frankness and simplicity. Anger should be overcome by developing Kshama, love and the spirit of service.

Jealousy is also a great obstacle. Even Sadhus who have renounced everything, who live with one Koupeen only in the caves of Gangotri and Uttarkasi in the Himalayas are not free from this evil Vritti. Sadhus are more jealous than the householders. Their hearts burn when they see some other Sadhu in a flourishing condition, when they notice that the neighbouring Sadhu is respected and honoured by the public. They try to vilify the neighbour and adopt methods for his destruction or elimination. What a sad sight! What a deplorable spectacle! Horrible to think! Dreadful to imagine! When the hearts burn, how can you expect peace of mind? Even highly educated people are very mean and petty-minded. Jealousy is the worst enemy of Peace and Jnana. It is the strongest weapon of Maya. Aspirants should always be on the alert. They should not become slaves of name and fame and jealousy. If there is jealousy, he is a small, little being only. 


He is far from God. One should rejoice at the welfare of others. One should develop Mudita (complacency) when he sees others in prosperous condition. He should feel Atma-Bhava in all beings. Jealousy assumes various forms such as Irshya, Asuya, Matsarya, etc. All forms of jealousy must be totally eradicated. Just as milk bubbles out again and again during the process of ebullition, so also jealousy bursts out again and again. It must be entirely rooted out.

The Sanskrit term for jealousy is Irshya, Matsarya and Asuya are also synonymous terms. But there is a subtle difference. Jealousy is a particular kind of emotion or Vritti that arises in a Rajasic mind wherein the victim looks upon with a grudging eye on the prosperity or success or higher virtuous qualities of others. His heart burns when another man is more prosperous or happy than himself. Hatred and anger are the modifications of jealousy. A man filled with jealousy hates another man if he is in a better position than himself. He gets grief at the sight of another’s success. He tries his level best to pull him down to undermine him by various foul means, by back-biting, tale-bearing or vilification. He tries to injure him. He attempts to annihilate him. He creates dissensions, party-spirit amongst his friends. These are the external physical manifestations of a man of jealousy.

A man of Irshya thinks that he should not get any kind of sorrow or discomfort and that those whom he dislikes should be afflicted and should suffer. There can be no worst vile, vicious nature of a man than his jealousy towards others. It is filthy, ignoble and beast-like. The ignorant, deluded souls of a very narrow mind are greatly affected by this deadly cancer. One who gets agitated when another man enjoys his own status is termed as Asuya. A man of Matsarya cannot bear the sight of a man more prosperous and of better qualities than himself. This is the subtle difference between Irshya, Asuya and Matsarya.

Jealousy is the very root of all evils. It is very deeply rooted. Maya havocs through this particular vritti. The restlessness of the world (asanti) is due to jealousy. The whole play or lila of Maya is kept up by this one emotion. Anger, hatred, malice exist side by side with jeaousy. They are the old-standing associates or comrades of jealousy. If jealousy dies, hatred and anger die by themselves without any further treatment. many murders atre committed on account of sex-jealousy, money-jealousy.

No one can enjoy an iota of real happiness if his mind is filled with jealousy. Kings, Barons, Lords and Earls cannot have any happiness so long as they are slaves of this emotion. What can money do? It can only augment the uneasiness of the mind. “uneasy lies the head that wears the crown.”

There are six ways of eradicating this emotion of jealousy

  1. Rajayogic Method.
  2. Vedantic Method.
  3. Bhakta’s Method.
  4. Karma Yogin’s Method.
  5. Method of Vichara of Vivekins.
  6. Theosophist’s Method.

A Raja Yogi destroys the Vritti by “Yogah Chittavritti-nirodhah.” He destroys all Sankalpas of jealousy by introspection, careful watch and meditation. He adopts another method of “Pratipaksha Bhavana” by cultivating the opposite virtues of jealousy, viz., nobility or magnanimity (Udarata). Jealousy is the result of petty-mindedness. If nobility is supplanted, jealousy will die of itself.

(pgs. 325-328, How to Cultivate Virtues and Eradicate Vices by Swami Sivananda Maharaj)

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