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How is envy destructive?

William Stillman
Health Education Specialist

Envy is destructive because its central focus is on that which you do not have such as a person deemed desirable, monetary wealth or material possessions. It is natural to feel a twinge of jealousy upon learning of another’s good fortune because we wish the same for ourselves. But envy is the brother of infatuation; both experiences denote a consuming obsession with that which is not real. Those who are envious believe that external elements, once acquired, will complete their happiness. This belief serves only to disappoint and perpetuate further destructive conduct. Happiness comes when we are at peace within ourselves. Contentment comes when we appreciate our blessings.

Dr. Kathleen Hall
Preventive Medicine Specialist

I believe that the reason this is one of the Ten Commandments (thou shalt not covet) is that envy plants the seeds of self-destruction and the destruction of others. Envy is the root of murder, stealing, infidelity, violence, and so much more. When you live a life desiring what others have you can never be at peace or be happy. Envy is a very serious spiritual situation. You are given your life to live with your own purpose. It is illogical to envy what others have because if it was destined to be yours it would be. Most individuals with envy are living in a kind of hell, with the delusion that if they only had what another person had—beautiful spouse, great job, new car, children, or a big house—they would be happy. True happiness is never found in what someone else has. True happiness is acquired when you live from the inside out, not from the outside in.

A Life in Balance: Nourishing the Four Roots of True Happiness

More About this Book

A Life in Balance: Nourishing the Four Roots of True Happiness

Nautilus Book Awards Winners for 2007 (category: Self-Help/Psychology/ Personal Growth) "Like many people, Kathleen Hall found that despite great success and material wealth, she had yet to identify...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.