Society seems so driven by materialism. Who can get ahead of who! I try not to get caught up in this, but I frequently find myself getting jealous of what others have. How do I stop being jealous of them?
The Aish Rabbi Replies
I'd like to share with you a true story:
When I was a young boy, I remember sitting in the back seat of our Ford staring jealously at a beautiful limousine that had pulled up alongside us.
"Hey Mom," I said excitedly. “Look at that car! Could we get one just like it?"
"Dear," my mother said gently, "do you have any idea what kind of car that is? I am sure you do not want one. It's a hearse."
Everybody has their own package of ups and downs in life. And as the old saying goes: If everybody put their troubles into bags and set them at the center of the room, whose bag would you choose to take?
Just as we would not be jealous of a person that has an entire cabinet filled with expensive medicine, so should we not be jealous of someone that has more materialism than we have.
When we see what other people have, we should think to ourselves the following: "I'm so lucky that I don't need all the things they need!"
Whenever you find yourself feeling jealous, keep the following things in mind:
• Whatever one has is from God.
• Though some people have more and some have less, every person has what he needs for his mission in life.
• What each one of us owns is suited for his own individual mission.