In Season 6, Episode 7 of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, one of the leading characters named Quark is dealing with jealousy. He is a Ferengi, a species known for believing that “earning profit was the sole meaningful goal in life, superseding all other endeavors.” When one of the other characters teasingly asks Quark if he is jealous, he replies, “There’s no profit in jealousy.”
Quark is right according to the theory of scarcity and abundance thinking. This theory promotes the idea that if you see the world as having a deficit of time, energy, or products to meet everyone’s needs, then your world will be defined by scarcity. You will struggle to have enough in your life because you believe that the world is that way. In contrast, those who believe in abundance will find that there is always enough of whatever they need. So a person who is jealous and operates under the motivation of jealousy who be viewing the world through a scarcity model of thinking, and as Quark warns, that person would find no profit.
As I have been working on preparing a meeting on jealousy for my meetup, I realized that one of the ways in which I have dealt with jealousy in my life is through a scarcity mentality I previously held. I was raised in a family that was raised by those who grew up in the Great Depression. My grandparents had to leave school after eighth grade graduation to get jobs in order to help keep the family fed. The whole nation was living in a time of scarcity. As anyone who has known people who lived through the Depression knows, many of them did not let go of their fear and scarcity mentality even in later years when finances were stable for them. Those who were in fear of losing their money again were often very conservative-- if not downright stingy-- with their money. They passed this scarcity mentality on to their children (the Baby Boomers) who passed it on to their children (Generation X, my age grouping). As the Millenial Generation comes of age, we are finally seeing the legacy of the Great Depression no longer having the same influence on today’s young adults as in previous generations.
However, I never really had thought about the scarcity mentality as being a part of jealousy. To me, I always labeled it insecurity. Yet one of the major roots of jealousy is insecurity. People are envious of others for having things or talents that they might never have. Those who are feeling insecure become jealous when they don’t work through their true fears. For example, I see insecurity and jealousy manifest as a scarcity mentality among many of the alternative healers in Austin. I have watched one healer greedily scarf up any resources I am willing to share with her and others in our circle so that she can build up her files, yet she is unwilling to share any of her resources publicly. I have experienced an intuitive publicly demeaning me during a meetup so that she could look like the more gifted psychic. In another situation, I had a healer refuse to acknowledge my part in a joint healing we did because it was more than his ego would allow.
All of this is nastiness is insecurity rooted in the scarcity mentality: Individual healers are not able to accept that there is more than enough work in the world for those who are talented and willing to give their best to their clients and patients. The fears are rooted in ego, not grounded spirituality, for the fears show no trust in the Universe. If the healers are on their correct path, then they will receive all the work and financial support that they need to be happy in life.
Every once in a while I do feel the green-eyed monster rising up in me, especially when I see other people whom my ego has judged to be less talented than me achieving things that seem way beyond their abilities and reach. I have to pull back on my own reins and remind myself that different people are on different journeys in their lives. Each of us are meant to experience different things at different times. When I see people flocking to a healer whom I know is dangerously misguided, I have to remember that that healer is teaching his/her/hir clients an important lesson in life, one that I might have already learned but which other people still need to grasp. For me, the lesson at that time is to remember that there is abundance in the Universe, and that I am walking the path that I am meant to walk.
I believe that if we put faith in the Universe and if we follow our intuition and stay on our correct path, then we will often find abundance. That doesn’t mean we will never experience times of drought or pain in our lives, but when we do, those times of drought are often meant to help us grow and change in ways that will eventually bring us greater abundance than we could have imagined. Keeping our egos in check and in the words of our teachers, “keeping our eyes on our own papers” will help us to grow and prosper rather than wallowing in jealousy, fear, and insecurity.
© 2015 Elizabeth Galen, Ph.D., Green Heart Guidance, LLC