Jealousy is an emotion that I have never been able to come to a rational understanding of. Although I have come to rational understanding of my positive emotions, such as love or contentment, the negative ones, such as hate or jealousy, continue to elude me. It’s been a while since I’ve experienced either of those, but I remember my experiences with them distinctly because it is rare for me to have such intense emotional experiences.
Hate is easy enough to be rid of once you find the path to a genuine love for all of existence, but eliminating jealousy is not so easy because it has a different psychological root. Like most mammals, homo sapiens sapiens is a territorial creature. We have a hard-wired sense that certain parts of this world belong to us. It is not uncommon to extend our sense of ownership to other people. Not only in the rather obvious case of slavery, but in the more subtle case of jealousy. We experience jealousy because we have an undefinable sense that another person is ours to do with as we will, and that as a result said person should not have relationships with others.
We are wrong, of course, in thinking that any person belongs to us. A person can only choose to relate to another person. They cannot be coerced, and they have no obligation to maintain a relationship with us. We have no rational right to feel hurt or betrayed when they have a meaningful relationship with someone else, and no excuse to feel as if we are being cheated when they have a cheap fling with someone else. Nonetheless, we have those feelings.
Even a man with a heart of gold will melt in the fires of passion.