How to Overcome Jealousy and Stop Being Possessive?


How to overcome jealousy and stop being possessive?

—NS, India


Dear Friend,

Jealousy and attachment will ruin a relationship, for they are like rust to iron: corrosive. Think of a positive expression of the opposite and work on that quality.

Instead of being jealous, affirm acceptance and calmness. There’s a chant written by Swami Kriyananda:

I own nothing I am free, in myself I am free.
I own no one I am free, in myself I am free.
I need nothing I am free, in myself I am free.
I need no one I am free, in myself I am free.

(Refrain:) In myself I am free, in myself I am free.
I am free, ever free, in myself I am free.
I am joyful, ever free, in myself I am free.
I am blissful, ever free, in myself I am free.

Metaphysically speaking it is taught that we have lived countless lives even just in human form. We have had many partners, parents, children, friends, neighbors. God gives us the freedom to act wisely or unwisely; kindly or selfishly. Can we not also extend to those we say we love a similar degree of freedom and acceptance? Does anyone really owe us anything at all? Patanjali (in the Yoga Sutras) says that to one who is non-attached to the body and personality, the memory of past lives arises.

Is my child really mine other than to care for and raise to adulthood? Does my spouse really belong to me like a table or chair? If my spouse pays attention to someone else will my jealousy or attachment cause him to stop? Will my anger, resentment, or irritation be helpful? No, of course not.

Be practical and forgiving both to yourself and others. Jealousy eats away at your contentment and happiness like a cancer. The law of karma tells us that what is yours will come to you. The best response is to remain calm and even-minded, lest you inflict upon yourself the necessity to keep experiencing the issue until you finally let it go.

Meditation will help you become increasingly centered and content in yourself, regardless of how you are treated by others. Prayer, devotion, and selfless service will purify the heart of attachments. In God all fulfillments lie: nowhere else. Do not condemn yourself to the prison of negative emotions by repeating them. Cast them away from your heart like you would a leech that you find on your arm sucking the lifeblood of happiness from you.

It will take strength and commitment and the grace of God and guru. Affirm “I am free, I am free!”

Blessings to you!
Nayaswami Hriman