SHAFAQNA- Jealousy is a very dangerous and destructive disease, which afflicts most people. Very few people are protected from its destruction. Jealousy is dangerous both on the individual as well as the social level. Like termites, it causes gradual destruction of the individual on a personal level, and the society at large.
And for ‘Imaan (Faith)’, it is as dangerous as fire is, for dry wood.
Jealousy means to be disgusted and upset about a bounty conferred on another person, and to hope that the person is deprived of the bounty. For instance, to be jealous of a brilliant student who has passed his exam, and wish that he had failed. Or to be jealous of a profit earned by a businessman and wish that he had suffered a loss instead.
It is this jealousy which prevented Satan from prostrating in front of prophet Adam (A.S), and as a result, he became the subject of Allah’s anger. In reality, Satan could not stand the honor and esteem that prophet Adam (A.S) enjoyed near Allah. Similarly in his jealousy, Qaabeel killed Haabeel, and the brothers of prophet Joseph (A.S) threw him in to the well. It was nothing but envy, which compelled Bani Umayyad to oppose Islam, and prevented them from accepting the prophet Hood of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H&H.P) and Imamate of the commander of the faithful (A.S). Thus, the greatest affliction of jealousy is that it prevents a person from accepting the truth.
No wonder Imam Sadiq (A.S) warns:
“Jealousy destroys the faith as fire destroys wood.”
(Usul-e-Kafi, vol. 2)
In another tradition he (A.S) declares:
Foundation of disbelief (kufr) is based on three things: 1) Greed 2) Pride 3) Jealousy.
If one is jealous of Allah’s bounties like health, intelligence, wealth and stature, bestowed on others, then that person is in fact disputing with Allah’s Judgement and this takes a person closer to infidelity and polytheism. Instead of being jealous one should pray to Allah to bestow on him those bounties, as Allah’s treasures are limitless and Allah is not troubled in granting bounties to His creatures.
Jealousy is not the means for acquiring success. Instead, one should strive for success, by struggling for it in a legitimate manner, constantly seeking Allah’s help and Imam’s (A.S) guidance. One who is jealous should realize that his jealousy will not affect the other person in the least, but he will only harm himself.
Therefore, one must refrain from jealousy, and should seek Allah’s protection from this spiritual disease. By pondering over the verses of Surah Falaq we become aware of the destructive effects of jealousy.