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SENIOR: There is always more to the story of envy

Hopefully you and I are never tormented by envy. What do I mean by envy? Dictionary says, "Desire for some advantage or possession belonging to another." That could be a never ending problem for those of us with few attributes or possessions.

Hopefully you and I are never tormented by envy. What do I mean by envy? Dictionary says, "Desire for some advantage or possession belonging to another." That could be a never ending problem for those of us with few attributes or possessions.

Let's take a closer look at envy.

Someone once said that love is looking at life through a telescope and envy is looking at life through a microscope. That explains it well in my opinion. Envy is looking at too narrow a view, too small a portion of life. If the feeling of envy ever strikes us, we need to take a broader look. Let's do that using one example.

Some folks envy those who have more money than they do. The individual being envied may have more than one home, a private plane, a yacht and who knows what else? What's not to envy seeing someone else rolling over and buttering themselves up in that luxurious setting?

Let's take a deeper look.

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As Paul Harvey, who recently died, used to say, "And now for the rest of the story." The rest of the story could show an individual who is truly alone, no love life and no real friends. The rest of the story could reveal that the individual in that opulent setting is in poor health with a very short time to live.

The rest of the story might reveal that the individual inherited the money to purchase all those expensive toys. He or she may not have personally accomplished zit. They may have tried and failed at more than one effort, time after time, until their self concept now is zero.

The rest of the story may reveal that they have no means of personal enjoyment and that they actually envy those of us who can enjoy hours of simple inexpensive personal reading. And this list goes on and on. You could quickly see the broad picture through the telescope revealing a person whose enjoyment of life, in spite of all their toys, is in fact, pathetic!

A synonym for envy could be jealousy I've mentioned my years in Montana and my love of poetry. James Whitcomb Riley said it better, using cowboy jargon, in the fifth verse of his poem entitled, "My Philosophy:"

It's natural enough, I guess,

When some gits more and some gits less,

For them-uns on the slimmest side

To claim it ain't a fair divide;

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And I've knowed some to lay and wait,

And git up soon and set up late,

To catch some feller they could hate

For goin' at a faster gait.

I'm hoping, with this column, to have you look through the telescope for Paul Harvey's "Rest of the Story" should you ever become tempted to feel some envious feelings coming on. Envy isn't a winning or short term proposition; it is a little bit like running out into the ocean, the deeper you go in -- the harder it is to get out.

And to close, once again with some comments and a bit of humor:

One blessing in being poor, honest and hard working is that nobody envies you.

Envy provides the mud which failure throws at success.

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If there is any sin more deadly than envy, it is being pleased by being envied.

Some ulcers are caused by inflammation of the wishbone.

Most of us would be better off financially if it weren't for the extravagance of our neighbors.

Don't envy anybody. Every person has something no other person has. Develop that one thing and it will be outstanding.

Bernie Hughes, Ed.D., is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at Bernie1@cpinternet.com .

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