Today, my husband and I witnessed a strange interaction between two women, in a public setting.

The first woman was asked to speak on a topic she’s very familiar with. She’s got a lot of passion for the subject.

Apparently she had no idea she was going to present to the group. She mentioned this while she was talking off the cuff. I know her to be an intelligent woman but I was amazed at how well-spoken she was. Her presentation was organized, balanced, flowing and interesting, in spite of being unrehearsed.

I know she was a teacher for thirty-five years. I realized, as she spoke, I was seeing just exactly how skilled she was. The woman is what I would call, a brain!

I think most everyone was glad they’d attended the meeting. You just don’t see a person speak so eloquently that often. Especially without preparation!  She wrapped up her talk by inviting people to research and recommending a particular website as a place to start.

We were sitting in rows, classroom style. The group had all turned to listen to this woman talk. She was in the audience and spoke, sitting in her chair at the back of the room.

Just as we spun around to face the front and give our attention to the man leading the “class”, a woman in the back asked if she might as the first woman some questions. This was a polite query.

“Of course,” the first woman, said. She seemed to have little clue the impact she’s made with her speaking. It makes sense. If you’ve been a great speaker for decades, you forget your own power. But anyway, this second woman started in with this bizarre challenge.  Seriously, it made no sense.

“I was talking about Russia, not Jews,” the first woman responded.

The second woman continued to press her to answer some question that was entirely unrelated to anything she’s just said. I’m talking ZERO connection.

This exchange went back and forth several times….maybe four or five times. It was surreal.  Eventually the leader stepped in. His talk ended some minutes later and the group dispersed.

Later, my husband and I were talking. “You could easily see the envy (of woman number two).  She was envious (of woman one) and there’s no getting around it.”

It was an astute observation. The next time I see something like this, I will be asking myself, “Where’s the envy..?”

19 thoughts on “Envy”

  1. Some people cannot stand to see the spotlight shift onto another person, especially if they seem to embody the traits they “envy” with almost careless ease…I’ve seen this happen a lot, too, in group settings. There is always “that one” who just has to say something, anything, even though it is unrelated, unmeaningful, and unnecessary.

  2. I too have felt I witnessed such, I work with a group of 30
    Management requires us to attend group discussions
    Over the course of a dozen meetings, in my case also, a couple women
    Appeared to follow ,those who had new or relevant material,updates or concerns with personal, what I thought, unrelated types of protests
    Over time both women impressed me as, not trying to be insulting, but childish noise, I have decided they are trapped in 13 year old minds
    Not trying to get al lFreudian ,It makes me wonder what kind of approval they received as developing young adults .

  3. I know envy. I need to pick something to spur us on to be better but.. still sitting on my shiny buttocks

  4. oh yes i know envy, i felt it myself when i was feeling less adequate, especially if it’s in a field i love. I have to control that part of myself, because it is very ugly. lol it’s just human nature; and appreciate other’s talents too. and i realize that it’s not about trying to be better, but to realize that we all have different ways to express ourselves, whatever talents that is.
    Maybe in this case with the 2nd lady, she hated that the other lady was getting all the attention. well you know, it isn’t appropriate in that arena. I mean that was kind of a low blow she did (the 2nd) and maybe she is too blind to see that she made herself look clownish doing that. lol oh well, we all make mistakes and hopefully we all learn.

  5. I know about this! I have Saturn in Libra, and Pluto in the 11th house(Mars and Sun in Leo). I’ve learned to spot the nuances, before something erupts. Years ago, I had a public speaking event that went south, due to envy. Regardless of the “event” I removed myself from that circle of folks. I’m thinking that with Pluto in the 11th, perhaps I was greeting a group (women) Karma from a Past Life. I also think the envy erupted because I was speaking of personal psychic gifts and events that truly happened. (This was a metaphysical group of many levels of learning.) C’est la Vie!

  6. I already heard many of such unrelated questions after speeches, but I never knew that they’re motivated by envy. I always wonder about envy and can so absolutely not relate with envious people. I could never feel envy towards a mortal being. Instead I rather follow Carlos Castañeda’s advice: ‘Death hasn’t touched you yet. That’s all that counts.’ Of course this advice resonates well with my Eighth house Sun.

    The notify checkbox seems to be back. This gives me hope for more fruitful discussions.

  7. I’d say that by speaking up, the 2nd woman was just trying to attract attention to herself (and the unrelated question just an excuse to do so). Lots of people want to be in the limelight.
    There are also people who like to provoke, trying to see if they can challenge the other person and bring them down a notch. That is more like active envy, with negative intentions.
    I don’t think they always realize the result -> not always to their advantage.

    1. lol! @satsun, yeah, but it’s funny. 😀 after the awkwardness, and the strangeness in the air, it’s really lol worthy. 1st woman is all serious, into her speech and gets all attention in her that her competence is awesome and the 2nd one just comes in like a comedy. i dont know…i guess i see some sense of humour in this after awhile. as long as no one got hurt.

  8. In regards 2nd woman:

    Another side of the coin is that she felt intellectually inferior and needed to egoistically shore herself up in this particular peer group.

  9. Avatar

    A tactic of NLP (neuro-linguistic programming)is to make the other person emotional through passive aggressive attacks, set them off-balance and disrupt their thought process.

    1. Your post inspired me to do some research on nlp. Super interesting.

      It’s amazing how pervasive the passive aggressive approach is in this current manifestation. I see it in my daily life recently. (Potential clients devaluing my services). (One client said, after I mentioned my rates, “that’s a bit steep isnt it? I responded with “yes it’s a bit steep.” When I recognize that there’s an attempt at manipulation using this tactic, it seems really weak. But it’s worked on me in the past with great efficacy.

  10. Such a strange thing. We’re still talking about it. My husband heard some intonation in Woman #2’s voice, he thought was sort of deranged. Reminded him of something. He could not see her face…but saw the face of Woman #1.

    I saw both women. Gave them both my full attention w / poker face.

  11. Woman nr. 2 not draw attention to herself in a negative way which goes opposite to her intention to be seen as smarter than the other woman. She had many defeats not just one. Acting on envy/jealousy (most of us feel such feelings for different reasons but not everybody acts on it), drawing negative attention, unable to read the room, being disruptive/challenging with points that have zero sense, making others uncomfortable- leader had to step in and solve the issue, not being accepted by the peer group that she probably want to fall in the good graces of (consisting of others, you too, your husband as well). I hope woman nr. 1 didn’t get discouraged from the experience. This makes me want to read a book about the art of speeches and how to shut down detractors.

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