Jump to content
Science Forums

Evolutionary roots of envy


Recommended Posts

It seems that our level of happiness is determined not by absolute, but by relative level of comfort. This means, that a man feels good only when he lives better than others. It is good to be richer than average, but when everybody becomes richer – nothing changes. This effect can be explained as follows: without this mechanism, populations who live in bad conditions would have problems because they have too much sufferings (e.g. suicides), and the populations who live in good conditions have this problem too (big euphoria can harm the brain).

As a result, we have the feeling of envy. When we see that other people live better then we, the fact of their comfort makes us unhappy. Figuratively speaking, these people, by the fact of their comfort,  “hurt” us, and there appears a desire to hurt them in return. Similarly, when we see that many people are living poorly, we feel compassion and a desire to help.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...