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Friends or colleagues?

Lately we had a discussion about friendship.

  • Friendship evolves over years. Only then, you can tall if it is a real freindship.

  • Friendship can evolve in a short period of time. It is as if you recognize a piece of yourself deep wtihin the other. It feels good to be around someone and enjoy spending time together.

I remember a conversation with my god

father. It was when I visited, in my teenage years. He wanted to know more about my life, school, my boyfriend, my friends. I was trhilled to tell him all aobut it. I shared about my boyfriend and told him about friends and colleagues. He smiled and then asked me about the difference between friends and colleagues . I mulled over how to explain this. I struggled for words. I tried but, I couldn't quite explain it. I don't know exactly what I replied, it's been too long for that, since I was a teenager then. But I remember what I felt. My godfather stopped an looked at me with his dark brown eyes, his lvoe for me so vibrant and gentle. He told me that for him, all the people he spends time with, the people he likes to be around, are friends. He doesn't understand why one makes a difference there. At that time I thought, oh, he doesn't get it. But this conversation has left an impact. I am so grateful to be his godchild. God bless him.

Why do we, as humans, make such distinctions? It might be that underneath this distinction lies a pattern of fear. Such as fear of rejection, fear of not being loved. As if you want to protect yourself from the heartache of a (possible) disappointment or injury. How do you feel about this? Do you differentiate between colleagues and friends? (not at work, or school) Please leave a comment, I would love to read your insight.


PS.: Whilst I was typing, I realised that thsi discussion we had, was like a cancellation of a thought of close friendship. Well, what can I do? Accept it and send them lots of love through the either.

FRIENDSHIP by David Whyte is a mirror to presence and a testament to forgiveness. Friendship not only helps us to see ourselves through another’s eyes, but can be sustained over the years only with someone who has repeatedly forgiven us for our trespasses as we must find it in ourselves to forgive them in turn. A friend knows our difficulties and shadows and remains in sight, a companion to our vulnerabilities more than our triumphs, when we are under the strange illusion we do not need them. An undercurrent of real friendship is a blessing exactly because its elemental form is rediscovered again and again through understanding and mercy. All friendships of any length are based on a continued, mutual forgiveness. Without tolerance and mercy all friendships die. In the course of the years a close friendship will always reveal the shadow in the other as much as ourselves, to remain friends we must know the other and their difficulties and even their sins and encourage the best in them, not through critique but through addressing the better part of them, the leading creative edge of their incarnation, thus subtly discouraging what makes them smaller, less generous, less of themselves. Friendship is the great hidden transmuter of all relationship: it can transform a troubled marriage, make honorable a professional rivalry, make sense of heartbreak and unrequited love and become the newly discovered ground for a mature parent-child relationship. The dynamic of friendship is almost always underestimated as a constant force in human life: a diminishing circle of friends is the first terrible diagnostic of a life in deep trouble: of overwork, of too much emphasis on a professional identity of forgetting who will be there when our armored personalities run into the inevitable natural disasters and vulnerabilities found in even the most ordinary existence… Friendship transcends disappearance: an enduring friendship goes on after death, the exchange only transmuted by absence, the relationship advancing and maturing in a silent internal conversational way even after one half of the bond has passed on. But no matter the medicinal virtues of being a true friend or sustaining a long close relationship with another, the ultimate touchstone of friendship is not improvement, neither of the self nor of the other, the ultimate touchstone is witness, the privilege of having been seen by someone and the equal privilege of being granted the sight of the essence of another, to have walked with them and to have believed in them, and sometimes just to have accompanied them for however brief a span, on a journey impossible to accomplish alone. ... ‘FRIENDSHIP’ From CONSOLATIONS: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words. © David Whyte: Many Rivers Press REVISED EDITION 2020

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