Friendship, Love, and Truth

800px-Friendship_love_and_truth

“Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies.” — Aristotle

Our everyday lives, often full of the mundane, and punctuated by moments of joy and sorrow, can sometimes lead us to become somewhat indifferent to the relentless changes that occur as a matter of course, weakening our awareness of things extraordinary. Thankfully, throughout these relentless periods of change, we are blessed occasionally by the arrival of special people, who make all the periods in between worth the wait. My conscious awareness of an acute sensitivity to an elusive, yet profound intellectual and emotional connection to such spirits, and of an inner stirring that transcends the boundaries of conventional interactions between myself and these other special people, occurs so infrequently, that when they do occur, it generally results in extraordinary events, which often overwhelm me in ways that make managing the events especially difficult.

friendship-love

“A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself.” — Jim Morrison

With all my heart, I have tried to accept the circumstances of my life, and to continue to move through the phenomenal world, mindful of its impermanence. And yet, somehow, I have not been able to shake the awareness of something keenly out-of-sync with the flow of events as they unfold at times. Throughout my life, in rare moments of surprise and delight, my inner world has been abruptly and profoundly disturbed by the arrival of particular kindred spirits, and although I willingly and knowingly embraced the path at that time, it often resulted in confusion and disharmony. Reflecting on these events afterwards, it seems I did so without fully comprehending the scope of the consequences of that embrace. Over time, I gained some perspective, and with persistence, came to be more discerning about my attention to such events.

love-friendship

“A true friend unbosoms freely, advises justly, assists readily, adventures boldly, takes all patiently, defends courageously, and continues a friend unchangeably” — William Penn

We often rush to describe friendship solely in terms of camaraderie and faithful allegiance to another person in a very particular way, and generally most of us can agree that a friend is someone with whom we feel these sentiments, but there is such a wide range of what might be properly described as friendship, that such a narrow definition seems more like a limitation than a proper description. The quote above points to a greater expansion of our definition of what friendship can entail, and in my experience, those individuals with whom I felt a special kinship, or a greater-than-usual emotional connection, as friends, often became much more than simply friends, even though the boundaries of our modern expectations of what constitutes friendship tend to limit what is possible in such relationships. Despite an increased freedom of choice today, and a much greater range of abilities to communicate with each other, we still seem to cling to the notion that friendship only means “liking” someone, when in fact, a much deeper and more profoundly affectionate connection between friends is not only possible, but desirable.

quotes-sayings-love-friendship-nice

Our relationships generally are well-defined and unambiguous by their very nature, but occasionally we encounter particular spirits in the world who do not fit very well into any of these well-established roles. A few years ago, I attended a lecture at Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia by Beatrice Bruteau, who wrote “The Creation of a Self-Creating World,” in which she gave a description of friendship, that goes beyond mere external circumstances:

“If there is strong attraction to the other as a person, an interesting thing happens. One is not satisfied with merely being intimate with the descriptive reality of the other. One wants to be close to the interior of the other, to feel the other on the inside as the other feels. One yearns to be with the other, not as the other appears to be, but as the other really is from the other’s profound sense of self.”

It may well be that our initial contact with such extraordinary connections between people, in spite of the external circumstances, results in an awareness of a commonality which transcends our common notions of friendship. What better way to illustrate the importance of our interior worlds, than to become aware of our connection to such spirits, which may defy all external considerations. The compelling draw to such individuals may be experienced in their presence as well as in their absence physically, and while our physical presence is generally expected to generate an immediate response to a kindred spirit, the fascinating experience of immediate recognition or attraction to others we encounter can occur through a combination of elements, and point to a much greater degree of connection between all of us, that cannot be explained simply by genetics and previous experience.

Advertisements

8 comments

    • jjhiii24

      Joycelin,

      Thank you so much for your visit and for your observation that we share an interest in similar thoughts. Life has been challenging with so much activity and distractions these past few weeks and I have been struggling to catch up a bit. The idea that we are limited in our choices regarding how our relationships are defined generally has always been a point of contention for me, since my experience of the world and of the many amazing and wonderful people with whom I share the planet have always seemed to fall somewhere outside of the generally accepted ideas of what are assumed to be the “norm.”

      Your own blog has many wonderful entries which demonstrate how our preconceived notions of how the world is defined are often not precisely as predicted by the conventional wisdom. Your open heart and mind provide a solid foundation for the realm of possibility, and I admire this about you very much.

      Please continue to share your heart and mind and thoughts and feelings with us! I appreciate your kind words very much.

      Warm regards….John H.

    • jjhiii24

      True friendship of the sort you infer from your comment must be quite rare. Misunderstandings can occur even among the best of friends, I think, although if the friendship is true and strong, the misunderstandings don’t interfere or change the friendship. Close friendships are sustained through a degree of mutual understanding, a degree of kinship, and even genuine love, and these bonds cannot be broken except through the most severe of circumstances. I think what you are suggesting is that when we know our dearest friends well enough and have this unbreakable bond, misunderstandings have no power in such relationships, and I would agree there.

      I’m glad you enjoyed this posting and thank you for your close reading….John H.

  1. Dr. Aluora Jr

    Beautiful post. Just what i was thinking about. Lets just say it is genius especially to bring out what many are thinking in an almost perfect way, absolutely brilliant.

    • jjhiii24

      Dr. Aluora,

      Thank you so much for your visit and for your generosity in describing my blog entry in such a positive light. Your characterization of my posting on this very important subject is reassuring, as it affirms to some degree that my experiences are valid, but it also confirms that others can appreciate the same variations in our relationships as kindred spirits, which can alter significantly the nature and quality of what we describe as friendship. There are many different areas of human interaction which could benefit significantly from a broadening of our default characterizations, which often have seemed to me to barely scratch the surface.

      I strive always to expand the realm of possibility in my investigations and explorations of my subject, and your comment is
      encouraging in a way that I appreciate very much.

      Warm regards….John H.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s