- February 24th, 2008 by Shalini Nambiar | Posted in General   5 Comments »
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I believe friendship is the most genuinely humane relationship of which we are capable. To be understood and appreciated for oneself is a vital experience in life, strengthening our will to live in seen and unseen ways. Friendship multiplies by many times the amount of value we are able to create and experience in life. As the saying goes, friendship doubles our joy and halves our sorrows. Nothing brings deeper satisfaction or more lasting reward than the effort to be a true friend to another person.

From my experience, friendship is not a matter of the amount of time you spend with someone. Rather, it is a measure of the strength and depth of the spiritual resonance that arises between you. Many times, meeting someone for the first time, I have felt an indescribable sense of familiarity.

There are many different types of friendship. There are the people we simply feel comfortable and at ease being with. Even more precious however, in my view, are friendships that are based on a shared sense of purpose or commitment to a common cause. Friendship is tested and proven in adversity. Perhaps only those who have suffered truly demoralizing blows can fully appreciate the beauty of friendship.

Friendship is one of those parts of life that we at times take for granted. It rolls off of our tongues as if we expect it to be present in all areas of our lives. I hear our ‘friendship is forever’ or ‘friends always’ is a common thread that runs through our lives. But in truth how many true friendships do you have? Think for a moment and list those you feel are true friends and those with which you have a close relationship. Are they true friends? Is their friendship from the heart? How many people do you truly see as friends?

Friendship is a gift that two people give to each other. It is not an expected result of meeting but a true and unanticipated gift of enormous potential. True friends form a special connection that will weather any storm. True friends understand being human and give the other room to grow. True friends are there even when they are not expected to be present. True friends know and cherish each other’s gift.

The primary reason why most friendships fail is due to the ego problem. Except for a small percentage of highly evolved ones, most of us ‘suffer’ from ego and more often it is bloated too. Usually, friendships are struck and nurtured based on helps extended by one to the other. But every such act develops obligations on those who are getting helped. This is where human psychology starts playing its part in a negative fashion. No human beings, especially those who are socially and economically in the same social stratum, would like to be obliged to one another. In the past there was much more interdependence in the society and day-to-day helps were considered quite natural. There was not much feeling of obligation at being helped because it was quite natural to help others. But now the situation has changed and all of us have become too individualistic. In the changed scenario, it is more often the rule that those who bother to help others get stabbed at the back at the very first opportunity. Those who get helped would like to see their benefactors out of their way (and sight if possible) at the earliest.

Another reason why true friendships are few and far between now is the huge turn over of people whom we meet in a lifetime. In olden days, there were many who would spend their lifetime in one village or in one district or state. Such limited exposure and limited resources provided adequate reasons for more co-operation and friendship. Scores of people of same age spent their lifetime together in the same area and chances of striking friendships were very high. But in this jet age when most people spent their productive lives outside their state or country, chances of long lasting relations are rare. Most people are content with having more acquaintances and very few friends.

In a highly competitive society like ours, there is hardly anything that one can offer another and consequently true friendship among equals is like a mirage. How can we find true friendships in this fast and selfish world? This world is not a permanent world and our life in this temporary world is very short like a thin string tied between two edges. In this time how can we find friends and friendships, which is true and trustable? Friendships involve recognition or familiarity with another’s personality. Friends must share likes and dislikes, interest, views, passion of their life and world. This gives a lot of recognition with the person whom we need have friendship.

How can we recognize potential friendship? There is a lot of symptoms which includes mutual desire for companionship and perhaps a common bond in some topics similar to each other. Beyond that a genuine and mutual friendship involves a shared sense of caring and concern, a desire to see one another grow and develop, and a hope for each other to succeed in all aspects of life. True friendship involves action: doing something for someone else while expecting nothing in return; sharing thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment or negative criticism.

True friendship involves relationships. Those mutual attributes we mentioned above become the foundation in which recognition transpires into relationship. Many people say, “Oh, he’s a good friend of mine,” yet they never take time to spend time with that “good friend.” Friendship takes time: time to get to know each other, time to build shared memories, time to invest in each other’s growth.

Trust is essential to true friendship. We all need someone with whom we can share our lives, thoughts, feelings, and frustrations. We need to be able to share our deepest secrets with someone, without worrying that those secrets will end up on the Internet the next day! Failing to be trustworthy with those intimate secrets can destroy a friendship in a hurry. Faithfulness and loyalty are key to true friendship. Without them, we often feel betrayed, left out, and lonely. In true friendship, there are no backbiting, no negative thoughts, no turning away.

Real and true friendship involves freedom of choice, accountability, truth, and forgiveness. Real friendship looks at the heart, not just the “packaging.” Genuine friendship loves for love’s sake, not just for what it can get in return. True friendship is both challenging and exciting. It risks, it overlooks faults, and it loves unconditionally, but it also involves being truthful, even though it may hurt.

So cheers!!! and lets find some true friends this summer.

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February 24 2008 04:07 pm | General


  1. Arun Kumbhat Says:

    More than anything, I suppose friendship is a choice gift one gives himself/herself.
    The only prerequiste is an attitude of empathy.
    Has anything ever had lesser entry barriers?

  2. Meenakshi Chaturvedi, Delhi Says:

    Hi …arnt we all in search of true frienship…this article stirred a lot of memories and yes trust is the backbone of all relationships………cheers!!!!!to the author

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