The least of virtues

First and foremost, loyalty is the least of virtues; displayed, usually, only when betrayal has already occurred. Loyalty aside, if friendship is not based on the honest portrayal of the reality that the friend acknowledges, upon what, then, would you have it based? His or her reality may be different from yours, but, however much it differs from yours, it is no less valid than yours. Of course, he or she could withhold his or her opinion, or alter it to flatter you. I believe that interest, fascination, infatuation, obsession, love…happiness…all lie in mystery rather than identity. Then there is the question of freedom versus responsibility. Did the context of your friendship grant that friend the presumption of freedom of expression vis-á-vis you, or was there, rather, in you, anyway, the presumption of responsibility – for your feelings? Misunderstanding that causes hurt may, both parties willing, be clarified, rectified. Hurt, to hurt, unguarded, with no misjudgement, no misinterpretation, no misreading possible, is, in my opinion, unforgivable.

Forgiveness for misunderstanding, misguidedness grants change. Anyone who hurts only to see you writhe in pain is beyond, beneath any benefit that might be derived from grace.

Love is needs-met. What does her or she do for you? What do you do for him or her? Reciprocation is seldom motivation. We often give simply because it feels good to do so. Resentment occurs when reciprocity is expected. Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the intended victim to die. Without expectation, there may be no disappointment, but there may still be desire, the desire for something, anything pleasant, or of value, or comforting, to anticipate.

There are only two types of people in the world – those who need help, and those who help – takers and givers. Generally, takers prefer to take, givers prefer to give. Balance eludes many, perhaps even most. You can still seek the good in them, despite and still, in lieu of dismissing them. I have few friends, even fewer who offer me anything other than the presence of their living, breathing selves. Many of these defy all that I hold dear. In being reliably erratic, though, they keep me on my toes. Maybe, deep within them, there are profound surprises aching to burst forth. Maybe I will be fortunate enough to witness their unfolding. Maybe not. It does not matter to me. I give, because I am a giver. What they do, or fail to do, is not my concern. Destiny may not be coerced, cajoled, or counted on. If destined to traverse a path on this Earth with another, for any length of time, I owe it to both of us to be the most that I can be with every encounter.