The mouth of the small dry riverbed lies open to the sea. Waves run up the beach and enter the river's empty channel as a barely perceptible movement. On entering each wave banks higher against the reverse flow of water, creating sensuous smooth surges that caress the riverbank. In time the wave slowly changes from a single mass into a series of short steep waves with breaking edges sparkling in the sunshine. Eventually the wave withers and dies, the water stretching like a rubber band, as it returns sliding into the ocean.
Your Potential Reveals Genuine Friends
Our friends are people we return to again and again to find and offer support, love and understanding. Close friends are precious. Real friends are interested in you. They understand, sympathize, offer practical support, listen, don't judge, give of their time, give of their money, share intimacies and bring joy.
Genuine friends are hard to find. They are not easily found in the places where people normally socialize, like pubs, bars, clubs, churches, work etc. It is possible to find real friends in these places, but such finds are rare. Close friends are found by following our potential. When we lead a life with increasing potential we are living our lives by listening to and following inner guidance. By living this way, we mysteriously find that we will recognize and automatically be attracted to other people who are living the same way. Following my potential is the only way I know to find and make genuine friends.
There are many ways close friends can come into our lives. Sometimes existing friends turn into close personal friends. This can happen with old friends who begin to follow their star at the same time we do, or who begin sometime before or after we have started. Sometimes family members turn into genuine friends. This is particularly satisfying, because we then have both the bond of sharing a family and being close friends together in the one person. Sometimes we are led or are introduced to new people while following our potential and we quickly know that they could become real friends.
My friends have changed and evolved as I have travelled the inner journey. Before I led a life devoted to the inner call I had friends through work, hang-gliding, squash and tennis. These were not genuine friends. At the time I thought they were close friends, because I was not clear what real friends were like. Still, deep inside, I had nagging doubts about the quality of their friendship. Although I saw them often, I did not feel that I really knew them. This is because we talked about what we did, not about who we were. We did not reveal our dreams, doubts, anxieties, joys and insecurities to one another.
When I took up charity work as a hobby, I began to lead a devoted life. Through charity work I met people who were closer to being genuine friends. I felt I knew them better than my other friends because they discussed personal matters. However they did not reveal enough to be close friends. They were half way between everyday friends and genuine friends.
In time a few of my charity friends introduced me to some of their friends. A few of these people became my first real friends. I made other close friends by attending personal growth activities, workshops and classes. I discovered that these places were quite good for meeting genuine people. During this time family members were becoming close friends. One old friend also changed into a genuine friend. This was happening because I had started to explore my potential.
Eventually I became so delighted with the benefits of having genuine friends, that with a close personal friend as my partner, I started a club called New Horizons, a friendship club for people interested in personal development. As a consequence of starting this club the number of real friends I have has really grown. I feel intimately involved in my close friends lives. Sharing my life with so many caring people is deeply enriching.
It is important that we can share intimacies with our friends. We need friends to help us find, share and understand our potential. Genuine friends are precious. They are precious because they bring love. We love them in return and we know we would lose our way without them.
Our intimate friends act as our everyday counsellor. A friend once put a note in my office. It said, "It takes two to know one fully." We cannot know ourselves on our own. We need to share ourselves with others. When we share our lives with another openly and honestly and that person is a genuine friend who loves and tries to understand us, that very act of sharing will help us fulfil our potential. In my conversations with my close friends the way opens up before me and becomes clearer. We can do this for one another because we are both listening to the call. Love and understanding blossom within each, because we are living intuitively.
Through sharing we discover that, "A problem shared is a problem halved" and that, "A joy shared is a joy doubled." No wonder genuine friends are so precious! Lets look more closely at the characteristics of close friends so that we will know whether or not we are able to share creatively...
Genuine friends are interested in you.
Genuine friends understand.
Our closest friend will be the one who understands us best. Therefore he is well placed to help. A genuinely close friend is particularly good at assisting in exploring our potential.
Genuine friends sympathize.
Genuine friends listen.
Genuine friends don't judge.
Genuine friends offer practical support.
Another friend has a bicycle workshop in his house. Whenever I need my bicycle fixed he often offers to do it for me free of charge.
Genuine friends give of their time.
Genuine friends give their money
Genuine friends share intimacies
Genuine friends bring joy.
Genuine friends help you find your calling.
At times following our potential can be tough. It is natural to have doubts, fears and insecurities. It is in times like these that the love of close intimate friendships keeps us going. Genuine friends are much more important than financial wealth. Genuine friends give us unconditional love. It is the quality and number of our close friends that is a true indication of our wealth.
Of course the best way to discover genuine friends is to be a genuine friend to others!
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