Excerpt from essay on Friendship, by Ralph Waldo Emerson
It has seemed to me lately more possible than I knew, to carry a friendship greatly, on one side, without due correspondence on the other. Why should I cumber myself with regrets that the receiver is not capacious? It never troubles the sun that some of his rays fall wide and vain into ungrateful space, and only a small part on the reflecting planet. Let your greatness educate the crude and cold companion. If he is unequal, he will presently pass away; but thou art enlarged by thy own shining, and, no longer a mate for frogs and worms, dost soar and burn with the gods of the empyrean. It is thought a disgrace to love unrequited. But the great will see that true love cannot be unrequited. True love transcends the unworthy object, and dwells and broods on the eternal, and when the poor interposed mask crumbles, it is not sad, but feels rid of so much earth, and feels its independency the surer. Yet these things may hardly be said without a sort of treachery to the relation. The essence of friendship is entireness, a total magnanimity and trust. It must not surmise or provide for infirmity. It treats its object as a god, that it may deify both.
Best Friends Forever (BFFs)
Reading these thoughts of Emersons remind me of how many expectations we have in regards to others.
We may not expect others to keep track of our deeds or lack of them but in general, we do expect reciprocation of our affections. After all, we long for the attention and affection intimate relationships bring.
When we engage intimately, we open ourselves to another as much for giving as, receiving affection and attention.
Part of the intimacy stems from trusting another with our feelings and thoughts about what we feel.
When we feel rejected it is because we are not receiving the attention and affection we expect from the one we have let ourselves go with; instead, we are let go by the one not reciprocating our affections. We are unable then, to give or receive.
This is extremely painful and these strong feelings cloud our perceptions of and pertaining to the cause and effect within the relationship.
They amplify our agony by forcing us to reconcile our difference with what is and what we want to be.
We want affection and the safety and comfort of knowing we are not alone. Yet, unrequited affection leaves us vulnerable and we must deal with the loneliness it brings and our vulnerability our inability to get what we want.
It’s not really being alone, it’s aloneness we reject.
We know the world turns without our permission. When we feel alone and must face that we are not in control, we become fearful.
It’s our expectations keeping us afraid. We focus on what we think ought to be rather than what is. Our thoughts and perceptions are clouded by the fear. We don’t understand what we see (we misperceive), because, it is not a clear picture.
Our mind pictures what it wants to see mixed with what is and becomes out of focus.
As Emerson put it, we cumber with regrets, from not having our expectations met.
This distress makes it hard to maintain our health.
Upon us, then, is forced reconciliation when confronted with the unwelcomed feelings experienced when we are neglected by those endeared to us or, so it seems.
Really, it is the fear forcing us to examine the picture more closely, for clues and solutions to our discomfort.
As we begin to distance ourselves from the expectations. We relax our vision of how it ought to be and find ways to deal with our aloneness.
Maybe this expands our self-reliance, but it also can harden us. We learn not to trust in others or, to trust that others will not do, as we will them to.
A verified fact of life; no one can fully meet our expectations, not even us. We want affection and don’t always receive it, let alone the way we’d like it.
Our standards are so high; we ourselves, do not live up to them. This is true for all of us.
It would serve us to remember this when we perceive others as less than what we’d like them to be.
This doesn’t diminish the hurt we experience when we feel let down and rejected. It does however, remind us that none of us is the god we think we are or, the god we may regard others to be.
This is beneficial because it is humbling. A humble spirit is a kind spirit. It knows disappointment and recognizes generosity, therefore, learns to be grateful.
This may sound great but it is hard to practice thankfulness when we feel things are unfair or, should be another way to meet what we hope for, expect or intend (we all have “good” intentions).
Hope is a form of expectation.
We are sold many slogans telling us we can have exactly what we want if we just… think this, do this, be this, etc.
These are shares from others whom are feeling “good”, want to feel “good” or are simply selling us their “goods”.
We buy into these ideas because it feels good to hope. It’s been said, you want what you can’t have until, you get it then, you want something else.
Hope is essential to receiving and in attaining anything.
Not getting exactly what we want moves us along. It adds hope upon hope.
Falling short of a goal, being let down by another or ourselves, causes us to hope for at least, the portion of our expectation we have not received or attained so, we keep going.
It increases our knowledge as mankind (as a kind man).
We store our memories as we go along adding to what we have learned and know. These experiences teach us to be kinder through humility the humility in the struggle of pursuit.
While we work at putting things into the order we wish they were; they order us around.
We go round after round in the battle to change our circumstances. Things change, yet, they remain the same, in manner.
They evolve while we develop ever closer and ever further from what we hope for, i.e., if we do attain one thing, another takes its place
An emersion from Emersons writing above: True love transcends the unworthy object, and dwells and broods on the eternal…
The object of our affection is in general, unworthy, in that, it will never live up to our hope
It is not eternal and will not satisfy our need for true love which, transcends (is above) our desires.
It is these desires, these hopes, that lift us up and that weigh us down.
We want but, do not get; we get but, do not want what we get.
The constant yin-yang/push-pull both, bolsters and weakens us, depending on the stage of our development in this process.
It is important to remember, everyone is subject to this evolutionary process.
It’s not survival of the fittest so much as, it is, the timing of the order under which, we find ourselves.
Just as all of the properties necessary, coming together in the precise time and order, formed the universe(s), in order to form the various living beings on our planet; we are being formed (are in a form of being) in perfect time and in perfect progression, according to our natural order.
In other words, all things take place as they should and, are perfect as they are. This doesn’t mean we do not evolve or change. That is exactly what we do.
We are babies developing through stages of growth.
Just as, we may not recognize grandpa in his baby photo, we will transform into someone unrecognizable when we are fully developed spiritually.
That is the point when we meet our expectation and realize the hope (that hope for something better becomes, real before our eyes).
When we finally reach better, we will not see ourselves as gods to worship.
Emersons conclusion: The essence of friendship is entireness, a total magnanimity and trust. It must not surmise or provide for infirmity. It treats its object as a god, that it may deify both.
When we reach better, we will have our expectations met, we will know true love and be able to fully trust another because we will all be part of the God family (God will be our last name, as we, will be his children). However, we will not worship each other but will honor the father of Gods (the father of us, Gods children whom, he promises to write his name on our foreheads); He whom, will have brought us together with Him into his God family.
True, loving, nurturing, kind, whole, friendship will be inherent in our changed nature.
We will not need to worship false gods (each other); no more being let down by having our expectations unmet by those we think can or, claim to be able to meet them… no more broken hearts or broken promises.
Our hope will have been realized and our expectations surpassed and met by much higher standards than our own, by, the one true God, who transcends (is above) us and whose true love is greater than anything we could think of reciprocating or showering on others.
Emersons statement: It never troubles the sun that some of his rays fall wide and vain into ungrateful space, and only a small part on the reflecting planet.
The rays of Gods sons’ light will not fall in vain on ungrateful objects of His affection.
They will fall upon all of us whom, he is teaching to be grateful and whom he will call together and are born through Jesus Christ, to God, as children; born, adopted, grafted into his spiritual family to share in his shining glory (to be heirs, inheriting, partaking of, His blessings and wealth with Christ), to dwell in the eternal.
We will live together with the essence of friendship in its entirety, as Emerson stated, in total magnanimity and trust, without infirmity. That is when things will look better to us; once we have fully matured into our full potential.
God will have lifted us up, never again, to be let down.
We will have everything in common, working from the same agenda (A-gender: God has no sex and we will be neither male nor female, just as we began, before our sex was formed in the womb).
When we are on the same page with no hidden agendas, we will work together seamlessly, as one… all for one, one for all; that’d be God… all for God, God for all, of one accord, in unity; no longer acting alone, now; all acting as one.
No longer in a hole; now, part of a whole.