Wednesday, June 17, 2009

If you want to test the genuineness of your friendship

How do you choose your friends? If you are like most others, you'd probably be making friends with those who support your way of thinking, feeling, understanding, likes and dislikes. So, in effect, all that you're looking for is someone who supports and approves of the mess that you have made out of yourself.

This is where a Guru differs. He is your friend, but he's also somebody who constantly pulls your ego down and tramples it under his feet. Normally if anybody touches your ego, even if he is your closest friend, he becomes your enemy. The guru has the special privilege to destroy your ego and still be your friend.

If you are someone's friend, you don't necessarily nag them constantly with all the things that are wrong with them. But at the same time, you must also have the nerve to point out the flaws in your friend, even if it is going to make you unpopular with him. In our quest to be liked by everyone, we end up doing a lot of stupid things. Look at all the unpleasantness that you have been constantly building up within yourself in order to maintain pleasantness around you! The mind is a fertile ground. So, you need to pay attention to the kind of emotions that you plant in it. The more unpleasantness you bury inside you, the bitterer the fruits.

If you want to test the genuineness of your friendship, try being unpopular with your friend. Do you have the courage to be that and still know that you like him and he likes you just the same? Right now, your friendships are made on agreements, likes and dislikes. A true friend is somebody who has the courage to point your stupidities out to you and still be as loving and nice to you as he/she had always been.

I'll explain: Three Generals of the US Army met one day. They decided to go on a tour of the Grand Canyon along with their troops, for some exercise and recreation. Very soon, the Generals began to brag about themselves. The first wanted to show how obedient his battalion was. "There is no other battalion like mine when it comes to courage and obeying my commands," he said. "Let me show you." He boomed, "Private Peter!" A young soldier came running and saluted the General, "Do you see the Canyon behind you? I want you to leap across it. Now!"

The man ran with all the speed that he could muster and leapt. Obviously, he couldn’t cross the canyon. He fell on the rocks and died a miserable death.

It was now the turn of the second General. He laughed and said, "Watch me now."

"Trooper Higgens," he called. The soldier arrived. "There is an emergency. I want you to fly across the canyon and inform this to my officer on the other side. "

The man flapped his hands and before you know, he was falling deep into the canyon.

The third General became very quiet, but the other Generals wouldn't give up. He stepped out of his camp and called out one of his men. "Listen, can you see the stream beneath?" The man nodded. The stream was only about 200 meters away from the steep waterfall. He handed over an envelope to the soldier and said, "I want you to jump into the stream, swim across it and take this message to the headquarters."

The soldier looked bewilderedly at the General and replied, "Sir, it looks like you've had a drink too much. I'm not going to do such an utterly stupid thing"

The third General turned to his shocked brother officers and said, "This is real courage!"

Be courageous in your friendships. If speaking your mind results in your losing a friend or two, be ready to part ways with them.

- Jaggi Vasudev

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