Of Friends and Foes

It is an undeniable fact that we are in a journey in this life. As we travel down the road, we will encounter at least two common types of people – friends and foes. Those who help us or those who make us suffer. As human personality is unpredictable, we cannot be certain whether the people we meet in our daily lives are good or bad. However, we can find specific persons who have served in our life deeds as enough to be called our friends or enemies, based on our respective ideals, opinions and biases.

Stereotypically, Friends are people you can rely on. They are the ones who’ll listen as you tell your secrets. They are the persons who will be there in hard times – to be with you through thick and thin – and especially a shoulder to cry on. A friend is someone you can keep close to your heart – the reason you have a bosom friend or a best friend – because strictly, you can trust him or her.

On the other hand, your enemies are people who you can’t trust – the snakes – and you should try to keep them very well out of your life. Otherwise, you’re giving the chances to ruin your life, by telling lies and trying to push your friends out of your life. The relationship you hold with your enemy is strenuous and interesting. The role your arch enemy – most especially – plays in your life is crucial. Whether it’ll build you into a better person or create this deceitful hateful creature is to be determined by the role you manage him or her with this role. Remember: “Our world is a wicker basket – loaded with both good and rotten apples. Just make sure you don’t get rotten, too…”

As the wise men from the past have said repeatedly, we must never disregard the value of the relationships we share with other people – especially with our friends and foes. Their traits can overlap – due to the complexities of human nature – so we must be careful and observant. If we are not wise in our choices and decisions, the person at our side whom we consider our trusted friend is our worst enemy. John Gay has warned, “An open foe may prove a curse, but a pretended friend is worse.Alexander Pope had once spoken: “Trust not yourself, but your defects to know, make use of every friend and every foe.” In the same manner, Alfred Lord Tennyson said that “He makes no friends who never made a foe.” Thus, we can live without an ally or adversary – no man is an island, so to say.

Let me give you this striking passage from C.S. Lewis’ Weight of Glory as a parting shot:

“It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal.”

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