Passing Ships

Passing Ships 150 150 Ben Coker

Passing Ships

Have you noticed the ‘ships’?

The ships that denote how people relate to one another.

“I don’t want a relationship” someone commented recently.

Well, that will be hard – because unless you’re living alone in a cave on a desert island, completely ‘off the grid’, out of touch with the world, the you really cannot avoid relationships of one kind or another.

And even if you are completely alone you’ll still have a ‘relationship’ with yourself!

You and I have ‘relationships’ with everyone else on the planet – and even with those who are on a higher plane having departed the physical world – even if for you it’s just a memory.

It’s all down to semantics again, and ‘common usage’. That word, ‘relationship is often misused to mean something more or different to what it is.

A ‘relationship’ is simply a logical chain of connection to other people – all other people.

But some talk about a ‘committed relationship’ or just a ‘relationship’ meaning a close or intimate connection with one other person, or a legal relationship such as a marriage or some other sort of ‘permanent’ connection.

The thing is that you and I need to move beyond the basic ‘relationship’ and use other words to describe the various situations we are in with other people.

But then confusion crops up again, particularly with the word ‘partnership ‘which can mean all sorts of ‘_ships’ to other people.

Partnerships can be a legal arrangement or not. There are ‘civil partnerships’, business partnerships and other forms of living or working together.

A partnership is usually formed between two or more people who are out to achieve the same objectives or goals bringing different skills, knowledge, experience and attributes to the ‘party’.

A variation on partnership might be ‘membership’ of a group of people sharing common interests or objectives.

Another category of ‘shipping’ includes relationships like apprenticeship, internship, scholarship, leadership, and mentorship where one side of the relationship agrees or contracts to be trained, taught, led or guided by the other.

All of these situations are of course ‘relationships’.

But there is one type of relationship that is different.

This is the most important ship of the line. The flagship of the fleet which over-rides all of the others, and which can be added to and augment all of the others.

The one that, lack of which, even at a very minimal level, can cause all the others to fall apart.

The most important ship, the most powerful ship in the fleet is friendship.

Friendship is different from all the others and more powerful as it binds people together, not like the others in a logical way, but in an emotional way.

Without friendship –

  • A marriage of whatever type will eventually fail
  • A sexual relationship will not last long
  • Families will break up
  • A business or other kind of partnership will collapse
  • And all the other ‘ships’ will founder and sink.

And the stronger the friendship, the stronger the ‘logical’ relationship is likely to be.

But what is friendship? What is a ‘friend’?

A friend is someone you support and who supports you in whatever you each do – whether you agree with their opinions or actions or not.

A friend is someone who you help and who helps you without necessity for reward (although money is still the silent applause for a job well done even if it is by or for a friend)

A friend is someone who is ‘there for you’ and for who you are ‘there’ in an hour of need.

Friendship is given unconditionally. Whatever they do, or you do, you remain friends. However, there can be agreed boundaries to this.

True friends will often agree to disagree about certain things without affecting the friendship.

You and I find our friends usually through common interests or a common background, but it’s also quite possible to become firm friends with someone you strike up a conversation with on a plan, in a train, or at a meeting.

And friendship can of course, also grow from an existing ‘relationship’.

It starts with rapport, that mutual feeling of ‘liking’ each other, the charisma of being a ‘nice person’ that comes across, that unseen and unnoticed spiritual connection that just happens.

It will then move in one direction or another, down a blind alley, or towards a new relationship of some form – and ‘logical’ relationships that start with friendship are always much stronger.

So, if you’re looking for a new relationship of any description, personal or business, why not start by making some new friends.

Establish that rapport and take it from there with everyone you meet.

And if they don’t respond, move on, it’s just not meant to be at this juncture in the space-time continuum – you never know what might happen.

I’m going to make new friends this week.

(And I don’t mean the social media definition!)

How about you?