- Namita Purohit
- Life Stages
Developing friendships based on higher principles. We all need friends. Sometimes a person may prefer to be alone for a while, but never permanently. Our perpetual inclination for relationships is a quality we have in common with Krishna because we are part of Him. You never see a picture of Krishna alone; He is always with His friends and devotees.
Friends provide support. On the journey of life there are twists and turns, ditches and dead ends, obstacles and opposition. But as John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote, “I get by with a little help from my friends.” It’s a brave and bold step to strive for purity in a world of degradation, to embrace simplicity amongst rampant materialism, and to cultivate selflessness in an atmosphere charged with exploitation. Anyone who cuts against the grain in this way will face temptation, doubt, ridicule and moments of weakness. Without the encouragement, support and good advice of spiritual friends how can we continue? It would be a case of one small loner trying to fend off a riot!
The basic principle of spiritual relationships is one of sharing and giving, rather than taking and exploiting. If we meet someone less spiritually advanced than ourselves, we can show compassion and try to inspire and encourage them. With peers, we share our thoughts and contemplations as friends in camaraderie. And when we associate with more advanced devotees, we should hear from them and serve them with a humble and respectful heart. Often, in this world of exploitation, people’s exchanges with one another are just the opposite.
But it’s not utopia even amongst sincere seekers of the truth. We are all works-in-progress and have our own personality, preferences and approach. This reflects the spiritual world, which is also full of variety. Thus, it can take some time to find like-minded devotees who we can connect with in a deep way. But be patient, sincere and determined. As we steadily develop our pure relationship with Krishna, we’ll find ourselves more able to form friendships free of friction and flaw. Spiritual friendships nurture us beyond selfish concerns and petty desires. Such friendship is based around an eternal truth, an eternal world, and an eternal connection; real soul mates connect on the level of the soul.