Friend: Derived from Proto-Germanic freogan or frijonan; meaning free to liberate. Later definitions include forging a relationship. Old Saxon frohan, Old Norse fria or frija (love).
Proto-Germanic freond or fijanan (to hate) was an enemy; closely related to fiend (17c).
“The enemy of my enemy, is my friend…”
This proverb is attributed to the Arab World indicating that two parties share a common enemy. They may choose to align to defeat a shared foe.
“My friend is my enemy, and my enemy is my friend…”
Is a modern corruption of the Arabian proverb, indicating that an enemy is a person that shares an emotional bond. It is reminiscent of the development of the term friend by the 17th century.
Fellow: Derived from Proto-Germanic feolaga; meaning partner. Old Norse felag indicated a partnership for monetary gain. In Viking societies the importance of this term recorded the sharing of land, cattle, and other material wealth. By the 15th century it was applied to males to indicate a fellowship between men. In earlier centuries, such as the 12th it was explicitly used to indicate that males had a sexual relationship and shared companionship (feolahschipe). By the 16th century the term reflects a male-partnership in sharing ideas, business ventures and a vested partnership.
Friendships indicate that you have an emotional investment, or attachment to a person you hold in high esteem. Friendships do not require an equal share of sentiment, and can often be one-sided. Fellowships often include shared beliefs and activities but do not require friendship. A fellowship may develop into a friendship, and vice versa.
Be mindful of your associations. You could be imagining and projecting your ideas of fellowship and friendship onto others. This does not mean the person on the receiving end shares your thoughts and feelings. You may consider a person a friend, but they may be your fellow.
When a person seeks your friendship, skeptical inquiry may serve you well. Investigate, observe, collect data and form a hypothesis before deciding to align with others. This brings me to the term Trust…
The term was born in the midst of the Middle Ages and at a time that the dominion of Kings forced subjects to ‘trust’ the king. If the subjects submitted to authority, this obedience placed the populace on the lower-ranks of beings. The king would then take everything from him, to include the very essence of his being, for himself.
The term has an interesting evolution. In the 12th century it’s brought into the English language to imply that we should find comfort in another. I feel that we should be comfortable with ourselves. As time goes on, the term implicated others to be in alliance and allegiance. When that allegiance is broken, the only recourse was to take his life. Whether literal or symbolic, beware of those who need your trust. They want something from you. I know that sounds harsh, especially in lieu of the values taught in our modern societies. Funny thing about these societies, they are riddled with archaic values passed off as progress.
This deals directly with honor. How honorable is it really to place an importance on trust? Personally, for me… It is dishonorable to trust and to pledge allegiance to any person; giving your life to them, giving them leverage over you.
People use people and that’s the nature of what we are. The sooner that we accept our nature the better off we will be. We can then exceed our humanity and ascend to a higher level of being.
- Some friendships have mutual benefits.
This does not require that the benefits be equal. At some point, if you are not providing a benefit, the friendship is severed.
- Some friendships are for personal validation.
This is an issue of social class validation. It demonstrates to others that you are popular, loved, or admired. These friendships usually lack depth, are short-lived. The person quickly moves on and collects new friends to replace those they have lost.
- Some friendships act as extensions of family.
A very meticulous investment, the potential friend is examined thoroughly, and must be in good standing with all members of the family. These friendships may last years, but could have periods of leaps and bows. Similar to family disputes, these friendships may survive time with years of emotional attachment or can end dramatically much like severing contact with a family member.
- Some friendships are seasonal.
When the seasons of a person’s life changes, so does the need for friends. If a person is going through a transitional or hibernation period, friendships are typically severed or suspended.
You may be seeking a particular friendship, and it may differ greatly from the friendship the other person is seeking. The friendship sought, is not always communicated directly and may be assumed.
You may consider a person your friend but how can you be certain that this person shares your ideas about friendship? Have you discussed it? Was it assumed? Did it end abruptly and for some reason you cannot fathom? Have you examined the self before projecting blame onto others? What of personal responsibility? What should you be held accountable for? Just some questions to consider.
Obstacles in the Work
In your conscious Work, I strongly urge you to be conscious of your associations, who you consider your friends, and why you forge fellowships. The term friend is often used too casually, and too frequently. It may be the source of personal suffering as you both imagine and project onto others your internal considerings of friendships or fellowships.
The merry go round is fun for a time but eventually you have to get off the ride.
Beware! You are a midst friends and fellows!
 Work: Esoteric theory & practice. Conscious efforts on the self, and manifestations of the self.
 A form of self-identification, and obstacle in self-awareness.