A deep friendship can be one of the most satisfying and sacred of relationships. But how to go about creating one? What is the key to creating the “heaven on earth” that is a sacred friendship?
Find out here:
When we let go of striving for the perfect, archetypal friendship and just practice being a friend, we discover it is not about finding friendship; it is about being a friend.
Whenever we are unconditionally present, the friend before us feels affirmed, safe, and seen on the deepest level so that the goodness and authenticity of his or her being shines forth. In this moment the friendship is a sacred connection. And it flows both ways: when we are living from our own depth, everything and everyone is experienced as real, not as an interpretation or idealized image. We also become more forgiving as we accept our failings. We experience in lifelong friendships a compassionate acceptance of each other’s longtime flaws.
A movement into intimacy reveals imperfections as well as strengths. Though we may seek supportive and nurturing relations, the closer we become with someone, the more or disturbing, difficult, and dissatisfying traits are revealed. But here is where we meet depth and emotional closeness. Sacred friendship is a way of being, an intimacy with oneself and the world that invites the presence of another into that space.
Within the wide embrace of sacred friendship, acceptance and forgiveness are what make real intimacy possible. Intimacy rests in the simplicity of being fully present, responsive to what is there in the moment, with no agenda or anticipation. By fully being in the moment we are there in just the right way. We rediscover the mystery of who we are through this interchange of opening and surrender. Such friendships create heaven on earth.
Adapted from an essay by Steven Smith in Voices of Insight, edited by Susan Salzburg (Shambhala, 1999). Copyright (c) 1999 by Susan Salzberg. Reprinted by permission of Shambhala.
Adapted from an essay by Steven Smith in Voices of Insight, edited by Susan Salzburg (Shambhala, 1999).