02 April 2010

The enemy of my enemy is my friend!

The phrase the enemy of my enemy is my friend is a proverb that advances the concept that someone who is the enemy of your enemy is therefore your friend. It further means that because two parties have a common enemy, one can use the other to advance their goals.  (From Wikipedia).

I disagree a little about this because the enemy of my enemy is very often not a person.  I think that the enemy of my enemy is the warped mindset.  An enemy (if you consider anybody as one) is usually the opposite of your friend (as Wikipedia nicely puts it)!  So your enemy, let's say 'he' for ease of writing, is a person who relishes your downfalls and glorifies your faults.  
His life, or a part of it, is just a crusade to showboat.  Many decisions revolve around making a public statement that he is doing better.  In fact, he would even befriend those he would not normally be interested in but who he thinks are your enemies, just to make a point.  It's sad because "birds of a feather flock together".

When people begin to live their lives in accordance with hatred and mischief, I know it eats them inside.  So it isn't simply that my enemy is my enemy's friend.  It's more a case of my enemy misunderstanding the true essence of a friend.

In my mind, I think that the weakest people source out the enemies of their enemy.  They court them.  They stay in touch.  Nothing unites them but a misguided sense of camaraderie. They cannot justify what or why they feel and they look for validation with others who might give them some quick fix.  Once they do that, they go down a slippery slope because friendships, true friendships cannot grow when you have a hidden agenda.

I think at some point in my own life, I might have been guilty of it too.  I know that admitting it is half the battle won.  Moving away from that practise is the final hurdle to jump over.  It takes strength of character to discern the reasons for initiating a friendship. 

I'm not saying that every scenario that starts this way ends badly.  I am sure that sometimes you can genuinely find a real friend even when you had the wrong intentions at the beginning.  

However, true friendship sees growth and needs fertilisation.  The crop won't grow if you never intended to nurture it.  The only path you follow is perpetuating a lie and the one who eventually loses would be you.

The enemy of my enemy isn't a tangible being.  The enemy of my enemy is an intangible mindset that shackles the normal protocol of making friends and hinders true freedom to live normally.

I guess what I'm saying is that we should be friends for the right reasons!  Right?

(all photos from here)


Pat said...

I found this interesting - for the simple reason that it made me sit back with steeple-d fingers, and think about my friends, and how I went about be-friending them!

I don't think I went out there and actively courted an enemy of an enemy, though. In fact, I'm hard put to come up with the name of an enemy! Hahahah!

But I must admit, there are people I dislike, and whom I'd give a wide berth to, given half the chance!

My friendships are precious to me. Especially now, when I can truly call so few real friends.

And I couldn't agree more with you: we need to be friends for the right reasons. If not, the friendship will fade - as there will be nothing to bond one to the other.

A great read, here, Lita. I'll now make like Pooh, and do a little think on it :)

Estrelita Soliano Grosse said...

Pat, I was wondering what you thought about this. So I really appreciate your comment. In fact, you are clearly instrumental in my wanting to continue blogging.

Friendships are surely so precious and people take it lightly.

I think we sometimes forget the right reasons for friendship. Well, sometimes there are just no explanations for why friendships happen, but to initiate a friendship for the wrong reasons, well, that's just wrong.

I can't really remember courting anyone of late because we had a mutual dislike of someone. However, when I was younger and still insecure, I did find comfort from sourcing out those that shared my dislike of a certain person. Now that I'm older and wiser, I'm over that. LOL

Thank you, Pat! For the friendship, for the input on my blog, for just being there, for just expecting nothing and always ever present in my mind ... :)

Johan H said...

If the enemy of my enemy is my friend, then could the friend of my enemy be also my enemy? Facebook seems to believe so. When you sign up, it'll ask if you'd like to befriend your friend's friends. I guess this is how people end up with 5,897 "friends" on facebook without ever having known a single one, or even wanting to know each one individually.

I find the enemy of my enemy thing a rather presumptuous way of relating to people which can only leave one poorer than enriched. If one has bad social skills or a psychological problem, he can turn an absolute angel of a person into an enemy. By letting others prejudge other people for us, we only stand to lose what could turn out to be the friendship of a lifetime.

Btw thanks for visiting my blog and leaving comments. Really appreciate it. :-)

Estrelita Soliano Grosse said...

Johan, I think that the friend of my enemy is usually sympathetic of my enemy and that creates a natural block for a normal friendship to emerge. Not impossible though but highly unlikely.

Having said that, I have made friends from unseemly and unexpected places which turned out to be wonderful and fulfilling relationships.

I enjoyed those posts by you and it was a treat to read it. :)