For about a month now I’ve been consciously meditating. I don’t really meditate the way you might imagine though. Sometimes meditation happens on a spin bike in my garage. A few songs go by, I get warm and I set into deep quad work. Heavy, repetitive music thumps in my ears, I clamp my eyes shut tight and my mind wonders as my legs begin to resemble two large pieces of oak a blaze over a camp fire…
Other times meditation in fact happens around a fire. I recently bought a fire pit for my back patio, and I find myself lighting fires almost nightly over the last couple weeks, sitting for extended periods of time staring deep into the coals, long after my wife and kids have grown tired of roasting marshmallows and the cold became too much for them.
And finally, meditation happens early in the mornings, over coffee. I open the bay windows in my kitchen and stare into the dark, watching streaks of sunlight and they gradually bathe over the tops of the trees. That was my experience this morning… coffee and sunlight.
My meditation this morning took me to brotherhood…
Atty’s post about our jogs, coffee time together and the “iphone” generation a few days ago made a huge impression on me. I’ve thought deeply on it and its implications quite extensively now. I have rolled this idea over in my mind like a stone made smooth by water rapids in a river bed, this important idea of the “long game” and putting in the time to really form something great in your life. It does take time and effort to create anything great- be that a nice piece of furniture, an awe inspiring oil painting, or a friendship.
There are basic tenants that are most important to forming the type of friendship that becomes more a work of art than a relationship over time. It requires deep trust and honesty, but also quite a bit of courage.
Atty and I cross the lines with each other sometimes. Sometimes we say and do things that we probably don’t realize might hurt or offend the other. Where we excel is having the trust, honesty and most of all, courage to speak up. Wounds are not allowed to form and fester between us.
Further, this friendship takes courage as you are forced to defend it time and time again. I don’t know whether or not Atty has had to defend his friendship with me, but mine has been under attack more than a few times. My own wife, my mother, and other past friends I have since let go have all outright attacked my friendship with Atticus.
I get the impression that it offends them. I suspect that they feel jealous of this bond I have formed with Atty that I have not formed with them.
Further, I think it bothers them that I will defend it so quietly yet vehemently. In the case of my wife, I see that it troubles her. I think she hurts that she has destroyed these bonds not only with me, but with most of the people around her, yet my bonds grow stronger than ever.
I think both my wife and my mother are troubled because they suspect that perhaps deep inside, I love this man more than either of them.
Maybe I do. I certainly trust him more than either of them.
Atticus and my friendship are not perfect and neither of us are. No person is perfect and expecting that anyone will never let you down is a serious miscalculation. People will always let you down sometime or other. The key is having the courage to face and admit it when you do.
There are other important elements, such as learning to not covet the possessions, talents and other things your best friend has. Learning to accept each other’s negatives while celebrating their strengths, and so forth. But I do think at the core, courage and trust are the two most important elements.