In my last post I looked at the topic of friendship – what it is and what it is not.
We discovered that much of what occurs in relationships, benignly termed ‘friendships’ is no more than a mutual exchange of emotional goods, an attachment or agreement, if you like, between soul traders. As soon as one party acquires all his/her psychological needs or finds a more productive source elsewhere the so called friendship comes to an end.
An unexpected breakdown in the cosy world of friendships is, paradoxically, the time when true, authentic friendships have the opportunity to appear. As the drug-like attachment is painfully broken the individual concerned is open, perhaps for the first time, to the ‘Other’, a Source seemingly outside the world of man, a transcendent immanence that lies within.
Once such an awakening occurs, others with similar experiences may begin to gravitate towards the newly enlightened soul with the purpose of sharing his/her life. Thus a friendship is formed, not one dependant on the mutual stroking of fragmented egos, but one based upon a common life flow from the Other.
Needless to say, such relationships avoid the subliminal manipulation and power play games of the majority of human interactions. Instead, both parties are content to eat of the Father’s table and channel the Divine acceptance outwards towards the other.
So what then is a Gaelic Anam Cara; a Soul Friend?
Is it more than the authentic friend discussed above?
I believe so!
In my personal experience a Soul Friend is, if you like, a Special Forces operative in the Friendship Army; indeed, a specialist Paratrooper to boot.
Let me explain.
Our Soul Friends generally drop into our lives from out of nowhere, just at the right time, seemingly acting out a pre-scripted heavenly drama.
Unlike our more conventional friends, an Anam Cara appears to have had an almost identical experience to ourselves in their search for Self and Divine Love.
This close identity is manifested in the totally unconditional acceptance that flows between the two individuals concerned.
Such a friendship doesn’t require high maintenance – it’s appears as if the hard work has already been carried out in a higher plane of existence.
Subliminal rivalry cannot destroy such special friendships, both parties possessing a great immunity to the destructive inter-personal force.
Like Special Forces the Soul Friend has a finely honed set of skills ready to bring into the friendship mix.
Vision – a clear view of the Big Picture, the ability to see why the friendship exists and where they are both heading in the Divine Journey.
Wisdom – a seemingly effortless flow of Spirit knowledge for encouraging their friend on the Way; the practical outworking of Divine Love in the individual’s day to day life.
Compassion – the ability to feel the other’s pain in shadow valleys and the will to help in any way possible.
Trust – the unusual ability to allow Divine Love to carry them on the River of Life; a quality that ignites the same reaction in their friend.
Is an Anam Cara a spiritual director or master to their disciple friend?
I believe not.
There is no master/disciple dichotomy in the relationship with a Soul Friend. In other words Soul Friends come in pairs, Special Forces friends for each other, thus avoiding the dangers of control in the mutual relationship flow.
The unique thing about our Anam Cara is that time and/or geographical relocation doesn’t diminish the nature of the friendship – it appears that the spirit resonance or vibration that knits such souls is permanent, ready to be reactivated when required. A bit like the psychic connection between identical twins the respective Soul Friends appear to share a spiritual DNA. Hence the fear of losing an Anam Cara is groundless; they just don’t go away, unlike many of our passing friendships.
Divine Love realises that the path to Self Knowledge and Divine Communion can be a lonely one. Indeed, each of us must ultimately make that journey alone but thankfully there is help along the way.
Open your heart and look up for he/she may just be about to parachute into your world.
An angel by any other name.
I would like to dedicate this post to my personal Anam Cara, Stephen Hill, a true Soul Brother, living in beautiful New Zealand, a world away from my Lincolnshire home. May Divine Presence cover and saturate him and his wee family.