Monday, June 11, 2007

Finding Friends in Pam's Labyrinth

For me one of the most exciting aspects of blogging is having titles that won’t be changed by editorial effort.

For instance this title is inspired by a movie I watched a couple of weeks ago, Pans Labyrinth is a unique blend of Fantasy set in the post war era of Spain. In the movie a young girl is a princess from hundreds of years ago who returns as a girl whose mother marries a tyrannical General. While her mother struggles to deliver the General’s son, dying in the process, our Heroine begins the tests that prove her immortality.

The Last of all the gross and gruesome tests was to let a drop of her baby brother’s blood flow on the gateway to her kingdom, but she refuses and ends up getting shot by her stepfather, she dies and is welcome to her kingdom, she is princess and her Late parents are the King and Queen.

If the mortality of man is defined by fear, selfishness and hate, then certainly our heroine has passed the test for immortality, for she showed none of these traits, excluding her from the vast majority of humanity where individual search for survival and fulfillment stirs all these traits in varying degrees.

To me the most challenging of mortal mans endeavors is finding friendship.

Unselfish, non-judgmental and helpful relationships are as rare and as precious as the diamonds it is often compared to. If you have someone in your life you consider a friend you will notice that your loyalty is constantly tested, in casual conversations, deeds and those thoughts that sneak into your mind where no one is watching or listening.
If we are to pass the test, this time not of immortality like in Pans labyrinth but of loyalty, we will find that it depends on our ability to negotiate the twists and turns……… the Labyrinth of human relations. The prize at the end is not royalty this time but loyalty. For only the loyal will find loyalty.

LABYRINTH….I like the word and all its connotations, it describes so well my opinion on human relationships.
The Encarta dictionary says it means
confusing network: a place with a lot of crisscrossing or complicated passages, tunnels, or paths in which it would be easy to become lost
something very complicated: something that is made up of many different parts that is complicated and
hard to understand
What other word can better encapsulate the web of relations and emotions that surround our quest for true friendship (or true love for that matter). What we often describe as friendship comes in the guise of convenient companionship. Knowing the difference between true friendships, vague acquaintances and outright enemies is as complicated as any maze man can create.

Like a fellow passenger in a bus, train or air plane especially on long-distance journeys, travel arrangements place us side by side with total strangers who share our space. This confinement sometimes leads to casual conversations, abruptly ending when you reach your destination.
The less obvious travel companions come in different forms, they maybe, colleagues, classmates, bosses, neighbors, relatives or even lovers. Such travel companions swarm our worlds, healthy social relations requires us to recognize them, and to acknowledge the important role they play in our lives.
The danger lies in deluding ourselves that friendship fuelled by convenience of proximity, can replace genuine companionship. When in true friendship emotional support and non-judgmental acceptance is paramount, in convenient companionship individual benefits and subtle opportunistic tendencies prevail.
In this Labyrinth, many have escaped and found true friendship; others like me are still stuck in the maze, our loyalty and mortality constantly tested……this is my labyrinth…Pam’s labyrinth.

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