Please allow me to first emphasize that it is not the intent of this post to belittle anyone’s occupation or choice of. It is solely what I feel through my own perspective of life.
After reading Gary Zukav’s The Seat Of the Soul, I have rediscovered many thought provoking statements and quotes. The topic of Intention is a chapter of its own and from this chapter, I found many practical quotes that not only explained why certain interactions with people seemed to be awkward and displaced.
Over the weekend, I had two very interesting meet ups with friends I have known for many years. It is the usual “life got in the way” kind of meet up after a very long time. One, I have not met since more than 10 years ago and the other more than 20 years.
The first friend I met was another like-minded fellow. We made the appointment a few days prior through WhatsApp and the part I will probably remember for the rest of my life was when he wrote and I quote – “Before you answer, FYI I not doing any MLM or insurance”.
Like seriously, how true is that?
At this time and age, how true it is that most of us who bust our asses with our 9 to 5 jobs dread that out of the blues “let’s catch up over lunch” from someone we have not met for ages?
As expected, my meeting with Chris went really well as we enjoyed a meal and some stout over very interesting conversations ranging from family to religion. Conversations that fed my intellect and soul to say the least.
The second meet up was scheduled almost the same time as my appointment with Chris. This friend of mine has been asking for a meet up for a few months and I thought that I should reciprocate his good intention out of courtesy.
The conversations started a little awkward and at some point, I felt it was a lot of small talks and the information flow was only one way – he was asking all the questions and I almost mechanically feeding him with a lot of personal information. At some point it felt really uncomfortable and annoying that I am divulging so much about myself to someone I have not met in ages.
Our conversations was not as spontaneously as my conversations with Chris and eventually, I was presented with a “passive income opportunity”.
Here I am telling myself “Not another Multi-Level Marketing Scheme!” and I was annoyed that another valuable Sunday evening wasted.
You see, I have got beef with MLMs. The INTENTION behind MLMs to be exact!
For me, the sole intention of MLMs is nothing other than using and taking advantage of others. The quicker you get to the top of the pyramid, the better regardless of the struggles of those below you. And if people realize the position that they will be on that pyramid when such “opportunity” present itself, I can bet that they will not even think twice about getting out of that conversation immediately.
Probably the next thing that annoys me most about MLMs is how disillusioned people are when they are into it. For one to get a percentage cut of a total revenue, certain amount of sales must be achieved. Most MLM enthusiasts are so disillusioned that they love to convince themselves that the number of members he or she recruits is all that matters – WRONG! I can recruit a million people who does not spend a single cent buying products/services from the MLM company and I will be where I started – ZERO, 0, zilch! To think that recruiting without selling is totally disillusioned, naive, and contradicting! Like everything else, MLM is a numbers game.
They present the opportunity lightly and try to make something mundane interesting by using words like “building foundation”, “passive income”, and “financial freedom”. When these are all achieved at the expense of others!
If you focus on the INTENTION behind MLMs, it is one that is very sinister.
I take offense when people I count as friend present me with an MLM opportunity because it is an insult not only to my intellect but it makes me disappointed and sad that such learned people can fall victim to such schemes with disillusioned intention without realizing it. Worse, some justify that the intention is to “help others” in their quest similar to their own.
I guess we compartmentalize friendships in terms of grading the type of friends in our circle. I observed that there are some friends who we hold close to and will do as much to keep them from harm’s way. We will be careful when it comes to presenting “opportunities”. While there are friends we have no qualms of using, abusing, and take advantage of.
And then, we talk about friendship.
Is it and must it always be a “demand and supply” or “need and needed” relationship?
I have no problem to have a friend who just sat next to me being silent and that is enough to make me feel good knowing we are present for each other.
I always believe that people can bring about spiritual growth in each other. In life, we can have friends who are spiritually draining as well as those who are spiritually nourishing.
“I do not want to be your friend anymore”
How many of us can relate to this statement?
Perhaps it was back in primary school at the age between 7 and 10 that I hear of this statement most among my “friends”. A way children threaten one another in attempt to disempower and make others feel lesser of themselves. It was a BIG deal not having acceptance from others when we were young.
Fast forward to today, social networking sites are amazing and the best tools in helping grown ups follow through with this childish threat. We can finally “get rid of” people we dislike or are not “beneficial” to us. Or perhaps, people we have come to realization are total strangers to us.
I have grown to accept the fact that we can never control what others feel, think. or want/need to do. Ultimately, it is their decision to make themselves happy as we ourselves make decisions to remain sane and happy. De-cluttering friends list virtually is good for clearing up all the noises but I am one who rather have someone I befriended make the first move – unfriend me. That is because when I make a new friend, I hope they are friends for life without any expectations.
That begs the question – do we “friend” someone before we get to know them or do we get to know someone before befriending him or her?
If you think the virtual friendship world can be cut throat, the real world can be scarier. You can have good friends this year and they can walk past you like you do not exist the following year.
Whatever it is, let’s start with INTENTION…