Written by Trần Đình Hoành
Translated into English by Nguyễn Hà Huyền Vân
Our relationships – between us and our friends, lovers, wives/husbands, partners, comrades, brethren… or just anyone – are always a matter of risk taking. When we say “I love you and I trust you wholeheartedly”, that is a romantic feeling from the bottom of our heart, and also is a matter of risk taking.
Life is impermanent, and so are people. This is the truth, neither optimistic nor pessimistic. It is a truth of life just like the rain or the sun. As long as we are alive, we change in every ksana. And our emotions or relationships also change – a couple may live together till old age or may divorce after 5 years due to a myriad of different reasons. We need not delve into the causes here, but only need to know that where there is convergence, there is divergence. Where there is connection, there is separation. Hence, every time we decide to tie our affection to someone, we are accepting the risk that the relationship may someday be broken or severed.
This recognition is essential in our relationships with others. If we are afraid of falling into pieces, of “man’s unfathomable heart”, of “being double-crossed” someday… then our heart will be garrisoned up, even locked up. That is just an empty room, cold and dark.
The only way to have friends, lovers, and other intimacies is to take some risk – that is, to put your trust in the other person, with the understanding that humans are fallible and the current of life may not always be flowing smoothly for us.
I have a close friend, who is also my client. She is 10 years older than her husband, and she used to ask me this question regularly: “I’m so worried. Everything is still okay now, but what if in 10 years’ time I grow old and ugly, and he leave me?” I said: “That of course may or may not happen. What’s the point of worrying? This is what will surely happen: If you keep worrying every day like that, you will be stressed, and your marriage will be very tense and miserable, which might be the reason for him to leave you. Thus, don’t you imagine bad things 10 years away and make them bad things of this moment. Don’t think of it, imaginations are just ghosts, and what do you think of ghosts for? Enjoy each day with happiness, and don’t waste any moment worrying. And that cheerful family atmosphere may keep him with you forever.”
That is what human relationship is supposed to mean–taking risks without thinking of the risks themselves, and trying to make every moment in the relationship a cheerful and happy one. If every minute is a happy one, many minutes together may make fifty or sixty years of happy life.
Therefore, in human relationship, let’s open our hearts, be willing to take a little risk, and live every minute to the fullest.
This is not to say that you should take risks without giving a single thought about them. Always have a rough evaluation of the other person. Do not just go online, have some sweet chats for a few days, and then give them all your money, your house and yourself. Be streetwise a little. To survive the world, we all need to know how to evaluate, think, and check out new acquaintances a little. Get to know a bit of each other’s background. And once you’ve already felt that this person is trustworthy, take your chance to get closer to each other, trust each other, and don’t let the ghosts from the future tell you to close your heart, or get stressed out day and night in the relationship.
Human relationships, from romance to economic and political affiliations, are all controlled by a few key factors – sincerity, honesty, acceptance of risks, and positively making every moment of the relationship sustainable. Simple as that.
Wish you a sustainable day!