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This is Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay Click HERE on this line to find essays via Your-Key-Words. {Most frequent wordstarts of each essay will be put here.} ========================================================== %RISK TRUST LOVE SECURITY VULNERABILITY DEFENSE 901114 It is risky to trust people who do not know the real nature of love through personal experience. It is risky to trust people who approach life and each other person in a manipulative manner in which they are looking for points of vulnerability to take advantage of. It is risky to trust people who are always on the defensive, never trusting anyone because they themselves are always on the offensive in conflicts which to them are perpetual, and cannot be resolved to the mutual advantage of the people who are afflicted by them. It is risky to trust people who have not accepted the gift of security from others who love them, because authentic love has never been offered or because they do not want to accept love on true love's truly non-manipulative terms. It is risky to trust people who treat dishonesty and misleading behavior as tools, to be used in manipulating other people in technical efforts to achieve unilateral goals, in keeping with unilateral ideals and values. It is risky to try to avoid trusting anybody, for in the absence of trust personal and communal integrity will not survive. The fear of having trust betrayed, kills those who let that fear lead them to try to avoid trusting anybody. We do well to be judicious in whom we trust. We need to be careful in choosing whom to trust. Yet to refuse to trust anybody, is to alienate ourselves from everybody, and so to die. How then are to we recognize whom we can trust? By looking for signs of honesty, authenticity, non-calculating spontaneity, relaxation, serenity, receptivity and generosity, humility, thankfulness, appreciation, and profound simplicity. It is safer to trust people who give these signs in coherent patterns, than it is to try to avoid trusting anybody. It is dangerous to alienate people whom we cannot safely trust. The more that they are alienated, the more dangerous they become to themselves and to others. We can love people whom we cannot safely trust. We need not regard them as honest, when they are dishonest. We need not regard them as authentic, when they are pretending to be other than what they really are. We need not regard them as competent, when they are incompetent. We need not believe the lies they tell. And, we need not alienate them by our manner of relating to them. We need not support people in their ways, when we cannot trust them in their dishonest ways. We can be for them becoming trust-worthy, by not supporting their dishonest ways of being manipulators who are trying to milk us of our resources and energy. We need not let them milk us, for letting them milk us encourages them to continue to be dishonest manipulators. We can be honest with them, and by being graciously honest we can confront their collusions and addictive patterns of perception, feeling, thought and behavior. Such honest confrontations need not be violent, confrontational, offensive or intentionally threatening. The manner of the confrontations can be guided by honest love, rather than by manipulative intent. (c) 2005 by Paul A. Smith in (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================