Human friendships can very quickly become a club of mediocrities, enclosed in mutual flattery and approval, preventing people from seeing their inner poverty and wounds. Friendship is then no longer a spur to grow . . .

Scott Peck talks of pseudo-communities. These are where people pretend to live community. Everybody is polite and obeys the rules and regulations. They speak in platitudes and generalities. But underlying it all is an immense fear of conflict, a fear of letting out the monsters. If people start truly to listen to each other and to get involved, speaking from their guts, their anger and fears may rise up and they might start hitting each other over the head with frying pans. There are so many pent-up emotions contained in their hearts that if these were to start surfacing, God knows what might happen! It would be chaos. But from that chaos, healing could come. . . They discover that they have all been living in a state of falsehood. And it is then that the miracle of community can happen!

Jean Vanier

Source: Community and Growth (Amazon Affiliate)