~This is a translation of a 2011 article of mine written in Romanian. Those passing 8 years took nothing away from it and only made it relevant to a wider audience, hence here it is in English too.~
Dedicated to all my enemies, past, present and future ones.
Enemies are those worthy people who help you go ever further and ever higher as they diligently keep at cutting the branch from under your feet. Tireless and full of abnegation, they'll be there for you at all times. Mere friends may come and go, as life takes them for a spin sometimes and they may take or even expect you to take perhaps more interest in their own affairs than in yours but your enemies are always there for you, always at work, tirelessly pursuing you, selflessly and passionately at work so that you - only you and not themselves - can attain perfection.
Enemies are indeed a rare and precious breed of foe. A mere opponent might betray you sometimes and simply abandon you to your own fight with yourself or with the burden of what you are trying to achieve. By contrast, a real enemy, a professional enemy, will always be there, if not directly next to you then at the very least right behind you, heating up the coals on which you have to tread and testing by way of dynamite the bridges you make (just to make sure they'll last), cracking the whip and seeding tornadoes even - all of it simply aimed to make sure you go indeed further as fast as you truly can. As fast as you really truly can, not just what you, naive as you might be, thought perhaps you could. A good enemy is capable of making you indeed go further even when not only you but also everyone else around you and even the poor flesh and tired soul of your own body truly believed to not be able to move at all for anything in the world - except of course, for anything other than a real enemy.
The professional enemy is unfairly despised, pilloried, cursed and spat upon. In the very century of political correctness, unparalleled equality of rights and persistent hunting for any discrimination no matter how faintly imagined only, the professional enemy is perhaps the only remaining social category to be denied basic rights and recognition, while being continuously and unrelentlessly denigrated as well as systematically discriminated against.
Without a recognised profession, without a workers' union, without social protection and medical insurance, without even the most basic recognition of his own merits, the professional enemy is forced to take on a second job and even to pretend that he is someone else, to pretend that he is indeed aiming for notions and ideals such as The Truth or the General Good, Wealth or Liberty - those terribly abstract and cold ideas that are in fact the very opposite of the burning passion that is the core of his being. Because the professional enemy is a very passionate being indeed, he has a single burning passion and that passion is - you. Your friends may value you and your relatives may love you but it's only your enemy that has mounted you on such a lofty pedestal that he'd give up his own life and his own hope of immortality to see you fall down from it and break your neck. And he doesn't even ask for much in return from you.
All that your enemy ever asks from you is a small observation, a bit of feedback, a tiny grain of truth like a grain of sand that lodges into his own world's oyster shell and chaffs him unbearably so that he proceeds to coat it, painfully but persistently, with layer upon layer of pure hatred. From the moment you made him that gift of the unbearable sliver of truth, you've got in return an enemy for a lifetime, all eager and dedicated to you, working tirelessly for your own glory. All that you have to do afterwards is simply to give it some time - good enemies take time to grow but grow they will. And good friends are made by everyone and anyone but professional enemies are indeed reserved only for the few.
At times, all you need to ask for is just one true enemy in your life - and then hope that your wish will be granted. Pity though for all those enemies that I wasted long time ago when I was too young and too green to properly appreciate them...
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