I worry that my friends don’t really like me and that they just put up with me, that I’m not really invited to events but that they feel they have to ask. I always think they like each other more than they like me. But, I also wonder whether my friends feel the same way too, I have one friend who is good about talking about this kind of thing and voices similar concerns, maybe these ideas are part of being human and are attempts by our minds to protect us, unfortunately I think maybe the margin of error is too large and these thoughts are emphasised, which help with self-preservation, but not with social interaction. Maybe it is a cost/benefit situation where being kept safe outweighs, in evolutionary terms, the need for love and affection. Paranoid thoughts must serve some purpose if they exist in so many of us. Indeed, if it was rare, we would not have a word for it, or it would be a little known word. Maybe the modern world is too fragmented to create the loving, understanding and nurturing environment for people to feel safe with each other. Also, I think we are all scared to reveal our private sides for fear that people will use it against us (I am anyway), we all try to project a public front because of this fear, and because we are all doing it all we see of other people is their public persona (because they too are scared to show their private persona) we feel that we are different or alien as we know that we are projecting a front, but we do not know that other people are. Maybe liberation from paranoia is to create environments of trust where we admit who we are inside, I think we will find that we are all very similar, we are after all the same species, how can we be that diverse? In passing a few weeks ago, I said that I was worried that I smelt too much when we were out, and my friend turned round to me and said “I thought it was only me who worried about that” and I said “you can bet your life that if you do something, somebody else does it too” I saw her again a couple of weeks after this and she repeated it to me and said it really resonated with her and made her feel better, it bridged a gap between us and she realised that we are the same inside. I think we could all do with realising that our behaviours are part of being human, we all do them, they are part of our, individual, social, cultural and genetic make up and do not happen in isolation, they are not created personally by us but are part of the COLLECTIVE human condition. I hope I haven’t waffled too much and that this makes sense to you and helps you, as a human being, I like to help you. We must act with love in the things we do.