A couple of months ago, the Tetrahedronics article was titled, “The Five People You Need in Your Life.”  It described the five groups one has social connections with, namely, Mentors, Students, Followers, Colleagues and a Spiritual Advisor/Confessor.  Some interesting comments were received, too, such as “You also need a health advisor,” and, “What about a coach,” to “Four of the five groups are plural, but the last one is singular.  If that person changes, then wouldn’t that category be plural too?”

After some thought that there may be more than five categories to include doctors and coaches, I came back to the five groups to look at them a little more intently.  Mentors are those to whom one goes for advice, so doctors and coaches would fit into that category.  They’re the people who shape us by challenging us to be better than we currently are, and can provide some type of guidance to reach those aspirations.

And as for the last comment, yes, one’s spiritual advisor or confessor can change, so that last category could be “Spiritual Advisors/Confessors,” so long as one doesn’t have multiple ones with conflicting philosophies at the same time.  Additional people in this role could be Mentors, but there needs to be a singularity of this category at a particular time in one’s life to provide a rudder, if you will.  A boat doesn’t have multiple rudders.  If it did, there’s a good chance it wouldn’t go anywhere.  At least, not where its captain wants it to go.

It also became clear that all five of these categories were sociological ones.  In that light, yes, there are more types of relationships we have in life.  So in the spirit of “The Five People You Meet in Heaven,” here are The Five Types of Relationships You Have on Earth:

Intellectual/Psychological – These are folks you can have intelligent discussions with, that think about things and cause you to think about things.

Emotional – From those people you like, to those people that you just can’t stand.  Isn’t it interesting that sometimes, the people that we just can’t stand become good friends when we get to know more about them.

Sociological – Check out all those people you need in your life as described above.  That’s a system within a system.  These are members of your social circle, individuals with whom you interact.  This also includes people with whom you really have no close connection, but are part of some type of society with you.  On a grand scale, it’s every American, or every Catholic, or every inhabitant of planet earth.

Physical – From people who are in a committed monogamous relationship, to those who are just with one another in the same place at the same time.  In a way that doesn’t readily come to mind, it’s everyone on an airplane, at the mall at a particular time, or in a school.

Theological/Philosophical – It’s that “deeper” relationship that can result from recognizing that we also have a spiritual component to our lives.  It’s that “special something” that makes us more than the sum of our parts, to one’s search for meaning, and one’s reason for being.

What about the “Familial” relationship?  Where does one’s family fit in?  It really doesn’t “fit in;” everything above fits into it.  It’s the overarching principle that results when all the elements work together systemically.