What is the best way to deal with a friend who is behaving badly? ie hurting themselves and other people, and acting in a way that they would also see as ungood, not just 'badly' from my perspective. If they were a Christian, I'd go with sympathise with the factors that got them there, but refuse to condone it, and then help them stop. I tried it last night, though, and ended up feeling like a horrible person.
On a more general note, how do you all cope with the communities that form without an underpinning set of rules? With allegiances (for want of a better word) being so flexible these days, it's difficult to know what expectations other people have of friendship, community etc - much more simple when everyone you knew had lived in the same town all your life. Argh, I'm not explaining this very well, perhaps 'cause I'm not properly awake yet. :) Perhaps an example . . . in my view of friendship, friends build up a certain amount of 'credit' that allows them to hurt me on occasion, without me giving up on them. What if they don't agree? Is that going to cause tension in that relationship? On the other hand, it seems unduly committee-like to sit down with a potential friend and draw up a constitution. :)