friendship - friendship 3

The reward of friendship is itself.
The person who hopes for anything
else does not understand what
true friendship is.

Alfred of Rievaulx


Genuine human friendship is on the basis of human affection, irrespective of your position.  Therefore, the more you show concern about the welfare and rights of others, the more you are a genuine friend.  The more you remain open and sincere, then ultimately more benefits will come to you.  If you forget or do not bother about others, then eventually you will lose your own benefit.

the Dalai Lama


There is no wilderness like a life without friends; friendship multiplies blessings and minimizes misfortunes; it is a unique remedy against adversity, and it soothes the soul.

Baltasar Gracian

My friends have made the story of my life. In a thousand ways they have turned my limitations into beautiful privileges, and enabled me to walk serene and happy in the shadow cast by my deprivation.

Helen Keller

Once I was very sick.  It was clear that the cure for this illness was in my own hands.  However, it involved two things that I found most difficult to do--exercise and good diet.  Most of the people I knew, aware of my detestation for broccoli and walking, never mentioned these hateful things.  Two of my closest friends, however, were really pests. "Good food, good food, walk, walk, walk."  I would have like to have killed them.  But, and this is the point, which of these were my real friends--those who were so nice that they never mentioned the hateful remedies or those who so loved my life that they made me miserable until I changed my ways?

Edward Lavin


If friendship is firmly established between two hearts,
they do not need to exchange news.

Sa'ib of Tabriz


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Make new friends, but keep the old;
Those are silver, these are gold.
New-made friendships, like new wine,
Age will mellow and refine.
Friendships that have stood the test--
Time and change--are surely best;
Brow may wrinkle, hair grow gray;
Friendship never knows decay.
For 'mid old friends, tried and true,
Once more we our youth renew.

Joseph Parry


To have a good friend is one of the highest delights
of life; to be a good friend is one of the noblest
and most difficult undertakings.



Without friends no one would choose to live,
though they had all other goods.



Friends are the sunshine of life.

John Hay

Friends are lost by calling often and calling seldom.

Scottish proverb



Oh, the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person, having
neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all out, just as
they are, chaff and grain together, certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them,
keep what is worth keeping, and with a breath of kindness blow the rest away.

Dinah Maria Mulock Craik


It's important to our friends to believe that we are
unreservedly frank with them, and important to
our friendship that we are not.

Mignon McLaughlin


The friend of my adversity I shall always cherish most.
I can better trust those who helped to relieve the gloom
of my dark hours than those who are so ready
to enjoy with me the sunshine of my prosperity.

Ulysses S. Grant


Many a friendship -- long, loyal, and self-sacrificing --
rested at first upon no thicker a foundation than a kind word.

Frederick W. Faber


Our individual circle of friendship is part of the global circle
of friendship; it is one and the same.  A drop of rain from the
sky, a drop of water from the river, or a drop of water from the
ocean are all just that--a drop of water--until they accumulate.
The friends we make in our own small circle contribute to the
spread of friendship around the world.  Making one true
friend is a step toward creating world peace.

Daisaku Ikeda
Buddhism Day by Day


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Friendship is a topic that's dear to my heart, for I've always had a great number of problems with the whole concept. When I was young, our family moved regularly (military), so I never really learned how to be a friend on a long-term basis. I never had time to reach any level of comfort or security in a friendship. Add to this the great amount of fear that I have of people, and you get someone who had a very hard time establishing, maintaining, and nurturing friendships. The bottom line was that I didn't ever feel that people wanted to be around me--there was always something better that they'd rather be doing. So I didn't call someone and say "Let's go see a movie," or "Let's go hiking tomorrow." I wanted to, but I never did. So I ended up being alone, wishing I weren't.

Even now I still carry that fear as a part of me, but I can show my caring in spite of the fear--I haven't gotten rid of it, but usually I'm able to work with it, recognize it, and deal with it on my terms, not its terms.  It's not easy, though--there are still plenty of times when I feel I don't belong, when I feel that people would much rather be with someone else than with me.

But more and more I learn the value of those people who will stand by me through anything, and the value of standing by my friends through anything.  More than anything else, I've learned to lower my expectations of my friends in one important area--I don't need constant affirmation that they consider me to be a friend.  I accept that I am a friend, and I don't need to hear it to believe it.

Still, there are few people whom I would consider to be true friends.  Part of that is due to the type of person I am.  I'm not very extroverted, and I am somewhat guarded in my relations with others.  But I've come to realize that's okay, and that's part of who I am.  I would much rather have few good friends than many superficial friendships.  But I also know now that if I want more friends, it's up to me to make them, and not up to them to come to me and introduce themselves.

If you're like I was and you want to have more friends, pick up the phone, or the next time you're talking to someone you'd like to be friends with, suggest a cup of coffee somewhere or a walk or a hike.  You'd be surprised how many people would like to be your friends, if only you'd let them.  If you're more comfortable with fewer friends, let that be and accept it.  No matter what, it's important that we treat others with the dignity and respect that our best friends deserve, and eventually we'll be able to call every person "friend," whether we know them or not.

tom walsh


It is great to have friends when one is young, but indeed it is still more
so when you are getting old.  When we are young, friends are, like
everything else, a matter of course. In the old days we know
what it means to have them.

Edvard Grieg


I have always differentiated between two types of friends: those
who want proofs of friendship, and those who do not.
One kind loves me for myself, and the others for themselves.

Gerard de Nerval


Do not protect yourself by a fence, but rather by your friends.

Czech proverb


The friendships which last are those wherein each friend respects
the other's dignity to the point of not really wanting anything from the other.

Cyril Connolly


I would go to hell, if there were such a place, with any friend of mine,
and I would want no heaven of which I have ever read if
any friend of mine were in the outer dark.

Minot J. Savage


True friends don't sympathize with your weakness;
instead they help summon your strength.


Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born
until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.

Anais Nin


One's friends are that part of the human race
with which one can be human.

George Santayana


Friendship is the highest degree
of perfection in society.

Michel de Montaigne

It's the friends you can call up
at 4 a.m. that matter.

Marlene Dietrich

Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want
is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.

Oprah Winfrey

A friend is someone who allows you distance but is never far away.

Noah ben Shea



The happiest business in all the world is that of making friends,
And no investment on the street pays larger dividends,
For life is more than stocks and bonds, more love than rate percent,
And those who give in friendship's name shall reap what they have spent.


friendship - friendship 3

Human beings are born into this little span of life of which the best thing
is its friendships and intimacies. . . and yet they leave their friendships
and intimacies with no cultivation, to grow as they will by the roadside,
expecting them to "keep" by force of mere inertia.

William James


Love is blind; friendship closes its eyes.

French proverb


Being a good friend and having a good friend can enrich your days
and bring you lifelong satisfaction.  But friendships have to be created
and nurtured.  Like any other skill, building friendship has to be practiced.

Sue Browder

Articles and book excerpts on friendship:

Being There, Coming through      Janice Hain

By friendship you mean the greatest love, the greatest usefulness,
the most open communication, the noblest sufferings, the severest truth,
the heartiest counsel, and the greatest union of minds
of which brave men and women are capable.

Jeremy Taylor

True friendship is a plant of low growth, and must undergo and withstand
the shocks of adversity before it is entitled to the appellation.

George Washington


Those who seek friends without faults stay forever without friends.



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They seem to take away the sun from the world who
withdraw friendship from life; for we have received
nothing better from the immortal gods, nothing more delightful.


A friend is dearer than the light of heaven; for it would be better for us
that the sun were extinguished, than that we should be without friends.

John Chrysostom


We cannot tell the precise moment when a friendship starts.  As in
filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it
run over; so in a series of kindnesses there is at last
one which makes the heart run over.

James Boswell


A knowledge that another has felt as we have felt, and seen things
not much otherwise than we have seen them, will continue
to the end to be one of life's choicest blessings.

Robert Louis Stevenson

Friends are necessary to a happy life.  When friendship deserts us,
we are as helpless as a ship left by the tide high upon the shore.
When friendship returns to us, it's as though the tide
came back, giving us buoyancy and freedom.

Harry Emerson Fosdick



Daily Meditations, Year One
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