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The four friends

guide to friendship

By Energyia SinghPublished 2 years ago 4 min read
The four friends
Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

Friends are an important part of our life, whether we are young, adolescent, adult or old. A life without friends is a life without fun, without happiness. And so finding right friends is very important. Normally we have fun-time friends- friends with whom we share fun times. We go to movies with them, we party out with them. We gossip with them, we discuss our crushes, our hates, our loves with them.

But that is not what friends really mean, in this article, I will write about four types of friends, as told by Gautam Buddha to Sigala, a young boy. As most Buddhist stories start... mine also starts with "One day..."

One day as Lord Buddha was on his way to ask for alms, he found a young boy Sigala offering prostrations to the six directions. Seeing him Buddha asked the young Boy what he is doing the boy replied his father had instructed him to prostrate thus so as to increase prosperity and wealth.

Buddha said this is not the right way to prostrate. The curious Sigala then requested the enlightened one to shed light on the right way to prostrate, for increasing prosperity and wealth. Buddha told him that friends, good friends are the real source for increasing prosperity and wealth.

Buddha told him the importance of friends and how to identify good friends and foes disguised as friends. We will talk about foes disguised as friends some other day. Today we talk about four types of good friends as told by Tathagat to the young Sigala:

Helper Friend: Helper friend protects you when you are vulnerable. He guides you, counsels you against wasting your wealth. He helps you in protecting your wealth. When you are afraid, he gives refuge, he gives you strength. And when you are in need he provides you with more than you asked. Do you have a helper friend? Check out the friends who told you not to do something- because it will harm you?

Not to bunk the class- it is an important lesson...

Let us not party tonight- tomorrow is an exam...

That guy/girl looks hot, but I am not sure he/she is really into to you...

Hey, I know you feel like punching your boss, he is douche bag, but this is not the time...

Durable Friend: A durable friend shares his secrets with you. He protects your secrets. When the misfortune strikes he does not abandon you, instead stays with you. He can even sacrifice his life for you. Are you lucky enough to have a durable friend? Such friends are rare... stories are written about them... for most of us, except our parents and probably immediate family- finding such a friend is a rare gift. Be grateful if you have even one such friend.

Hey you failed, do not worry it is not the end... I will help you pass the next time...

I am so sorry you lost the job, but hey till you get the other, you can hangout at my place...

Oh you are sick, worry not, I will bring food and groceries to your house, you take rest and get well soon...

Mentor Friend: A mentor friend stops you from doing evil. He encourages you to do good karma. He tells you what even you do not know about yourself. He guides you in the path that will lead you to liberation from the miseries. Identifying mentor friend requires a level of wisdom, that most lack. And having a mentor friend in your life, well it is 1 in a million chance.

Hey you are angry, I know, but in this anger what ever you will plan will harm you. Let the anger go...

You want to punch him, punch me instead...

Hey driving and drinking - nope- not a good idea. I will not go- and will not let you go either...

Compassionate Friend: A compassionate friend will never rejoice at your misfortune. He will be filled with joy on hearing about your prosperity. He will stop others from speaking ill about you. He will praise those who speak good about you. This sort of friend is there with you through everything. And if you are the rarest of the rarest, you may have a compassionate friend. Someone who will be happy, not jealous that you got the promotion. Someone who will stop others- when they speak ill of you. Someone who knows all you weaknesses and yet neither abandons you, nor speaks ill of you. But remember, while you are indeed luckiest to have a compassionate friend-- do not stretch your luck.

Enjoy your friends, those who stand with you in your good times, in your bad times, those who have courage to tell you that you are wrong, you have erred... and those who can love you even when you have erred...

If you like reading it, please do click on heart and share with your friends. And if you want you can also send me tips.


About the Creator

Energyia Singh

A light worker.

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