Wednesday, October 04, 2023 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.


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A friend is, as it were, a second self.


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HAST thou a Friend, as heart may wish at will?
Then use him so, to have his friendship still.
Would'st have a Friend, would'st know what friend is best?
Have God thy friend who passeth all the rest.

Thomas Tusser

The First [Friend] is the alter ego, the man who first reveals to you that you are not alone in the world by turning out (beyond hope) to share all your most secret delights. There is nothing to be overcome in making him your friend; he and you join like raindrops on a window. But the Second Friend is the man who disagrees with you about everything... Of course he shares your interests; otherwise he would not become your friend at all. But he has approached them all at a different angle. he has read all the right books but has got the wrong thing out of every one... How can he be so nearly right, and yet, invariably, just not right? He is as fascinating (and infuriating) as a woman.

C. S. Lewis

I knew Syd personally between 1989 and 1991 - it would be over egging the pudding to suggest he was my friend although I considered him (perhaps incorrectly) to be a friend of a friend.

Syd Barrett

I desire so to conduct the affairs of this administration that if at the end, when I come to lay down the reins of power, I have lost every other friend on earth, I shall at least have one friend left, and that friend shall be down inside of me.

Abraham Lincoln

Friend after friend departs;
Who hath not lost a friend?
There is no union here of hearts
That finds not here an end.

James Montgomery

"A friend and a prudent friend, can help to shape a friend's decision. He does so by virtue of that love which makes the friend's problem his own, the friend's ego his own (so that after all it is not entirely "from outside"). For by virtue of that oneness which love can establish he is able to visualize the concrete situation calling for decision, visualize it from, as it were, the actual center of responsibility. Therefore it is possible for a friend - only for a friend and only for a prudent friend - to help with counsel and direction to shape a friend's decision or, somewhat in the manner of a judge, help to reshape it.
Such geniune and prudent loving friendship (amor amicitiae) - which has nothing in common with sentimental intimacy, and indeed is rather imperiled by such intimacy - is the sine qua non for geniune spirtual guidance. For only this empowers another to offer the kind of direction which - almost! - conforms to the concrete situation in which the decision must be made."

Josef Pieper
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