Counsellor February

Friendship - Apsects - 2

from: Hazrat Inayat Khan -

In an Eastern Rosegarden

(see also forum)

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3. Overlooking

And the third important thing in friendship is overlooking. No human being in the world is faultless, no soul in the world is perfect. If on our part there is no desire to overlook our friends' shortcomings, there can be no more friendship. Friendship is maintained by recognizing that a human being is imperfect, that he has his faults and shortcomings. There is always something in him to overlook, and if we go on doing so, there is always the possibility that he may develop those very qualities which are lacking, for we may add to our friend qualities that are waiting in him. Sometimes people meet once, and they feel they are friends. Sometimes people know each other for months and years, and so they grow to be friends; their knowing each other and coming together in the end brings about the fulfillment of friendship. In such cases it develops as a result of their knowing each other

Another odd thing sometimes happens, and that is when two persons are at daggers drawn for many months or years, and then suddenly throw their daggers away and become friends for ever; but this is unusual. I myself have seen people who have been enemies working against each other for years, and from the day they became friends they have been the closest friends.

Constancy

Those who say, ‘I was his friend and he was my friend but now we are not friends any more’, should realize that they have never been friends. It was a presumption on their part, a false impression. Can friendship be such a false thing, can gold be gold at one time and not at another? Gold is gold, it never changes, it remains the same. Constancy in friendship is the soul of friendship. And that custom whereby a friend writes to another ‘Yours as always’ is wrong. If a plant remains as it has always been, it does not grow, and that which does not grow is not living, and that which is not living is dead.

Deep Regard

When a person thinks, ‘I am too good or too kind to you, I have been too devoted to you’, that person forgets that kindness, goodness and devotion are larger than the horizon. No one can be too good, no one can be too kind, and no one can be too devoted. And when there is a discussion between friends, and one says, ‘I have done so much for you, I have suffered so much for you, I have had so much pain on your account, I have had such a difficult life for your sake,’ then he is entering into business. He wants to keep a diary of what he has given in the form of love and kindness and goodness and sacrifice. A true friend makes every sacrifice he can and never thinks about it; he does not even allow his mind to ponder upon the subject. Real friendship means regard, a deep regard for the pleasure and displeasure of the friend.

Is there anything in life which is more delicate than friendship - taking care that no words should hurt the friend, that no action should harm him, that not the slightest shade of coldness may fall on his heart? It is most difficult. If a person has learned the manner of friendship he need not learn anything more; he knows everything. He has learned the greatest religion, for it is in this same way that we will make a way to God. The one who has never learned the manner of friendship will never know the way to God. He may be God's worshipper, but he cannot be the friend of God.


 When the human heart becomes conscious of God,

it becomes like the sea:

it extends its waves to friend and foe.

 

Gayan - Chalas


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