Saturday, June 26, 2010

Collage 103

Lynn found a wonderful old book published in 1971 called "Friends Together: Celebrating the Gift of Friendship". For me, this project is about friendship. Here is one of the entries entitled "To Be a Friend" by Robert Hardy Andrews.

"In India 2500 years ago, a man named Guatama Buddha walked the roads and preached and taught. His teachings are still remembered by five hundred million believers in Asia and the Orient.

I am not a Buddhist. But I find no disloyalty to my faith in accepting advice as practical today as it was when Buddha first offered it. In a mango grove in Bihar he told one of his disciples that five things are necessary to achieve release from unhappiness and fear. These, he said, include: restraint, proper discourse, energy in producing good thoughts, firmness in pursuing them, and acquisition of true insight. But first of all, and above all, he said, the seeker must learn to be a good friend.

When people asked for a definition of friendliness, Buddha answered, "It means to have hope of the welfare of others more than for one's self... It means affection unsullied by hope or thought of any reward on earth or in heaven."

Buddha admitted that such generous wholeheartedness would not be easy. Yet in the long run it is intensely practical. "Compassion and knowledge and virtue," he said, "are the only possessions that do not fade away."

"To be a good friend..." How simple it sounds -- just five short words. Yet how much they represent! Think how much it could mean, a flowing out of new forces of friendship from person to person, and eventually from land to land.

Try as we may, there is no other form of security. As Buddha said, "Friendship is the only cure for hatred, and the only guarantee of peace." -- Lola

Lola Baltzell
from page 213-214 of original text
collage, acrylic paint
made 5/14/10

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