Law #472. Friendship
Friendship reduces loneliness and depression. When friends share their embarrassing secrets and feel free to express their innermost fears and desires, the relationship digs deeper. Persons jealously guarding their privacy do not form deep friendships. Male-female friendship runs into the thicket of sexuality, less so in liberal societies where finding sexual partners is relatively easy. The same-gender friendship flourishes among all cultures, more so in conservative societies and even more so in sexually segregated traditions. “The friends of God have no fear or grief.” Quran. Friends exchange gifts just as they exchange good news. “Do not make friends with fools, for they will hurt you with good intentions but foolish acts.” Rumi. The Greeks founded friendship on reciprocity, including pets but excluding non-responsive objects. Friendship with robots or virtual avatars is genuine and not a mental disorder. A “close personal friend” means someone who has exhibited special care and concern for the patient. New York Laws. Missing friends when they are physically away is a feeling akin to intense hunger and thirst.
This is part of a work-in-progress called 501 Laws. CounterPunch will publish one or two “laws” a month.