Discussion: Ideas of friendship
Novelist Marcel Proust’s idea that friendship is only the successful by being polite and respectful and that true friendship cannot be achieved, while Aristotle strongly suggest that a deep friendship is the only way to truly learn about one’s self, are like two different sides of a coin. Both are opposing ideal and both have merit. Aristotle wrote of a hierarchy of friendship that includes three distinct levels, the first two could be prone to failure if mutual interest binding them together no longer exist amongst one of the members. However, the third tier, being a friendship of the soul, is one that he believed will be more likely to last. The reason for this is because the members of said friendship share a deep, almost spiritual connection with each other. While I find this to very apparent in relationships, such as married couples who are extremely close and happy, I have also seen friendship that are just a deep and strong with people who carry on in a similar fashion to what Proust describes as being a successful friendship. The reason for this, I believe, is that there are friends who you can have a deep relationship without being “soul mates.” I have several good, really good friends that I would, at a drop of the hat, be there for them. I enjoy their company and have shared many things with them, to the point where my life would not be as fulfilling without them in it. However, I do not always agree with them, or I hide things from them. It is not that I do not trust them, it is that I do not share things with them because, although we are close, we are not so close as to be able to tell them everything. With that being said, there have been times when I have lied to them, whether to save them from the harsh reality of a situation only to so that they would know that I am there for them. Or because it was not the appropriate time to discuss my opinion on the matter, and I know that they have done the same for me. With that being said sometimes it is important and or healthy in a close friendship to be a little dishonest, if for no other reason than to show empathy. However, that can also be slippery slope, because somethings are not better left unsaid, as the saying goes. Sometimes being a little too dishonest can backfire, and the friendship will end up falling apart.
Vernon, M. (2010). The Meaning of Friendship. MacMillan.