Wednesday, November 07, 2007

A favorite verse

A faithful friend is a safe harbor;

he that has found one has found a treasure.

Okay. I am not a believer, but I do love some of what I have read in the Bible, during my believer period. What is there for an atheist to like?

There is compassion and wisdom. There are moral lessons. There is poetry. These are not foreign to the godless.

I love my family. My lover is sacred to me. But a true friend is a treasure. In this world, we have need of more than family and lovers. Our true friends are indeed a treasure.

And let us be clear - friendship is the purest of human relations. No blood, no sex. Only the willing commitment of time, and caring. Of loyalty and commitment. Of patience and understanding.

For me, like Whitman, every stranger is a potential friend. I want to seduce them all. men and women, to love me and to be my friend. Do not pass me by without a smile and an intimate word, some gesture of affection and recognition of who I am.

I am here but a moment and so are you. Let us be friends and share this moment. It is all we have; let it not be wasted.

Why is true friendship so rare? Because we are fully human only for a few moments in the day. We should all be poets, artists, musicians, and lovers -- all the day long -- mindful to those around us and open to the possibilities of friendship.

I love the city. But the message one receives a thousand times in an hour is - mind your own business.

What is the point of a city if it is not human engagement? How can so much potential beauty be ignored in the hurry from A to B that typifies the streets of New York?

For me, it is almost enough to swim among these sleeping fish and feel my slim connection to it all. I am the jellyfish whose energy is sensed only by those foolish enough to get too close. It is enough for me, but still, such a waste of life's joy.

For whom are you a safe harbor, a treasure, a true friend?


Judith HeartSong said...

what a fantastic post Neil, and I couldn't agree more. Every single person you meet in the day has a chance of becoming someone important in your life. So many people breeze through the day, never making eye contact, never really bonding with anyone. My "faith" is to be good to people, and to try to do what is right. I love the photograph.


Neil said...

Hi Judi,

Great to hear from you!

Your faith is at the center of all the great faiths of the world -- being good to people is a common thread among Buddhists and Muslims, Jews and Christians, and other faiths as well.

A true spirit of compassion and a practice of being good to others is, I think, also the key to human happiness.

Wishing you all good things,


fdtate said...

A great post, Neil.

Words cannot express how wonderful it is to see you blogging again on a regular basis. I've missed your passion.

Anonymous said...

Hey Whitman!

Good to find you blogging away on the interweb again.

A regular reader-