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Today Gurudeva distinguishes between friends and acquaintances. Gurudeva discusses all of the components that are necessary for friendship. Transfusions and transplants, prana and karma are subtopics.

Unedited Transcript:

Today, we are going to talk on friendship.

Friendship is a word, that often gets confused with the word acquaintance. An acquaintance is someone you have a formal relationship with. You are on your side of the table and they are on their side of the table. (You are on) There are certain formalities.

Acquaintances are business associates, (acquaintances are) your next door neighbor. You don't want to get too close to your acquaintances because you might be crossing a line and then regret that line that you crossed, slight them, anger them, misunderstandings come up. So the formality is always there. A happy card on a holiday, remembering a birthday, gifts not too large and not too small, appropriately given. They give you something, you give something back, within a reasonable amount of time. (and) You keep the acquaintanceship going over the years. These kinds of acquaintances, people often call friends.

In Weaver's Wisdom, verses of the Holy Tirukural, explain what friendship is. They explain how to evaluate a friend. They explain that a friend can insult you and you don't get insulted. There is a difference. It is playful, it is a game because you are close.

But what is closeness to another human being? We have relationships spiritually, (we have relationships) socially, (we have relationships) culturally, (we have relationships) economically, (we have relationships) physically. The physical presence of a person - sitting, talking, sharing economic concerns, cultural concerns, social concerns and most importantly spiritual and religious concerns. (and) Unless all of those are present - spiritual, social, cultural, economic and physical exchanging energies -that doesn't mean sexual necessarily- unless all those components are there you do not have a friend. You just have an acquaintance, a causal acquaintance. (that) If they run off, if they leave you, if misunderstandings come up, they won't talk to you anymore or you won't talk with them. That happens with acquaintances but not with friends, because friends are loyal.

Why? You have a spiritual bond, a religious bond. You enjoy the same restaurants, (you enjoy) the same company, (you enjoy) your acquaintances - social bonds. You enjoy listening to the same music, watching the same TV, music, art, drama and dance - cultural bonds. (Spiritual bonds -) You enjoy the same worship, you enjoy the same philosophy - spiritual bonds. Physical bonds - you enjoy being in one another's presence, (and) talking and sharing. Economic bonds - you enjoy buying things together or saying what you bought, (and) sharing problems at work, looking for that next advancement and helping one another economically come up the ladder just a little bit. (And) Unless all those components are there you do not have a friend, you just have an acquaintance.

( And,) Sadly many people marry their acquaintance thinking that they are marrying a friend. That's the difference between buying a new car or an used car on the used car lot. Marrying an acquaintance, is like buying an used car, because you don't know what's going to happen, how many repairs are going to be needed and how soon. (And) You can repair a used car time and time and time again and it never turns into a new car.

You've had that experience, I know. We've had that experience, too. Now we buy new cars!

A used car has the vibration of the previous owner, permeating every bit of that car. The prana of the previous owner is in that car and the experiential patterns that created that karma and the karmas of the future are in that car. Of course, that goes into heart transplants and liver transplants and kidney transplants, too. They are permanent. Blood transfusions, of course, wash out of the body in time.

Photo of  Gurudeva
When the philosophy is properly understood, we possess right thought, right speech and right action, which is proper behavior. This is culture.