Old friends are best, says John Selden. I start to think about this.
Since I’ve moved fairly recently to another city, people often ask me if I’ve made friends here. I guess they feel a little sorry for me when I answer in the negative. The problem is not that I’m averse to making new friends, or that I’m particularly fussy about the kind of friends I make. The simple reason is perhaps that the friends I have came here with me. No – they haven’t moved to the same city. Just that I feel their presence even though we live in different cities. When I met with this group of friends a few days ago, we experienced the depth of the bonds of friendship that were forged years ago.Years ago, we came together because of a common spiritual experience…..something so life-changing that we wanted to share it with other young people like us. And so we journeyed on, attempting to find ways to live, share and make a difference.
Much has happened in the last twenty odd years we’ve known each other. Personally, we’ve all travelled very diverse paths, but some bond larger than our individual selves makes us continue to feel one community. Common experience of years past binds us together still…we can meet after ages and still take up from where we left off. I don’t want to analyse what makes this happen. In fact, I can’t explain it. I’m just grateful to be privileged enough to have this community in my life. And as I grow older I want to cherish this community even more and find ways to strengthen it. Maybe because my ‘old’ friends continue to make me feel new!
‘How does one keep from “growing old inside”? Surely only in community. The only way to make friends with time is to stay friends with people…. ‘ ~ Robert McAfee Brown