She quotes Epicurus: “Of all the things that wisdom provides for living one’s entire life in happiness, the greatest by far is the possession of friendship.” She cites modern research that reports that humans need long-term close relationships and that people who can say they have five or more people in whom they can confide are more likely to describe themselves as happy.
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Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve also been reading The Island of the Blue Dolphins to my 8 year old son. This book, if you‘ve never read it, is about a young girl who must survive on her own after she gets left behind when her tribe leaves the island.
Actually, at first, it is she and her younger brother who are left on the island, but she loses her sibling to a pack of wild dogs who inhabit the island. After some time, she befriends the leader of the pack. At this point in the book, the girl remarks about how she didn’t realize just how lonely she’d been until she’d had the company of the dog each day.
My son stopped me from reading to tell me that he would never survive alone on an island like that. “Yeah, it sure would be hard,” I replied, “building a house by yourself and hunting all your own food...” “No,” he said. “Well, I mean, yeah, all that stuff would be hard, but I mean being alone – with no one to love.”
We adults frequently need the reminders of self-help authors, ancient philosophers and scientists to remind us of what’s important in life. But we would do well to remember that sometimes, the wisest among us are our children.
|My two sons|
|Some people care too much... I think it's called "love."|