Silver and Gold (links roundup)

A verse from the Old Testament that I have found effectively adapted into our culture is Ecclesiastes 9:10.

“Forsake not an old friend; for the new is not comparable to him: a new friend is as new  wine; when it is old, thou shalt drink it with pleasure.”

The subject of friendships is very prominent in our culture, and while the verse itself may not be super popular among our modern culture, the message it promotes is still very relevant. It’s an age old lesson. A new friend is like new wine, valuable, but not nearly as precious as an old friend (aged wine). While you may be scratching your head thinking to yourself that you’re not sure you ever heard that, listen to it this way:

In the song “Make New Friends,” new friends are compared to silver while old friends are compared to gold. Gold is more precious than silver, implying that old friends are more valuable than new one. However, silver is still very precious, so while old friends are worth more, all friendships should be valued. This is a lesson commonly taught to young children. This song, or round, is a song often sung by the Scouts of America.

There are loads of websites and books dedicated to promoting the value of friendship and instructing people on how to develop healthy relationships.

Researchers have studied the importance of friendship among human beings. Researchers say that friendships can affect everything from one’s health to their finances and overall happiness. People are encouraged to develop long and meaningful friendships. Some studies have shown that friendships rely less on the “friendship making skill” and more on our DNA. These studies showed that people with the same versions of certain genes tend to befriend each other.

With things like Facebook and MySpace appearing all over the web, staying in touch with friends has become increasingly easier. While things like Facebook might help you “keep the old,” they also pose a problem. Friendships are becoming increasingly lightweight to distance and relationships become “emotional flickers.”

A guy named Rath wrote a book called Vital Friends: The People You Can’t Afford To Live Without, Rath makes the point that if you ask people why they became homeless, why their marriage failed or why they overeat, they often say it is because of the poor quality, or nonexistence, of friendships. They feel outcast or unloved. Friendship has been directly connected to the success of a child and even as an adult. People who have someone close to them are found to be more equipped to deal with stress and adversity.

Finally, a columnist by the name of Jim Monday wrote an article about the importance of old friends and good memories. In his piece, his message was that old friends bring about good memories, and those memories “keep the wold of insignificance at bay.” Friends in general are important to have, they’re as precious as silver and new wine. But don’t forget about your old friends. You wouldn’t want to lose all your gold.

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