The Buddha on Friendship

The Buddha often emphasized the characteristics of a good friend. He spoke about a good friend as one who gives a kind of happiness based on knowing our interconnectedness, and that learning to be a friend to ourselves and being one to others is really the same thing.

Here are wise words about friendship from the Buddha; what better time to read them than at Thanksgiving:

He spoke about a good friend, or a true friend, as being someone who is a helper, who will protect us when we are taken unawares, when we are surprised by life in some way. This person will be a refuge to us when we afraid. He spoke about a good friend as someone who is constant in our time of happiness and in our times of adversity or sorrow, someone who will not forsake us when we’re in trouble. And as someone who will tell us their secrets and will not betray our secrets to others, and at the same time will be completely honest with us and warn us if they think we are heading off towards danger.

When we have such a friend we have a gift beyond measure.

Adapted from The Force of Kindness, by Sharon Salzberg (Sounds True, 2005. Copyright (c) 2005 by Sharon Salzberg. Reprinted by permission of Sounds True.
Adapted from The Force of Kindness, by Sharon Salzberg (Sounds True, 2005.


Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Barb McAvaney
Barb McAvaney3 years ago

Excellent article good friends are hard to find but when you find them it is a joy. Buddha speaks so many truths. I have read a few of his books and they have helped me sort out a lot of feelings.

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen3 years ago

Thank you :)

Aud Nordby
Aud nordby3 years ago


Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W.3 years ago

thank you

Bmr Reddy
Bmr Reddy3 years ago

Thank you

susan k.
susan k.3 years ago


Jane H.
Jane H.3 years ago

I am grateful to have some friends like that--it's unconditional love and it's what we all need and want, I think.

Ajla C.
Past Member 3 years ago


a             y m.
g d c.4 years ago