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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Benjamin Franklin quotes: Love your Neighbor; yet don't pull down your Hedge.


Love your Neighbor; yet don't pull down your Hedge.
- Benjamin Franklin


Like all of life, it's a balance. Yes, having universal compassion, acceptance, and kindness toward one's neighbor is central to being a noble person. And that applies equally whether the neighbor lives across the street or around the world.

At the same time, as Robert Frost says, "Good fences make good neighbors." Honoring other people's life choices and behaving kindly toward them is very different from enjoying their presence. Further, most of us would probably be happier if we spent more time quietly enjoying our own company and a good book.

In particular, be compassionate toward people who are continually unhappy and constantly complain or gossip, but avoid their company except when you are on a specific errand of mercy toward them.

*** Book of the day: May You Be Blessed (with FREE DVD)

Further reading: George Washington: It is far better to be alone, than to be in bad company

Happy Friends - Happy You

There is sanctuary in being alone with nature. - jlh

Meddling - 5 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Offering Helpful Advice

2 comments:

  1. Benjamin Franklin had a remarkable impact in so many ways. A Benjamin Franklin article just received the ‘Top 100 Electricity Blogs’ Award http://bit.ly/z8Ckp

    ReplyDelete
  2. Actually, to be fair to Robert Frost, he didn't say "Good fences make good neighbors." In the poem alluded to above, "Mending Wall," the neighbor, not the speaker of the poem, repeats the proverb twice. The speaker of the poem (and for that matter, the poem itself) actually questions this notion, asking "Why do they make good neighbors?...Before I built a wall I'd ask to know/What I was walling in or walling out,/And to whom I was like to give offense (lines 30-34).

    ReplyDelete

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