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The Importance of Right Friends

Every child has that time in his or her life when they meet new friends. This friendship can last for a long time which turns it into a brotherhood/sisterhood relationship. This relationship has the capability of being stronger than family ties, Imam Ali (A.S) states “A friend is closer than relatives.”(1).

Yet we as parents and the people who are expected to raise our children sometimes forget the importance of this fact and how it affects the child’s upbringing. The reason behind its importance is that friends affects one’s behaviors.
The Prophet (pbuh) said “Man is on the same religion as his friend so perceive who you befriend.”(2)
Prophet Solomon (A.S) stated “Do not judge a man until you see who his friends are, for man is known by his kind and by his companions.”(3)
Imam Ali (A.S) reports a saying about Jesus (A.S) in which he states “Wicked friends infect and bad companions destroy so perceive who you befriend.”(4)
What makes this even more important is that children will be affected faster and stronger because they are like how Imam Ali (A.S) stated “The heart of a young man is like empty land which accepts anything that is strewn on it.”(5)
Therefore, it is important to caution and aware our children to whom they befriend and to instruct them in good discipline before their hearts harden and their minds are occupied. Keep in mind that friendship with good friends is highly valued by the infallibles in a way that Imam Ali (A.S) stated “A reliable friend is a blessing”(5)

1.    Ghurar Al-Hikam 647,1669,8760,2059  
2.    Amali Al- Tusi p518
3.    Bihar Al-Anwar v78 p188
4.    Al-Kafi v 2 p 830
5.    Nahj Al-Balagha letter31 (advice to Imam Hassan)
6.    Ghurar Al-Hikam 671


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