I was in 11th standard when I decided to publish my first book. I had all the poems ready. I had the intent. But I didn’t have the INR 5000 that was needed to self-publish my book. I shared my situation with my best friend, Pooja. She heard me out patiently, hugged me and said, “Don’t worry. We will manage.”

I thought she was trying to make me feel better about the situation, like a lovely friend. The next day, she showed up with her silver chain and her elder sister’s ring. She put it in my palm and said, “Sell these and publish your book.”

All these years, and all these words, I still do not know how to thank her. Not even once did she ask me if the book would sell any copies or if we would recover her money. She wanted me to live my dream, and she was ready to do whatever she could to help me achieve that. That day I learnt an important lesson — true friendship is about believing.

I hope you have at least one Pooja who’d always be there for you. And, I hope you have been or will be your friend’s Pooja. True friendship is about showing up for your friends. It’s about being there for them no matter what!

Pooja and I grew up, and our lives went different ways. Yet, we know we are always there for each other even if we don’t talk to each other every day.

Family is precious, and good friendships are priceless. My friendships have shaped my life, for I was all of eight years old when I lost both my parents (I have written about my mom, father and granny on this platform, earlier). Ever since, my friends — various but all amazing ones — helped me navigate through. Therefore, I chose Meaningful Friendship as the theme for my editorial note.

Os. Me digest: meaningful friendships 1
Isn’t that true, my friend?

Oh, and did I get my book published? Despite Pooja’s help, we couldn’t collect five grands. However, a few years ago, my wish manifested when Nikunj didi (@nikunjverma) sponsored it for me. It was no less than a miracle. You can check out the book on Amazon. And just like that, the universe gave me another guardian angel.

A meaningful friendship is a blessing. It’s comfort. It’s respect.

I have curated these os.me member posts around friendships. Take your pick!

Transformative Ideas

An Unusual Friendship: Can a monk and a householder go beyond their worldly identity to become real friends? Here’s a heartfelt ode from Nikunj Verma to her monk friend.

Dear Myself: Before you become friends with the world, become friends with yourself. Here’s a beautiful letter to Gaarvi from Gaarvi.

Friendships and Me: Nalin bares his heart in this blog. He confesses he struggles with making friends. He recalls the time when he was depressed and suicidal and had no one to discuss his state. Maybe you will relate, and if you are seeking a deeper connection, perhaps you’d find a friend in this writer.

My Friendship Day: The cutest friends one could ever have, made Shalini Pandey their friend. The age difference only made this bond stronger. There were some ups and downs, but the warmth won over everything. This blog will make you smile for sure.

An Act of Grace: A tornado hit the town. Yet, Niraj Chandra says the universe is our friend. It is, but how many of us would acknowledge it? Here’s to seeing the universe as an ally.

And the Misery Doesn’t Seem to End: Aasra is going through difficult times. Her father passed away after a long battle with paralyses. Their business might be slipping out of their hands. She feels dejected. I include this post to tell Aasra that she will always have us, the os.me community. My dearest, you are never alone, for we are always with you and so is Swamiji! More strength to you!

Work Through Love and Freedom: Become a better person and end up being a better friend to one and all. Ravi Om Trivedi offers a summary of Swami Vivekanand’s famous lecture. Learn from the best.

Reality: Books are our best friend — that’s a popular adage. So, we picked up their book review of Ziad Masri’s Reality Unveiled. The book is a result of Masri’s 15-year long journey of self-discovery. The author attempts to seek the seemingly conflicting desires of worldly success and deep spiritual fulfilment. In this blog, VM captures the book and highlights many thought-provoking ideas.

Watch This Now!

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Om Swami Wisdom

The Secret of Healthy Relationships: Having a relationship is easy, but having a good one is hard work. Read spiritual leader Om Swami’s article to know the secret of maintaining healthy relationships.

The Essence of Friendship:  I meet so many young people whose lives completely revolve around their friends. They go to great lengths to keep their friends happy, often by doing things they ordinarily wouldn’t do. Sometimes, they call it peer pressure. One time someone asked me, “How do I know who is my real friend?” I thought this question deserved attention. Check out the link to know the answer by spiritual leader Om Swami. 

Dear os.me family, what does a meaningful friendship look like to you? I’d love to hear about your friends who left an impact on your life. Please share your thoughts in the comments section below. Before signing off, I’d love to share one of my favourite songs that has to be part of this Digestthis one.

PS: Did you find this Digest useful? Let me know in the comments. Know someone who’d find it useful? Share this post with them and introduce your friends and family to our phenomenal Karma program.