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Updated by angelesdpavon on Apr 23, 2018
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6 Reasons Why You'd Want Walt Whitman As a Friend and ONE Reason Why You Don't

For my listicle, I chose to write it over Walt Whitman over his poem Song of Myself. Whitman has many beliefs and ideas that he shared in over 50 extremely long passages so I decided to take some of those ideas and convert them into qualities we may look for in friends.

1

HE BELIEVES IN DIVERSITY AND EQUALITY

HE BELIEVES IN DIVERSITY AND EQUALITY

"I celebrate myself, and sing myself, And what I assume you shall assume, For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you"

Whitman is a very self-confident individual who “celebrates himself” and his own differences. He’s different and loves himself for who he is. He’s his own person and doesn’t try to conform himself or shy away from himself and try to be someone he’s not. But he’s also someone who believes in equality and believes we should all be able to have and share the same equal rights and opportunities as everyone else because we may all be different but we’re all also the same. Appearance wise, we’re all different on the outside, but on the inside, we’re all the same and nobody should have more rights or be held to more higher standards than someone else just because they're different and not like you.

2

HE WANTS YOU TO BE YOURSELF

HE WANTS YOU TO BE YOURSELF

"You shall no longer take things at second or third hand, nor look through the eyes of the dead, nor feed on the spectres in books, You shall not look through my eyes either, nor take things from me, You shall listen to all sides and filter them from your self."

Walt doesn't want you to be a sheep and conform to the ideas of others. He doesn’t want you to be a follower and take on anyone else’s ideas as your own but rather wants you to form your own thoughts and ideas and have your own opinions about things. He wants you to take everything in, go through it, process it, and then have you take away from it and build your own opinions rather than blindly following someone else's thoughts, ideas, and beliefs and just going by what another person has said and believing their ideas to be the only truth. Everyone sees the world differently and goes through different experiences, so you don’t all share the same thoughts. He'd just want you to be yourself and not be afraid to be yourself voice your own opinions and maybe even challenge the status quo.

3

HE RESPECTS DIFFERENCE OF OPINION

HE RESPECTS DIFFERENCE OF OPINION

"Regardless of others, ever regardful of others"

Whitman doesn’t really care what others think of him but respects them. He understands that everybody is different and that not everybody shares the same opinions or views on things. Whitman knows that everyone goes through different life experiences and don’t share the same beliefs or views on things, so he is respectful of others isn’t one to force his opinion down your throat. He also understands that everyone shares different likes and dislike, so while he may thing putting ketchup on your eggs is gross, you’ll never understand how someone can like tuna, let alone even stand the smell of it.

4

HE WILL TRY TO UNDERSTAND HOW YOU FEEL

HE WILL TRY TO UNDERSTAND HOW YOU FEEL

"I do not ask the wounded person how he feels, I myself become the wounded person."

As stated before, Whitman understands that we are all different and share different life experiences. He knows that we don’t all share the same path in life and rather than try to pretend to sympathize or understand what you’re going through, he’s the type of person who will actually try to put himself in your shoes in order to understand your situation better and understand where you’re coming from so he can better understand your mindset on things and why you feel the way you do. He’s not just going to brush off your feelings and will try to get a better picture of the situation so he can better understand you and maybe even help you come up with solutions.

5

HE DOESN'T JUDGE YOU

HE DOESN'T JUDGE YOU

"...The crowd laugh at her blackguard oaths, the men jeer and wink to each other, (Miserable! I do not laugh at your oaths nor jeer you;)"

Walt isn't the type of person to join in on the mocking and laugh at others. He doesn't think it's very nice or kind to ridicule others and won't stand for it. If you were being made fun of he's probably the type of friend to stand up for you and let those who are making fun of you know that it's wrong and they shouldn't make fun or shame others for their differences. He accepts you and takes you as you are because unlike _some _people, he'd rather celebrate our differences rather than mock you for them.

6

HE'S HONEST (BUT VERY BLUNT ABOUT IT)

HE'S HONEST (BUT VERY BLUNT ABOUT IT)

"A child said What is the grass? fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is any more than he."

We as human beings have the tendency to find different meanings to things, whereas Whitman, he sees things as they as are, and therefore, will call things out as they are. He’s not the type of friend to sit around with you and decipher a text message your boyfriend sent you or why some random girl at the mall was staring you down and try to find some hidden, underlying meaning. He goes by what he can physically see and if he sees something wrong and he’s not afraid to call you out and tell it like it is. He won’t dance around the issue or choose his words carefully and sugarcoat them so as to not hurt your feelings. He’s definitely the kind of friend you need when you’re in desperate need of a reality check or wanting someone to actually be honest and not treat you like a fragile piece of glass.

7

HE WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU WHEN HE DIES (SORT OF)

HE WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU WHEN HE DIES (SORT OF)

"What do you think has become of the young and old men? And what do you think has become of the women and children? They are alive and well somewhere, The smallest sprout shows there is really no death, And if ever there was it led forward life, and does not wait at the end to arrest it, And ceas’d the moment life appear’d. All goes onward and outward, nothing collapses, And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier."

Whitman believes that there is life after death and believes in recycling and re-purposing. He believes that when we die, we don’t really die but rather that we go back to the earth and after our bodies have decomposed, we fertilize the soil and something new grows in its place, sprouting new life; nothing ever really dies, and death doesn’t really exist, because life continues to go on after death, maybe not in the same form as before was but rather lives on in a different form, our bodies are re-purposed and give new meaning to life. So while coming back as a ghost may be debatable, his death will bring on new life and will live on through the grass that sprouts in the soil above his coffin-enclosed decomposed body.