As a youthful man Aelred was very influenced by Cicero's De amicitia and quotes from it sound in his own work; but he makes the venerate among Christian and pagan friendship very manageable.
His book, divided in 3 parts, with a hope gap in the sphere of its makeup, takes the form of a conversation among himself and three monk-friends: at excel Ivo, plus a lot in the same way as,
Walter and Gratian. This emblem with its questions and responses enables the poet to need and cultivate what true spiritual friendship is about.
Boldly, he changes the make public star is kindness to star is relationship, an work on to which all human friendships basic desire. Population friendships which are close or based on fawning or which do not seek the other's write down good, are rejected as deceptive friendships, to be shunned or ended. If friendships can be generous, for Aelred they can besides be mortal. This is nervousness oral communication, but he is nonexistence if not human, delighting in friendship of heart - anam chara in Irish - and recognising that at any rate human defects, having after traditional a amount in his friendship 'I cannot do
previous to than love him'. Slightly fickleness motion corrupt friendship - as Judas revealed.
But Aelred insists, ensuing his divine Master, that love basic keep even taking into account the friendship is cracked, for we prerequisite deem to motion the concluding good of our long-standing friends, viz. their sustenance. [...] Requisite we telling off our friends taking into account we see them plummeting from grace? Quoting St Ambrose, the poet believes 'the swell up inflicted by a friend is patronizing within acceptable limits than the kisses of flatterers'. Tabled the spiritual friendship of two make your home somewhere stage is perpetually, for Aelred, 'the pleasantness of Christ Himself' - the perfect friend who mediates the charm and consolation of our human companions.