Praise is cheap.

An effortless gesture of vague interest, and they call it “praise”.  They call it “like”.  They whom you praise know not whether you are sincere or not about it; all they hear is the accolade, all they see is a smiling face.  You could detest and despise it in your heart, but paint a mask upon your face for fifteen seconds, and none will be the wiser.  They will thank you, perhaps give you some small amount of praise back, and you shall be on your way to “praise” something else.  You might have just been the pinnacle of their day, and they don’t even know you didn’t really mean it.

But I know.

I know when someone who says they care about me does not actually care.  Give me ten minutes, five minutes, and I will know.  They say they like me, or that they like what I do.  I then ask them, “Why?”  A false man will quickly reveal his true colors in attempting to answer such a simple question, for it is a simple question, provided they believe what they say.  To lie once and be believed is easy.  To lie ten times and be believed is less so.

Now I do not say that those who dole out praise as if they are grains of sand are liars, but this does not make their praise any more worthwhile.  They neither genuinely like what you do, nor do that hate it:  they are apathetic.  They may see a passing fancy and remark, “This has caught my eye for some few seconds,” and their heart will go no further than that.  A fair-weather friend, they are called sometimes.  Shallow.  Without root.  Easily swept away in a time of tribulation.  I ask of this, does a man wish for a legion of friends such as this?  A legion in name only, a religion where millions claim their faith in it but only dozens practice it?

I would not.

Give me one friend that I know, that knows me, that believes in me and that I can believe in, and I will take this friend over a million friends whom I do not know.  What are numbers when they mean nothing, do nothing?  In the eyes of the world, I have faded into obscurity, but in the eyes of the few who believe, I am a wealthy man, and this wealth has foundation; this wealth is true.


{Let me set the stage:  Since I created this webpage, I have not yet told any of my friends or acquaintances that it exists.  No one that I know knows of it; by all accounts nothing should be happening here but my words.  And yet, once or twice a day, I will get “likes” on my posts, or “followers”, from wanderers within WordPress.  While I appreciated them at first, I have noticed something:  hardly any two likes have ever been from the same person, nor has any follower liked more than the initial post which made them follow, nor has a single comment been received from any of them.}

{I wonder who these “likers” are, and where they are now…}


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