"People affect each other in subtle and complex ways, and it is important to develop the ability to discern the nature of that influence. According to Buddhism, 'bad' friends are those who encourage our weaknesses. A truly good friend is someone with the compassion and courage to tell us even those things we would prefer not to hear, which we must confront if we are to develop and grow in our lives."
Shakyamuni replied, "Ananda, this way of thinking is not correct. Having good friends and advancing together with them is not half the Buddhist way but all the Buddhist way."