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Thursday, December 21, 2023

The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life.

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Richard Bach

American author Richard Bach is best known for his 1970 novella “Jonathan Livingston Seagull,” the story of a seagull who loves flight and yearns to find a greater purpose than just survival. But these words spring from a different work: his 1977 novel “Illusions,” in which two stunt pilots become friends. One of them carries a notebook full of pithy philosophical sayings he calls the “Messiah’s Handbook.” When the book comes into the protagonist’s hands, he finds this reflection on the meaning of family in its pages, which in turn encourages us to ponder how we define our own families. “Family” is a flexible term, and we can choose to prioritize people in our lives based on the mutual care and appreciation they offer rather than on whether or not we share the same DNA.

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