‘I find it wholesome to be alone the greater part of the time. To be in company, even with the best, is soon weariness and dissipating. I like being alone. I never found the companion was as companionable as solitude.’ – Henry David Thoreau
“…a time to keep silence and a time to speak.’ – Ecclesiates 3:7
It’s up to the individual to find the balance they need between socializing and solitude. Too much of either is to be overwhelmed by the energy of others or cutting yourself from healthy interactions.
Death is said to be ‘getting away from it all.’ But how can this be known as no one really knows what happens after the moment of death or if we do really get away from anything. At the end of your life just make sure you really never lived but lived with passion. Solitude is a presence not an absence, so it can be accessed at any time. You could be deep in the woods and not feel solitude yet do so in the middle of a large crowd. Being alone means different things to different people under varying circumstances.
Solitude is part of the journey to discover what is inside you. Some scary things will be found that needs to be brought out into the light of day but good stuff will be discovered also. It’s all part of the adventure of daily life. Solitude helps us to regain the balance we need to face reality as it is. If you take a look at the average work day morning for a typical family you will see a lot of hurrying being done. The radio goes on for the latest news and weather, various washroom activities, cooking what passes for food or eating sugar products and getting the kids off to school. Then it’s driving with a lot of traffic congestion to get to work. Thinking about all of this is enough to make a person go back to bed or work from home or live off grid.
Being alone can be frightening for a person to deal with. A suggestions is to ease into it gradually then build up to longer periods of time. During this transition it’s wise to find a quiet spot so noise pollution won’t be a factor. The world is getting to be a very tense place, the us versus them mentality is all too common. More often than not we wake up to construction noises not to the sounds of nature. People ‘on the go’ all day must be terrified by the emptiness inside them nor realizing what solitude actually is.
Solitude is a real privilege that improves the relationship you have with yourself. It gives you a chance to stand back and take a good look at what you are doing in a clear light. Therefore it mends the quality time you have with yourself. Being alone can free us from the opinions of others so we can center on our own calling. You don’t have or need to be in a place of worship to find this, you can do it anywhere.
Solitude to the mind is the same as healthy food and drink is to the body I don’t want to agitate things any more than what I have to as the world is in enough turmoil now. Just listening or reading the news is enough to prove my point here. Solitude helps us recognize what is good about our world.
I’ve attended several mediation groups and one Quaker meeting in my travels. What I appreciated the most was the silence in the group setting. I find what is missing in church services is the quiet time. All of them involve a steady stream of noise for 60 to 90 minutes. By the time the service ends I look forward to going outside so my ears can get a break from the noise.
Silence during a speech can allow the main points to sink into the minds of those who are actually listening. ‘He who speaks does not know, he who knows does not speak’ is a quote that could remind us to keep our foot out of mouth. Quality thoughts keep us rational instead of being insane. Think well and be of sound mind.
Ron Murdock has lived and worked in Western Canada all his life, and will continue to do so until his last day on Planet Earth. He has a good number of interests and hobbies which include dogs, freight trains, baseball and astronomy. Ron wants to know what the truth is, and nothing but the truth, and will do what research it takes to find it. The best compliment he can get is when a person says his writing, or what he says, gets them seeking.