Let’s make it crystal that there is a huge difference between voluntary solitude and loneliness. Solitude is the state of being together with oneself; by yourself. Where as loneliness is the state of being away in a sense of stricken connection with others. One is a symptom and or start of a depressive time and another a positive enlightening process.
I have always been an advocate for solitude, though I caught myself drifting towards the loneliness side of it. We all are in connection all the time, social media connects, internet is a worldwide connection of ever roaming thoughts and ideas. But I feel in this era of apparent useful connection of people to this ginormous degree, we have lost ourselves. People feel ever so distant from their family and friends, those fishing trips and hikes with buddies have turned into a mountain photoshoot. And as it is a topic that could be related to a huge degree with loneliness, we have forgot the idea of solitude.
Solitude isn’t just the state of being alone, its actually quite scary; you’ll be alone with your own thoughts. And believe me when I tell you that you can be scary to yourself. When people try to enter solitude. They forget the reason for it. It isn’t to gain magical powers of that in an instant you’ll be the “best you could be” kind of thing. Its long, its tiring, its scary. When that metal object in your pocket is away from you and you are in an unknown place with unfamiliar faces perhaps staring at you, that’s when you’ll truly know yourself. Now here’s the thing I find utterly ludicrous; people think that solitude and finding themselves; their inner selves is how they will know themselves. I know this sounds repetitive, but look at this; their presupposition is that their real self is good. Are you sure that your month long decluttering will manifest an angel to you? No! You never know. The proper idea of solitude is to not accept who you are, but to know who you are and make it better. I say “it” because it will feel different, you might cry realising how cruel you’ve been to yourself or to others, how you could’ve changed your life five years ago, all the suppressed guilt, regret, sadness, everything will be open to be attacked by your now-self to make it go away because it just might be that dreadful. Its only when you’ve cleared yourself of the fog and the translucency of what you are that you might connect with the people that are important to you, the best. Its only when you have left being an imposter and are real that the real ones around you will come in your life, things will declutter for you…
All this might seem like a statement for not being in a state of solitude, but it isn’t. But why would anyone want to be in such a state? Why this gnarly being would you look at? Well its a simple answer… you wanna be the human you desire to be? That’s what you gotta do, you’ll never that human unless you change your inner-self, its on you my friend, its your choice. Go and slay the dragon.
“I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude.” – Henry David Thoreau