“Without great solitude, no serious work is possible.”
We live in a world where we experience a lot of sound. Whilst viewing a mountain of social media information, watching the TV, and playing with all of our gadgets, it is very important, in fact it is imperative that we step away from all of these things from time to time. To simply stop and take time to step into a world of calm and quiet for a few moments. Have you noticed that your soul sometimes experiences a pull for stillness, to just sit in silence and ‘be’ in solitude?
Our life is meant to be lived in balance like yin and yang, and one such balance is between sound and silence. We need not become a hermit and go and sit on a mountain top. At the same time we do not need to go to the other extreme and lose ourselves in an ocean of trivialities, conversations and multi-media posts. The important point here is who is controlling who? Is the media forcing us to sit in front of the TV channels, for us to be glued to our phones and devices, or is it our need for such trivia?
Mountaineers, astronauts and hikers find peace and solace in stepping away from the world, even if it is only for a few hours, days or months. However, we need not trek to the Himalayas to find such inner peace. We need not move an inch, silence and solitude are simply a thought away. But we have to make preparations within our self to fully appreciate solitude. Just as climbers and spacemen spend years in preparation for that ultimate climb or journey, in the same way, we need to prepare for that ultimate lift; that surreal wonderment; that elixir of experiences. Indeed, many of those people of adventurous spirit have said that their outward journeys were deeply spiritual, that solitude actually brought them closer to their inner self and to God.
“In the silence, we listen to ourselves.
Then we ask questions of ourselves.
We describe ourselves,
and in the quietude, we may even hear the voice of God.”
Solitude means seclusion; to isolate one-self from people. This can be an imposed isolation or a chosen one. Either way the person is alone. However, in solitude there is a difference between being lonely and alone. Solitude is considered as a strength whereas being lonely implies that we have little choice. With the right attitude solitude can be quite an enlightening and enriching experience for the soul. We discover things about ourselves we would not otherwise come to understand when we are busy with the hustle and bustle of life.
One might be in prison or in a monastery, but if we have an open mind and the right attitude, then when in solitude the results can be similar or the same – enlightenment. One need not be afraid of solitude. Because in solitude we can find ourself. We need to learn to love silence and solitude. It is not a dark place, it is a bright place. Because where the soul is, there is only light and lightness, no darkness.
“When my mind is silent, I am able to feel God’s Love.”
When we place ourselves in solitude we need to be disciplined. We need to be committed to not being disturbed or attracted by other things. This is the command of the discipline to the mind, so that the mind does not wander elsewhere. The act of sitting in solitude itself is also a discipline.
Many poets, artists, and musicians have created masterpieces from a place of solitude. Silence is very much a part of creativity, and in art we can see this emerging inspiration and beauty… All true artists take time out to re-connect with the essence of their being, to let their spirit flow out and through the creative process. Whether that be through song, dance, music, painting and all the other many artful expressions of the spirit.
“God, the Supreme artist, uses our life for the creation of art. We are the instruments through which the force of life expresses itself.”
We have to take time to appreciate the gift of the quiet moments in life. We can all learn to make our life into a masterpiece with the gift of solitude.
It’s Time… to embrace solitude… it really is the creative place of power for the soul.
© ‘It’s Time…’ by Aruna Ladva, BK Publications London, UK