In the darkness of solitude
I love the dark hours of my being.
My mind deepens into them.
There I can find, as in old letters,
the days of my life, already lived,
and held like a legend, and understood.
- Ranier Maria Rilke
Loneliness is not the absence of company, it is the melancholy over that absence. With all the power of the internet, information in a microsecond, it also has created the predilection for loneliness. Together with an endless run of TV shows, the internet has taken our ability to be still, to just be. Boredom knocks on our door after a few minutes of silence; the need to text or message someone overtakes you. Boredom and loneliness are to be expected to some degree, but technology has intensified them. Gone are the days when a phone call perhaps once a day to a friend sufficed. Gone are the days of quickly getting together with your friends - simply because everyone was off doing something, living life and not being reachable 24/7. But yet, in that loneliness & solitude, consciousness is there. Awareness is here. Our essence, our love, it is always there.
And in losing solitude, what have we lost? Firstly the capacity for introspection. That exploration of the self, that the idealists, modernists and yes, Tantric scholars, place at the centre of spirituality. The reason of being; connecting to our own true nature, our essence. It is when we are alone that we can immerse into our innermost self and in the midst of our essence, we know ourselves to be one with all being. Henry Thoreau called it '' in the Walden Pond of their own natures, and baited their hooks with darkness.'' How beautiful is that?
The internet has remapped our attention spans, just skimming over has replaced reading and the solitary mind has taken a long vacation. All our decisions become influenced by social context rather than being able to fish into that darkness and seeing what is hidden there.
As spiritual teacher Adyashanti puts it ''In that solitude all ideas and images are left behind, and we can intuitively orient ourselves toward the unborn and uncreated ground of being. In that ground we find our true being; and in the same manner in which our being in uncreated, it is also undying. Therefore, all that we will ever be or can be is found in our solitude (within ourselves) and is timelessly present in its fullness and completeness, now and eternally.
In our solitude, when we let go of every idea and story, we discover we are not alone, for we find that our innermost self is the spirit, our essence, divinity. And the sweetness of that is seeing the divinity of all things, not matter how great or small. In solitude, we immerse into silence and that silence is behind all creation. It has its own power, a blank canvas and the very core of your being. When we arrive in our own silence, we will know true freedom and real power.
Adyashanti talks about us having eyes to see the divinity of all beings is to bring light into this world. To stand alone in true solitude is to stand in recognition of the absolute completeness and unity of all manner of existence. And from that common ground, where nothing and no one is foreign to you, your love extends across the magnitude of time and embraces the greatest and smallest of things.
This is the gift of solitude, of silence and stillness. As we relax into awareness, into listening to our own song, everything else begins to fade, and our hearts begin to open to a Love that guides us beyond all fear and into the solitude of our being.
I will meet you there.