An Awakening of Solitude

A text here, a status update there, a Tweet here, an instagram picture there: Social media, and the way we have been conditioned to use it, has drastically changed the way that we behave in ways that probably would not have seemed possible a few decades ago. We live in an instant-gratification society and in one that does not appreciate pauses or breaks in a daily routine of motion, even when we are motionless. Our society does not take kindly to people who are quiet, private and prefer solitude. Our culture prefers to boost those who seem to know everybody and it raises their level of popularity regardless of any actual intellectual, artistic or inherent ability other than being able to sourround oneself with people. What makes this even more sad is that these connections are not necessarily personal, they are often made through text or online profiles so it only serves to further William Deresiewicz’s point, as he states in his article “The end of Solitude”, that “Loneliness is not the absence of company, it is grief over that absence. The lost sheep is lonely; the shepherd is not lonely.” In essence, individuals are not afraid of being alone per se but rather the potential of that happening is what scares them. In the process of shielding ourselves from this fear we lose something that is vital to our mental and spiritual progress, the idea of being able to understand our very selves through introspection and prayer. This is only possible when we take a moment and spend that time to look within so that we can see our faults, our strengths and are able to be in tune with God and His plan for our lives. We get so lost in the commotion of everyday life that we shed an remnance of what we may become if we were to go against the grain and stand for something meaningful.

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