According to a study done by experts at Harvard University, more than 5.34 million people are experiencing loneliness RIGHT NOW. (Now some will read that and take it what it is for and run off and repeat it without question. Others, will question the statement and think well how can they be so sure about that) Congrats to the second group of people who have learned not to be so gullible when it comes to reading news or ‘statistics’ lol because I totally just made that number and study up. I don’t have to be an expert NOR do I have to attend “Harvard University” to not only infer but intuitively know that loneliness is one mode of suffering that many people experience. So many things can be said about loneliness and it can easily branch off into other subtopics, but for today I would like to share my perception on loneliness and aloneness.
Loneliness and aloneness are known as synonyms, and if you look up the definitions they will most likely state the same thing. For this moment though I’d like you all to try and think of them as opposites to each other. Or even a better word to describe them, Aloneness is Complementary to loneliness. Loneliness. Most of us can first handedly describe and share what it is like to be lonely. For loneliness is experienced by tons of people and this direct experience itself makes us truthfully KNOW what loneliness is without thinking about it intellectually and using our mind-instrument to describe it. I refer to loneliness here as its more known meaning which is a temporary mode of suffering and pain, a negative emotion, and what most people consider an undesirable experience. Loneliness can be perceived in many different ways and can vary in severity depending on the consciousness of the person experiencing it; there is no one size fits all. In times like now especially more than usual, people are experiencing loneliness, even though detrimental external events are bound to cause loneliness to people we still come to the fact that loneliness has been around far before the present and recent past happenings. Why is something that is not only widely known by the mind but experienced directly by millions and millions of people hardly ever spoken about? Why do people in group conversations like to make boring superficial talk about their accolades and ‘plans’ at restaurant dinner tables? Why is our society based off how much we have rather than how much we give? One can even assume and question the fact that most “Friends” (Convos between you and one other) do not touch upon important topics such as loneliness when they talk to each other. Loneliness can invoke feelings of vulnerability, (which many people have a false perception of this feeling) can make one feel insecure, (everyone/the majority possess to some degree or less a level of insecurity) and can have one feeling like he/she is in an unknown space and very uncomfortable empty abys. Loneliness can have one thinking such detrimental thoughts such as “why am I such a ‘loser’’, “there is something ‘wrong’ with me”, “I am not ‘normal’ why can’t I be like the others.” Feelings and though-forms such as those said unconsciously smother the person who consciously perceive and notice this feeling of loneliness. For the people who do not feel or think in this type of way are for the most part not facing their feelings and thoughts for what they are and instead find external stimuli to avert their concentration and attention to. This is a whole ‘nother topic in itself and is very harmful to the well-being of a person. Said persons and the large-sum of people who react in this way will most likely keep responding in this unconscious/unhealthy way their whole lives. Now for the others that not only feel this loneliness but courageously (at the moment one has no idea they are reacting in a more courageous way) draw their concentration to it, problems inevitably start to rise due to the unconscious/ignorant idea-forms one has of this reality we call the universe and of themselves. This world is built and ran off of falsehood, so for one to judge and conform yourself to society and your immediate peers is not necessarily ‘wrong’ or ‘bad’, but perhaps not aligned with your potential true-self.
Loneliness can be felt by one who is either in their room by themselves or in a crowded market area. Both scenarios have the same core feeling of being separated from others and themselves. I have felt different planes of loneliness throughout my life. Some are easier to describe and put into words while other levels of loneliness are too draining to even put into an idea or written statement for one to comprehend what it must be like. (Many will understand what I mean by this if the experience is known) I use to have this overwhelmingly feeling of loneliness all while pretending everything was okay. I would feel so separated internally that I naturally started to exist externally in the same way. From moments of locking myself up in my bedroom and not leaving the house all summer to locking myself in the restroom stall in school during lunch break. From other moments of walking down the halls with nowhere else to go and no one else to see but my next scheduled class and teacher, to walking with my family and still feeling this emotion of separateness. I always over-thought that… did anyone else? I always over-thought and questioned my showing up early or being the first to enter class in high school. I would think to myself useless things such as ‘you don’t want to be seen always going into class early and or being the first one, people will think you are lame’. I observed that, and some people can relate to this and can take notice that mostly all the kids in between passing time for class are mingling with other friends and don’t usually go straight to class. For the majority of high school, I never had friends to speak to on my way to class or spend extra time to go and see before the bell rang. Despite that, I would make it seem like I did and would sometimes just walk around aimlessly to kill time so I could be like the others. I would think too deeply about my circumstance, and obviously this over-thinking was in no way benefiting me. I have briefly described here some instances and happenings in my life relating to loneliness strictly to give the reader who may be experiencing or has experienced loneliness something to relate to. Perhaps the truth is that many people experience loneliness, it’s just very few express this to others who aren’t ‘close’ to them. And if I were asked why is that so I would have to reply with I do not know… for to even began thinking about or writing about that statement is a whole ‘nother article in itself. There are many causes, experiences, events and catalyst that can be said about why people do not openly express true feelings, thoughts, and desires.
Now, as I said earlier… I believe loneliness is only a temporary mode of existence. (It is in a way an illusion, I use the word illusion here in meaning of not belonging to the supreme reality and truth of our nature, but with that being said this illusion is still very real) And I can now say as well, loneliness is a great teacher. I understand it is difficult for one who is directly experiencing this feeling to even consider that but in due time one may come to this realization if they consciously choose to, in due time. The same way one got themselves in this state of loneliness whether that be unconsciously or consciously, one must use their will to get themselves out. Once again, this free-will can be strong or weak, conscious or unconscious, concentrated or ignorant. There are innumerable ways to get out this mode we call loneliness. Some ways may be more or less beneficial to the being while other ways may temporarily solve the issue but in the long-term still existing in a dark corner of one’s being. If one is to consciously solve their feeling of isolation and separateness than one must begin by willfully thinking and concentrating on the reality of things and our existence. Things such as in the ‘beginning’ we came into this world alone and in the ‘end’ we have no other choice but to ‘leave’ alone. Observe nature, even nature seems to us to be connected more than we are. The trees are still… rooted, grounded, and connected to the earth while we walk along this world not confined to anyone or anything, seemingly and illusively separate from our nature. But this is not so, our sense-vision is deceiving to us and if we fail to understand the higher reality of our self and nature we will only continue to endure suffering and pain in moments where one can choose not to. Everything and everyone seems separate from us but in reality, we are all interconnected. The animal gives and receives to the plant while the plant receives and gives to the animal. There is a natural give and receive relationship in this existence. What seems like loneliness is a misconceived and false perception of the truth-existence of our aloneness. Now I speak of aloneness here in a way of truth, positivity, delight, and calmness. If one wants to solve their problem of loneliness at its roots than one must go into this aloneness. This seems contradicting but it is far from that, by going into our aloneness and realizing the inner self and doing the inner work that must be done one consequently comes out of this draining mode of loneliness. Now of course this is not the only way to realize and get oneself out of this feeling. Reason and thought can also be used to heal oneself. In this way, the mind is more involved and relied upon. One uses reason to develop idea-forms to present to themselves and in effect change their perception of their current reality. While this can solve the problem of loneliness temporarily it still only scratches the surface. For the mind is an instrument used for our will. The mind is incapable of understanding the infinite and unlimited existence in everything and everyone. The mind is for memory and not where true-knowledge exists. I consciously choose to realize the other perception of loneliness which I refer to here as aloneness. Do not get me wrong though, it took me years and constant battles with my mind ego to realize a more aligned perception of my aloneness. Before I tried using my mind, ego, and other external stimuli to solve my issue. But I don’t know.. during those moments I just felt like something was still missing. There was still something inside of me that was lingering behind. When I started to choose a different perception of loneliness and not only think of it but feel it in a more beneficial way, I noticed other parts of my being were being effected as well. Aloneness is a beautiful thing really; in time of despair aloneness is mistaken for a falsehood of negativity. In reality aloneness is necessary for one who consciously chooses to fix their issues at their roots. Take for example, the couple who always spends time together. They hardly ever are seen apart and in need of always having each other by their sides. While this can temporarily not be an issue, in the long-term it begins to have an effect. Without one even noticing or realizing it they become tired and bored of what seems to be the same presence of their significant other. They start to think they ‘know’ each other, they start to take each other for granted, they don’t pick up on the lovely little things that are changing without and within each other. They have unconsciously sacrificed aloneness and the teachings it comes with to avoid feelings of loneliness in their relationship. Whether one consciously chooses to be alone or one unconsciously chooses to be lonely, what can be said about both is that they are extremely valuable teachers and many lessons can be learned through these experiences.
Loneliness and aloneness are one of the greatest teachers of life. Mostly everyone, if not everyone, will go through this experience. We have a choice to consciously or unconsciously take this lesson and attain as much knowledge out of it as we can. No matter what the determinate or cause of this feeling is, what matters is that the feeling is there and equal to all. Loneliness does not pick and choose based off of external characteristics like race, gender, age, or marital status. Loneliness is a part of this world and in order for us to accommodate to it we must establish in our true-being an equilibrium within. We must understand that loneliness and aloneness are two different poles on the same pendulum. The pendulum may go from one extreme to the other throughout our lives, even at spontaneous moments this pendulum will naturally be balanced and in the middle of the two. But with a strong, persevering, and conscious will we can choose to ultimately have our balance with this pendulum and in effect feel and experience less pain and suffering. The choice is ours, we must plant the seed now if we wish to reap the fruit later.