Solitude probably happens to be one of the most favourite, enjoyable moments for many a thinking, introspecting souls, especially poets, writers and musicians. It is the time one spends exclusively, all by oneself and one’s muse. Since I believe that everyone is a poet and/or singer at heart, it goes well with each one of us.
Seemingly synonymous, solitude is often confused with loneliness. That is why it is crucial to clearly identify and distinguish between the two. Then alone would one be able to avail the privileges of the former, and escape the handicaps, curses of the latter.
Solitude refers to aloneness, i.e., absence of anybody else around. But even then, you are not entirely without company. Yes, you are in your own company at that moment. Being exclusively in your own company, you are actually able to connect with your own self, especially you soul, and interact with it in peace, undisturbed. You experience a rare harmony rather than being at war with yourself or others. That is the ideal time to analyse, assess, rationalize and put the things in their proper perspective. If you spend your time prudently, you ultimately turn out your best friend, guide and philosopher, as well as soulmate.
Loneliness, on the other hand, is doubtlessly a scary word. It is a gloomy state when one is not only alone in physical sense, but also at the emotional level. For one reason or the other, one keeps pushing away people – close ones, relatives, friends and everyone else for whatever they matter. Loneliness acts to segregate people and leaves them in an abyss of perceptions and apprehensions of their own creation. It leaves them extremely restive, fatigued, hyper, reactive and an emotional wreck. Starved of emotional fulfillment and contentment, they get into a highly vulnerable mindset. That is why I called it scary, because that may lead to other more debilitating conditions like depression, psychosis, and so on. Therefore one has to be very cautious, watchful against loneliness.
In contrast, solitude comes out as more satisfying and fulfilling. It offers the best occasion for getting in harmony with one’s own being, one’s soul, the cosmos and of course, the creator. It sparks the creative juices within one’s mind, and releases a cascade of creative forms, especially poetry and music. Poets and musicians have been the greatest beneficiaries of solitude.
So why not let solitude, with its immense potential, fetch all contentment, peace and serenity in your life. Those who practice this mantra experience to their contentment that, ‘Solitude is bliss.’ The same sentiment echoes in Tame Impala’s soulful words –
Space around me where my soul can breathe,
I’ve got body, but my mind can leave.
Nothing else matters, I don’t care what I miss,
Company’s okay, solitude is bliss.’