Long ago, in a world much different than the one in which we live today, the word “alone” came from two words: ALL ONE. We slipped away, from the world we knew… for a few hours, a day, an evening, a week… to connect again to the ALL… to the center of our very own being.
Going into solitude was a necessary departure from day-to-day responsibilities, where we inquired into the presence of our own soul’s wisdom, and the wisdom that pulses as wind and river and rhythms of the natural world.
Going into the wilderness of one’s soul — where we listen deeply and feel fatigue and weariness drop gently away, this is where we remember. It’s not a “thinking thing”. It’s not something to be practiced or mastered or understood. It is simply something to surrender one’s self into.
We all have different cycles for needing to turn inward. My own cycle is to take the full moon each month and turn inward, and to take a week or two each year to “drop in”. One teacher I have slips away to India for rejuvenation for upwards of a month each year, while one of my closest friends’ has a cycle of slipping consciously away every two years or so into a new culture and way of moving through the world. (I know, I know… you are thinking… who goes away like that? I’ll tell you who: both are moms – both are single, and neither are independently wealthy — just sayin’).
I know you know: that turning inside helps you see yourself more clearly, and when you are graced with crystal clear vision, decision-making comes easier, because you turn your eyes to what is most important. Healing becomes so much more available, and illness comes with less fortitude and fang, and you weather challenge, loss, and the unknown with a broader and more expanded base of being.
I didn’t realize these things when I was 20. Or 40 even. The potency of being “alone” came to me in force when I was 45. And now, I won’t deny myself this ALL ONE time. I turn to it. I insist upon it. I marinade in it. I know its power and I honor the way it lays an impression of Truth over my life so when I return to my home and my life and own struggles, I see all of it through the eyes of something much bigger than myself, and I rest into THAT.
It wasn’t easy at first. It took two or three “slippings away” before I really felt the power of doing so. Before I knew in my blood and bones that all of me and all I touch benefits when I do so.
You can do the same, you know.
You have permission. You have the right to turn your heart and mind and eyes and hands to the silence and solitude of your own knowing. And, no, you won’t likely get a standing ovation from those who have to make their own dinner or find their own ride home from practice. But that’s not a bad thing — the ones to whom you are most close will eventually see the preventative and palliative purpose of your listening, and how this also raises them up and illuminates their own lives.
In time, dear One. It takes time.
You, too, can do this. And at some point, you must. That is, if you choose to live fully. That is if you choose to summon the wisdom and multi-dimensionality of your own soul.
If you don’t, all is well too. It just won’t be the same. That’s all. Life has less dimensionality. Your foundation won’t be as steady or broad. Struggles will take you down more easily. Anxiety and depression, disease and injury will wait a little closer to the entrance of your being.
You know what to do. I’m not here to say, “do this, or do that.” I’m just here to say, “Please, do listen.”
Look up from time to time and check in. Ask yourself if the choice you are making today is leading you in the direction of the dream?” And if it’s not… then consider turning inward. Consider taking a bold and brazen step in the direction of fortifying your own soul.
And then, once you take that step (ooohweeee! I just got goosebumps!)
THEN… you just watch what happens.