A question worth a billion dollars
Loneliness is valued negatively in the West. People often steadfastly stand against it, are tied up in those chains to fill every single moment going to the gym, doing this or that, to have to get a proper job, to have to be married etc…they fight against space and time to just sit down, drink a coffee, sing under the shower, be creative, feel free to think, dig deeper, don’t deny, don’t escape, out of distractions. Have you ever fight loneliness? How?
Here in Asia, it is another story. Meditation hugs loneliness like pasta does with tomato sauce.
Since my teenager-hood years, I’ve been running after pure emotional independence and I’ve met many people doing the same for a variety of reasons: to protect themselves from the pain the interaction with other people can cause, to control everything, to be perfect like some sort of invincible Ironman. I thought that if I was able to be on my own, to be lonely, to be disconnected by everybody I would have been a symbol of independence, a conqueror of inner strength, like an old Greek hero! Well, let me tell you something more. It is impossible. It is no human.
Me and you all have to go through the acceptance of the dependence from others (not a paroxysmal one, not the sick one, no no no). You can fly high, dream, be lonely as much as you like, but you all need bloody connection! And I am not talking about Internet!
Rainer Rilke used to write: “I hold this to be the highest task of a bond between two people: that each should stand guard over the solitude of the other”. Humans need spiritual or emotional connection to survive. Independence is not contemplated. We aren’t hermits living in a cave.
Living abroad as a white woman in such a traditional Nepali village, I’ve been feeling disconnected and vulnerable among other people. Breathing and embracing this vulnerability has been hard. Accepting that I am that weak it will be my strength, looking for connection my personal fight. I am cornered. Now it is time to open the door and welcome my deeper weaknesses like I would do to an ugly and smelly wanderer.
I’m embracing loneliness like I would do with a naughty cheeky child and I am trying to read through the message behind my vulnerability. This is a once in a life chance to search for the code of this message.
Embracing this distress has walked many ways. Drawing, origami making, tentative to play harmonica, bansuri flute, studying Nepalese language. And you? How do you embrace your vulnerability? How do you find your connection with the world?
Meditate and breathe.