There is no species of training I ever underwent to which I owe more than to the habit of regular periods of inner solitude. Solitary we must be in life’s great hours of moral decision; solitary in pain and sorrow; solitary in old age and going forth to death. Fortunate the person who has learned what to do in solitude and brought himself to see what companionship he may discover in it – what fortitude, what content.
By a great blessing I had an aptitude for these hours of quiet reflection and grew to love them… To be alone and still and thoughtful bestowed upon me the richest joy I knew and for this priceless cultivation I shall be thankful always. — Father William Sullivan, from The Wonders of Solitude, edited by Dale Salwak
When I wrote the below piece I didn’t use the word solitude as William Sullivan above does. It’s the perfect word for what I was trying to express. Perhaps at some point I’ll rewrite the piece. Solitude does not infer loniliness and there are times that we absolutely need healthy alone time. Yes, we need solitude.