Thursday, 2 January 2020


Solitude and Community
  As an intuitive introvert, I rarely feel lonely when I’m alone. When I was in my early twenties, I took a job in a lookout tower, firewatching in the forest. I was alone on a mountain peak for four months, and I never felt lonely. Reality didn’t catch me there. I was not in danger of my Queen leaving me. But the moment I returned to civilization, loneliness descended on me like a landslide. How could I be so happy on the mountaintop and then rubbed so raw when I came back down? I didn’t want to live my whole life on a mountaintop—I’m not a hermit. I had to go back and forth, as the King did, until the visionary life could finally stand the impact of the water of reality. The Queen in me had to learn to withstand the water. It’s a process. I believe that everyone who has touched the realm of spirit has had to go through this antechamber.
If you’re honest and perceptive, you can tell the difference between regressive loneliness, the first kind, and the ineffable second and third types of loneliness, where you sense and then see what you cannot yet have. The second and third types of loneliness are nearly indistinguishable. If you can say exactly what you are lonely for, it will reveal a lot. Do you want to go back where you came from, to the good old days? Or have you seen a vision you can’t live without? They’re as different as backward and forward.
Dr. Jung said that every person who came into his consulting room was either twentyone or forty-five, no matter their chronological age. The twenty-one-year-old is looking backward and must conquer it. The forty-five-year-old is being touched by something he cannot yet endure. These are the only two subjects of therapy.
The Garden of Eden and The Heavenly Jerusalem are The Same Place, depending on whether you are looking backward or forward. 
A person touched by Loneliness is a holy person. 
He is caught in the development of Individuation. 
Whether it’s a development or a regression depends on what he does with it. 
Loneliness can destroy you, or it can fire you up for a Dante-like journey through Hell and Purgatory to find paradise. St. John of the Cross called this The Dark Night of the Soul.
The worst suffering I’ve ever experienced has been loneliness, the kind that feels as though it has no cure, that nothing can touch it. 
One day, at the midpoint in my life—a little like Dante—I got so exhausted from it that I went into my bedroom, lay face down on my bed, and said, “I’m not going to move until this is resolved.” 
I stayed a long time, and the loneliness did ease a little. 
Dante fell out of Hell, shimmied down the hairy leg of The Devil, went through The Centre of The World, and started up The Other Side, which was Purgatory. 
I felt better, but as soon as I got up and began to do anything, my loneliness returned. 
I made many round trips until gradually an indescribable quality began to suffuse my life, and loneliness loosened its grip. 
Nothing outside changed. The change was entirely inside.
Thomas Merton wrote a beautiful treatise on Solitude. 
He said that certain individuals are obliged to bear The Solitude of God. 
Solitude is Loneliness evolved to The Next Level of Reality.
He who is obliged to bear The Solitude of God should not be asked to do anything else; it’s such a difficult task. 
For monastics, Solitude was one of the early descriptions of God. 
If you can transform your Loneliness into Solitude, you’re one step away from the most precious of all experiences. 
This is the cure for Loneliness.
Excerpt from: "Inner Gold: Understanding Psychological Projection" by Arnie Kotler.

No comments:

Post a Comment