1. ‘It’s extremely liberating when you finally feel comfortable being alone.’ This is so true! Admittedly, as someone is slightly more introvert than extrovert, this comes reasonably naturally to me—though, like you, I should do it more often!—but I am convinced that even the most out-there extrovert needs alone time and to be comfortable with their own company. It isn’t surprising I don’t think that mystics through the ages, from pretty much all religions, have long championed silence and solitude and being vital to our well-being. Thanks for writing your post—it was a good nudge for me! 🙂

  2. Your observation that sharing can somehow “complete” solitary explorations resonates with me. I’ve found that the very act of shaping experiences into something shareable completes them. Sharing that product with others is, at least for me, but a bonus (even if it is a good one).

    I’ve been in love with nature ever since the fifth grade, but it wasn’t until I lived in New York City did I begin to better understand why I so appreciated it. The city taught me to cherish solitude, and I realize now that nature functions as a filter: It blocks out the noise of civilization, stripping us naked and leaving us alone.

    A hike through a forest is a shortcut to solitude, but it isn’t the only path to it. I’m comforted by the knowledge that we can create alone time in the midst of urban life, regardless of which coast we’re on. All you need in order to experience the beauty of being by yourself, it seems, is your self.

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