Most people do not like to be alone. But why? Solitude comes from the Latin, “solus,” meaning alone, connoting seclusion and isolation. Loneliness has an undesirable connotation of being friendless, rejected, forsaken and forlorn.
Some people embrace solitude, others find it intolerable. Examining its relation to silence and recollection reveal it can be a cherished gift during the pandemic.
Silence means being still, quiet or at rest, implying composure and poise. There is the saying that only a person who is silent can speak meaningfully. Silence generates interior insight and understanding, prompting us to plumb the depths of our soul, to listen to it attentively to get through life as best as possible.
Life normally revolves around friendliness, helpfulness, being present to one another and living in community. But what do we bring to these conditions? Do we really give ourself to them completely? Or do we concentrate more on self-satisfactions to the neglect of them? How often do we take time out to truly listen to ourself to learn the answer?
The temptation during COVID-19 is to embrace distractions — anything to fill space and time — and to ignore the power of recollection that unifies our spirit and uses the solidifying strength of contemplation.
Author and aviator Anne Morrow Lindbergh once wrote, “We seem so frightened of being alone that we never let it happen. … We choke the space with continuous music, chatter and companionship to which we do not even listen. It is simply there to fill the vacuum. When the noise stops, there is no inner music to take its place.”
Solitude that is caused by COVID-19 is an opportunity for achieving the inner music of which Anne Morrow Lindberg spoke. It is not an enemy but a friend helping us through a difficult moment.
Join the CatholicPhilly.com family
CatholicPhilly.com works to strengthen the connections between people, families and communities every day by delivering the news people need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live.
By your donation in any amount, you and hundreds of other people become part of our mission to inform, form in the Catholic faith and inspire the thousands of readers who visit every month.
Here is how you can help:
- A $100 gift allows us to present award-winning photos of Catholic life in our neighborhoods.
- A $50 gift enables us to cover a news event in a local parish, school or Catholic institution.
- A $20 gift lets us obtain solid faith formation resources that can deepen your spirituality and knowledge of the faith.
- A small, automated monthly donation means you can support us continually and easily.
Won't you consider making a gift today?
Please join in the church's vital mission of communications by offering a gift in whatever amount that you can ― a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more, or a monthly donation. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community and sustain CatholicPhilly.com as your trusted news source. Thank you in advance!
Make your donation by credit card here:
Or make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103