I got spammed by Clay Oglesbee today, an email of his e-newsletter which can’t be linked to because he quit blogging, just like he quit Northfield. (I’ll get over it eventually, but not yet.) The title of his newsletter was Emptiness…and Easter and it reminded me 1) why I love to walk by myself in the Carleton Arb; and 2) of some of my favorite solitude-related quotes.
As a spiritually-oriented atheist, I’m a big believer (heh) in grabbing a Shot of Solitude (SOS) regularly. (continued)
I can grab a little SOS anytime and anywhere, of course, but being in nature can help me because it increases the likelihood that I can quiet my chattering brain.
- If all’s basically well with my life, then I just try to ‘be’ and maybe ratchet up on the gratitude.
- If I happen to be struggling or suffering about something, I’m a little better able to put aside my solutions or desires and instead, put myself in an ‘asking’ frame of mind and then just wait and rely on solutions to present themselves. Inspiration always comes, reliably. I can count on it, just like gravity.
If you’re a believer, these are two of the ways God talks to you. But since I’m not a believer, I don’t miss out on these goodies that can still come my way when I regularly grab a little SOS.
Here are some of my favorite solitude-related quotes:
Nature is the clearest bringer of solitude. Even if you are in the company of others, the greatness of nature can overwhelm the insignificant chatter by which we measure most of our days. – Kent Nerburn
Being alone, in itself, is nothing. It can be a breeding ground of loneliness as easily as a breeding ground of solitude. Solitude is a condition of peace that stands in direct opposition to loneliness. Kent Nerburn
I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude. – Henry David Thoreau
Solitude is not something you must hope for in the future. Rather, it is a deepening of the present. – Thomas Merton
I lived in solitude in the country and noticed how the monotony of quiet life stimulates the creative mind. – Albert Einstein, physicist
The silence of creation speaks louder than the tongues of men or angels. – Thomas Merton
Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it. – Ferris Bueller