Solitude, quality solitude, is an assertion of self-worth.

“Loneliness is to solitude what a beat-up old Volkswagen is to a new Rolls-Royce: You can live through the ride, but it doesn’t do much for your peace of mind, which is what is at stake here. More than anything else, solitude is about achieving peace of mind, tranquility of spirit and clarity of thought. Loneliness is random; solitude is ritual. Loneliness is black coffee and late-night television; solitude is herb tea and soft music. Solitude, quality solitude, is an assertion of self-worth, because only in the stillness can we hear the truth of our own unique voices.” — Pearl Cleage

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Dana View All →

Author and founder of Storyknife.org.

4 Comments Leave a comment

  1. This is amazing. So many equate solitude with loneliness and don’t look beyond for benefits. It is sometimes more difficult for younger people to understand, especially since so much of life now is fast paced, hectic, crowded with people and/or noise, chaotic. For them to find quietude is to find an unfamiliar place. At 73 I welcome solitude even though I also relish family, friends, activities. I can regroup and regenerate when by myself .

  2. I look forward to solitude times. It is quiet. I can sing (badly) as I belt showtimes in the shower, accompanied only by the howling pleas of the dog. I can sob over the sad parts of books, or dream the day away crocheting lap warmers. It is the peaceful quiet that seems to draw me in. I need times of aloneness. I need them as much as I need times with those I love. Balance. Peace.

  3. Agreed, with both Cleage and Sarton. In the same vein, take a look at Alice Koller’s “The Stations of Solitude”, and her previous “An Unknown Woman”. She is a philosopher, who had to leave much of the world to seek solitude, on Nantucket, to find and rebuild herself.

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