Saturday, July 4, 2009

“Solitude is Fortitude” – Prof.M.S.Rao

“We live in a very tense society. We are pulled apart... and we all need to learn how to pull ourselves together.... I think that at least part of the answer lies in solitude.” - Helen Hayes

Life is becoming more complex with the rapid changing technology. Stress levels among the people are rising at alarming rates with the rising aspirations and expectations of the people. Companies demand a lot from their employees to beat the stiff competition which is possible only by being innovative and creative in delivery of goods and services. In this process, employees undergo fatigue at the workplace resulting into higher stress levels. Employees also want to prove and survive themselves by going extra mile. It is in this context, solitude is the need of the hour to break stress, anxiety monotony and boredom.

What is Solitude?

“Inside myself is a place where I live all alone, and that's where I renew my springs that never dry up.” - Pearl Buck

People often confuse between solitude with loneliness. In fact, it is not so. Solitude is a state of being alone for a short-term where in there will not be any physical contact with others. It is like taking a break once in a week by totally avoiding the routine work. It is also like taking a short leave for vacation. As people go for fasting without taking food for giving rest to the internal system, people also go for solitude for giving rest to mind for sometime.

Loneliness Vs Solitude:

“We enter the world alone, we leave it alone.” - James Anthony Froude

Often loneliness and solitude are interchangeably used by people. However, there is a thin line separating these both. Loneliness is a negative state whereas solitude is a positive state. Solitude helps in engaging oneself internally with a healthy thought process as a companion. Loneliness reflects missing something in life. It represents isolation. Loneliness depletes mind and body while solitude restores. Loneliness is bitterness while solitude is sweetness. To put it succinctly, solitude is chosen while loneliness is imposed.

Merits of Solitude:

“True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” - William Penn

• It is the best way to get to know about yourself.
• It removes the clutter and purifies your mind thus enhancing your concentration.
• It helps in beating stress levels.
• It helps you dig deep within and brings out the best.
• It helps in better self-awareness, self-control and self-discipline.
• It helps in recouping the lost energies. Besides, it builds fresh energies, enhances creativity and innovation.
• It helps in exploring yourself analytically thus improving your personality for all-round success.
• It replenishes your energies and helps you move further and forward with confidence and optimism.

Solitude is Fortitude:

“No man should go through life without once experiencing healthy, even bored solitude in the wilderness, finding himself depending solely on himself and thereby learning his true and hidden strength.” - Jack Kerouac

When you do routine things you get bored. Then, it is time to go for solitude for self-analysis and introspection. When you want to do things differently, it is time to go for solitude. People go to beaches and spend time in solitude in the sounds of sea waves as it provides solace and strengthens will-power.

History reveals that several great leaders preferred solitude whenever they were in distress. In the epic Mahabharat, at the fag end of Kurukshetra battle, Duryodana underwent inside the water to remain calm for sometime and also to take in fresh energies. It was a kind of solitude. Saints and sages go for solitude to search themselves internally. They go to a serene place and enjoy in a state of solitariness. Therefore, solitude is fortitude.


“Solitude shows us what should be; society shows us what we are.” - Robert Cecil

People should spend sometime in solitude everyday so as to stay healthy physically, mentally and spiritually. It should be treated as an investment and expense of time. Few companies provide sabbatical leave to their employees who work for some period. It helps them to unwind themselves and get back to work with recharged energies. To sum up, it is essential for individuals and institutions to go for solitude regularly keeping in view of the growing uncertainty and complexity due to rapid technology.

“The happiest of all lives is a busy solitude.” - Voltaire

The End

1 comment:

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