solitary Confinement?

January 28, 2010

Solitude enjoyment has become an illusive, fleeting object.

While we all need some amount of human companionship, everyone obviously craves different amounts of it. Admittedly, we all have to be alone each day. For some, it may only be when they’re in the bathroom. Still, others may spend the majority of their days alone.

Yet, it’s becoming easier to avoid solitary-ness. With cell phone advancements moving at phenomental speed, another human is only a touch of a button away. And of course that does not just mean voice-to-voice communication. Text messages enable ones to enjoy a continual conversation spreading on and off over days or maybe weeks. And Facebook and Twitter create lines of infinite communication. One post can reach hundreds of people. And in two minutes, you may have instituted 50 conversations. No one ever has to be alone again!

But, why is that such a desirable thing?

Is it because that’s how most of our great-great grandparents lived? Living on a farm with no one but family to be found for 100 miles–causing their offspring to swear off that lifestyle.

Do we think that any semblance of a similarity to past generations means we have not yet reached our potential as humans?

Maybe a little old-school living is what the doctor would order if we bought out the time to visit him. (Well, maybe a chiropractor or naturalist. Medical doctors would never prescribe anything not involving a bottle of sorts.)

In reality, I feel nothing but complete respect and admiration for those who enjoy being alone. Giving oneself solitary time illustrates a strong sense of self-acceptance and confidence. If we don’t know who we are as individuals, how can we offer ourselves to anyone else?

It’s not hard to locate those ones who detest spending time with themselves. They’re the ones who ironically can’t stop talking about themselves. Lack conversation etiquette. Start every sentence with I or my. The ones who rattle off movie and television lines constantly. And the ones who reference “hanging out with friends” on their resumes and Facebook profiles as their hobby.

I just recently joined the iPhone train. I’m not exactly proud of it. It always seems that the things I start out tirading against, like Starbucks and iPhones, are the very things the universe decides to turn on me and force me to fall to my feet in adoration.

But it’s the truth. I do, in fact, love the iPhone. But it’s also helped me to see even clearer the full capabilities people have to stay in touch with others all the time.

That’s a train I just can’t get on.

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