The Secret to Healing Loneliness
Loneliness is one of the great sufferings of our times. Despite our being constantly on-line, tuned in, read here the heart needs human contact and warmth. And, beyond that we all have a deep hunger to belong to community or family. Yet, before we can truly feel a part of their world, we must understand the difference between loneliness and being alone.
If we come together out of fear of being alone, this togetherness is not really satisfying, but often a way to hide from the disconnection, self judgment and sense of separation that fuels our lives. There are many ways to heal this, both psychologically and spiritually. For example some practices and roads to health insist on community – individuals are strongly advised to spend time together, help one another, be there for each other. Interaction is considered crucial.
For example, Jewish practice, you must belong. You are not allowed to isolate yourself. Over and over you are told that it is not good to be alone. In fact there is a painful assumption in many communities that there is something wrong with you if you are alone.
In Jewish practice, the place to find God is not away from life up on a mountaintop, or in personal seclusion, but at the kitchen table – among family, friends, food, discussion. The experience of God is never separate from life, and never