Solitude is the Self-Healing Medicine You’ve Avoided

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Sandia Mountains in New Mexico | photo by Diana Waldron

Solitude is a radical act of self-care.

If you aren’t used to solitude, at first it might seem daunting. You’re about to confront everything about yourself you never realized was happening beneath the surface. All your habits, your thought patterns, your fears, your desires, your anxieties, are all illuminated for you. It takes a lot of courage to face yourself. To enter the hidden chamber of your psyche and let every cloudy trauma that’s been stuffed within you rise up to the surface of your mind. It is the ultimate purging process.

In many ancient healing traditions, the wounded or sick patients would spend time removed from society in solitude, healing and recovering, regenerating their energy. Solitude was considered palliative care. In a mystical sense, this gives us the opportunity to commune with our soul, which is where the real illness is said to reside. The solitude gives a chance for the higher psychic forces to come in and for healing work to be done. Solitude creates a channel between you and the universe that must be protected and kept clear to facilitate healing and inner growth.

Solitude is the gateway to healing yourself.

You’re tuning into yourself in a deeper way than you ever have before. It can be a lonely time when you are in the self-healing phase. It’s deep, intense self-inquiry. You are plunging to the depths of your being, going beyond your normal everyday social ego. You naturally slip into deeper thoughts and deeper feelings. Higher vibration. Higher music. Higher love. And you begin to distance yourself from the lower. The lesser. The world you were once so caught up in but which also caused you misery. But you know you’re deep in that spiritual soul search. You’re removing yourself from the external world to dig a well deep inside you that will support you wherever you go.

You learn to become your own support system.

You learn to be your own axis connected to universal intelligence—an open channel for the electrical kundalini energy to flow through.

To facilitate your own self-healing journey, it can be helpful to distance yourself from distractions and noises that hinder your ability to focus on yourself. This is challenging for most people who will resist spending a lot of time alone. But it’s essential to carve out this space for your inner wisdom, your inner voice — whatever you want to call it. Without it, nothing can come through. Your radio receiver is already full of other people’s voices and opinions, and you need your own direct connection to the universe. It’s like how people in the old religious communities thought they needed to go to a priest in order to talk to God. Nope. This is the opposite. You’re building your own bridge. Not even “building it” because it’s already there. You’re clearing your channel. Letting the information and ideas flow through you in the form of intuition, insight, and inspired action. By spending time, a lot of time, more time than you think, in solitude, you begin to unravel these influences. A cleansing process begins. All the old images—from TV, newspapers, social media, movies, internet, magazines, memories, stories — begin to be digested. Removing these cleans the mirror of your soul and lets your own true light shine. But the process can be long and arduous. Even though this time might be painful and feel like a desert, walking through it will bring the life you seek.

To quote one of my favorite authors, Clarissa Pinkola Estes:

“Begin searching the internal land . . . hold torches into the caves of your psyche . . . even though it’s painful, it is the journey itself that has the juice you’ve been seeking. The journey itself is fertile. Whatever you seek is seeking you.”

Diana Waldron is a writer and a sitarist.

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