Why you should explore solitude

Sahara

Silence and solitude are lost cultural phenomenons, spaces which needs to been explored and used. I am fascinated by silence and solitude. Fascinated by that what happens to the human spirit, its identity and personality, when the talking stops and ventures out into emptiness.

Some people are frightened of those who desire and aspire to be alone. For them solitude can be threatening and they recognize it as not social. They feel that someone who wants to be in solitude is somebody who does not take social responsibilities. Someone who does not conform to their standards. And so being unacceptable in social forms.

“If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.” ― George S. Patton Jr.

But the truth is different. Someone who deliberately explores his live, who explores the world and the connection with it, in solitude, is someone who learns to be self dependent and will develop a strong self esteem. There is no number of friends, contacts or connections that can make you into a stronger independent person. Being in solitude will deeper consciousness of oneself and it will give an increased sense of freedom. Which will lead to an independent-minded, self thinking, reflective person. These qualities will make someone a valuable team player. Someone who can take social responsibilities, without being pressured by a herd mentality. Someone who feels free and independent of principle, or conscience. Someone who is not afraid to think different and use creativity to solve lifes issues. A person who is free from social peer pressure to conform and being able to think and act for himself, rather than be under the influence of group-think. This in contrary to those who conform. Those who need to consume more and more, and whose lives are influenced by group thinking and standardized.

“Sheep only need a single flock, but people need two: one to belong to and make them feel comfortable, and another to blame all of society’s problems on.” ― James Rozoff

I am part of society, have a family life and run a business, still I take my time to go away from all this. I spend regularly a few hours or a longer period in solitude. It helps to deal with social pressure, it helps to reorder the mind and it cleans the soul. I practice my solitude in running, especially on longer runs. Then I am several hours on my own and far away from everything. There, being mindful, being one with motion and breathing, there I find these powerful moments of solitude and stillness.

Try it, and feel what I mean. It can change your life.

Warning

If you are reading this, then this warning is for you: Every word you read of this useless print is another second off your life. Don’t you have other things to do? Is your life so empty that you honestly can’t think of a better way to spend these moments? Are you so impressed with authority that you give respect and credence to all that claim it? Do you read everything you’re supposed to read? Do you think everything you’re supposed to think? Buy what you’re told to want? Get out of your apartment. Move away from your screen. Stop the excessive shopping and masturbation. Quit your job. Start a fight. Go out and fuck, move, run, breath in. Define your character. Go hungry; keep your existence lean. Wear away the fat, get down to the lean tissue and see what it’s all about. Find out what you’re made of and what you’re capable of. Test and define your character. Be who you are and not that copy of a copy of a copy. It’s all in your head. Be without mind. Explore solitude. Take away all clutter and distraction. Don’t try to blend into the world. Be on fire. Do not conform or live a life of false consistency. Be silent, be god, be a devil. Claim your humanity, prove you’re alive. Don’t become a statistic. You have been warned.

The 145 characters that construct me

145 chars

Write 145 chars about yourself, take a picture of your ego and post it online. For other people to see and to like. Look, I went out for a run!  In return like someones picture taken in front of a mirror.  Always in the know what your friends are doing. So busy trying to have even more online friends.  You have more online contacts then non-digital contacts in your neighborhood. Stay connected, share, like and change the world. Social media, the live of pretended friendship and fake intimacy. But who do you know ? for real ? Not even yourself any more. You are changed the moment you decided to play the game and became part of the mass, part of the lie.

“Life is more or less a lie, but then again, that’s exactly the way we want it to be.” ― Bob Dylan

People on social media don’t represent their own self. They stage, edit and censor a virtual representation of their selfe and their lives. They become the person as how they want to been seen by others; a staged self. A self created illusion of the self. A self based on a social status, strategically calculated from likes, friends and followers. Whats will next ? What’s the relation between you and them ? or between you and that what you really are ? Are you that what you wanted to be or did you become a construction of virtual images ?  Don’t make yourselve in the image of the commodity. 

Motivation, our hidden power

motivation

Every run starts with the first step, and to actually make that first step it takes a special kind of energy: our motivation.

Motivation is the inner willpower, the inner driving force, to achieve a goal and the hidden power behind the energy that moves us forward in life. It is the inner voice that says: take action! Do it now. I don’t think it is the same as enthusiasm although I see a relation between them. Where enthusiasm is an emotion which sets an idea in our mind it does start our actions, it is motivation that fuels our actions. It is motivation which gets us started and what keeps us going, it helps us to overcome obstacles and dealing with discomfort. Continue reading

Self discovery

Self discovery

When I became 40 years old,  I made a promise to myself;  I will try every year something that I never did  before.  Self discovery: do something new that would bring me totally out of my comfort zone. So in the last years I have learned diving (sport, technical and rebreather diving) and froze my ass of  on a SAS type survival course in Scotland. I started to run (trail and ultra marathons), attended a Sesshin in a Zen monastery, did a Mindfulness course, climbed mountains and ran trough the Sahara. I visited Morocco, stood  on Germany highest mountain top and dived 60 meters deep in the Red Sea. I had moments of great joy, deep concentration, inner peace but also moments of fear. I endured cold, pain and disappointment (hello MDS).

All these smaller and bigger adventures bought me in contact with the most interesting and nice people and showed me beautiful places. I have learned a lot, had to face my fears, moved my limits and was forced to go out of my comfort zone more than once. I experienced a lot  which  made me mental, emotional and physical stronger. But the most important is that all these experiences helped me to find out who I am. By reaching further, deeper and trying harder I learned who I am and it helped me to understand who I am.  It helped me to become happy with and accept the person who I am. And that is a big reward!

The essence of warriorship, or the essence of human bravery, is refusing to give up on anyone or anything. – Chögyam Trungpa

Go, give it a try; do something you have never done before, something  that is  out of your comfort zone. It could be running a marathon, learning something new  or traveling to an obscure destination alone. The experience will add to the essential process of self-discovery and it can help you to become happier and more comfortable with who you are.