Monday, May 7, 2012
Soliloquy on Solitude
Probably because I write my blog posts in the first person I have been more than once asked if I am travelling alone. For most of this trip I shall not be. Until we leave Ireland I shall be contentedly accompanied by Elisabeth, my companion for the past twenty years and more, thereafter she will make her customary trip north to Iceland while I return to Greece for the summer. I shall see her again in November. I justify my use of the first person when writing my posts by invoking my contention that practically all our lives, whether or not accompanied or amongst company, are passed alone. My posts are reports of my experience and mine alone; to use ‘we’ and ‘our’ rather than ‘I’ and ‘my’ would, I believe, distort the truth. How can I possibly know what sensations Elisabeth, or any other companion sharing an experience with me, is enjoying, or suffering, concerning that experience?
We enter the world alone and leave it similarly. Why then should we consider that through the time between those extremes we are anything other than alone. Perhaps during moments of extreme passion between humans there may be flashes of something approaching meetings of minds but these moments, even for the most passionate, add up to an insignificant percentage of an existence and are memorably transient as might be a particular aroma or taste.
Far from worrying in any way, my ideas concerning aloneness help me to treat time spent unaccompanied as being no different to time spent accompanied. By invoking a thesis that anything that can be rationalized can not be feared, these ideas foil, for me, the possibility of ever experiencing emotions of self-destructive loneliness.