Till now, with my posts I might have looked like an optimist. I want to be, but I am not. And thus, it’s not a surprise that I have come across this dreadful feeling called loneliness, a lot of times. I have been living almost alone till a month back from last about 3 years. But that doesn’t necessarily define loneliness. I have felt completely at peace on a snow-clad mountain where I was standing alone with no one in the vicinity. And I have felt so lonely amidst a crowd sometimes that I got weak in my legs and felt like dropping off.
Everyone of us has experienced loneliness at some point in time. I have come across two kinds of situations that have triggered my loneliness quotient. One by physical alienation and the other by mental alienation. Though I would not like to measure pain, the one caused by physical alienation vanishes with meeting of the beloved ones. However, the one caused by mental alienation, might be scarring, and can have long-term effects.
Here, by physical alienation, I simply mean parting and it is not uncommon to me. I have had several occasions of traveling and staying away from my life streams, my family and close friends. It’s very challenging. And the more the time passes by, the tougher it is to handle. However, to our relief the communication means have taken off a lot of pressure. I can’t imagine when mothers used to send their sons to far off lands not knowing when they would reach, how they were and hearing from them once in months. For me, it is much simpler than them. As soon as the reunion occurs, it feels like someone has just put heaps of water on a parched land and flowers are sprouting up instantly.
The loneliness because of mental alienation is much more complex and difficult to handle. Every person has their own share of it and customized situations which they have to deal with their own way.
To alienate by definition means to be indifferent/unfriendly especially where attachment exists. So, here it basically refers to a clash or deadlock or breakdown in communication with someone whom you have personal attachment with, meaning family, friends etc. By mental alienation, I mean when this disagreement is not merely seen as disagreement and results into indifference in relationship or disapproval of you as a person etc. Disagreements occur and they occur all the time in our lives. And they do happen mostly with our close people, obviously because of the fact that you want to talk to them, listen to their thoughts, have their opinions on your things and vice versa and also have a kind of approval for your decision/thought. For others whom you are not close to, the deadlock of discussion is much easier to accept as it is simply a difference of opinion, not a disapproval of you and even if it is, most people won’t care.
This decision or thought might be regarding small things in life or it might be life changing. The indifference from the beloved one to it causes loneliness proportional to the seriousness of the issue. Here comes a little something called understanding and respect. I believe, in this situation where you stand opposite your beloved one head to head, the disapproval should be clearly for the particular thought. And there might be several of those in lifetime. So, this disapproval should be a normal disapproval and should not add up in the lifetime to intended/unintended disrespect. If we try to make sure that the ‘I am with you always even if I don’t agree with you on this for so and so reasons’ motto is enforced, this loneliness factor will reduce largely. This, of course, doesn’t apply to immoral activities. But only to a difference of opinion. But, if respect exists and is understood consciously, you won’t feel like the world is crashing in front of your eyes and the alienation of thought will feel better than a total alienation of the person.
One thing is sure, loneliness is a dark path. Most people will face it sometime or other. But it is unhealthy if it is for long periods. So, its our responsibility to make sure our beloved once don’t tread that path.