Loneliness is a subject which almost every people in the world would face, especially me, because I stay on my own. There are large amount of times when I have to be alone.
The most lonely time for me is the time after work every day. I feel down and lonely when suddenly nothing occupies me. When my mind becomes not engaged, negative thoughts come in.
Then, I learnt Swadhyaya through practicing Yoga. I start to apply Swadhyaya to deal with loneliness. I consciously observe and analyse it, breaking it into details and analyse the details. When it arises, I am aware of it and try to find the reason behind it. When it disappears, I am aware its disappearance and find the reason of its disappearance. Then, I find something:
Overall, loneliness is not something that arises from being physically alone, at least for me. It is from weakness of my inner self. There are some weaknesses for myself. It probably was there since I was born, i.e. timid. All of those weaknesses would easily invade into mind as some particular form, i.e. worry overly for future as a result of timid, when the mind is occupied by nothing. Therefore, in fact, loneliness is always there if somebody has weaknesses in his/her inner self. It is just a matter whether he/she feel s it or not. The company by others or doing something else is just a distraction away from loneliness.
Therefore, to deal with loneliness is actually to deal with one’s inner weakness. You have to find your true weakness, aware it, analyse it, and finally to overcome it. Then you would feel contentment all the time and enjoy every moment of being in consciousness, as Santosha. Even when you are alone, there are so many things you can enjoy, i.e. the air you can breathe in. You even can enjoy your own thoughts. When you enjoy the thoughts, the thoughts become positive and creative. In particular, the great ideas or concepts will come from this stage.
But I have to admit that inner weaknesses are very difficult to deal with, because they are very stubborn as they normally start from the time when you were born. An effective way to deal with it is just to foster the habit of being aware of that the feeling of loneliness is arising from your own inner weaknesses and your own weaknesses would make the feel of loneliness fade away.
Xie Na (Weekday Hatha/Ashtanga 200hr YTT/6th July intake)