Friday, 6 April 2012



What really is loneliness ?

Does it affect you ?

Can you ever be free from it ?

I was surprised to read that the 14th Dalai Lama, has been recorded as saying that he never feels lonely, or suffers from being lonely. This statement seems somehow alien to my concept of this topic. But as I am a huge fan of this man, I read with interest as to how he would describe his answer in more detail. When asked by the writer Howard C. Cutler if he ever felt lonely his answer was simply no.

The question was then put to him to explain why he wasn't prone to any feelings of loneliness, and he goes on to explain. It would appear that he views each encounter with a sentient being with a perspective of compassion. With this attitude he feels connected with all things, because they both share a certain common ground, and thus he eliminates the need or even the experience of feeling lonely. Wow, what a simple yet effective method, if it works in practice. It would appear that it does if you have ever seen anything of this man.

So I thought, well he's constantly surrounded by people, apart from his 4 hours of meditation each morning. He is inundated with visitors and well wishers and seekers of wisdom so how would he have time to feel lonely ? But he goes on to explain, that there is a marked difference between being alone, and being lonely. The problem we as westerners seem to have is that we have adopted a dramatically more romantic connection to the subject of intimacy. The Dalai lama says that intimacy is the key to losing any feelings of loneliness. Using it and understanding what it is. So let's see if he's right.

We in our society see intimacy as something held sacred, between two or several willing and consenting people, usually with regards to sexual relationships. We see that it is not possible, nay frowned upon to be intimate with anyone except our spouse, girl/boyfriend, or partner. Almost as if it is taboo to think of being intimate with anyone else for fear of offending our loved one, or society in general. And we seem to revere the union of fidelity as if it is the highest of all achievements, yet often fail miserably to come anywhere near to living with it.

If we look back a little way in history we will see that things were very different centuries ago. This new romantic kind of expectation came in around the end of the 18th century. Before that men and women shared far more common intimacy regularly. I'm not talking about just with regards to sexual fidelity, but with physical contact. Somewhere we developed a calling to see that 'one special person' with an almost angelic reverence. A pedestal that few could reach, hence the feeling of elevation to a higher plain of importance. Ironically a place no-one would be able to reach, as we set the pedestal so unbelievably high.

Understanding what intimacy is might help.

According to the Collins on-line dictionary.

intimacy (ˈɪntɪməsɪPronunciation for intimacy



  1. close or warm friendship or understanding; personal relationship
  2. (often plural) euphemistic sexual relations

You see initially I thought that this was only about sexual things, but clearly familiarity/closeness/understanding and confidence are all a major part of this word.

So to put this into a better context, I now better understand why the Tibetan and other eastern approaches are far more enlightened as to what intimacy is and how it can be used. So the Dalai Lama can use this connection of compassion to become close to others in ways of understanding and familiarity and be better able to enjoy the fruits of his time, rather than concerning himself over doubts as to more destructive thinking. This is possibly why we as westerners suffer so much when we feel let down by our significant others, wives, husbands, partners, because we place such a high and almost impossible task ahead of them.

If we simply were close to, cared for and were in contact with these people, wouldn't we feel more happy?

Try to see things differently and the world opens up to you, as it has for me, by considering more opinions and viewpoints. Maybe the world is not a tragedy, but a world where anything is possible, as long as we try to include and tolerate others perspectives.

So if we think that loneliness is just not being in close intimate contact with someone, why not try to include more people and get closer to them. (obviously I'm not encouraging sleeping around or infidelity) I am merely saying, stop seeing it as the thing to be feared. A hug a smile, a pat on the back, a hand up now and again is all it takes to feel more connected. As wild as it seems, I have seen a lot of this between guys (who incidentally are supposed to be macho and not affectionate toward other men) when they are in the pub, the football dressing room, they often touch one another in acts of (more subliminally overlooked) intimacy. It is beautiful to see, even if they are unaware how necessary it actually is for their sense of worth in company.

If we continue to evaluate everything within the confines of intimacy only being allowed between sexual partners, then we are going to miss out on opportunities to feel good and happy about our relationships with others. So how we see intimacy will affect our state of loneliness, or our liberation to pure happiness and joy.

Finally, yes is the answer.

To whether we will ever be able to be free of loneliness.

Go from here determined to contact/interact with more people. Become deeply involved with them in acts of sharing, caring, touching (appropriately) them as friends and fellow human beings. Don't sit and wallow in pity at having no friends, be a true friend and others will flock to you, for they will feel welcomed and cared for. 

Take heart from my post, you are on the road to recovery when you realise there is a problem, and get stuck into dealing with it. It won't be easy, but it is better than getting lost completely in a world of your own.
Big hugs,
Peaceful Warrior.


  1. I think for me, lonliness (or lack there of)directly correlates with feeling understood. It doesn't necessarily have to do with the physcal side of connection (although I crave that none the less) but more if I loose the emotional reciprocity with another, I can wind up feeling alone and lonely.

    This was interesting, by the way... :)

    1. Yes, I agree. This is what the compassion is about. Putting yourself into the shoes of that other for a moment and try to understand them. And who will claim to hate any physical contact from someone we admire and trust.? It is a two way street. If we give we will receive. An old Bible passage says, for what a man is sowing, this he will also reap.
      Glad you liked it Chantel.

      Please accept your Hug of friendship, for your continued comments.

  2. I am blown away by this post. Brilliant and beautifully articulated.
    Thank you and thanks to the Dalai Lama. This is one more of those marvelous Eastern truths that make everything make sense.

    I am one who rarely feels lonely......I always thought of it as a lack in me, but I see now that my commitment to hugs, both actual and symbolic must be what keeps me from being lonely and I feel humble in the knowledge that it is not a shortcoming but, perhaps, a virtue......

    Wow, I have suspected that you and I are I am sure.

    Love ya'.

  3. P.S. I am so smitten by this post that I am going to post your link on my blog as my mass hug for today for all of my followers.

    Hope you don't mind....Oh, dear....maybe I should have asked for permission first? Naaaah. Sue me if you must.

    1. Well what kind of a man would sue his soulmate?

      Lo, I do so adore you too.... Where have you been all my life??

      I am also smitten that you write such lovely things about my post. Can I take it that you shall be a follower for a while yet???

      You are by no means odd, in any way other than being unique, and yes it is a virtue, so be proud to show it and not afraid that you are being errant of something. Clearly your time here so far has been used wisely to amass knowledge and apply it. No good feeling sorry for yourself because it is all within your (our) power to adopt a different viewpoint at any time day or night. The situation does not change, only our responses to it, that really matter and show what we have learned.
      You need no permission dear Lo, to be the wonderful woman that you are, always kind and thoughtful and indispensable.

      Here is your Massive Hug to share with anyone you like.

      Loads of love.


  4. Lo sent me. I am most often alone, but rarely lonely. I connect in that loving "intimate" way with all the people, as well as animals in my life. Also, I think it's important to connect with the I AM in each of us. As in I AM enough because I'm connected to the life force that connects us all. This is a wonderful, thoughtful piece.

    1. Thank you Jayne for your comment.

      I have needed to understand this, as I had suffered for a long time, and it seems almost an epidemic in Great Britain. But it is good to read that both Lo and yourself have mastered a connection with the universal energy/spirit to be able to avoid the feelings taking over your entire thought processes.
      I wanted the piece to say something about the way in which opening your eyes to another solution would help if you were or had been in a situation like this. I wonder why I missed the boat that passed this island, but am glad in a way that it may help me to help others.
      I write a lot of poetry these days to try to help flush out the negative emotions, and thereby replace with room for positive ones.
      It is kind of like an emotional therapy, but in one way I am sure it creates a unique perspective on what for many of my countrymen is a huge issue.
      Take a look from the IMAGINE link on the side bar.
      If you were able to go back more than 700 poems and read through, you could possibly follow the thread easily of my recent awakening.

      Please accept a HUG,(SEE BOTTOM OF BLOG PAGE) as this is my way of being intimate with many more people, who have taken the time to offer a meaningful interaction.

      Loads of love. P.W.

  5. Hello! I came along via Lo's link to your blog and I am so glad I did! What a great post.I completely agree with what you say and I have to say that in my life I am quite physical, quite touchy feely. I like to hug, to put my hand on someone's shoulder.Somehow the physical touch creates a warmth, a link between souls - not in a sexual way at all, but rather in just a human way, a caring way.Your post inspires me to write and when I do I shall link back to both you and Lo. Thank you for your words. Sarah x

    1. Well thank you Sarah, and welcome. I can't promise to be as wise or articulate on every topic, but I do try to be honest and explain some of the things I came to comprehend and by which route, so that it may offer others a fresh pair of eyes so to speak.
      I look forward to what you will create from this tiny bit of an idea, and thank you for being so incredibly warm and inviting, I feel loved by you. Yes the intimacy should not always be about sexual contact, as you say. But each in it's place creates a far better understanding of how to use intimacy for the good of all.
      Once I was married to a woman with 3 wonderful children. (They are still wonderful, I believe, though I haven't seen them for some years...)(She was also wonderful in a different way) The oldest was a girl, a teen and very attached to her biological Dad. But as time went on she needed support in her growing up as do all children and her dad was neglecting her. She needed attention, sometimes physical and I was warned to worry about it....!! (she might accuse you of something)
      She was an incredibly attractive young woman no doubts about that, took after her mother, but I never worried as advised about the assumptions of what people who live in fear said. She needed a hug a cuddle and to be told how lovely she was as do all maturing people, and she got that from me. I knew where the boundaries were despite her not being my biological daughter, even if she was a hottie. How could I ever see her becoming a well rounded out woman if she was deprived of the things she needed as did the boys, a damned good tickling and plenty of intimacy, to see that contact with a man didn't have to be always sexual in nature.

      I hope that they are all well balanced people as a result.

      I hope that you scroll down to the bottom and take away with you your first of many HUGS.

      Thank you Lois too.

      Loads of love.


  6. I always attributed my lack of loneliness to the fact that I'm comfortable with myself; I enjoy my own company. But your post gives me a larger perspective. I feel connected to friends and family even when I'm not with them, and to the living beings of the universe. I draw energy from the Earth. In fact, when I'm out of sorts it's important to get outside, off the concrete, and stand directly on earth and grass. It's another way of connecting to the universal life force.

  7. Thank you for this comment. I also like to do this, and the walks that I have done so far have taught me a lot about connecting with more than just people. Our Universe is one huge resource, and we are connected to all of it, whether we see it that way or not.
    Like the pebble in the pond scenario. Who knows what where or how that disturbance will become manifest? Energy can be drawn from places other than people, I guess that's why we like trees and water so much. They are full of what we are too. Pure energy.
    A friend of mine did a re-connectivity healing with me a year or so ago, and it brought me into a much more grounded place.
    So glad you enjoyed the post.

    Here is your Hug, I hope it finds you well.

  8. I'm sure I've told you over one of our many wonderful coffees that I don't feel lonely PW. You ask why, and I can only say that when we find stillness and connect with oneness, including the bright beings who surround us but who we don't normally see, it becomes immediately obvious that we are in fact never alone. Feeling lonely due to not having someone special in our life is easily fixed - as you obviously already know - make everyone someone special. :)