Although solitude means a state of being alone or seclusion, that is not necessarily a bad thing. The art of solitude in contentment is something that has yet to be mastered by the masses. With technology constantly advancing and social media buzzing nonstop, who has time to be alone, yet we all are.
Too afraid to be with our thoughts, not what everyone else thinks. Too concerned with image yet striving to achieve images portrayed. What more?
While traveling to Sweden a few years ago, I discovered a philosophy that makes their culture so rich and satisfying. One word, lagom. It is a Swedish word that does not have an English translation. The best way that I can describe it is “enough”. It is when there is no excess, or gluttony, nothing fancy or elaborate bringing attention to oneself. If we were to share, I would take no more or no less than my appropriate portion. There is contentment in that word, a quiet solitude with oneself to learn how we are to live peaceably.
Not allowing things to own us, minimalism at its best. In our solitude, there should be a state of contentment, a “lagom” philosophy where “not too much” but just enough.
Too much solitude may bring about sadness, but just enough will allow creativity and wholeness to be processed. Balance.
I was told a story of the Vikings and where the term originated as we sailed on a 100 year old boat to view the King’s castle. The Vikings would gather around a table a share a goblet or large cup, each drinking a portion that was enough but not more than his fellow. This mindset is extinct in our culture today. It is all about, mine, me, I; not we, us, our. A little bit of solitude gives us the opportunity to think and reflect on mistakes, gratitude and what may lie ahead.
What does Lagom look like in your state of solitude?