Alone V. Isolation 

I used to equate solitude with the loneliness of isolation. I placed little to no value on being alone. Alone meant an escape from you, them and the intolerable. When isolating, I was either brooding, licking my wounds, or passively punishing others. In any case, being alone was always a negative.
But being alone is not always lonely, it can be an opportunity for growth and connectedness, if I chose to see it. Calm and contemplative concentration enables something greater to work through me, when I am willing. When I meditate, still and quiet with the Universe, I am transformed.
Yet, meditation is not an exercise in transforming myself. It is a process of opening myself up in order to be transformed. It is the unchaining of self from the obsession to be secured and tethered to the outside world. This is where I find unlimited freedom. Meditation is being firmly grounded, rooted in the moment and freed from the fixations of self. It is in this solitude that I find my reprieve from regular routine or crazed calamity. 
Serene solitude can be mindful and meditative. It is my spiritual teflon keeping me safe and protected despite situation or circumstance. Sometimes serenity is simply standing on a stack of dimes in the center of a hurricane, as I try not to lean too far in any direction as chaos whirls around me.
When I am alone, I no longer isolate. Alone is another chance to become closer to a Power Greater than myself, acknowledging presence past my usual comprehension. 
Solitude is not a sentence, it is my salvation. 
~S.D.

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