billiesimon

Leo or Teal on loneliness?

13 posts in this topic

Since I'm in a time in my life where I've ditched a lot of my old negative friends, I'm going out to find new friend and people, and sometimes I feel very lonely when I don't have plans for the nights.

Now, the problem here is that some teachers describe loneliness as a necessity for growth and something that you also have to accept as part of life and to enjoy. Leo for example has talked about this.

Other teachers, like Teal Swan, have dedicated a big effort on condemning loneliness as the social disease of this technological era, and one of the main causes of depression, school shooting, intolerance and drugs. To be honest I completely agree with her. Loneliness is a social disease and it's spreading like a virus in western society. She also emphasizes that we NEED human contact and human intimacy or we literally die inside.

Some like Eckhart are in the middle, since he encourages people to socialize but at the same time to appreciate loneliness and to observe it as a consciousness, without identifying with the pain.

 

I'd like to hear @Leo Gura on this, and other people who are ahead in the actualization work!

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I can tell you that I would have never started consciousness work, or even self-improvement, if I never would have felt as lonely as I did a few years back. I would say loneliness and suffering can be as much a motivating force as it can be a destructive one. When I look around me though and I see "normal" people, I pity them for the fact that they will never suffer enough and be forced to be open minded enough to maybe embrace something like spirituality or self-help.

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@billiesimon

Yeah I've thought a bit about this and in short I don't really know.

Leo is very advanced and I guess your socializations needs are going to be very different at turquoise and at orange/green levels.

There is value in socializing and there is also great value in spending quality alone time (without distractions) such as in hardcore retreats. It's best to do both without looking for a "right" solution because there is none :P Do what feels right to you :) 

Edited by Lynnel

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@billiesimon Everyone has their balance.


"Every culture that's ever existed has operated under the illusion that it understood 95% of reality and that the other 5% would be delivered in the next 18 months, and from Egypt forward they've been running around believing they had a perfect grip on things and yet we look back at every society that preceded us with great smugness at how naive they all were. Well, it never occurs to us, then, that maybe we're whistling in the dark too!" -- Terence McKenna

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I side with Teal on this one, because I do believe that socialization is necessary for the vast vast majority of people. So, unless a person is living a life of renunciation as a monk or hermit, then abstaining from socializing altogether is incredibly unhealthy and is a denial of our natural drives.

I see a lot of people on here who are already socially avoidant, further solidify their tendency toward social avoidance because they start thinking it is a sign of virtue and higher consciousness. But it actually keeps them from addressing their needs from where they're actually at because they may even repress their needs and desires toward human connection.

So, my view on this is that a person who is not specifically living a life of renunciation, where renunciation is the spiritual practice in itself, should not abstain from the basics of life. So, a person should eat normally, sleep normally, hold a job, and have friendships and relationships. It's important to meet our human needs.

Our humanity is not a mistake to be sloughed off, but is a valid part of this experience. And belonging to a social group is a natural outgrowth of that, and need not be transcended.


Check out my YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/thediamondnet 

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I struggled with loneliness throughout most of my life... and I am not that old or anything.

What Leo teaches is how it can let us gain muscles in this field. His field. The field he teaches to us. He helped me to some degree with my loneliness. Watching those TED talks about loneliness made me feel even more horrible, so thanks Leo. He even said that he struggled with it too and that it is just a thing you have to fully experience. To its potential. Any suffering can help you, if you see how.

I am currently reading ''The Anatomy of Lonelines'' by Teal Swan. There are many good practices in that book. I found that Teal mostly wants us to really understand the issue. See the roots of it. Of course, Leo taught this same thing. Just in a different way you see. He taught it in the sense of: ''feel it fully''. Because when you feel an emotion fully, it is only then that you shine light on it. Therefore seeing it dissolve. Seeing is the keyword here.

Now Teal isn't fully wrong. Loneliness is an epidemic. Never have we ever felt so seperated in the world, even though we have gotten so many different ways to communicate to strangers/friends online. Explaining the ordinary human how they can grow with loneliness is like shooting a bullet in their stomach and asking them to feel it. Only people who are more aware understand what Leo means with that.

Both sides have truths.

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Human contact and human intimacy without connection is about as worthless as trying to build the empire state building on quick sand. The whole problem is not that they are lacking human contact but rather human connection. I would say that the majority of relationships are a facade built on a weak foundation-therefore there is a lot of window dressing not giving each other in the relationship the capacity to be open and issue genuine love and compassion. (this could very well be a projection, however this is the way I see it especially here in stage Orange America)

For human connection to take place there has to be a willingness to be vulnerable, most people are too afraid due to social conditioning and several other factors. They fear being judged, labeled, categorized, and compartmentalized so telling someone to pursue friendships and socialize when they are depressed and feeling like dog shit to me doesn't align with my experience. A lot of their friends are probably dealing with the same exact issues, but until someone is able to be vulnerable the connection between two human beings cannot take place. The way I see it for someone to be vulnerable it takes some healing and understanding. For healing and understanding to take place one has to heal on their own unless... 

Of course each individual had their personal highly developed human being that can hold space for them and show someone how to be vulnerable, etc. then I guess it would make sense to go out and find relationships. 

From my own experience my days of loneliness and extreme suffering (my own self perpetuated illusion) was for me where the coal became the diamond. With so much pressure something had to give, and what gave was a crazy mystical experience of pure ecstasy. 

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There's a difference between solitude and isolation.

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I'm reading The Anatomy of Loneliness by Teal Swan and what I get is that Teal talks about a kind of loneliness caused by fragmentation. You can be among a crowd of friends and still be lonely. I think that's why some of her initial exercises from the book is to seek for things in the other person that you can integrate in yourself. I'm still reading the book and it's very interesting. I don't know too much about Leo's approach towards loneliness, but I'm loving Teal's approach and I really relate to it. She's a wonderful teacher.

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On 1/25/2019 at 11:11 AM, billiesimon said:

She also emphasizes that we NEED human contact and human intimacy or we literally die inside.

And why is death such a bad thing? :P

Edited by onacloudynight

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On 1/25/2019 at 11:11 AM, billiesimon said:

 ...sometimes I feel very lonely when I don't have plans for the nights.

... loneliness as a necessity for growth 

...condemning loneliness as the social disease

...Loneliness is a social disease and it's spreading like a virus

Eckhart encourages people to appreciate loneliness and to observe it.

Let go of the thoughts about other people’s thoughts about loneliness. That’s taxing, energy-wise.

Go directly to the bodily sensation. That’s what loneliness is. Go to it directly and see what it is. Learn & understand it.    

Find the I which experiences it.   

 


  Nonduality & Meditations         

Empty your head, fulfill your heart       

 

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Thanks for the nice responses, especially @Emerald and @Ampresus.

I've reflected a lot about this and realized that there's a component of loneliness that comes from being an ego and an individual, which you have to accept.

At the same time there's the epidemic of isolation and depression that the post-industrial society has created. This is the actual problem that needs to be counter-attacked with socializing, becoming more active in your nightlife, and becoming more empathetic and warm with people. 

Also ditching the addiction to social media is very important, because this web 2.0 gives us the illusion of socialization, while in fact we are all alone in our rooms. And here depression sneaks in...

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Loneliness is not a bad thing. It pushes us to connect with fellow human beings. A lot of people in here seem to want to transcend their own humanity so that they won't feel lonely ever again. Well good luck with that. Emotions are beautiful, they remind us of our own vitality. And you can't just nitpick the ones you want.

I also agree that social media in general is very bad, as it is designed to addict us and make us feel cranky (and thus more receptive to advertisement). After the first iPhone was introduced mental illness among teenagers has shot through the roof. I foresee that in the coming years a lot more people will distance themselves from social media.

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