Here in the Northern Hemisphere, we’re entering into what can feel like a particularly lonely season for many people: the leaves have fallen from the trees, daylight disappears early, and the holiday season is upon us.
In this week’s episode of Gathering Gold, I share a passage from The Wisdom of Anxiety about loneliness, and Victoria and I talk about how we can shift from discussing loneliness as a statistic (1 in 5 adults in the U.S. reports feeling “serious loneliness”), and start to add color, texture and feeling to the conversation.
What color is loneliness for you?
What shape does it take?
What stories does it bring up in each of us?
I describe three types of loneliness: loneliness of the self, relational loneliness, and spiritual loneliness. Victoria shares a beautiful poem about feeling lonely, and discusses her experience of isolation during covid lockdowns. We talk about our need for others, and how to approach feeling lonely even in the midst of gatherings or intimate relationships.
To close, I lead us through a Tonglen practice to help us connect not only to our own hearts, but to the hearts of all those around the world who are suffering.
As always, we’d love to hear your comments, either here or wherever you listen to your podcasts. And if you’re enjoying Gathering Gold, please review, rate, share, and subscribe, as it helps others find us.
Sending you love and hugs as we enter this holiday season ❤️.
Is it ok that I felt lonely when I spent my holiday with my partner? It was my first Christmas away from home/family, and I was in an unfamiliar environment with unfamiliar people (I had only met his family once prior). I didn’t know how to tell him how lonely I felt and how much I wished I was at my family’s, and don’t know if it’s normal that he couldn’t fill the feeling of “home” for me.
That’s completely normal. One persons isn’t meant to fill the internal places that an entire community is meant to fill.