I ask myself how things are going. Today I’ve been reading Solitude: A Philosophical Encounter , by Philip Koch, so I might as well use some of his material to check in on myself. Koch associates the following features with solitude: physical isolation; social disengagement; and reflectiveness.
Physical isolation: It feels just to my liking. I like not bumping into anyone in the house; the space is mine. I don’t mind saying hello to the few people wandering the beach, and yet I feel no pressure to do so. I feel safe all the time. So, I’d say that the amount and kind of physical isolation that is available to me at this cottage by the sea is to my liking.
Social disengagement: Let’s face it, doing a blog creates quite a social network, but a different one than I’m used to. It is totally my responsibility, my choice, and up to me to control. Blogs are so new that I doubt they have been studied in any serious way. Needs more study and reflection, but for now it isn’t getting in my way.
Reflectiveness: Need I say more to you blog readers? I have plenty of time to just be, to reflect.
I don’t agree with Koch’s conclusion that “the most promising place to look for the core of solitude is in the realm of social disengagement.” For me, physical isolation is the heart of it. That being said, I’ll be more than ready to go home tomorrow. I’m not a recluse, nor do I have any desire to be a hermit. I love my home and I love my shoveling companion who sent me this cartoon.