Solitude and silence–two words our modern world needs to take to heart. Perhaps all of our problems can be traced back to the simple fact that modern man absolutely refuses these two hidden treasures. Indeed was Pascal right when he claimed, “All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”
Thomas à Kempis tells us in his Imitation that we must, “Seek a proper time to retire into thyself, and often think of the benefits of God. Let curiosities alone.” Couldn’t we all benefit from spending a little more time alone with God?
Man is, by his nature, a social being and thus naturally drawn to social interactions, but must those social interactions be always with our fellow man? Could we not more often satisfy our social appetites by discoursing with our Creator? Certainly such heavenly conversations would be infinitely more beneficial.
“For God with His holy angels will draw nigh to him who withdraws himself from his acquaintances and friends.”
“It is better to lie hidden and take care of one’s self than neglecting one’s self to work even miracles.”
“The desires of sensuality draw thee abroad, but when the hour is past what dost thou bring home but a weight upon thy conscience and a dissipation of heart. A joyful going abroad often brings forth a sorrowful coming home; and a merry evening makes a sad morning.”
Solitude and silence, dear readers, are how we avoid sin and progress in goodness. Let us, with the great Thomas à Kempis, “Shut thy door upon thee, and call to thee Jesus thy beloved.”