This particular discussion was inspired by an article that came across my news feeds regarding making a choice between being Independent and Being Alone.
I find this a curious choice to make because I don’t believe that it is an Either/Or Situation. Granted, I live in the US so the social and cultural mores here are different than in other parts of the world. That being said, let’s get some definitions out of the way first as I see them:
Independent: A State of Being where your reliance on others is limited as much as practical. Independence encompasses a wide spectrum that include Social, Financial, and to a lesser degree, Cultural. I don’t believe that true Independence is possible because we all have to exist within Society and as such, we have to make compromises.
Being Alone: This one is easy. You are alone. You have no one else in your life whatsoever. I call this one easy to define because it’s a simple state of occupancy. It’s also not true because as long as you have yourself, you are never truly alone.
There is a belief in Modern Life that in order to feel complete, you must have another person with you. To coin a phrase that is often used to describe a certain low cost, rather tasty deli meat: “That’s Baloney.” Feeling complete comes from within. It is the knowledge that you have within you the skills and the desire to live your life on your terms and do what must be done to advance your own self-interests.
Is there truly a situation where a choice must be made between Independence and Being Alone?
Well, I suppose that there may be situations where one might interfere with the other, but those situations are few and far between and almost always involve personal choice. We choose what path we follow. We choose what actions we take. Finally, we choose who we associate with, who we accept, and who we allow to accept us.
In short, I see Independence as an internal thing that is manifested externally and Being Alone as an external thing that is an option whether or not to be internalized. I am Independent AND Alone and I’ve never had so much fun in my life.
Still working on those more cheerful topics…stay