My first thought on this blog is my final thought for the night: I am contemplating loneliness.
What is it?
Is it a feeling of separateness from people?
Is it the feeling of loss of something you had, or thought you had, whether it’s acquaintance, friend, or lover?
Is it the lack of like minds, compatibility, some minimum number of people who share the same view of the world and similar personality?
Before someone suggested I was lonely, and before I found out it wasn’t joking banter, I’d never thought of myself as lonely. I didn’t feel lonely. Alienated, sure. Statistically unusual. Out on the tail of some bell curve…
But I thought about it, and finally considered the last option on that list.
It would mean loneliness is not negated by quantity, but by quality, so to speak, which is a cosmic roll of the dice and implies an inherently unfair universe.
Was Don Draper correct in season one of Mad Men? Is the universe indifferent?
By odd chance this topic came up at exactly the same moment I met, by oddest introduction in the most unlikely of places, someone who saw the world more similarly to me than anyone I’d met in a long time. Some say there are no coincidences, but I have to admit that was a weird experience.
I don’t think you can be “known” without being understood; otherwise you’re playing a character in a story, and not really living a life.
To be understood, though… Seems like a gift attached with a curse that most people will never be able to perceive undermining their life on a very deep level. I’ve always thought it wasn’t worth the sacrifice, but it’s still difficult to actually live without.
It’s Nietzsche’s “anvil of personal character”: What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger.
And its corollary must, therefore, be: Those who have it easiest must be weakest. That’s the trade off, it seems to me.
Now, maybe, I understand Bob Dylan’s Jesus-like beatitude in “The Times They Are a-Changin'”:
“The loser now is later to win.” And the winner now is later to lose.
Everyone gets a turn, given enough time, which is the impetus of compassion, and explains why youth can be the bully, and the judgmental become the discontent.
Perhaps the universe is fair, in its own, strange way, after all.