Stimulating loneliness

Sunset on the ocean at Captiva Island, Florida, January 2013

Sunset on the ocean at Captiva Island, Florida, January 2013

“The loneliness you get by the sea is personal and alive. It doesn’t subdue you and make you feel abject. It’s stimulating loneliness.”Anne Morrow Lindbergh

I connected immediately with Lindbergh’s words in the quote.  I’m seldom if ever at the sea all alone, but it always wraps me in a calming sense of solitude.  Maybe it’s the immensity of it, underscoring my relatively insignificant presence.  Or maybe it’s the sights, sounds, scents and sensations; the rare setting that taps into all five of our senses, leaving the faint taste of salt in our mouths.

In any case, as Lindbergh describes, the loneliness I feel by the sea is never an unpleasant experience.  In my case, I think it may be the paradox inherent in feeling, through such rich isolation, the presence of deity.  It’s as if I am experiencing the omnipresence of God in a highly personal yet universal way.  I realize that may sound like so much new-age doubletalk, but if you’ve ever had the sensation yourself, you will know what I mean.

In any case, I wish for you today the stimulating loneliness of the sea (so like that of the sky), if only in memory or imagination.  As we share the common experience of sanctified solitude, we are brought together in the unending mystery of being part of a vast sea of global humanity, each of us remaining unique, and uniquely loved by God.

This post was first published seven years ago today. The original post, comments and photo are linked, along with two other related posts, below. These links to related posts, and their thumbnail photos, do not appear in the blog feed; they are only visible when viewing the individual posts by clicking on each one. I have no idea why, nor do I know how they choose the related posts. That’s just the way WordPress does things.


  1. Judy from Pennsylvania

    Beautiful photo, beautiful and precious words. And yes, I know what you mean.

    Thank you for this post that ministers to my spirit today. Much appreciated.

    • Thanks so much Judy! I’m happy that you enjoyed it and identified with it.

  2. I haven’t been near the ocean in 2 years now. I know the feeling you are describing. I think that’s why I love going there. You are on my mind daily so don’t think you are forgotten. I’m starting to come out from under and catching my breath. Will send note soon. I definitely need the sea now.

    • Thank you Marlene, it’s great to hear from you! If you feel up to a trip to the ocean, I’ll try to figure out some way to get to Oregon to take you myself!! Thanks for (still) being here! I am always so happy to see your smiling face in your Gravatar.

      • I’m not getting here much anymore but you are always in my thoughts. Trying to get the energy to write a card this next week. This was not the summer to go anywhere. Maybe next summer. I’m hoping there are no fires or covid next summer. My son couldn’t even enjoy their trip here and they usual go to the beach when here. Hope you are doing well.

        • M, take your time about writing. I always do. You put much thought into what you write, so it is always worth waiting for! I too am hoping for better days ahead. Meanwhile, Matt and I are well, and grateful to be so. Sending giant hugs! ❤

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