Aloneness with God

”Aloneness with God differs from rugged individualism. Solitude is for the purpose of loving communion with Christ Jesus. Its objective is not to let one’s ego reign supreme. Its goal is not to go it alone, to have no need for people, or to be in control of life. A contemplative’s persistent efforts to be completely autonomous bespeak withdrawal and isolation rather than growth in communion with God and with all creation in God.  The all-embracive receptivity to God essential to the ere­mitic life indeed requires an uncommon degree of self-reliance, self sufficiency, and independence. But those qualities, when they are mature and healthy, balance with a compassionate solidarity with the world, a realistic knowledge of one’s own needs, and an abiding sense of interdependence with all creatures.” ~From Discerning Vocations to the Apostolic Life, the Contemplative Life, and the Eremitic Life by Marie Theresa Coombs and Francis Kelley Nemeck