In my mid twenties, as I moved into introspection, self enquiry and spirituality, I understood the importance of solitude. I began to enjoy time spent reflecting, meditating and contemplating life so much that I withdrew more and more, finding ease and joy in time spent alone.
I went from one extreme to the other recognizing how much easier it is to just be with my own company creating my own theories, realities and beliefs rather than deal with dramas that come with relationships regardless of their nature.
Then I hit a plateau, there was very little I could learn from myself. I knew I had to open up and engage more in order to grow. Some human relationships continue to challenge me in many ways and yet I realize now that without a human interaction, it is difficult to measure where you stand in life and what you need to work on in yourself.
There is no way to practice spirituality on your own all the time. Doing so might create a very stable and comfortable state of being so long we are alone (anyone moving to the Himalayas soon?) and yet we find ourselves challenged as soon as we engage with another person. Yes, time spent alone is still a very important part of any spiritual practice. Yet if we do not find another person that will act as a mirror, annoying us, challenging us, driving us mad, then we will never know if our knowledge is wisdom or mere theory.
Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.