Our societies are confused about solitude. The images of happiness conveyed by television and advertising often feature merry groups of friends, while being alone and being lonely are considered almost synonymous. But one in three of us in the OECD countries now lives alone, and this number is set to rise.
We explore the distinction between solitude and loneliness. We ask just why being alone can sometimes feel so frightening, and what benefits there might be to overcoming these fears. We consider what we can learn from hermits and those who have actively retreated from the world. Above all, we ask if it’s really possible to be happy in partnerships, in friendships, at work or with family - if we can’t, first, also be happy by ourselves.
This is a class about the lost and yet highly valuable art of solitude.
ABOUT CORE CLASSES
Our classes have been designed to give useful insights around the big themes in life. You’ll be challenged to think deeply about the issues that matter most, and provided with a space to share your thoughts, ideas and experiences with other curious, open-minded individuals.
These sessions are designed by experts and taught by members of our faculty. They include a mix of lecture, conversation and group activity. Optional homework is provided for those interested in further study.
This class is part of our EQ Certificate Programme. For more information about how to enrol at The School of Life please click here