There's a lot of information that needs to be covered to explain what I'm about to talk about, but I'm just gonna hit the high lights and leave it at that for the time being.
There's a huge difference between "solitude" and "isolation." The reality of the situation is that we are never really isolated because everything is connected in one way or another. This has be proven in science recently (last 100 years) and on the spiritual plane (over 4,000 years.)
I got the tattoo because a girl broke up with me after we had dated for 3 years, and had been engaged for a number of months. Long story shot she broke up with me because I was an alcoholic addict that wouldn't stop drinking / using.
She put up with as much shit as she could until she realized that I wasn't getting better, and her quality of life was suffering, so it was better for her to drop me and find another guy.
Because we only have about 30,000 days to live, I am thankful that she spent around 1100 of those with me, but in retrospect those days might have been wasted for her. I know that I can't give those days back to her, and I wish I could but that's outside of my abilities. The best that I can do is pray that God takes care of her and makes up for my short comings.
That's kinda of a personal thing, but back to the main topic, the tattoo.
When I got it, I figured that I was never going to get into another relationship because that one hurt, and I never wanted to feel like that again. What ended up happening is that I got into a few more relationships after that one, and they hurt a lot more...
I got the tattoo at 22, and at 27 I'm starting to realize the importance of solitude. It isn't a matter of being alone, it's a matter of being okay with myself.
When we seek isolation it is because we don't want to be around people. We don't want people to know what we're doing, what we're thinking, or how we're feeling. We want to be disconnected.
When we seek solitude it's because we want to be with ourselves. We like ourselves now, and what's even better is the fact that we get to have those really good conversations with God.
The only thing that made me realize the difference between isolation and solitude is the fact that I accepted the idea that everything is connected. I'm just as connected to the sun as I am a tree that I'm standing right next to. I'm just as connected to some random person in China as I am with the person I'm shaking hands with at any given moment.
So, while I'm sitting in my room with nobody talking to me... I'm still just as connected to everybody on earth as I am with God. It isn't until I start trying to disconnect (isolate) (which is impossible) that I start suffering again. (Some people call it cutting ourselves off from the sunlight of the spirit.)
The importance of solitude: Being connected to everything is great, but if we don't take time to sit back and look at ourselves, if we don't take time to undergo some kinda of personal inventory, how do we know what kinda of influence we're having on the world around us?
In our daily lives, are we a negative or positive.... thing..? (person, spirit, life form, being) that's connected to the universe? Do we give our energy, or do we go around sucking up as much energy as we can?
It's only in solitude that we're really going to be able to get the answer to this question from God (Higher Power.)
This is just one of those things that rattles around in my head. If you think I'm wrong, talk to somebody about it, if you have an open mind and understand what I'm talking about at all... cool cool. :)