Sri Aurobindo attained God-realisation while in prison.

To spend time alone – to be isolated from the outside world and our usual outer routines – is the ideal prescription for the deepening of our spiritual practice.

From time immemorial, seekers of Truth, of liberation and enlightenment, have sought the solitude of caves and forests, or the relative seclusion of an ashram or monastery, shut off from the incessant myriad temptations and distractions of our habitual outer lives, the better to pursue our ultimate quest.

Our yearning to “get away from it all” can lead us to the far ends of the earth. The same yearning can be fulfilled while remaining exactly where we are – in the ever-widening sky of our silent mind, the ever-deepening ocean of our spiritual heart, the ever-illumining sun of our soul.

Everything depends on our attitude. There are things we can control and things we cannot. We cannot control outer circumstances, but we can control our responses. We can focus on what we are losing, or on what we stand to gain. We can bemoan being forced to stay at home and fret over all the activities we are missing out on – or we can relish the golden opportunity to run faster, dive deeper and fly higher … within.

A spiritual seeker will accept time in partial or complete isolation eagerly and gratefully as an unparalleled blessing.

Every moment counts. At every moment we are either moving forwards or falling behind. Always move forward. Never remain idle. Structure your day around your meditation practise, embracing only activities in harmony with your inner direction.

Next time you are tempted to grumble about the tribulations of isolation, remember this …

Sri Aurobindo attained God-realisation – the highest bliss, profoundest peace, eternal liberation and perfect illumination – while in prison.