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Paramahansa Yogananda's "I Am Lonely No More"

Paramahansa Yogananda's poems serve to deepen yoga meditation, offering devotees new ways of grasping the spiritual nature of all creation.

Paramahansa Yogananda

Writing at Encinitas

Writing at Encinitas

Introduction and Excerpt from "I Am Lonely no More"

Paramahansa Yogananda’s speaker in "I Am Lonely No More" from Songs of the Soul no longer senses himself as a solitary being adrift on a sea of danger but instead realizes that his beloved Divine Self accompanies him everywhere he goes because the Divine Beloved Creator exists everywhere the speaker may travel.

Excerpt from "I Am Lonely no More"

I am not lonely in the chamber of solitude,
For Thou art always there.
I am lonely amidst an uproarious crowd,
In which the silence slips away
Like a startled, fast footed, large eyed deer. . . .

(Please note: The poem in its entirety may be found in Paramahansa Yogananda's Songs of the Soul, published by Self-Realization Fellowship, Los Angeles, CA, 1983 and 2014 printings.)

Commentary

The speaker in Paramahansa Yogananda’s "I Am Lonely no More" is celebrating his freedom from the human malady of loneliness.

First Movement: Celebrating Freedom

The speaker expresses and celebrates his freedom by stating that he is not lonely when he is, indeed, alone in any location, even while experiencing "solitude." His awareness of the Divine as an integral part of his own self allows him to be conscious that the Lord is always with him.

The speaker then insists that while he is in a large noisy crowd of people, he finds that he can, in fact, be lonely because the presence of the Divine Reality, so palpable in silence, is hard to realize in a noisy, boisterous group of people.

Colorfully, the speaker says that in such a place, the silence of the Divine "slips away / Like a startled, fast-footed large-eyed deer."

Second Movement: Loneliness Before Experiencing Realization

Before the speaker had realized the nature of his oneness with the Divine, the speaker was plagued by thoughts that seemed to declare him to be an isolated individual, resulting in the negative state of loneliness. In this desperate state, he lamented and feared that as he had come on earth from some "unknown," thus he would have to leave and again enter that same nefarious "unknown."

Third Movement: Learning to Make God One's Own

Since finding that he has been eternally united with the Divine, the speaker asserts that he has discovered that he and the Divine are always united. Regardless of where the speaker may travel, whether in lonely places where no one else can be found, or whether he finds himself in places filled with other people, he is now always aware that he has a Divine Friend Who accompanies him.

The knowledge of this reality of his Higher Self secures for him permanent relief from the dull human heart ache that causes the sense-bound mind to think it is alone and isolated.

Fourth Movement: God's Infinite Drama

The speaker has become aware of the invisible ties that bind him all round: front and back, in life and in death.

The speaker now understands that his life is not just one chance occurrence that holds no meaning while offering only a miserable display of unanswerable questions; he now comprehends that his life is part of a cosmic divine plan wherein he can play his part in God’s infinite drama.

Fifth Movement: The Result of Meditation and Spiritual Effort

The speaker, through meditation and spiritual effort, has come to understand and realize that he comes from the Divine, he lives in the Divine, and he will "dive" into the Divine after he leaves his physical body. Referring to the Divine as "my Known-One," he confirms his divine knowledge.

Sixth Movement: Divine Unity Banishes Loneliness

So simply and so beautifully, the speaker avers that before he had met the "big Self," he was, in fact, afflicted with loneliness; however, now the affliction of loneliness assaults him no longer.

The speaker has realized his eternal unity with the only Entity that can banish all loneliness, the Entity that instills every great thought and comfortable feeling that the human heart and mind craves. In the Bliss of Unity, the speaker can say he remains, "lonely no more."

Paramahansa Yogananda's Songs of the Soul

© 2018 Linda Sue Grimes

Comments

Alexander James Guckenberger from Maryland, United States of America on January 05, 2018:

I could tell! ^_^

Linda Sue Grimes (author) from U.S.A. on January 05, 2018:

That is wonderful, Alexander. I do, too!

Alexander James Guckenberger from Maryland, United States of America on January 04, 2018:

I love Yogananda so much!