The Power of Solitude

Solitude is independence.
– Hermann Hesse


When you acknowledge the integrity of your solitude,
and settle into its mystery, your relationships with others take on a new
warmth, adventure and wonder.
– John O’Donohue



In solitude the mind gains strength and learns to lean upon itself.
– Laurence Sterne


One can be instructed in society; one is inspired only in solitude.
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

New York City, USA

Loneliness expresses the pain of being alone;
solitude expresses the glory of being alone.
– Paul Tillich

Tibetan Pilgrim




It is good to be solitary, for solitude is difficult;
that something is difficult must be a reason the more for us to do it.
– Rainer Maria Rilke




The more powerful and original a mind,
the more it will incline towards the religion of solitude.
– Aldous Huxley

Sri Lanka

Solitude is strength; to depend on the presence of the crowd is weakness.
The man who needs a mob to nerve him is much more alone than he imagines.
– Paul Brunton



United States

Whosoever is delighted in solitude is either a wild beast or a god.
– Aristotle



There is a fellowship more quiet even than solitude,
and which, rightly understood, is solitude made perfect.
– Robert Louis Stevenson




Since the time of St. Jerome, it was mandatory for any kind of scholar or thinker
to spend time out in the desert in solitude. It’s no coincidence that the desert has been
a major part of the visionary or mystical experience from the beginning of time.
– Bill Viola

New Zealand

The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.
– Albert Einstein

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About Steve McCurry

Steve McCurry, recognized universally as one of today’s finest image-makers, has won many of photography’s top awards.
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53 Responses to The Power of Solitude

  1. Pingback: The most important skill nobody taught you – Take A Breath

  2. Para o Marco! says:


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  6. abraham says:

    Great moments of solitude!! Wow!

  7. lili Soleil. says:

    Wonderful pictures. solitude is indeed a fulfillment of the soul.

  8. yu in kol says:

    Solitude is Freedom

  9. SameerRao says:

    Magnificent exposition of the concept of Solitude

  10. Anonymous says:

    Magnificent exposition of the concept of Solitude

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  12. These are beautiful images and very inspiring.

  13. Sayantan Bhattacharya says:

    Thank you

  14. Hawkesmill says:

    Beautiful images as always! What a lovely study of solitude. Awe inspiring.

    Loving the runner in Italy!

  15. Manish says:

    beautiful images, and am in complete agreement. Solitude is strength, the mob- weakness….love it!

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  17. jeanmartell says:

    Beautiful images as always. I do love that many of the photos include animals. I think their quiet acceptance and unconditional love can bring an almost spiritual component to solitude. I know they do that for me. The quotes you have chosen accompany your photos perfectly. Thank you for another wonderful share!

  18. Gorgeous and I couldn’t agree more…solitude is a wonderful thing.

  19. Patricia Casarano says:

    Thanks to sharing. Wonderful! A beautiful italian song describe very good Solitude. Songwriter Fabrizio DeAndre’. Search by Title “Anime Salve” – “Saved Souls”. Click on

  20. andrewvokes says:

    Always inspiring, primarily with your fantastic images, but also with your text.

  21. hyun ah kwon says:

    I can’t say anything
    just say oh my.

  22. Alyssa Abidin says:

    Reblogged this on Glance away .

  23. paula graham says:

    Stunning, the quotes, but most of all the shots…oh my!!!

  24. Pingback: The power of SOLITUDE | Photography and Music

  25. vivlm says:

    Reblogged this on vivlm and commented:
    Areal message of the drawing deep that comes from solitude

  26. sujith kumar says:

    “whoever is delighted in solitude is either a wild beast or a god” -Aristotle

    Stunning work Steve, keep inspiring

  27. All of them are incredibly stunning!

  28. loisajay says:

    People and their animals. That is the best kind of solitude.

  29. In general people think one is alone, when one is delighted in solitude. 🙂

  30. Sonia Malysz says:

    Your photographs made me realize how much I miss my own place of solitude; your quotes encouraged me to look for it. Thank you 🙂

  31. Reblogged this on zeysen and commented:

  32. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful Solitude

  33. Mary Ann Malkiewicz says:

    Wonderful pictures and comments. Thank you.

  34. Myrna says:

    This is one of your best posts. Perhaps I think this, because I so much appreciate my solitude now that I am in my autumn years. Thank you for this wonderful inspiration.

  35. the colors of life,steve mccurry,beautiful

  36. Mansukh Shah says:

    Solitude beautifully illustrated with the most outstanding images. Thank you again Stevebhai
    The best thinking has been done in solitude. The worst has been done in turmoil.

  37. Mike Parish says:

    Beautifully done.

    Another comment referenced the animals in many of the pictures. It struck me how interesting it would be to see a series that shows people with their dogs, cats, or horses.

  38. snowfox66 says:

    I cherish my solitude. I don’t understand people who must be constantly jabbering or being around others. These are the ones who like to dictate what others do, and that is NOT right. Love your posts and the photos as well!

  39. Gerard Hinloopen says:


    Sent from my iPhone


  40. jaideep Chatterjee says:

    Only Steve could come up with so many different frames that define solitude. Its not just an inspiration, but an eye-opener, in a world of chaos, to the universe of solitude

  41. Anonymous says:

    Stunning work!

  42. Michel says:

    Magnifique série. En regardant avec attention ces photos, nous pouvons avoir la sensation d’être le personnage dans la photo, dans un fantastique décor. Merci.

  43. gillianoz says:

    As a person who has spent a great deal of time in solitude, I found this series of photos particularly interesting. As usual I was moved by the images and the collection of accompanying quotes. But I was surprised by how many of the images included animals along with the “solitary” human beings. Surely animals are good company, and their presence makes a difference to our solitariness. I could imagine a different series of photos that had people who were alone without animals…that might be equally interesting. Thanks, Steve.

  44. Your work is pure inspiration…

  45. Sue says:

    Solitude in different manifestations beautifully illustrated….

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