If we are to hold solitude and community together as a true paradox, we need to deepen our understanding of both poles.
Solitude does not necessarily mean living apart from others; rather, it means never living apart from one's self. It is not about the absence of other people — it is about being fully present to ourselves, whether or not we are with others.
Community does not necessarily mean living face-to-face with others; rather, it means never losing the awareness that we are connected to each other. It is not about the presence of other people — it is about being fully open to the reality of relationship, whether or not we are alone.
~ Parker J. Palmer, from A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life