The first question:
Confrontation of oneself in aloneness is very fearful, very painful. What to do?
It is fearful and it is painful, and one has to suffer it. Nothing should be done to avoid it, nothing should be done to divert the mind, nothing should be done to escape form it. One has to suffer it and go through it. This suffering, this pain, is just a good sign that you are near a new birth, because every birth is preceded by pain. It cannot be avoided, and it should not be avoided because it is part of your growth. This pain and this suffering is known traditionally as tapascharya, austerity. This is the meaning of tapas – arduous austerity, effort.
But why is this pain there? This should be understood because understanding will help you to go through it, and if you go through it knowingly, you will come out of it more easily, and sooner.
Why is there pain when you are alone? The first thing is that your ego gets ill. Your ego can exist only with others. It has grown in relationship, it cannot exist alone. So if the situation is one in which it can exist no more, it feels suffocated, it feels just on the verge of death. This is the deepest suffering. You feel just as if you are dying, but it is not you who is dying but only the ego which you have taken to be yourself, with which you have become identified. It cannot exist because it has been given to you by others. It is a contribution.
When you leave others you cannot carry it with you. Think of it in this way: when you are in society, people think you are a very good person. This goodness cannot exist when you are lonely and alone because this is what people thought about you. Now those people are there no more. Your image cannot be helped. It has become foundationless. By and by it will disappear and you will feel very bad because you were such a good person and now you are no more. And not only good people will suffer, if you are a bad person that too was given by others to you. That too is a way of getting attention. When many people consider you bad they give you attention. They cannot be indifferent to you, they have to be aware of you. You are somebody, a bad man, dangerous. When you move into loneliness, you become nobody. That bad image will disappear and you were feeding on it, your ego was feeding on it. So bad men and good men are not basically different – both are gaining their egos. Their mediums differ, but their goals are the same.