The Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) has both challenged and changed the world’s perception of individualism, materialism, greed, organization, and the many uses of technology. This pandemic has driven people to avariciously hoard items that are needed by EVERYONE in the world, and to vainly attempt to make money from others dire privations.
I am, however beginning to see a dim pulsating light at the end of the tunnel. People are beginning to realize that there is a “Smarter” way of living and that humanity is at a point where it desperately needs a course modification geared toward togetherness and teamwork. We are at a place on our road of existence where we should seriously consider which direction we plan to take. Do we continue straight on, driving our planet into oblivion, or do we take the road less traveled, and save our world and society from recklessness?
“The world has enough for everyone’s need, but not enough for everyone’s greed,” Gandhi.
The last few years have demonstrated how anger, hostility, greed, and prejudice can drive a wedge between friends, families, communities, and even countries! The last few weeks have shown us that these “wedges” and “differences” are useless when fighting this new invisible enemy (COVID-19).
Materialism and greed have created a society driven by a need for the latest and greatest with the insatiable urge to have everything and anything. Materialism, desire, and hoarding are now a big part of our society. Human beings are social beasts, and this need to “socialize” and possess more has driven us to engage with our peers via new and exciting communication channels based on the developing technology available. Businesses and educational institutions now utilize on-line options for courses in-lieu of in-house meetings and classroom activities.
Ironically, there are always several silver linings to every cloud. This cloud is a giant, evil black monstrosity called COVID-19, an invisible enemy, that not even a murderer or criminal can evade. In many ways, we’ve already adopted the concept of “social distancing” during the era of social media and technology. Yet this ability to distance ourselves socially may be our saving grace. With no vaccines available, you are safest at home in front of your computer or smartphone in your hand.
Unification of families is now a reality brought on by COVID-19! Crime is down because of the mass hysteria that the streets are not safe. Restaurants and grocery outlets have more efficient delivery and pick up services, which minimizes travel, and therefore accidents. Doctors are once again making house calls to elderly patients who are too frail to take on this new invisible enemy. Society is on a path to healing from an enemy that we cannot yet embrace.
Yes, we can survive as individuals, even in quarantine, and still, be part of a caring community. In this globalized world, our lives are so intertwined that we need to view ourselves, as individuals, as communities, as nations, and as a uniquely privileged species. It has taken a virus to show us that only through togetherness we at our most reliable, most alive, most human and that we understand what is most important. We are all bound together as part of a miraculous web of life on planet Earth!
A final thought though…Will society remember this most-important-lesson learnt after the virus is no longer the enemy, or will people, communities, and countries go back to business as usual?
By Marold Studesville & Alyson Stasek