A vast majority of the world is now in lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID 19. This has dramatically affected life globally with many non-essential businesses being forced to shut down, staggering job loss around the world, economic recession, school age children who are no longer going to school, overwhelm of healthcare systems around the world, loss of leisure and entertainment, social isolation, not to mention all the fear and uncertainty that has resulted.
A lot of people are wallowing in their fear, anger and grief over the circumstances and wondering when the lockdowns, quarantines and social distancing will come to an end, which have no end in sight at this point. However, this dominant narrative will not change the situation and will not change the way you feel about what you’re going through.
1) Our way of life has been unsustainable for at least one century with the advent of the industrial revolution and the manufacture of goods in factories that rely on fossil fuels and have been polluting the air we breathe.
3) The earth has lost much of its forests through logging, agriculture, mining and industrial development. Forests are the earth’s lungs and produce the oxygen that all living things need.
4) The greed of corporations with their unsustainable practices and the governments that allow them to operate are to blame for the environmental destruction of the atmosphere, the land and the oceans with the subsequent loss of many species.
5) Education systems have not evolved since World War 2 and focus on rote learning of language and math skills and learning facts instead of teaching children how to learn, emotional intelligence, stress management, how to relate to others, financial literacy and other crucial life skills, which they currently only learn by trial and error.
6) Most people report job dissatisfaction and are only doing their work to make ends meet and pay their bills instead of pursuing their true higher calling.
7) The global incidence and prevalence of chronic diseases has been increasing for several decades.
8) Depression and suicide around the world have been steadily on the rise for many years.
9) Opioid, alcohol and other addictions have reached epidemic levels globally.
10) Human trafficking is a global problem with close to 40 million people in modern slavery.
11) 3 billion people around the world live in dire poverty with 1.3 billion people living in extreme poverty, less than $1.25 per day, with 22000 children dying each day due to starvation.
12) Food quality has deteriorated over the years with the advent of genetically modified organisms, the use of toxic pesticides and the feeding of hormones and antibiotics to livestock.
14) We spend the majority of our time indoors and have been disconnected from nature and have lost all the inherent benefits of this connection.
These examples are a reflection of how humanity has lost its way. So should we be truly surprised that we are now facing a pandemic? The fact is that we could not continue to live the way we have and something had to give. This is why I call the coronavirus pandemic a wake up call for humanity.
You see, it has come at a time when it is most needed in order for us to stop everything we are doing and reassess where we have been, where we are now and where we are going? The fact is that the trajectory that humanity was taking prior to the pandemic was the path to extinction. This is why we have been all forced to stop so we can contemplate this fact.
The real question is that will we learn from this experience? Will people wake up out of their trances to see what is truly happening on the planet as I have outlined above? Whether or not they do, I will say that our survival as a species depends on it. If humanity does not consciously evolve then it risks facing extinction.
How this plays out in the coming months remains to be seen. I do see signs of hope, however. There are discussion groups and blogs popping up all over the internet about this topic. One which I highly encourage you to check out is writer Charles Eisentein’s essay called The Coronation, which is the best piece of writing I have read about a broader perspective about our current situation.
The fact is that we will get through this eventually, although our lives will never be the same. In this time of quarantine and social isolation I encourage you to truly ponder the state of society and what needs to change and evolve in order for humanity to have any hope of a sustainable future.
Do this by looking at your own life and where you may have lost your way in the external world. Your conscious evolution will require you to go deep inside to that still place within from which all change is possible. The way forward is going to require dramatic change which will not be easy and will likely be painful but is essential for our survival and to live in joy and harmony with each other, with nature, with the earth and with the cosmos.
Nauman Naeem MD