Until now, I have been walking in the dark, so to speak, carefully watching where I placed my feet. It has all been a figurative shuffling my way through all the necessary tasks to reach a modicum of preparedness for lockdown. Yvonne and I spent two days carrying furniture around in the Auditorium to create our home TV broadcast studio from which we can now offer professional consultations and be in touch with our dispersed family and friends. The ‘studio’ looks quite snazzy and we gave it a trial run yesterday. It is a small victory and it feels good.
While languishing in bed this morning (which is our new indulgence), sipping away at my second cup of coffee for the morning, it was the first time that I began putting some thought to the world’s future, post COVID-19. In a parallel stream of activity, I have been listening to an Audible release of the New York Times bestseller, The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, a compilation of 37 essays written by eminent psychologists and mental health experts who assessed and wrote about this current president. As a professional in Alternative Mental Health, the book is hugely informative for me and I can recommend it as a worthwhile read. It is very illuminating and forthright about Donald Trump’s mental state of mind. Anyway, that is not the real point of me writing. These two streams found confluence in the question: What will the world be like if a president of the most influential country in the world made the blunder of the century and put the people of America at risk in the impulsive and naïve way he seems to be dealing with COVID-19? What if money trumped lives? (Sorry for the pun.) This led me to a thought gear change. What about Britain? What would happen if Prince Charles (who has tested positive for the virus and is next in line for the throne) succumbs to this illness? The Queen and Prince Philip are in the high-risk group and might not fare well if the virus finds its way into the inner circles of the Royal Family, as it already has through Charles. How will the world change if this happened over the next few months? Furthermore, BBC reports that Boris Johnson has gone public with his COVID-19 infection as has Michael Gove, UK’s Health Secretary. These men are at the leading edge of the target group of those at risk. We could be witnesses to some incredible and rapid shifts in leadership, royalty and governance!
From a different angle, I thought about how fortunate we are to have a robust global internet, clever molecular medicine and the many social media portals that allow us to connect with one another. The world would not have fared as well a decade or two ago without these tools. We have technology like Zoom, Cisco Webex and Microsoft Teams that allows businesses to rapidly tool up and let their employees work from home. It is remarkable really. I did smile a bit though. I remember moaning at my stepson over his past obsession with social media and getting huffy when all my communication attempts came back in monosyllabic grunts while he had his nose firmly fixed in Facebook. This trend now seems to have become the new norm amongst adults all the way into geriatric circles, and while it (talking to somebody’s skull) still irks me, digital connectedness is a huge asset to this modern world as we hunker down, waiting for this virus to pass, a bit like the Israelites in Egypt with a daub of sheep’s blood on their doorpost, waiting for the Angel of Death to pass them by.
I then thought of hot cross buns. Will this be an Easter without them? What about chocolate Easter eggs and Lindt bunnies? I had to quickly shift out of that depressive line of thought. It is far nicer to contemplate our global future!
I am optimistically believing and hoping that there will not be a wave of narrowmindedness, bigotry, xenophobia and other forms of hatred that sweeps across the globe in the wake of World War V (v for virus). Let’s hope people don’t start blaming the Chinese, seeking retribution for the losses they incurred (think Trump). Let us hope that this does not lead to xenophobia aimed at Asians, as it once was towards Muslims. Let us hope affluent white travellers in South Africa do not become targets for having brought the virus to the townships in South Africa. Sadly, we already see traces of this kind of thinking in the collective psyche.
One of my readers sent me a private message yesterday (and thank you to everyone who has done the same). It included some meaningful advice to help mitigate against what I have already mentioned. Here is what he wrote: (1) Encourage everyone to isolate oneself from news about the virus because we already know everything we need to know about it; (2) Don’t look for additional information on the internet as it will weaken your mental state; (3) Avoid sending fatalistic messages to others as they may not have the same mental strength as you do and your message may activate their pathologies, like panic, a sense of hopelessness and depression; (3) Maintain good social, mental and hygienic discipline in the home; (4) Hold onto a positive mood as will bolster your immune system. (Since you have some time on your hands, search the internet for Bruce Lipton and dig into his work on epigenetics); (5) Draw on resources that inspire and encourage you. This may include your belief in God but it can also come from uplifting reading, learning a new skill or exploring a latent.
Thank you, SW (he did not want to post publicly) and forgive me for some of my editorial adjustments and additions.
By the way, I am still fretting over the prospect of no hot cross buns and Lindt bunnies at Easter so I think I must hide away for a while and do some mindwork of my own.