Prophecy, history, myths – call it whatever you want, but at the back of the mind, we weren’t fully prepared for what Sylvia Browne had predicted for us. Disregarded as a creepy coincidence, we were caught off-guard when a tiny member of the coronavirus family decided to wreak havoc on a global scale.
Claiming to be the most elite of all living creatures, we were at our wit’s end when no amount of wealth or power could shield us from this ‘mild’ virus. Starting from a fatality rate of less than 1%, COVID-19 now has a rate of 18% worldwide. Other than the rural and underdeveloped countries, the superpower countries were also shaken up. So what changed that allowed the novel coronavirus to get such a stronghold of us?
It took the world a global pandemic to open their eyes. It was not the virus that had weakened us. It was our differences, ignorance, and negligence. You ask, “of what?’ Of what nature had been trying to warn us time and again. Of the cruelty and inhumanity that fellow humans brought upon each other. Of the deterioration of ethical values and morals as we claimed to climb to the pinnacle of success.
Our ladder to success had been wavering for a long time. The virus was the unexpected catalyst. Is this still a highly unfortunate event, or have you pondered over what lesson the pandemic gives us? Like every other hardship, there are things the pandemic has taught us.
Human History and Natural History Are Inter-Linked
The mere existence of the human race is solely dependent on the course of nature. Yet, we refuse to accept the evident link between our wellbeing and the health of our planet. Despite the growing threat that nature has been warning us about, our greed for controlling everything had it’s even more considerable backlash.
The one very blatant lesson to learn from the pandemic is that if you try to go against the course of nature, you are bound to face the consequences. Exhausting fossil fuels, depleting the ozone layer, poisoning water bodies, occupying acres of landfills to dump your waste, destroying habitats – the list can go on.
You might have heard that during the lockdown, Earth ‘healed.’ And what do you recover from? A wound, a disease, or a discomfort. Our goals must shift to take into account the health of our planet. Our actions must be driven by the aim to promote a healthier, greener world.
Mother Nature should not be the cost of our success. Instead, it should be an incentive to work harder to reverse our actions and ensure a safer environment.
Natural Catastrophes Don’t Consider Boundaries
Somehow, our human minds had limited the spread of the virus to China. We were not prepared to host an unexpected guest. Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan accurately describes the virus as a ‘problem without a passport.’
Sadly, the boundaries that determine our caste, creed, and race exist only in our minds. The virus, however, does not take these boundaries into account. The transformation of the Chinese epidemic to a full-blown pandemic is evidence enough.
If a microscopic pathogen can overcome racism, why can’t we? We need to realize that our inflexible and indurate mindset will cost us more than we can afford. A single country cannot tackle the problem that is mutual to the rest of the world. Now is the time to put aside our differences and join hands to fight COVID-19 as a common enemy.
It is our collective willingness alone that can help us change the course of our situation. It’s going to require more than brute force and smart leadership to overcome this pandemic as one unit.
Do Not Underestimate Scientific Knowledge
Where deliberate misinformation is at its peaks, science has been our reliable source of guidance. However, political propagandas and fake social news have tarnished our image of public knowledge. Scientists are trying to make a great effort in helping the general population to understand the situation but in vain.
I guess it’s because we are not directly exposed to the threat. Our front-line workers have diluted it. Even in such times of despair, when established institutions fail to come up with a management strategy, the scientists from all around the globe have learned to connect.
In light of their commendable role towards our society, we should consider including scientists in future policymaking and regulations related to public health. We are greatly indebted to the scientists of our generation. As a lesson to learn from the pandemic, we should make it our responsibility to encourage science and take greater interest.
Value Social Interactions
The most noticeable impact of the pandemic is the practice of social distancing. The sudden disconnection with other people starting taking its toll after only a few days of lockdown. It was soon apparent that a human’s instinct to communicate is more of a need than a want.
Amongst all the fact-based things the pandemic has taught us, this emotional and physical need to get in touch with our loved ones has had the most significant effect. We have come to realize the importance of connections and relationships that we had taken for granted.
We realized that, in reality, a human needs another human to keep the natural cycle of life going. It has presented us with the bare truth that without fellow humans, our power, wealth, and existence is merely meaningless.
From now onwards, we must recognize our role as a part of this society. We must learn to give generously with no expectations of return. Value the relations you have and be grateful for what you have been blessed with. The pandemic has greatly crippled the economy so if you’ve still got a livelihood to consider yourself lucky.
Now that we have time more than ever, we must evaluate what lesson the pandemic gives us. It is now that we must take responsibility for our actions. Rather than sulking over our ‘ill-fate,’ we must take confirmative steps and learn from our experiences. Because if we don’t, nature is going to come back with an even harder blow, probably, far greater than the COVID-19 pandemic.