Tuesday, March 31, 2020

The Human Condition Amidst a Pandemic

Friends of the Pacific Electric Trail
We are all in a state of distress. Our sense of security and our base of emotional well being are as much a victim of the Covid 19 virus as the stricken person confined to the hospital bed. Even though only a fraction of the population are afflicted, we are all suffering and sheltering in fear. This is beyond politics, finances, social standing, or geographic location. 

Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels
The very nature of our sense of security, whether it be family, profession, or social support of friends are immediately affected. Unlike those who have been through therapy, counseling, or 12 step programs, most of us do not have the necessary “tools” in our “toolbox” to deal with the loneliness and sense of disconnection that comes with this overwhelming lack of control. Compounded with our desire to point the finger of blame at some group, person, or institution for our own absolution, we are feeling powerless. 
Anyone who has experience in prayer or meditation is already light years ahead of the average person, once we pick up the practice again. But there can be a wide gap between “having the tools” and “using the tools”. 
Social interaction and reassurance are some of our most important “tools”, and these have been taken away from us at this time.
 Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

There are new jobs, promotions, home purchases, and geographic moves that are now in limbo. Our lives have been put on hold without any guarantee that these futures will remain intact.
Those us who have immediate family in the house are finding out how to work with each other’s personalities quirks that may have been overlooked before. This can be especially challenging with teenagers or the elderly in a household.

Photo by Dennis Jones Friend of the PETRAIL
By any measure this is a test. For some of us it may be the greatest test we will ever face in our lives. The immediate goal is to preserve our lives. It can be said that the greatest challenge for humans after basic survival is to interact with each other in a healthy way. The greatest gift for humans in society is our ability to interact with each other in a healthy and supportive way. 
Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels

For each of us there is a choice to be made in this moment that will affect the rest of our
lives. So, we need to do the things that we know are good for us. Get plenty of sleep,
fresh air and sunshine, exercise, eat a healthy diet in moderation, and most importantly be kind. In the face of adversity, nothing stands the true test of time as a gentle heart and a willingness to reach out to help the person beside you who is struggling. 

               “The prizes go to those who meet emergencies successfully. And the way to meet emergencies is to do each daily task the best we can”.  William Feather.
Friends of the Pacific Electric Trail

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