Let’s value the lessons we are being taught in the times of Covid-19
Despite Vision 2020, 2030, 2040 and 2050 having burst like a bubble, it is amazing to see how man still finds it impossible to live in the present. Man by his innate nature is either lost in the past or daydreaming about the future. You can call it vision or planning, but the fact remains that there are times when everything goes topsy-turvy. If you have past wounds and scars, they too become insignificant and irrelevant. Amassed wealth, high positions, burning desires and ambitions – all lose their relative importance.
Believe me, what matters is the present, and there’s a reason why an old saying also simply echoes as ‘No time like the present’. I can’t agree more. I find the present times to be unique, something that truly is in our own hands.
Currently, we might be overwhelmed by the fear of coronavirus, but it’s still teaching us so much.
It has already helped us slow down, to stand still and ultimately reach a balance in our lives. It has also given us time to ponder upon, reflect on and start valuing what really matters in life, without having to read any self-help book.
In the last decade there has been a surge in self-management guides, spiritual gurus and pursuit of happiness, and now, time has suddenly taught us what’s really essential for a good life. The focus for a majority has moved to good health, peace and survival instead of materialistic pursuits. Each individual is worried about remaining healthy and alive now. Some are even paranoid. What is right? Do we become obsessed with the fear of Covid-19 or do we have a blind faith that nature will save us? Is it a divine plan or will science and technology come to our rescue? The questions are simple for those who believe in balance. The pandemic, however, proves that nature is the most powerful and yet we have to depend on science and technology to be rescued.
Several paradoxical facts too have been revealed. Many youngsters addicted to social media have realised the importance of human connect. People who criticised technology are experiencing its benefits.
The last few months have also taught us that the world will never be the same again, no matter what anyone’s nationality, colour, gender, creed and faith is.
We have to agree that we are learning a new way of life which will become the new norm. Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s words, “The old order changeth, yielding place to new,” are so apt. Yet we don’t have to be scared that everything will come to an end. It is true; some will succumb to the battle. It is equally saddening to see the plight of the poor. It is not even appropriate to categorise the present situation as a boon or bane. We just have to be sensible, cautious, pragmatic and optimistic to sail through. Man no longer needs complicated philosophy for life. The post Covid-19 world will most probably follow what HW Longfellow said in The Psalm of Life:
“Trust no Future, however pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act, act in the living Present!
Heart within and God o’erhead!”
So let us learn all that we can from the lessons being taught to us now!
(The writer is an English teacher at Punjab Public School, Nabha)