Our guest columnist this week is Vineet Saraiwala, an avid trekker, marathoner, and endurance cyclist. Vineet, who is visually impaired, is an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Bangalore.
The coronavirus is a pandemic with the entire world being threatened with its power. The virus which originated in Wuhan, China, has exponentially engulfed the entire human race sparing no country, caste, gender, borders, and income levels. But its beauty still mesmerises me and makes me wonder in amazement. We have always believed in the oneness of the world and interconnectedness of nature. We are all one big family. The happiness and wellbeing of one another is a shared responsibility bestowed on this family collectively. In these troubled times, how health from our neighbour to the wellbeing of a citizen in Italy affects our own health directly has never been so obvious and evident.
Larger lesson of coronavirus pandemic
Whether it’s individuals, states, giant corporations, nations or continents, we have always put our self-interest as the foremost objective. Our very purpose of existence has been linked to maximising of wealth and power for our own good. What corona reveals to us in a metaphor is that all forces – mankind, animal, nature and the invisible -are one. Our scriptures have always spoken about the universality of the cosmos but we are ignorant of it. The bush fires in Australia, nuclear disaster in Japan, oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico or the Bhopal gas tragedy affected lives but has never made this linkages so transparent & open.
Coronavirus requires collective action
A Chinese was lynched by a foreign mob, boxes of toilet papers were stolen from a super market, surgical masks disappeared from medical stores, patients ran away from hospital, social shaming of positive cases, hoarding of essential items by people are understandable. These are perfectly rational things which are expected to happen during times of crisis. Reflect for a moment that this panic and hatred will definitely solve your personal problem. But the corona is a truly global problem which needs to be solved collectively. If one human is affected in a region, another 100 are in danger. It’s a chain, a ripple which requires cooperation and not competition from fellow human beings.
Open our hearts to beat Coronavirus
We all are one family and if corona is stepping up its game, we too, need to step up ours. We all should open our hearts to serve humanity in whatever capacity we can. Help that old uncle in your building, Talk to a friend, pray for the world, acknowledge your security guard, offer water to a Delivery staff, gift your hoarded sanitisers, praise the cab driver, spread public information on corona, play with children, write a Thank You card, meditate in silence and share smiles all in this world of hatred. Corona has revealed such a profound wisdom which we never understood since ages and it is unfortunate that a disaster needed to be there on us to reveal this message of this interconnectedness of the world that we are all one big family.