This blog features reflections on current affairs through the lens of my Quaker faith and practice and offers not only analysis but a perspective on hope, renewal, and reconciliation - a “lift”, as I call it - during these stressful, chaotic times.
I hope that you will use the Comments feature to participate with me and with each other. I believe it will be enriching to us all.
I thought it was time for a bit of levity. I have learned that when my computer crashes, balks or just turns ornery, to just shut it off and back on again - commonly known as “rebooting.” (Isn’t it satisfying to think of giving the computer a good kick with your virtual “boot" once in a while when it becomes so frustrating?!) Amazingly, rebooting seems to work. So I especially appreciated the cartoon below. I actually have envisioned and written about some sort of cosmic message being sent from the Grand Control Center back to earth via the virus, and the cartoon below pretty well sums up my suspicions.
As the stay at home process continues I have noticed that we have all become philosophers about what the sustained holding pattern for the earth’s human inhabitants might ultimately mean. Conversations on this subject include a wide range of speculation, but the conclusion always seems to be the same: When things return to “normal” we’re going to arrive at a new planetary reality. The intriguing question, then, is what is the new reality we want for ourselves personally, for our families and immediate communities, and ultimately for the planet? If our imaginations are up for it, we live with the opportunity to seriously envision, and plan for, the “reboot" suggested in the cartoon. It isn’t quite like starting with a blank page or an empty canvas; maybe more like rearranging all the furnishings in our home. But some radical rearranging will definitely be offered and likely required.
This past week I have arrived at a fairly stark realization that we are in a longer period of incubation that I had originally thought - from two weeks, perhaps a month, or maybe until July or even fall. But I am now planning for eighteen months or more, well into 2021, or until a vaccine is developed that offers a substantial assurance it will resist the virus. My age and health condition prevents me from taking any chances whatsoever of getting the virus if I can possibly avoid it. And, I submit, that would be true for most of you as well, including younger folks.
So we will likely have a good long “gestation” period to contemplate, imagine and actually put in place at least some creative plans for our still-to-be-determined, post-virus future. I imagine, for example, taking advantage of our "Zoom revolution” communication technology that will aid us in exploring fascinating ways of living and working far more cooperatively as we become more proficient at Zoom conferencing and screen sharing. Or my favorite “new world” is the intergenerational relationship I am enjoying with my tweenage grandkids as we talk and tutor for an hour at a time each week in the intimacy of our shared face-to-face conversations in the comfort of their rooms with their “stuffies” and their art. So does this mean we will be less alienated by generation if our Zoom sessions become normalized? I hope so.
And the list could go on, and on, and on…What creative changes can you imagine guiding you into a whole new opportunity to reset your life and the world around you?
So onward, friends, into our brave new “rebooted” world.