Responding to The Coronation: Further Thought on Charles Eisenstein’s Essay Amidst Covid-19
In early April 2020 I saw Charles Eisenstein’s essay The Coronation circulating online amongst friends. At that time, I was recovering from having symptoms that had knocked me out for a week. Reading a 9000-word essay seemed a lofty task at the time. I read some of it and in the coming weeks listening to Charles share about it on various podcasts.
I’ve already been a fan of Charles’ work and his perspective. I found the perspectives shared to be refreshing and soothing. At the time, so many of the messages being shared online were fear-based. One had to seek out other perspectives than the pervasive narrative shared by mainstream media.
Now that 2020 is coming to a close, I thought it would be beneficial to revisit The Coronation essay again. We’re 8 months from when the pandemic became a concrete concern for many of the people in the US, and we have more perspective in general. With that, I’d like to reflect further on the perspectives Charles shared.
Here are some excerpts from the essay and my thoughts that coincide:
“Covid-19 is like a rehab intervention that breaks the addictive hold of normality. To interrupt a habit is to make it visible; it is to turn it from a compulsion to a choice.”
“When the crisis subsides, we might have occasion to ask whether we want to return to normal, or whether there might be something we’ve seen during this break in the routines that we want to bring into the future.”
I agree. A crisis like this allows cycles to break, and with broken cycles there can be clarity identifying our compulsions. One can say, a large amount of discontent and unease that people are feeling is because they are fearing the unknown that will come with these cycles breaking.
I see it all the time, even when people want change, they can be reluctant as that is on the side of breaking the cycle. I think it’s helpful that Charles uses the framing of the addictive cycle to show another context to show broader view of how the pandemic can be perceived.
“What parts of the economy will we want to restore, and what parts might we choose to let go of?”
“And on a darker note, what among the things that are being taken away right now — like civil liberties, freedom of assembly, sovereignty over our bodies, in-person gatherings, hugs, handshakes, and public life — might we need to exert intentional political and personal will to restore?”
Are we even allowed to be asking such questions so early in the crisis? When I see people in my network pose these kinds of questions, they are easily met with vitriol from others in their network. I don’t believe it’s the majority of people that oppose them, but it’s clearly a very vocal minority that does. so. What are the people who are unable to allow these questions to be discussed afraid of?
“For most of my life, I have had the feeling that humanity was nearing a crossroads. Always, the crisis, the collapse, the break was imminent, just around the bend, but it didn’t come and it didn’t come.”
I’ve felt similarly, especially for the last 20 years. Sure, I can’t claim to say that I believed a virus would be involved. I’m not a scientist or a virologist, so I’m not qualified to speak on the specifics of that aspect of the pandemic. But from a behavioral perspective, there is much to say regarding the media discourse and the infodemic portion of what’s been happening.
In my opinion, the infodemic preceded the viral pandemic. Once the viral pandemic took hold, it overshadowed any other pandemic we were already experiencing. The infodmedic continued to feed into the confusion and miscommunication of the viral pandemic. It’s more challenging than before to to parse out the major components of the infodemic now. Fortunately there are those who have been focusing on this for years. There’s lots of discussion around sensemaking that’s really helpful with parsing this out.
“We are right to stop, stunned at the newness of our situation. Of the hundred paths that radiate out in front of us, some lead in the same direction we’ve already been headed. Some lead to hell on earth. And some lead to a world more healed and more beautiful than we ever dared believe to be possible.”
“I write these words with the aim of standing here with you — bewildered, scared maybe, yet also with a sense of new possibility — at this point of diverging paths.”
When you think about we can just stop to process things and assess ahead at any given point in time. But sometimes it takes something as pressing as a viral pandemic to have the larger majority of people to slow down and assess thing. There seems to be few moments in time when the masses collectively stop together.
I think this is what’s happened this year, and I feel like Charles believes it’s necessary to speak of it from this vantage point as well. I’ve not studied much of ancient civilizations on my own, but Charles speaks of these broader cycles in civilization. There may be additional benefit in zooming out to that broader vantage point, whilst having the needed focus to zoom in on the virus and its effects at the same time.
“Lest we institutionalize distancing and reengineer society around it, let us be aware of what choice we are making and why.”
“Some commentators have observed how it plays neatly into an agenda of totalitarian control. A frightened public accepts abridgments of civil liberties that are otherwise hard to justify”
Is Charles wrong or inconsiderate for bringing this up? Are we allowed to question these things when our government or media deem something a crisis? Once again, I’ve witnessed people objecting to these kinds of discussions online. I’ve seen people lash out to others that are even trying to explore any form of assimilating processing of thoughts around this. If we’re going to talk about what’s frightening or alarming, then we must add people shutting down other’s questions to the list.
“such as: the tracking of everyone’s movements at all times,
forcible medical treatment,
restrictions on travel
and the freedom of assembly,
censorship of what the authorities deem to be disinformation,
suspension of habeas corpus, and military policing of civilians.
Many of these were underway before Covid-19; since its advent, they have been irresistible.”
“The same goes for: the automation of commerce;
the transition from participation in sports and entertainment to remote viewing;
the migration of life from public to private spaces;
the transition away from place-based schools toward online education,
the destruction of small business, the decline of brick-and-mortar stores,
and the movement of human work and leisure onto screens.
Covid-19 is accelerating preexisting trends, political, economic, and social.”
This is an extensive list. Can anyone argue that each of these things were on trend to be headed further in this direction? I’ve witnessed these trends to be accurate. If these things are indeed true, then we need to acknowledge that this has already been happening prior to Covid.
Sadly if we continue to draw from the addiction cycle analogy, people will be in a state of denial. For myself, even thought I agree with Charles on these points, I’ve not shared explicitly about it because I didn’t want to trigger anyone else’s trauma. I want to be as mindful as possible with the messages I put out to my social media network. That being said, we must find ways to discuss this effectively. It is necessary if we want to move forward responsibly.
“We are also hearing a lot about a “new normal”; that is to say, the changes may not be temporary at all. Since the threat of infectious disease, like the threat of terrorism, never goes away, control measures can easily become permanent.”
“If we were going in this direction anyway, the current justification must be part of a deeper impulse. I will analyze this impulse in two parts: the reflex of control, and the war on death.”
Charles was correct that we were often hearing the phrase “new normal.” This is going to mean different things to different people of course. It’s important to acknowledge the the course of actions over this year are being framed this way.
Once again why talk of where you’re going, when you haven’t fully accurately assessed where you’re coming from. I other words, how doing get there from here, when you don’t know where “here” is.
The Reflex of Control
“Compassion and conscience call us to do what we can to avert unnecessary tragedy. This is personal for me: my own infinitely dear but frail mother is among the most vulnerable to a disease that kills mostly the aged and the infirm.”
“Early reports were alarming; for weeks the official number from Wuhan, circulated endlessly in the media, was a shocking 3.4%. That, coupled with its highly contagious nature, pointed to tens of millions of deaths worldwide, or even as many as 100 million. More recently, estimates have plunged as it has become apparent that most cases are mild or asymptomatic. Since testing has been skewed towards the seriously ill, the death rate has looked artificially high.”
He speaks of some papers that were recent at the time, and of the Diamond Princess Cruise ship. While I believe that it’s important for people to research studies and findings regarding Covid-19, I’m not listening to Charles’s perspective for this kind of information. Although I do appreciate that he addresses it. (I think he would’ve been further criticized if he didn’t).
“Every day the media reports the total number of Covid-19 cases, but no one has any idea what the true number is, because only a tiny proportion of the population has been tested. If tens of millions have the virus, asymptomatically, we would not know it. Further complicating the matter is that Covid-19 deaths may be over-reported.”
I think a problem we in society is the quick judgment against any dissenting opinion. For Charles to be saying this so early in the pandemic is frowned upon by some. I think it’s important to consider these things. If the objective is to share accurate information or report “news” I believe it’s irresponsible to not address things like over-reporting or test accuracy.
So yes, we should be addressing these vantage points and perspectives. And yes, we should do so responsibly. But people shouldn’t be shut down for sharing their thoughts. I think those who are truly looking for solutions will find the varying perspectives helpful.
“Let me repeat: no one knows what is really happening, including me. Let us be aware of two contradictory tendencies in human affairs. The first is the tendency for hysteria to feed on itself, to exclude data points that don’t play into the fear, and to create the world in its image. The second is denial, the irrational rejection of information that might disrupt normalcy and comfort. How do you know what you believe is true?”
He refers to Daniel Schmactenberger here about how does one know what to believe is true. Our decline in effective sensemaking has been occurring before the onset of Covid-19. The discussion around it has been happening as well, at least for those who had the sensibility to have it in the first place. Once again, this is philosophizing and questioning that should be happening amongst us. I for one appreciate immensely that these discussions are happening,
“In the face of the uncertainty, I’d like to make a prediction: The crisis will play out so that we never will know. If the final death tally, which will itself be the subject of dispute, is lower than feared, some will say that is because the controls worked. Others will say it is because the disease wasn’t as dangerous as we were told.”
This is not a tough prediction to make. It is going to be rather unlikely that we ever will truly know. People like to find comfort in the thought that there will be a specific that will wrap up something in a near package. Uncertainly is a big challenge for the average person. But whether we realize it or not, there are many things in life that are uncertain.
He is correct. People will believe their current narrative as to why the viral pandemic pans out the way it does. For the most part each person will engage in confirmation bias to keep their narrative ‘right’ when the truth is they don’t know for sure. If someone cannot say that they don’t know for sure, they’re either experiencing cognitive dissonance, or lying (to themselves or to you).
“let’s look at some other numbers to get some perspective. My point is NOT that Covid isn’t so bad and we shouldn’t do anything.”
“Five million (children worldwide dying of hunger) is many times more people than have died so far from Covid-19, yet no government has declared a state of emergency or asked that we radically alter our way of life to save them. Nor do we see a comparable level of alarm and action around suicide — the mere tip of an iceberg of despair and depression — which kills over a million people a year globally and 50,000 in the USA. Or drug overdoses, which kill 70,000 in the USA, the autoimmunity epidemic, which affects 23.5 million (NIH figure) to 50 million (AARDA), or obesity, which afflicts well over 100 million.”
Think about all of these concerns he mentions here. We can no longer talk about these things the way we once did. These are concerns that we’ve had for decades. Now when someone speaks of them they have to make a qualifying statement about Covid. What is that about?
These concerns have taken a back seat. They have not gone away. In some instances they’ve exacerbated. When are we going to be able to focus on theses things again?
“If we can change so radically for Covid-19, we can do it for these other conditions too. Let us ask why are we able to unify our collective will to stem this virus, but not to address other grave threats to humanity. Why, until now, has society been so frozen in its existing trajectory?”
These are extremely important questions. I think Charles should be commended for asking them. I’d love to see community-based institutions address them as we move forward. I understand that this may seem not to take precedence over something that is more urgent and dangerous. But there should still be resources and attention rallying around these concerns too.
“The answer is revealing. Simply, in the face of world hunger, addiction, autoimmunity, suicide, or ecological collapse, we as a society do not know what to do. Our go-to crisis responses, all of which are some version of control, aren’t very effective in addressing these conditions.”
“It is a crisis for which control works: quarantines, lockdowns, isolation, hand-washing; control of movement, control of information, control of our bodies. That makes Covid a convenient receptacle for our inchoate fears, a place to channel our growing sense of helplessness in the face of the changes overtaking the world.”
These crisis control measures range in their ease-ability. While something like a lockdown may seem simple for one living under comfortable conditions, what about those who don’t. I’m not sure I understand that argument that people are making that measures to thwart Covid is easy enough for people to change their behavior, but for some reason it hasn’t been that easy or uniform for any other concern society has had.
“Covid-19 is a threat we know how to meet. Unlike so many of our other fears, Covid-19 offers a plan. Our civilization’s established institutions are increasingly helpless to meet the challenges of our time. How they welcome a challenge that they finally can meet. How eager they are to embrace it as a paramount crisis.”
“How easily the public joins the panic, embracing a threat that the authorities can handle as a proxy for the various unspeakable threats that they cannot.”
I’ve seen this before. Time and again, authorities overlook look more complex concerns needing to be addressed. Concerns with the environment, or communication concerns, or psychological based issues. Authorities usually on choose one or two issues to spearhead, putting all the focus in one direction, rather than spreading it across multiple issues. It does appear like Covid-19 fits the criteria for them to use such a structured response on how to control the impending crisis.
“Today, most of our challenges no longer succumb to force. Our antibiotics and surgery fail to meet the surging health crises of autoimmunity, addiction, and obesity. Our guns and bombs, built to conquer armies, are useless to erase hatred abroad or keep domestic violence out of our homes. Our police and prisons cannot heal the breeding conditions of crime. Our pesticides cannot restore ruined soil.”
Think about it? Why aren’t all of these other concerns handled more competently? So many people shunned these questions before Covid. Now they have Covid to shun them even further. So then can someone please state when is the ‘right’ time to address these questions. Once again, if Covid is deemed to be an urgent threat, put resources in place for it. But does that deplete all resources and focus from other concerns, especially when those concerns also result in death.
“What kind of problem succumbs to domination and control? The kind caused by something from the outside, something Other. When the cause of the problem is something intimate to ourselves, like homelessness or inequality, addiction or obesity, there’s nothing to war against.”
“If there is one thing our civilization is good at, it is fighting an enemy. We welcome opportunities to do what we are good at, which prove the validity of our technologies, systems, and worldview. And so, we manufacture enemies, cast problems like crime, terrorism, and disease into us-versus-them terms, and mobilize our collective energies toward those endeavors that can be seen that way.”
When you look at it from this angle, you have to see the truth in this perspective. Our leaders, whether governmental or corporate have certain tactics that they already have in place to use when they deem there is a problem. If the problem doesn’t fit their tactics, we don’t fight it. Then when something comes along that does work into their plan, they fight. Like Charles stats, they can pinpoint the ‘enemy’ and then the tactics for war and control can fall into place.
Funny as I’m writing this, I can already hear others who by into this saying I’m the cynical one. I’m not being cynical at all. I’m just calling it like I see it. It’s very clear and simple to me. They try to deride people from seeing it that, but for the most part it’s plain to see, and they don’t hide it completely.
“We single out Covid-19 as a call to arms, reorganizing society as if for a war effort.”
“Because Covid-19 seems to justify so many items on the totalitarian wish list, there are those who believe it to be a deliberate power play. It is not my purpose to advance that theory nor to debunk it, although I will offer some meta-level comments.”
I commend Charles for wanting to discuss the meta-level comments regarding this. I believe it’s a serious problem that we continually see people get criticized when trying to explore other concerns around this.
“Whether or not current controls are permanent, a precedent is being set for:
- The tracking of people’s movements at all times (because coronavirus)
- The suspension of freedom of assembly (because coronavirus)
- The military policing of civilians (because coronavirus)
- Extrajudicial, indefinite detention (ie. quarantine, because coronavirus)
- The banning of cash (because coronavirus)
- Censorship of the Internet (to combat disinformation, because coronavirus)
- Compulsory vaccination and other medical treatment, establishing the state’s sovereignty over our bodies (because coronavirus)
- The classification of all activities and destinations into the expressly permitted and the expressly forbidden (you can leave your house for this, but not that), eliminating the un-policed, non-juridical gray zone. That totality is the very essence of totalitarianism.”
So, are we allowed to discuss this or not? As I’ve stated before I commend Charles for bringing this up. I don’t see as a problem if people wish to discuss this perspective. In fact, I see it more of a problem if people are being censored from being able to have discussions about various perspectives. In my own network, when I see people opposing this, they are either coming from their own fear and cognitive dissonance, or they were already the types of people who acted in ways to censor others.
From the bullet list that Charles provided, we have seen some of these things occur less than when this was written. Still, I see no problem in stating perspective like this when an emerging crisis comes on to the scene, Then we can see what has developed over time, and the whether the degrees of development were accurately depicted.
“This is juicy material for conspiracy theories. For all I know, one of those theories could be true; however, the same progression of events could unfold from an unconscious systemic tilt toward ever-increasing control.”
Honestly I’m so over the term “conspiracy theory” even though I understand Charles is actually trying to reference things that would actually fit the category of conspiracy theory. Although I mostly see the term misappropriated by those who are trying to counter any dissenting opinion or trying to shut down those who simply doing some critical thinking.
I think it’s okay to consider Charles’ suggestion that thinks could still point in unwanted direction in an unconscious way. The only issue I have with that outlook is that when the powers that be see the results of their actions, this should be an opportunity to make the unconscious conscious. Therefore, when choosing to go in a direction that’s further hurting society (meaning we see clear results of this from the actions put in place) having it been “unconscious” should not be an excuse. The powers that be need to assess the results and feedback to have further actions be conscious actions.
“The ascent of control accelerated with the Scientific Revolution, which launched “progress” to new heights: the ordering of reality into objective categories and quantities, and the mastering of materiality with technology. Finally, the social sciences promised to use the same means and methods to fulfill the ambition to engineer a perfect society.”
“Of course they would like to keep track of everyone — all the better to ensure the common good. For them, Covid-19 shows how necessary that is. “Can we afford democratic freedoms in light of the coronavirus?” they ask. “Must we now, out of necessity, sacrifice those for our own safety?” It is a familiar refrain, for it has accompanied other crises in the past, like 9/11.”
Yes, I notice these similarities as well, before I saw that Charles mentioned it. So if Charles can make these cross-references with the past or using “history” for comparison and understanding, why aren’t others. Why aren’t they making these connections? I really don’t buy the arguments that someone might make “their just not smart enough to make the connection.” It’s amazing how much people make excuses for someone else’s incompetence. Rather than call them out on it, and have them explain themselves.
“True or false, the idea that the epidemic is some monstrous plot perpetrated by evildoers upon the public is not so far from the mindset of find-the-pathogen. It is a crusading mentality, a war mentality. It locates the source of a sociopolitical illness in a pathogen against which we may then fight, a victimizer separate from ourselves.”
While Charles specifically makes mention of the Illuminati at this point of his essay, I find it can be a deterrent to the readers. I mean he’s already mentioned the term conspiracy theory and other things a reader might find off-putting, but some words and terms will trigger people. While I wouldn’t want to censor Charles from speaking about these things.
“I have my opinions, but if there’s one thing I have learned through the course of this emergency is that I don’t really know what is happening. I don’t see how anyone can, amidst the seething farrago of news, fake news, rumors, suppressed information, conspiracy theories, propaganda, and politicized narratives that fill the Internet. I wish a lot more people would embrace not knowing. I say that both to those who embrace the dominant narrative, as well as to those who hew to dissenting ones. What information might we be blocking out, in order to maintain the integrity of our viewpoints?”
I prefer not to get bogged done in the specifics of any one particular narrative that is being proposed. Whether it seems conspiratorial by alternative information sources or whether it seems in-line with mainstream media messaging, I think it’s better to look at the broader strokes. It’s my impression that people too easily get caught up in content details, rather than looking at the context. I like exploring the context and seeing how the various content can fall into place from varying perspective lenses.
The War on Death
“The relevant question for me is, Would I ask all the nation’s children to forego play for a season, if it would reduce my mother’s risk of dying, or for that matter, my own risk? Or I might ask, Would I decree the end of human hugging and handshakes, if it would save my own life?”
“What is the right way to live? What is the right way to die? The answer to such questions, whether asked on behalf of oneself or on behalf of society at large, depends on how we hold death and how much we value play, touch, and togetherness, along with civil liberties and personal freedom. There is no easy formula to balance these values.”
Throughout this year, I’ve heard very little discussion around what Charles highlights here. Why aren’t people exploring the discussion around the pandemic in such a way? In my experience, it’s been rather difficult to have discussions like Charles is proposing. Whenever I engage with someone, they report the latest news story or findings that they’ve come across. What about their own logic and reasoning about they’ve functioned in the world.
Do you simply just scrap everything you know about how you’ve interacted prior to the discovery of a viral pandemic? I’m not sure it would be a wise recommendation to forget everything else you know because the powers that be are ending a message for you to change your behavior. What of your previous life experience? What of your logic? What of your intuition? Must your own inner knowledge take a back seat to an external authority?
“I’ve seen society place more and more emphasis on safety, security, and risk reduction.”
“It manifests in the form of latex gloves for more and more professions; hand sanitizer everywhere; locked, guarded, and surveilled school buildings; intensified airport and border security; heightened awareness of legal liability and liability insurance; metal detectors and searches before entering many sports arenas and public buildings, and so on.”
“The mantra “safety first” comes from a value system that makes survival top priority, and that depreciates other values like fun, adventure, play, and the challenging of limits.”
The list of measures stated above, are human-made decisions on how to cope with external conditions and perceived threats. Civilization has gone through many stages over the course of times. Some developments evolve society, other developments suppress it. When we experience the adverse effects of these measures, they must be change. We are constantly course correcting.
Some measures work in an acute manner. In the short term, they function to assist with creating structure and resolve to a problem. In instances when those measures were not meant to be long-term, we must create a contingency plan on how to gradually move to a more sustainable solutions. We have to ask if these measures are sustainable? Along with assessing their effectiveness, and exploring more suitable alternatives.
“I think most modern people, especially younger people, retain some of this inherent willingness to sacrifice safety in order to live life fully. The surrounding culture, however, lobbies us relentlessly to live in fear, and has constructed systems that embody fear. In them, staying safe is over-ridingly important.”
“The ultimate fulfillment of civilization’s program of control would be to triumph over death itself.”
“Ours is a society of death denial, from its hiding away of corpses, to its fetish for youthfulness, to its warehousing of old people in nursing homes. Even its obsession with money and property expresses the delusion that the impermanent self can be made permanent through its attachments.”
It’s a big claim to state that our society is in denial of death. I haven’t thought about these things much through the lens of death denial, but I can understand the point Charles is making here. I’m not sure how much this current of belief influences how we are handling the pandemic, but it’s worth exploring.
I think this is a tangent people may find difficult to follow. Or unwilling to explore. When there appears to be an urgent threat, I think most people would hesitant to wax philosophical about what’s happening. Rather they’d be more likely to take actions to avert any harm and danger. Which is what has happening, and that makes sense to me. But is there room at the table of decision-makers for people like Charles and those examining a broader picture.
“I asked a friend, a medical doctor who has spent time with the Q’ero in Peru, whether the Q’ero would (if they could) intubate someone to prolong their life. “Of course not,” she said. “They would summon the shaman to help him die well.”
“When the self is understood as relational, interdependent, even inter-existent, then it bleeds over into the other, and the other bleeds over into the self.”
While I admire Charles’ attempt here to bring in other cultures and their relationship to health care and death, I’m afraid it falls on deaf ears. People hardly pay attention when life is happening harmoniously. I don’t think they’re going to take the time to assimilate the broader strokes of other cultures when they feel their society is being threatened by a virus.
Having such broad perspective wasn’t valued in our society prior to the Covid pandemic, therefore these anecdotes will not resonate for most people. I’m gathering that from Charles’ understanding, this fits in nicely with his essay. But it’s my impression that this is where he begins to lose people.
“The War on Death gives way to the quest to live well and fully, and we see that fear of death is actually fear of life. How much of life will we forgo to sustain safety?”
“Totalitarianism — the perfection of control — is the inevitable end product of the mythology of the separate self.”
“Against the backdrop of the program of control, death denial, and the separate self, the assumption that public policy should seek to minimize the number of deaths is nearly beyond question, a goal to which other values like play, freedom, etc. are subordinate. Covid-19 offers occasion to broaden that view.”
Critique of public leaders and public policy increases every year, yet it appears little changes. With social media, it’s almost as if all people do is complain about the decisions of leaders, yet follow along with them anyway. How does it make sense to state your distrust in someone or something, yet follow the policies and protocols they relay to society.
Even if you agree with some of these policies and protocols, are you doing your diligent service to society by thoroughly examining the subject matter? I think some people believe they are, but they’re getting most of their information from mainstream media (which many also state distrust with these media entities). So how will people make better sense of things moving forward?
“Like all fear, the fear around the coronavirus hints at what might lie beyond it. Anyone who has experienced the passing of someone close knows that death is a portal to love. Covid-19 has elevated death to prominence in the consciousness of a society that denies it.”
This is a beautiful sentiment, and I believe that it’s these sentiments that are needed to resonate with people’s souls right now. Not sure if they are going to connect with these messages though, at least not in the formate of having to process so much broader view while coping with the practical matters of daily life struggles. Still, I’m glad it’s being said, and I hope these messages get to people.
What world shall we live in?
“How much of life do we want to sacrifice at the altar of security?
Do we want to live in a world where human beings never congregate?
Do we want to wear masks in public all the time?
Do we want to be medically examined every time we travel?
Are we willing to accept the medicalization of life in general, handing over final sovereignty over our bodies to medical authorities (as selected by political ones)?
Do we want every event to be a virtual event?
How much are we willing to live in fear?”
One again Charles poses to us a selection of questions. Are these questions answerable? Perhaps not at this moment in time. Are these questions important to consider as we move forward? I believe they are.
The things is, any one of these questions would likely be a lot for one to explore and process. Do people have the bandwidth tight now to do so. Are there groups of people that we can trust to do some of the leg work that will help us secure our sovereignty? Will society take a trajectory that chooses to quell fears, rather than stoke fears? More questions, but this is what comes up for me.
“Covid-19 will eventually subside, but the threat of infectious disease is permanent. Our response to it sets a course for the future. Public life, communal life, the life of shared physicality has been dwindling over several generations.”
“Do we want to continue to insulate ourselves still further from each other and the world?”
I find it fascinating that people believe the dwindling of communal life is by their choice. They believe it’s their own original thoughts. It’s not, it’s been projected into the cultural narrative for generations like Charles states. Sure, there are benefits to some of these societal changes, but the weaknesses and losses must be discussed too.
“To reduce the risk of another pandemic, shall we choose to live in a society without hugs, handshakes, and high-fives, forever more? Shall we choose to live in a society where we no longer gather en masse?…
“Shall children no longer play with other children? Shall all human contact be mediated by computers and masks?…”
“Is death reduction to be the standard by which to measure progress? Does human advancement mean separation? Is this the future?”
Okay, more questions. What will be the resolve as we take all of these factors into consideration.
“Do we envision a future of electronic hall passes, a system where freedom of movement is governed by state administrators and their software at all times, permanently? Where every movement is tracked, either permitted or prohibited? And, for our protection, where information that threatens our health (as decided, again, by various authorities) is censored for our own good?”
“Similar to 9/11, Covid-19 trumps all objections.”
There’s so much more to say about this!