If the Coronavirus could speak to you… what would it say?

If You could speak to the Coronavirus, what would You say?
What Gift could Coronavirus offer You? The World?
What are you inspired to reflect on?
Imagine yourself a year from now. What would you have learned?

Share Your Story

See below for submissions

Coronavirus Stories

You are our most formidable enemy, after years of relative peace and prosperity

This is a defining moment. Our collective trauma has broken us down. Can we rebuild on this eroding foundation? Our way of life is based on trust and connection; these invisible threads that bind us also create the foundation for a strong economy.

While it is challenging to be analytical about the stress in our lives during a time of peak anxiety and sweeping change, and even more challenging to take off our armor and connect with each other, sustaining our way of life requires exactly this. We need to move our thoughts from the fight-or-flight system into the highest plane of who we are. Our future as a people, and as a united nation, depends on it.


— Shauna Springer, Ph.D.  


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Lesson: Doing nothing is harder for many of us than doing something really hard
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There are plenty of examples in history to show us that nations of people can rise to the challenge of doing something hard. Yet, being asked to do nothing (but shelter in place) is quite a different thing. Many people will struggle with a loss of identity. The concept of “who I am” is formed in a network of interdependent roles and relationships. This is true across every culture and time. Losing all of this so suddenly will produce helpless rage for many of those impacted after the initial shock wears off.

Unless we are aware of this, and addressing it in a strategic way, this may lead to tragic outcomes to self and others. Specifically, if a potentially extended period of social distancing results in loss of a productive role in society and extended isolation, we can predict escalation of the very two risk factors that Joiner’s Interpersonal Model of suicide risk tell us we should be concerned about: thwarted belongingness and feelings of burdensomeness. The research community may insist that the data is “not yet in” but among those of us who are in trenches, who get weekly calls about suicides, or our nation's last responders who own funeral homes, there is wisdom to be gained in hearing their voice. They are our society's emotional first and last responders. They are the early alert system in our society. We need to listen right now to those who are in the trenches of mental warfare.

— Shauna Springer, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist  


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You swept in, making landfall like a hurricane, hovered over us for more than a year

\Many of us have suddenly been taken down to the “survival” level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Scores of us are getting laid off, small businesses are hanging on by a thread, and those who work in the gig economy are severely impacted by the discontinuation of their services. People across the span of wealth are suddenly feeling financially insecure.

Financial insecurity should theoretically be linked to the level of one’s wealth, yet now many more of us understand that it isn’t as simple as this. To the degree that we are stretched so thin that we don’t have savings or a buffer to pay our mortgage, we can be severely stressed by a change in our job status. You’ve made us insecure about our futures.


— Shauna Springer, Ph.D.  


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You’ve created impossible conflicts in our basic human priorities

The unwritten rules that we live by have suddenly changed. Unwritten rules are generally invisible to us—until they change. Two unwritten rules are “You earn your keep” and “You protect those you love.” These unwritten rules are directly at odds for many of us right now. Take the example of a dual wage-earning couple—perhaps one has been suddenly laid off and the other is a healthcare professional whose work is deemed “essential.” Due to the layoff, they need the income of the healthcare worker, but there is an invisible catch-22.

For that health care worker or teacher to earn income, he or she must go into their work environment without adequate personal safety equipment or a vaccine. As a result, those of us who are working may put loved ones at home in danger of becoming ill. Even though we are told that children are not a “high risk” group, the desire to protect our children from any risk is a primal drive. We are continually facing these kinds of catch-22 situations, torn between two highly unacceptable outcomes.


— Shauna ‘Doc’ Springer  


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The Hug

If I had known, I would have lingered
pressing our hearts together
in that strange and sacred embrace.
Inhaling the fragrance of
your friendship, kindship, your being
feeling your hair on my cheek
and the texture of your sweater.

We murmured our goodbyes
until next time -
meant to be a day, a week,
not a year, not a lifetime.

We pull apart, eyes meet again
with gentle knowing:
let this sacred touch keep you
and be a balm for tortured thoughts,
a vessel for secrets yet to share.

Had I known, I would have held you longer,
breathed in more of you
felt your heart a few more beats.
But had we known,
it might have been unbearable.

Now we hug in imagination,
remembering the bliss of casual communion,
and let this memory carry us
until next time.


— LM  

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Who would have thought that a gentle touch could be so dangerous
when it is such a critical part of our wellbeing?
How can we stay grounded and sane without a hug,
a pat on the back, a hand shake?

Who would have thought that we could recognize a smile
from seeing a slight crinkle around the eyes,
a nod in passing, a wave?
We have to look closely above masks to make that connection.

We continue to learn and adapt as Covid-19 engulfs us.
We are finding ways to maintain relationships
in the midst of chaos and uncertainty
and hold fiercely to the love that binds us together.

Our hearts continue to beat with the rhythm of life
as we press on through the shadows our eyes cannot penetrate.
We are finding our way in the dark by searching and by accident,
and we keep moving forward any way that we can.

We are resilient and brave, determined and innovative
even though we have no idea how to find a resolution
that will give us hope and will save us.
One step, one day at a time moves us through fear.

We are holding in reserve the touch
that will bring us back together,
waiting until it is time
to feel safe again.

— Dottie Joslyn  


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COVID Testing: Who wins? Who loses?

Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD) is a solidly proven social control tool, and it's effective under any form of government.

Hitler’s closest Lieutenant, Hermann Goering famously described the simple process: Put the people in fear, and if you can keep them in fear, you can get them to do or accept anything that you want them to do or accept. They will turn into sheep.

The current 24/7 fearmongering about COVID "cases", even though 85% of "cases" are asymptomatic (i.e. the testee is not sick), is a perfect vehicle to instill the FUD that Goering describes.

What enables us to be tagged as a COVID "case"? The Positive Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test, which can discover in our sinus cavities the presence of some viral DNA from the COVID virus. Unfortunately, the PCR test cannot distinguish between inactive viruses and “live” or reproductive ones, and therefore cannot determine if someone is sick, or even if they are contagious. It's therefore useless as a diagnostic tool.

And yet, this insanely inaccurate test (with a false-positve rate of about 80%) is being used to create these exploding, hysterical and meaningless "case" numbers, which are then used to justify and impose draconian shutdowns and protective measures, being implemented variously across the world.

This "great experiment" is not over, and it's not clear to me what the end-game is, but everything about this fails this writer's smell test.

Who wins, and who loses?


— KJF  

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The Signs

I pull my car into/ the carport as NPR broadcasts a report on/ the plague of desert locusts descending on the Horn of Africa/ swathing, swirling, moving on. /I turn off the engine and/ listen to the story. One rancher laments,/ “When we slaughter our livestock we find/ locust faces in their stomachs.”/ Largest swarm in Kenya is 37/ miles long by 25 miles/ wide, larger than most cities./ The locusts march on, their chitinous/ exoskeletons resembling military armor. I wonder,/ is this infestation one more sign of /the End Times? The Apocalypse set to/ descend on the world, swathing and swirling? / Africa already has makings /of a Covid-19 epidemic / Now add the locusts.

Will I soon/behold angels upending bowls over the earth filled with/ painful sores, dead sea creatures/ heatwaves beyond tolerance /darkness/ earthquakes?/ Can seeing visions, the battle between ultimate /Good and ultimate Evil be/ far behind? T.S. Eliot wrote the world will end/ “not with a bang, but with a/ whimper.” I’m fearing that/ before the last whimper (maybe from the/ lips of a Covid patient on death’s precipice)/ there will be many other bangs: giant/ hailstones, frogs tumbling from/ dragon mouths, gnats /in eyes, boils, torments./ I strain my ears to hear the/ inevitable clattering of hooves as the /four horsemen ride into town. // Bang. /In the silence that follows, I fear no one/ will remember the changing of /water into wine, the/ miraculous healings of mind and body/ a man walking on water.

— Hannah Maggiora  

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COVID Response: Who wins? Who loses?

I remember back when having a "case" of something meant that you actually had some kind of affliction: A "case" of athlete's foot, or a "case" of liver cancer, or a "case" of dandruff, or a "case" of depression, etc, etc.

Now, in a surreal and historic twist on the science of epidemiology and medicine, the media, and therefore all of us, are relentlessly focusing on COVID "cases", even though about 85% of those cases are completely asymptomatic, and only a small fraction of the remaining "cases" with symptoms are at risk of death or long-term disability. Even though we know who the at-risk groups are, and why they are at-risk. Even though we know how to mitigate those risks and build up our immune responsiveness.

But rather than respond to this threat proportionately by focusing on those most at-risk, COVID "cases" have become everyone's new boogeyman, causing Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt in the population at large, and generating economic and social collateral damage far exceeding the actual threat of this virus to the population at large.

Why is this global, fear-mongering approach to the COVID-19 threat persisting? Who wins? Who loses?


— KJF  

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Corona Tears

Sitting Thinking,
has brought tears from both eyes.
Not one teardrop from one eye
but both freely flowing.
Has the silence and stillness finally landed?
Has the well of emotion
finally filled to over flowing?
Finally watering the landscape
allowing flowers to grow again
in this world of fear, blame, and division.

The great forgetting
has broken the world.
The tears of emotion
now dripping and filling cracks
going deeper into desperate hearts
sprouting seeds of remembering,
remembering how to begin again in the garden.

Learning about love, tending, nurturing, harvesting,
all the abundance.
We remember about listening
to bees and birds, pollinating, spreading abundance.
We prune and fertilize with kind thoughts,
growing with the trees, learning their language, their songs
through glistening eyes.
The stone rolled away from blinded eyes
now washed from sheltering.
The silence, stillness, and wonder
have deepened this desperate heart.

Soon, as stones are rolled away from sheltering,
there is another chance to listen
and step into the garden as Adam or Eve.
This time nothing forbidden,
because I have listened to the well of emotions.


— Brian R. Martens  


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Live Anew

If the coronavirus could speak to me, it would whisper in my ear: live again. No, not just that hurried living, rushing from appointment to appointment, eating a high caloric diet from some fast food joint on some stretch of spaghetti highway -- no, fool, LIVE! See the sunrise this morning and meditate, then exercise, eat a bowl of strawberrie, and marvel at this, your new life.

The coronavirus would tell me my life is precious, that every life is precious, that sand is falling through an hourglass --my hourglass, my life.

Coronavirus would say, help my neighbors, bring my elderly neighbors food from the grocery store, volunteer at a soup kitchen, tell family that you love them, as tomorrow is never a guarantee, but a wish that you blow on, like the dandelion you made wishes to long ago.

Lastly the coronavirus would say, live anew, for just today, for every day honor those whose spirits have left this earth too soon--my grandfather who fought in a war continents away, my father who marched against oppression, for my grandmother who wanted to pursue a college degree but could not because only men went to college in her family at that time. The coronavirus would stir me to life, gently at first, and then like a shooting star racing across a coal-colored sky--with wonder and glee, saying, "You, everyone, live anew!"

— MM  

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I can't breathe--

This isn't my story, not really. Its not even my sentence in the title. Its George Floyd's. Its Michael Johnson. Its so many murdered black men and women. I find it SO interesting that we are facing a GLOBAL pandemic that attacks the breath, the lungs, our very system of bringing our bodies to LIFE.

I don't have answers for you about what CoronaVirus would say to me, but I am listening, and I think we as a nation and as a world need to LISTEN, and more than that, to atone for our bloody violent history of slavery before we can heal those wounds that are literally suffocating people to death, literally and figuratively with institutional racism blocking opportunities for jobs, education, growing wealth and so forth.

I hear Mother Earth SCREECHING in the fires, another act of nature. where we CAN NOT BREATHE because the air is thick with smoke and poison. I am in the midst of this sheet of smoke and covered in masks and gowns and protective gear, can barely see in front of me as I traverse this harrowing time.

Everything feels disturbed, at DIS-ease, and its rooted in the defects of our nation, the dark spots we have not been willing to shine the light on. It its LONG OVERDUE , it is time to shine the light into every corner, to let the light heal those festering infected wounds and begin the process of atonement. There is no way out but through. This is our journey. this is the heroes journey, and we are all being called to be our highest selves.

— Sas  

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Reconnecting with The Cosmic Soul

From the archetypal astrological perspective, the Coronavirus comes with intense evolutionary pressures for the radical reconfiguration of all the world’s structures, on both collective and personal levels.

Our inner world of the psyche and the outer-external cosmos, are intricately connected through powerful archetypal energies, manifested by the planetary movements. The intense experience of Saturn-Pluto is one that shapes our character, and profoundly transforms the structures of societies, as well as our own psychological inner world. The Phoenix bird archetype rises up from the ashes, and by destroying all the things that don’t serve us anymore, it brings a new light-a new order, a new paradigm. We are all in an alchemical process that allows us to awake, transform, and shift to a new level of consciousness. It's a death-rebirth process, where we need to rely on our own inner power and redefine our ambitions, careers, and the way we look at our happiness.

This aspect also brings breakdowns, a need to face our shadows, and will take us into the dark night of our soul. But our souls have already signed up to be here under this planetary alignment. Bathing in these strong cosmic energies, we can find profound creative intelligence, we can choose our personal true meaning, so we can be reconnected with the whole Cosmic Soul, with the Anima Mundi.

We have all received a reminder to reconnect with our humanity. It may be frightening, but it is so powerful. Are you ready?


— Silvia Popa- AstroCoach & Business Consultant  


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Insights from Fear of the Unknown

Yes ... Coronavirus as been speaking to me for a few months now. Here is what it says to me:

Fear not! Although I am a little different from other viruses you may have met over your lifetime, I am still just a virus. Fear-mongering stories are abounding between and among individuals, groups, institutions, and above all else, the news media.

All viruses - including me, Coronavirus, just cannot compete with a healthy immune system. So if you want to control me, look at your diet and other lifestyle choices that may be wearing down your immune system. Even if you have no symptoms of illness and believe you are healthy, look at your diet and mindfulness choices. How do you handle stress? Do you live a high stress lifestyle? Do you eat fresh produce (the builder of healthy immunity), or do you stick with the SAD (standard American diet, i.e., junk food, soda, high processed carbs, sugar, etc.)? Do you take vitamins (like Vitamin C and other immune-healthy supplements)? Do you practice yoga, do Bible study, or meditation so you can calm yourself and just be in the present moment?

This is a wonderful time to be still and quiet and reflect upon your life. Listen to your thoughts and feelings. Get in touch with your spirituality (and yes, we are genetically wired for this although the choice is always yours).

Use this important time to reflect, feel, and think about your life. I - Coronavirus - can help you make lemonade out of the lemons in your life.


— Dr. Donna Poppendieck, Principal, Health and Wellness Online, LLC  


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Living in Novel Time

Fresh, cool morning air floods through my open window. My lungs swell with unsullied oxygen as I blissfully inhale the crisp scent of life itself. Stilled freeways, ordinarily roaring this time of day, provide a noiseless backdrop. For a moment in the stillness, I just am.

Coinciding with my unreserved breathing, COVID 19 assails the respiratory systems of thousands. The fortunate get hooked up to a life support machine that blows oxygen into their lungs. If ventilating fails, people can drown in their own clogged fluids. In a heartbeat, they stop breathing.

The global pandemic and ensuing suspension of business as usual gives pause, an opportunity to stop and take a deep breath. This “industrios interruptus” clamors for us to reflect upon the stultifying effects of modern existence, where everything and everyone is a commodity, where a person’s value is determined by their productivity, and where the natural process of breathing, and the air itself, are casualties of our catastrophic consumptive appetites.

How have I also co-modified myself and others? What alterations of true self have been sacrificed at the altar of social conformity in the name of production? How shallow is my customary respiration? How much deeper could it be?

In the caesura, a flash in the pandemic sparks an opening to examine how we, how I, have been operating and to craft a vision for change. The Novel Coronavirus could be a catalyst for something new - a breath of fresh air.

— Kathy Trost, Ph.D.  

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Hugging in the Time of COVID-19

As shelter in place began, the solitude felt like the relief that comes when the sound of an air conditioner or gardener's mower stops and you realize you'd been holding your breath a little. When asked how I was doing, I felt embarrassed to admit I was relieved, living more slowly and quietly, knowing how many people were suffering.

Now, I'm embarrassed to admit how smug I was, judging people who exposed others to the virus. After visiting my beloved sister, I understand how hard it is to stay away from people you love.

We were determined to be careful. We self-quarantined for two weeks before, to keep each other safe. When I arrived, we all masked up. My sister put sanitizer in every room. I had one of her two bathrooms to myself, while her family shared the other.

Each passing day, we felt more relaxed in each others' company. Six feet became four and then three. By the third day, we only masked when we were within a foot or two of each other. By day five, not hugging my sister - my most favorite person in the world - felt like torture. When I shared this with her, we flung ourselves, simultaneously, into each others' arms, heads aimed away from each other.

If I got her sick, I would be devastated. And yet, that hug felt like oxygen - that same sensation of realizing how much I needed it, only when I finally had it.


— Julie Levin, MA  


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Living with the Coronavirus

Now we wake up with sounds that we never heard before. The sound of the ocean and its waves, the birds, and the leaves of the trees. We enjoy the breeze and all its calm that leads us to learn things that because of being in a hurry we have not been able to learn
In these days of social distancing, we learned to be with ourselves, to develop patience and face what happens.

Perhaps the biggest concern is getting a loved one, friend, or one to be contagious. We realized how vulnerable and fragile we are and that sometimes we can’t control everything. When the virus began to spread in other countries, we saw so far for it to reach us. Day by day we got used to this new reality, which offers us the opportunity to be grateful and positive. Why has social distancing been so difficult for us? Not being able to hug, not having contact with family and friends. Coronavirus offered us a gift, the time with which we are so "enmeshed" that sometimes it gets out of hand. Moments of reading those dusty books that we had acquired months ago. Making that recipe for Grandma's cookies. Now we have the gift of enjoying time.

To realize what really matters. We continue to be productive at our homes. Families share more time together. Empathy, communication and above all charity has developed. The positive of this disease is seeing how the environment improved. It is a reboot of nature and of us. The concept of life as changed. The virus mutated our way of seeing life, making us stronger.


— Maribel Pagan, MA, LPC  

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Take some time for you!
Let us enjoy the beauty of life though our senses.
Use your imagination just look at pictures of things that make you feel relaxed.
Imagine yourself touching the sand and feeling it in your hands and feet.
Listen to the sound of the waves and think about its smell and color.

Lets enjoy the beauty of life though our senses.

— Prof. Maribel Pagan, MA, LPC  

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That Retreat You Always Dreamt About

We may never know whether the forced and unbounded cessation of society saved lives. We can know what happened to us because we have been, for the most part, confined to home.

With the world somewhat upside down, that which is important has sorted itself from the superfluous. The voice or image of a friend, food to eat, walks to take, time to think, time to read, time to write: what was and is impoverishing economically was and is enriching spiritually.

Coming together electronically has become a reality, opening new doors for so much!

There is no such thing as virtual prayer or meditation, but each is available in this new world, and each is accessible owing to this windfall of time. No need to pack the bags, make the reservations, hustle to the airport, rush to the retreat house, unfurl the mat. It is all here, right before your eyes, and ears, and nose, and taste, and touch. Just add imagination.

Close the door to disease. Open the mind and heart and spirit to that still, small voice.


— MEK  

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Crisis Stimulates Evolution

An interesting time we are living in. I’ve been thinking about this a lot recently.

We are being asked to keep our spaces clean. To be cognizant of our social interactions and mindful of how our health and behavior impact one another. We are being asked to work less away and stay home, closer to our families. We are driving and flying less, therefore polluting our environment less. We are are preparing meals at home rather than dining out, therefore more mindful of healthy living practices. We are being asked to spend more time in solitude, perhaps for an opportunity to reflect and create. Perhaps this is a time to prove how courageous and resilient you can be. Maybe this is the universe’s ‘call-to-action’ for us to be more aware. To slow down. To unite. Sometimes ‘crisis’ calls for evolutionary practices.

With all the propensities, I believe some relief will come. I remind us all that having faith and taking action is the recipe for any revolutionary change. Accountability with compassion and empathy are necessary. Sometimes pain is necessary to evolve. It’s the law of the universe. So I remind us all to stay strong and committed because I truly do believe there is a light at the end of this long tunnel.


— Dr. Manmeet Rattu  


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Covid 19

I have to wonder if the blended culture and freedoms allowed in America have curtailed a united response from the majority.

It is disheartening that countries of largely ethic populations were "cajoled" "forced" "insightful" to recognize the threat and act positively thereby minimizing the casualties.

— RC  

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Time To Check Your Food

Coronavirus says this to me and to the world right now - Check your food, Buddy! and adapt to a plant based whole-food diet. It has now been proven that people who suffer from chronic diseases like Hypertension or Diabetes can either reverse their ailments or reduce it to a very large extent if they change their dairy and meat-infused diet to much more healthier Vegan Diet. There has been a great amount of research by medical practitioners like Dr. Dean Ornish and Dr. Neal Bernard that has proven to be path-breaking from the terms of how we look at food as a therapeutic process in itself. And the reason is that a plant based diet enhances your immunity and as I have a strong liking for people who have pre-existing conditions, there is a lesser probability of you getting infected (compared to those who have comorbidities) if you adapt to a healthy plant based diet. The plant based diet also increases fiber, reduce inflammation and helps maintaining healthy weight. You mitigate getting new infection through this healthy alternative. Even if you get infected, you will heal faster.

I also say this to you that, especially at these trying times, you need to practice compassion, stay healthy and take care of your personal hygiene. This is the time to be closer together, to heal, to drop the baggage of past mental blocks and embrace change. I am in front of you, stark and real! I may be in the air for all you know but get up, be resilient and change your story.


— Sandeep Kulshrestha  


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Viral Communication

Namuh: Why are you doing this?

Covid: What are you referring to?

Namuh: You are killing my people and disrupting normal life.

Covid: I am true to my design, death is just a consequence of your species genetic building blocks. Why are you doing this?

Namuh: Doing what? I’m just living my life and making things better.

Covid: Oh really? Better for whom? I don’t think the whales share your conviction…

Namuh: Well… I’m not harming them on purpose… it’s just a side effect of progress.

Covid: You do realize I can claim the same, right? All I am doing is finding a way to replicate, nothing personal here…. It is what I was designed to do.

Namuh: So you think you were designed by God to reduce the number of people on the planet?

Covid: God? What’s that?

Namuh: The creator, the force that caused the universe to become.

Covid: I am not familiar with this? Is that a Human invention?

Namuh: No, God is the cause of everything. She made the heavens and the earth, caused life to spring forth in all its beauty and filled our souls with hope and love.

Covid: Like I said… a human invention, a delusion you conjure to explain what you do not understand.

Namu: You must not have a soul, you have to FEEL God to believe.

Covid: So, if humans did not exist – God would not exist?

Namuh: I never thought about that.

Covid: Maybe that’s why I am here, to make you think.

— Oded Shakked  


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One Home - One Family
Better Days
We’re not alone

Emergency -> Better days -> We’re not alone -> Home

— Nola NOrdmarken, MA, MFT  

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What Does Love Have To Do With It?

Over the past few years in Northern California, we have experienced devastating fires. But what I loved about the fires is that it brought everyone together. Families and friends needed to stay together, and the community came together to help support one another through the loss and tragedy of it all.

With this Corona Virus, what we are seeing on a global scale, is the idea of isolation. We are being asked to stay away from one another… time for hibernation. Time to go within and ask yourself, “Where have I not been giving myself my love and attention?” “How can I love myself more?”

Have I been getting enough sleep? Do I need to take more naps? Can I go to bed 15 minutes earlier?
Can I decrease or eliminate processed foods from my diet and incorporate even more fruits, vegetables, and whole foods into my diet?
Can I decrease or eliminate alcohol?
Have I been getting enough exercise? Can I fit at least 10 to 15 minutes in each day?Have I been taking my supplements? Vitamin C, elderberry syrup, whatever it is…
Have I been taking time to be out in nature to ground myself?
Have I been able to forgive other people? Can I forgive myself?

If we can each commit to a little more self-love today and each day going forward,
Then we can be strong in the face of fear and have gratitude for the fear as the learning and growth opportunity that it represents.

I say Thank You Corona Virus for giving me the opportunity to love myself even more!


— Keli Meagher  

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Behaviors in Light of Covid-19

Ideological differences are but one trigger aggravating adherence to recommended practices for Covid-19 social protections. By conservatives, general discounting of the mainstream media leads to downplaying the health risks or perceived severity of Covid-19. The consequence of such perception aggravates adherence to the recommended actions of social distancing and wearing facial protective gear.

A common question emerges in our circle of liberal contemporaries whether to intervene when a member asserts a challenge to others concerning compliance with the protocols. Such challenges work in both directions: adherence believers rivaling adherence challengers; and, adherence challengers to believers.

Requiring social protocols to health often establishes negative consequences for non-compliance. No mask - no entry policies and police enforcement of social distancing are examples. The libertarian and anarchist see such enforcement as over-reach, believing their rights are usurped—no government has a right to interfere in a personal choice. “It’s my body.”

Those more risk-averse generally adhere to the social paradigm of everyone must play by the rules; otherwise, mitigating the spread of Covid-19 is fruitless. The same rationale used to support vaccinations.

And then there is just the plain old contrarian. The one that perceives their knowledge as superior and but for the passive, ignorant, blind followers, the truth would prevail. If they could only listen to the facts as proffered. Regardless of the aggregate behavior, the contrarian would use their selective facts to favor an opposing perspective.

There exist but three reactions to a social challenge. 1) Use facts to support a position and refute any questioning. 2) Keep silent, hide behind a tree, and stay quiet. Or, 3) be creative with ideas, embellish each person’s peccadilloes, and be empathetic towards the other.

Which are you?

— Geoffrey MacMillan  

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Gateway to Belonging and BeWilderment

Mother-Queen Corona, maligned for her ruthless ways (could it be otherwise, given our ruthlessness to Earth?), claimed the global stage at the crest of 2020, in sync with the much anticipated Saturn-Pluto-Jupiter conjunction in Capricorn—harbinger of death and transformation in our structures and systems—shouting: Go to your rooms! Think on your errant ways! Listen to the Natural World. Donning the guise of a biological threat to all, to the Breath that sustains us, we obeyed.

I am among the lucky to have felt the Blessing, rather than the Sacrifice, visited by Corona, to feel nourished by the gifts of Time and Quiet that have softly settled over the Land (with the exception of the cacophonous 8pm Happy Howling Hour). My watch words have been Slow Down, Simplify, and Savor. I have dropped into more instinctual rhythms and creative impulses, a deepened attentiveness to inner events needing healing and metabolizing, and to my relationships with the great pulsating world of the Garden outdoors.

Corona has also inspired me to seek understanding and connection with global online networks, where I have found much wisdom and kinship. Too, I have deepened my awareness of the Traumas we all know, and of what Healing entails. I have grown my capacity to forgive, to let go of old hurts and resentments, and found rejuvenation in family relations. I have contemplated with others the true meaning of Vulnerability, Resilience, and what it will take to ReImagine our world. First, I feel, we need to practice UnKnowing, and Be-Wildering.

Lastly, the gift of Time has allowed me to reawaken my Creativity and Play—in the grounded domains of Garden, Home, and Food, and in the airy sphere of Writing and Ideas. A year on, I will see how Corona returned me to a deeper relation to myself and to my part in Life, and that this in turn brought me into deeper relation to the larger Community of Belonging. I will thank Her.

— Diana Badger  


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What Existentialists Can Teach Us About Covid-19

Existential thinkers have a long history of poignant responses to crises, and there is probably no timelier exemplar than Albert Camus. In the closing pages of his 1948 masterwork The Plague (now on bestseller lists worldwide), Camus shows us just how significant and indeed essential even glimpses of inner freedom can be. Here is his insightful narrator, Dr. Rieux, commenting: “Among the heaps of corpses, the clanging bells of ambulances, the warnings of what goes by the name of fate, among unstinting waves of fear and agonized revolt, the horror that such things could be, always a great voice had been ringing in the ears of these forlorn, panicked people, a voice calling them back to the land of their desire, a homeland. It lay outside the walls of the stifled town, in the fragrant brushwood of the hills, free skies, and in the custody of love.”

While many of us may not share the inner freedom-nor eloquence-of the great existentialists, we can, to the extent possible, apply their chief teachings. Among these are first, recognize your ability to define rather than be defined by the circumstances that beset you; second, draw on your inner life-your memories, your imagination, your thoughts, and your feelings-to broaden your capacity to respond to rather than merely react against adversity; and three, connect with that which you love, for there is almost always something or somebody to remind us of life’s awesomeness, even in the most trying hours.

Posted by and with Dr. Schneider's permission. Excerpted from Psychology Today online, 5/12/20: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/awakening-awe/202005/what-existentialists-can-teach-us-about-covid-19

— Kirk Schneider, Ph.D.  


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I am reminding you, the human, that we both are a part of nature.

We will still co-exist until there's a vaccine or cure for human.

Until then, you, the human will lead a mindful lifestyle for yourselves and others.

You will focus on what you can control, which is your own actions.

— Saori Miyazaki, M.A., LMFT  


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Stop Eating the Bear! Death is Part of Life, to be Honored and, YES, Celebrated

Although coronavirus mostly kills medically vulnerable people, on the whole, it is lethal to frail elderly people ages 70 and up. One of the main characteristics of our time is the view of death, in any form, as a failure to be avoided at ALL costs (literally!). One quarter of Medicare spending in the U.S. occurs in the last year of peoples’ lives. Sadly, most old people die in hospitals, where the medical “industry” ferociously fights to prolong life by all available means, WITHOUT, necessarily, improving the quality of that life, while profiting greatly.

Millions of elderly people live in ‘care’ homes, often with very little or no connection to their families, to community, meaningful life or joyful activities. The financial costs of keeping old people alive WITHOUT regard to their “vitality”, wellness or happiness is a strange phenomenon of our time.

Indigenous cultures, which, beautifully, revere their elders for their wisdom, experience and guidance, have rituals to let the old die naturally and with dignity, when it is their time to go. This is essential to the survival of the tribe and for the dignity and respect of the elderly. Illustrating this, according to a myth from the North, when the time came, the tribe, which believed that another world, the afterlife, awaited their dead, would gather around an honored elder to celebrate his/her place in the never ending circle of life and death and then the old walked off onto the ice so that the polar bears would eat them, and the young could then hunt the bear and so sustain the life of the village. In our culture, in sharp contrast, we have the old, frail, near-death, often in-pain, immobilized and non-communicative people ‘eat the bear’ by having them consume time, resources, and money, leaving the tribe and/or family hungry or poor after their death.

It is important for us to continue to respect, love and honor old, wise people and benefit from their experience, wisdom, guidance and leadership but return to letting the highly frail, suffering and severely ill elderly die in peace and dignity in their community, hopefully in the arms of their loved ones.

Time to mature into an acceptance of death as part of life, as a transition to be honored and, yes, celebrated.


— Ofer Zur, Ph.D.  


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Freestone Road

“To run from vulnerability is to attempt to run from the essence of our nature and to immobilize the tidal, conversational foundations of our identities. In refusing our vulnerability we also refuse the visible and invisible help needed at every turn of our existence, and perhaps most especially, close off our understanding of the grief of others.” David Whyte

I like to go walking at dusk
in the twilight. But tonight I am growing,
moment by moment, afraid of the world
even my own surroundings. The moon has not
yet come up. In this light everything is gray
but the red pounding of my heart.

I come to the edge of my own being

I hear one owl hoot a warning to
another nearby. And then I make out
its taloned-beauty perched above me.

A Great Horned Owl
with its seraphim of wings
in the darkening heavens.

Its presence is a startling magnitude.
All that can come upon us without warning
as the angels of the biblical stories
change everything. Or the approach

when I am almost home, of this large stag
its silent silhouette alert, becomes medieval
a hart, it merges with the leaving light.
Almost Spirit, it must have been feeding on leaves
when we alarm each other, become motionless
in the interconnected bramble and lace
of the coastal mountains that are our habitat.

We live dangerously close to each other, don’t we,
to all that is magnificent and momentary.

— Judith Stone  

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Don’t  throw the baby with the bathwater. 

This is a time when more than usually I need information. And there is so much information coming at me that I find myself in a constant state of defense. Some of it is based on evidence, some on “evidence”, some is just made up. Some given by qualified people who say one thing and some by qualified people who say the opposite. Some is information, some is interpretation, some is projection, some is opinion, some is belief, and some is plain old misinformation. Some is spiritual, some is rational, some is factual – though facts seem to be debatable.

I have learned long ago that when you want to get a message across simply and clearly on the media there is little room for subtlety or nuance. That makes many speak in absolutes, seem sure of unsure things, claim as facts their hypotheses.  I find that some people are willing to take anything at face value to avoid having to be critical, and some choose to reject everything for the exact same reason. My instinct is to be skeptical, to not believe, to not accept. I keep telling myself to actually listen and maybe learn something valuable.

Here is where I am at: Personally, I  do not think the Coronavirus came to teach us anything, but I do believe we can learn from it. A lot. The fact that I dislike a metaphor doesn’t mean the idea is worthless. So I try to listen as much as I can, repeating the mantra to myself: “Don’t throw the baby with the bathwater”. It is exhausting.

— Doron Hovav  


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Life Choices, Regrets, Duty, Discipline, Noncompliance

It started with the media spreading fear, a possibility that any day could be the “last day of my life”. I contemplated missed opportunities (visiting relatives or places, expressing feelings, taking a stand, completing personal projects). I was forced to reflect on my life. The insight that could only be brought on by a pandemic was that I had to be content with the choices I made. I fought for a relationship, completed a race which defines me for the past seven years, promoted ultrarunning around the world, and made a difference in our horses’ lives.

There was a mental balance between life choices and regret. There was also duty and the discipline required to fulfill that duty. I realized that I had a family to protect and care for, that the several organizations I was involved in required extra work and financial help.

Crisis illuminates our duty more than ever to take care of our families, our loved ones and, if we are in a position of leadership, to take care of the people or animals who count on us. Success and leadership can only be tested in times of crises. This increased my motivation to take on the work load, and to go forward one day at the time.

Aristotle said: “tolerance and apathy are the last virtues of a dying society.” Today, more than ever, seems true. Tolerance for losing liberties & apathy towards the values we once held. Understating “noncompliance as a duty” when common sense is lost, offers hope. So does love, compassion & freedom of choice.

— Andrei Nana  

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I, the Coronavirus, speak: Death is NOT a failure!

Over many decades, admittedly, I, Covid-19, have clearly failed to get your attention regarding what you need to do to survive on our Earth.

The important messages that I failed to convey:

1. You have not attended to exploding overpopulation of the planet. Myriads of toxic problems and ecological imbalances confront the continued breathing, drinking and feeding of a growing population.

2. Earth’s climate and ecosphere is warming up due to overpopulation and excessive use of fossil energy, which harbingers the end of human life unless we change.

3. Finally, and most significantly, you fail to understand that death is NOT a failure. Life and death are part of a great eternal circle. Sadly, most people die in hospitals, where health care professionals ferociously fight for their lives, rather than die peacefully at home with their family and friends, surrounded with love. Profiteering medical and pharmaceutical industries perpetuate cruel and destructive practices, and billions of dollars are spent annually to keep near-death old people alive for years by all means.

Let’s set the record straight: While I, the coronavirus, indeed infect people of all ages, I primarily kill vulnerable old people, especially those above 70 or 80 years old. In spite of all the misinformation, I, generally, do not kill the young unless they are already medically significantly compromised.

I hope that I am more effective this time in delivering my messages.

— Maria Anderson  

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Our Common Quest

I want to understand you, do the safest things, and be healthy for myself, loved ones, local and world communities.

Too small to be seen, you are an equal opportunity infector, stealthily hitching rides to hosts. You challenge us to use our imagination and abstract thinking, understand exponential growth. You hijack cells’ reproductive machinery, then make billions of yourself. Your drive to survive is a contrast to the most adaptive species on the planet, human beings.

Humble and elusive, you bring the world’s greatest armies to a grinding halt. Skies clear, waters turn blue. You’ve awakened people: neighbors talk to neighbors as they exercise outside after their long torpor. Others pass with a nod, acknowledging the Common Quest, stealthily plotting your demise to stop you from commandeering our way of life.

Humanity’s mission is to find a vaccine, then produce that in the billions. The human species has a multifaceted drive to survive which contrasts with your simple existence. You just want our DNA in a warm moist place in the throat & lungs.

You are the world’s only superpower now, but can be defeated with soap. I want to wash you off my hands & things I touch. I want to breathe clean, fresh air apart from others and to protect myself, loved ones, local & world communities by taking all precautions necessary, because we are all on a mission to adapt and survive. It is our Common Quest.

— Brian Cavanagh  

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To save the future, we must rethink technology

The coronavirus is not the end of the world. But it is a warning shot not to be missed. Plagues come and go, but this is a dress rehearsal for even more traumatic events coming soon. And if we don’t plan together now, we’ll be blindsided once again.

The coronavirus must wake us to these changes:
* Accelerated social change due to AI (Artificial Intelligent) outplacing workers.
* Technology doing everything, changing forever human-machine interaction.
* Climate change

To successfully control these changes, and not freeze in paralyzing despair, we need to imagine an entirely new portfolio of tools and, especially, how we use them.

We need to rethink technology.

Over the past century, the natural sciences have revealed how nature resolves all opposites. Time is both straight and curved; chaos is highly developed order; mass and energy are the same. Now we have to infuse those insights into the tools we engineer, and how we use them.

We must determine that the outcome of our tool use is an act of mercy or kindness, not abuse or savagery. And engage in what Rilke called “the great work of the world.”

The first step is to agree what that “great work” is, the better to focus on solutions - not more wasteful consumer gizmos - with the right combination of composure, compassion, engineering and analysis, so that we and our descendants will survive and flourish in whatever is to come.

— © 2020, Thomas Mahon  

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Living the dream

I am an at risk person for this virus. Compromised immune system and over 60. As such I've taken seriously the threatening side of the situation and have stayed home with my wife, dog, and cats.

The bulk of the experience so far has been overwhelmingly positive. We live in a beautiful place. I love to garden. I already work at home most of the time - now all the time.

My wife an I are enjoying our concentrated time together. We walk in the neighborhood. We're doing a lot more cooking and baking. We Facetime or Zoom with our children and our granddaughter and with friends and business associates.

On the other hand I miss physical interaction with my children and with my granddaughter. A hug. A kiss. I miss traveling but only sometimes.

Mostly I am enjoying the quiet and the seclusion and the concentrated time with my wife and with the place we live.

— NMK  

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The Big Picture

Life is re-working humanity. The virus is doing the job. No one knows what will happen. Uncertainty is a component of what’s underway. The human experiment is being re-humanized.

The virus is a favor to us. Yes, it is a painful hardship. Lethal, in its very efficient way of cutting through everything; lives, structures and psyches. It is fundamentally disabling and enabling. Now, we have reason to believe the economy is not the most important part of our existence. Healing, will mean finding a new way of being. We are being made aware in a way that only clear and present death can do.

The virus is also drawing out of us greater capacity. We are being sensitized. Social distancing is making us more aware of each other, and is leading to the discovery that it isn’t physical proximity that is the source of connection. Omnipresent death, difficulty, and uncertainty is threatening and softening us up — growing us. The restoration of unknowing and mystery is frightening, but it has the effect of creating greater realization, that life entails a natural vulnerability, which deepens our regard for all existence.

The Corona virus is bringing us back to our greatest attribute. We are a social species. Together we are stronger, more creative, with greater awareness and sensitivity. Our shared awe is essential. The virus is a hubris killer, disrupting us, and evolving us.

— l/d  

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The Gift

Two years ago, I was given a gift called Freedom. This present was wrapped tightly in the drabbest of grays, the color of concrete, the sounds of metal, and smelling of chemicals and fear. My gift was Prison – once I was brave enough to peel the wrapper back and look inside.

Freedom said to me:
I've come to remind you you're stronger than you think. You don't need the things you thought you did.
You have everything you need inside.I've come to re-unite you with Yourself. To humble you while lifting You up.

Now I see the news on my little TV, as I sit on the top bunk in my prison cell, and I'm sorry about the seemingly ugly package you've all received. To say you're scared, sad, and inconvenienced is an understatement. I urge you to start unwrapping. What's glittering inside of Quarantine? If you are suddenly afraid of death, is it because you haven't truly been living? When are you overflowing with joy?

Who do you miss? Who or what are you relieved to have a break from? How will you spend your time once I leave?
What words have been caught in your throat? How much longer will you wait to speak them? Who or what has been renting space in your brain? In your heart? Remember that you're the landlord.

I'm here to remind you of your creativity. Of the bliss that doesn’t come from your title or possessions. I'm here to break a bad habit and start a good one.I'm here to introduce you to your family, yourself and your priorities. If you are brave enough to unwrap me.

— Jacqueline Herron MA  

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Peas in a Pod

“You’re projecting! You know what that is, right?”.

The Corona Virus smirked at humanity, “It’s a defense mechanism in which the human ego defends itself against unconscious impulses or qualities by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others.

You have the nerve to call me evil?

You’re guilty of the same behavior!

You’re an organism whose main goal is to multiply by leeching precious energy from its host. In my case it’s the human body, in your case, it’s planet earth.

So physician, heal thyself, eh?”

— DLS  

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The Way It Always Was

And did we think that we could control everything?

Did we imagine that 2 billion, could become 5 billion, could become 7 billion, with no reckoning?

Did we deny that there are forces in nature that cannot be stopped?

Did we pretend that our species is so special that it will go on forever, like no other species has, ever?

If only we were hip enough, or green enough, or sustainable enough!

Well, this is a reminder that in the end there is only death for all of us.

It is an opportunity to be awake every moment and to not trade our moments easily for things.

It is a chance to see the loved ones in our life as our most precious gifts.

It is a time to remember the way it always was... temporary, brief, irreplaceable, now.

— JL King  

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Exodus - יציאת מצרים

Especially in light of the Coronavirus pandemic, when human society’s neurosis has become a diagnosis. Especially when it becomes clear that this is not “the innocent child crying wolf, it is the poor wolf now who cries for help”. When “one must regard one’s self as if they personally came out of Egypt” because the biblical story does not really happen in Egypt, but in our hearts.

When a colossal crisis befalls and the societal order suddenly ceases to be a safe, it is a propitious time to become “one living human tapestry” and to return to solidarity and collective guarantee from all the distance and alienation of what is dividing & discriminating, from the burdensome edges of the ego-trip, from the delusions of grandeur, because “No man is an island entire of itself-every man is a piece of the continent. Therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls-it tolls for thee” and for me.

Original Hebrew submission: יציאת מצרים

דווקא בצל מגפת הקורונה כשהנוירוזה של החברה האנושית נהפכה לדיאגנוזה. דווקא כשמתחוור שאין זו "קריאת נער תם הצועק זאב! שכן הזאב עצמו הוא הקורא לעזרה". חייב אדם לראות את עצמו כאילו הוא יוצא ממצרים, שהרי לאשורו של דבר הסיפור המקראי אינו מתרחש במצרים אלא בלב. כשמתרגש משבר קולוסלי והסדר החברתי חדל להוות מקלט, זוהי שעת רצון להתלכד ל"ריקמה אנושית אחת שלמה", ולשוב לסולידריות מכל הזרויות של המפריד והמפלה, ומן הקצוות המעיקים של האגו-טריפ, שהרי "שום אדם איננו אי, שלם בתוך עצמו/כל אדם הוא חלק מן היבשת/ולכן אל תשאלו למי צלצלו הפעמונים/הם מצלצלים לכם." ם


— Efi Vinizky - אפי ויניצקי  

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Thank You! - !תודה

Thank you for forcing us

To stop on the side of the road and reroute.

To acknowledge the importance of hygiene - personal, communal, and global.

To feel, out of the isolation, our need for “togetherness” - family, community, humanity.

To understand the limits of the power of money, of technology, of progress.

Thank you for the amazing lesson.

And the price?

Much cheaper than war, than road fatalities, than starvation, than climate change, than the pollution of the air, of the water, of the soil.

What a bargain!

Thank you


The original Hebrew submission:


תודה על שאילצת אותנו לעצור רגע בצד ולחשב מסלול מחדש

להכיר בחשיבות ההיגיינה האישית ,הציבורית ,הגלובלית

לחוש ,מתוך הבידוד, את הצורך שלנו

משפחה ,קהילה ,אנושות ב”ביחד משפחה ,קהילה ,אנושות

להבין את מגבלות הכוח של הכסף ,הטכנולוגיה ,הקידמה

!תודה על שיעור מדהים


. . .הרבה יותר זול ממלחמה ,מהקטל בדרכים ,מחרפת רעב
,משינויי האקלים ,זיהום האוויר, המים ,האדמה

!ממש מציאה


— Ofer Aloni - עופר אלוני  

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New Resident

How could you ever find us in this beautiful little remote Alaska town? We’re not densely populated, not Wuhan, Milan, NYC. Not even on a road system...But you did. First alarming the world before you came here with confused images of far away bats, pangolins, crowded cages in markets and labs.

But you got here coming right across the channel in a plane to this little far away pristine almost not quite hidden place. You didn’t live here and now you do. You can be anywhere, often lurking covetously to pounce hosted through our touch, breath, frailties, sicknesses, and sundry objects.

Now every day the child-like part of me hopes you are gone from here and in each place you have been devouring, you the tiny oppressor, torturer, hypnotist. Go back to wherever it started before you became transformed with our help. But you can’t undo yourself now.

You need other transforming.

— Patricia Hauser, LCSW  

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I choose to focus on the gifts...

Generosity and kindness. Helping strangers. Opening our hearts to help our global community.

Musicians creating online communities through livestreaming. Feeling connected through this shared experience of isolation, fear, sadness, and concern for others. This extends beyond loved ones. This connects every human. While the physical separation is greater, the perceived separateness between people has diminished. No one is immune to this virus, and everyone is living this surreal reality. Strangers, celebrities, friends and family. Everyone feels less isolated, and hearts feel full of love and appreciation.

People connecting in more personal ways, rather than relying on texting. People calling more often to hear each other’s voice and say I love you.

Slowing down and appreciating what really matters in life. Precious time with loved ones.

Essential workers.

Health that is not taken for granted, and deeper compassion for all that are suffering physically, emotionally, and financially as a result of this virus.

Personal growth and adaptability. Creativity, strength and resiliency. Ways to bring balance to your overall sense of well-being, health and happiness. Taking care of yourself, body, mind and spirit.

The whole world has been impacted, and we are one unified connected world healing from this. Our lives will be changed, and these gifts will remain. We will love more deeply, take less for granted, and be stronger for it.

— Leah Robbins, Ph.D.  


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Visitation from The Ghost

I come in the form of a virus not to end you but to show you the death of possibilty that will continue world wide until you come together to honor the part of you that is by your human nature both separate and interconnected to others as well as to Nature.

I will move from place to place until you are forced to give up your use of the war strategy, Divide and Conquer.

— Shawn McGivern  

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What We Could Hear with the Volume Turned Down

Corona has given the world an opportunity to listen.

Noise volume has been turned way down and in many places, turned off.

Businesses are closed, office hours are limited, and social distancing has created physical space between us.

But our ability to communicate has not been infected. We have the chance to hear from our human family all around the globe: hear the crying, hear the laughing, hear the sighing; hear about our values, what we each need and want; hear about how we come together in crisis, or how we don't; hear about what causes one person to feel lonely actually makes another feel energized. We have limited physical and commercial mobility, but there is no limit to what we have to gain from listening and learning from one another during COVID-19.

My dream is after this crisis has passed, we will decide to keep the noise volume down and in some places, maybe even turned off.


— Lee Ann Haney  

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The Invisible Enemy

All along you made me believe that wars were fought against real enemies. Against real beings that you can attack with physical weapons or by mere words. What manner of enemy are you?

Can I feel you? Can I touch you? Do you have eyes or ears? Do you really care?

You are no respector of persons. You laugh scornfully as we bid this world 'Good bye' day and night. Do you ever go to bed?

What about boundaries? You seem not to limited by time zones, language or creed.

But wait. Your time is coming. I promise! He who laughs last laughs longer. One day you will be exposed. And the whole world will get to laugh the longest.

— Winnie M. Fuzane, PhD.  

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Do not underestimate me.
Do not think I am done.
Do not think I come without reason.

How does one stop a runaway culture —
one that has lost touch with itself,
one that doesn’t see beauty
in the natural, the pure,
where bigger is better
and faster outweighs all?

You think I am the hidden monster?
What about 5G?
That will infiltrate your souls —
unobtrusively at first,
but irreparably.
It will fill your young and old
with internal growths,
destroy your DNA,
and create a global microwave effect.

Would that you could learn some lessons
before that monster comes.
Would that you could slow down
and smell the roses.

I plead with you —
help your neighbors, your homeless,
the ones in more need than you.
Honor your doctors, teachers, artists, seers.
Honor the earth, the worms, the bees.
These are your saviors.

I bring you to your knees to wake you up.
How else can you learn
to appreciate what you have,
before you lose it all?
Your towers to the sky, satellites,
yes, they bring you GPS,
but you have lived without that before.
Your ice is melting, your lands are dry,
fires rage.
Stop already.

Go back to your roots.
Seek out those who know how to lead the way.
Your greed has blinded you.

I am small.
I am your wake-up call.
I am not your invisible monster.


— ©2020 Sherrie Lovler  


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A Message From Nature!

Look around you! We are still here bursting with life!

Stop and take a moment to appreciate the beauty we offer through shape and color, and the joy we bring you through scent and touch.

What a strong mobilizer fear is in your human world. Only when you fear for your life are you willing to stop your collective destructive ways.

What will it take for you to look up at the sky and marvel at the shifting formations of clouds?

What will it take for you to feel the rivers and seas and mountains and valleys are your precious home?

What will it take for you to care for the child, the mother, the uncle, the brother of a stranger?

What will it take for you to stand up for what is dear to you, feet extending from the earth, head raised up looking at the horizon, walking into the world with your heart open, claiming the birthright of humanity to live in personal freedom, planetary peace, collective creativity, and compassionate stewardship of our precious plant—our garden of eden?

Environment Change

— Anna Gatmon. Ph.D.  


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The Shadow of Our Smiles

It started with the handshake: not a good idea. You can bump elbows, or knees or shoes.

Well, actually, better not get that close: how about six feet? Can you make sure you stay six feet away from anyone else? You can wave if you like.

Then again, better not even put yourself in situations where you might encounter other people: could you please stay at home? Yes, shelter in place, and make your sorties only for the most critical missions.

Unimaginable, but you've adapted to these new rules within just a couple of weeks. Home is where you need to stay. Plan your excursions very carefully: minimize time away, maximize efficiency, but most importantly, avoid getting close to other people. Oh and, by the way, when you do go out: make sure to cover the bottom half of your face. You're protecting others, you're doing the right thing.

In this thoughtful and responsible gesture, you've allowed the face mask to become the last nail in your coffin of solitude. You've lost your last chance of connecting to "the other"—touching another's heart with your smile, feeling your heart warmed, if only for a moment, by theirs'.

As I make eye contact with another "safe" person in the store I wonder: was that slight narrowing of her eyes accidental, or was that the shadow of a smile hiding behind her mask? How long must we continue living with shadows, depriving ourselves of the shining light, the most important thing we have—each other?

— Leon Segal, Ph.D.  

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This morning's convo with Coronavirus

I say to Coronavirus:
You are Death.

Coronavirus says to me:
I am the dark river, every color, the void, the crossing,
crucifixion, the bitter cup, the swallowing up,
all the loves you could not contain, and everything you ever wanted;
Welcoming you with all my heart

— Robin O'Brien  

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Email From A Virus

I came in peace. I meant no harm.
I'm part of Nature, just like you.
I was meant to bring immunity
For a stronger, safer future.

I didn't know that you weren't ready.
And that’s strange. I cabled ahead.
I have it here: "Arriving Wuhan.
Stop. December 1st. Stop."

Maybe you just saw stop?
Or maybe heard nothing at all?
When I report, what will I say?
I’m already in deep trouble!

“You had one job!” they’ll accuse.
“You weren’t supposed to wipe them out!”
Look, can you help me here?
Can you learn just some lesson?

What happened to the Home of the Brave?
What the hell are you afraid of?
All that stuff might yes occur,
But why are you gripped in terror?

The future is yours to prepare.
I am like time. You come to me.
Or, you’re supposed to, really.
Today you were busy with other things.

You know what you focused on.
You left your roots way far behind.
You cracked the Earth, spit on Her.
Took what you wanted for yourself.

What’s important to you now?
How can you still make a difference?
Some, it’s said, must stand and wait.
Others fight. But all can unite.

Think ahead next time. Imagine.
Prepare. Believe. Join forces.
Put me up in a nice hotel.
Then send me packing home.

I only came to say hello. Really.
But you ignored me, insulted me.
You shunned me. Denied me.
What kind of friend are you?

— Jon Jackson, MD  

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I currently live in the space created by as-yet unanswered questions:

What are we learning now that we will forget when this is over?
What is it about the lives to which we can return that will seduce us, hypnotize us, and make us forget this?

Most of us experienced various forms of unnecessary emotional powerlessness in our pre-Virus lives—peer pressure, the need to prove ourselves lovable or adequate, various obligations that felt mandatory, a belief that competition of many kinds is inevitable.
What are we learning now about actual powerlessness, and actual choices? What will make us forget this post-Virus?

What am I learning about myself that I don’t like? What am I learning about my pre-Virus parenting by watching how my children react to the demands of their current lives? How will I wrestle with this troubling knowledge post-Virus?

We are now so hungry for personal contact. How did we so casually devalue it pre-Virus? How did our precious goals and treasured institutions push us to devalue it? How can we possibly resist this pressure in constructing our post-Virus lives?

What do I want everyone else to learn from this experience? Why am I not fully committed to learning this myself?

How will I feel if, after the deprivation, the anxiety, the struggle to stay hopeful, the sacrifices, and the glimpses of self that dismay me…how will I feel post-Virus if I learn nothing from this?

— Marty Klein, Ph.D  


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Guest and Gift

I am your guest.

I am your gift.

Thank you for inviting me. I have been dying to meet you for eons going on eons. Breathlessly, I awaited your hesitantly proffered invitation. Can you imagine how it was for me holding my breath lifetime after proteinaceous lifetime? Imagine the inhale, the joy of reception when I learned that you were now ready to invite me into your lusty home. I went to my closet, chose my finery, stood before that luminous dark mirror.

Then, when I tried on the crown, I knew how I would appear at your doorstep: an orb studded with extended stars sparkling for you. How could you refuse me? I crossed your threshold as both your guest and my gift to you.

All in a flash you felt me inside. "What kind of gift is this?" you asked. My answer came on your breath, your gloriously sweet breath. In exchange for your inhale, I inform you of the precious proportions of your life--what truly matters, what most deserves your love. In exchange for your exhale, I give you the joy of giving your life away.

Together, now and forever more, we breathe in this novel way, each moment stepping to this movement in time, dazzling in our simplicity, guest within host, host wholly host, so inviting now, so welcoming, sharing our feast at the festival of mutual embodiment, smiling at death's solemn grimace, at her part in keeping earth's apt proportions. You may not see it my way. You may struggle to get free. When you surrender, we will be allies in harmony.

— Patrick Woodworth  

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Open Your Eyes

I have been watching you, wondering about you. I have seen you for centuries, through wars, through famine and feast, and yes, through disease. I have seen you transform from something I created to something I no longer recognize. I have seen you misuse me, fight valiantly to fix what you have created, to make me better. And I have tried to communicate with you, tried to reach out to you, to give you signs. And you rushed right by. You didn't have time. You couldn't spare the effort. And now what you most need, what you have always most needed, you still don't seem to understand.

Now it could be lost to you. No amount of your time, your success, your riches, or your fame can save you. And the ones you should have respected the most will go first. You will not be allowed to say your goodbyes. Will you listen now? Will you take the time to recognize that all you have ever had, all you will ever have is within you. And that should be all you need. You don't need me. What you need is you. Will you pay attention now? It is you that you should have been protecting. It is you that you should have been fighting for. It is you that must fix. Will you stop now? Will you now open your eyes and find yourself.


— Claire Nana, M.A.  

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Fighting a common enemy brings people together

While I am not one of the people worried about succumbing to Covid-19, I still appreciate it's positive impact of bringing everyone together.

It has been remarkable to read the news and see nearly every country in the world making plans to fight this global enemy number one — Coronavirus.

After the damage done to the cessation of our collective cultural routines, I hope some lasting good comes from this collective experience of fearing our mortality at the hands of a common enemy that disproportionately strikes the wealthy and privileged and anyone else who travels widely and frequently. '

Let's hope this leads to global cooperation in the coming years.

— Josh Woodlander  


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