The coronavirus pandemic is not just a global crisis, but an event that has changed the world forever. When the pandemic will end and people around the globe will finally come out of their homes, they will have something vital to ponder on—where we will go from here?
There will be two paths in front of us. One path that leads to nowhere, where we will keep running in circles. The other one, a road to a better future where humanity will thrive and prosper. It will be up to us to decide which path we take.
Talking about humanity’s future, Booker prize-winning novelist, Arundhati Roy gave the pandemic a metaphorical meaning when she recently wrote, “It [the pandemic] is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next. We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, our avarice, our data banks, and dead ideas, our dead rivers and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it.”
A better world will have more compassion among people; where everyone will fight together against any threat, and celebrate victories as one as well. It will be a world where anyone can be a hero—a doctor, a student, a teacher, or a daily wager—where animals live peacefully and nature blossoms. Due to the pandemic, we have started to see glimpses of that world already.
The internet is flooded with stories of strangers coming to the aid of those in need with bags full of groceries; neighbours are singing and dancing from their balconies to uplift each other’s spirits; the air has never been so clean and the sky has never been so blue. Above everything else, the animals have reclaimed the streets where once their home existed. In this feature, Soulveda explores how a pandemic that started with fear and isolation is teaching us to bring profound, positive, and hopefully permanent changes.
A social leveller
The outbreak of the pandemic has made one thing clear. We are all equal in the eyes of nature. Everyone has been hit by the outbreak just the same. A world once obsessed with luxury goods suddenly rushed to stock up on essentials. Behind the protective face masks and gloves, everyone was equally scared and worried. The priority was health, rest was secondary. It is during this time of social distancing that everyone is realising how connected and dependant we are on each other. And thus came into being #WeAreInThisTogether—a trending hashtag that sums up the sentiment of everyone around the world.
Examples of compassion and kindness are all over the internet. Togetherness has found a new meaning in this difficult time. Qualities that we as a community have rekindled on a global level will not disappear even when the virus does.