What 2020 Has Taught Us
By: Divya Prabha
Just over a year ago would you have believed it if someone said that people would live moving around with face masks and PPE kit, that people would be by government order be confined to their homes, that there would be a pandemic of proportions beyond your wildest fears, that airports would be shut down, global travel would grind to a halt and people would eye each other with the suspicion ‘’are you a carrier?” Your reaction would probably be that the person telling you had been watching too many movies and perhaps wonder what planet they live on. However, this has been a reality for many over the last year.
This has been what has been seen on the surface but what really underlies this? Why has it happened? What are we supposed to do? A few months ago, I wrote an article which said the Universe had a message for us “Stay home”. The universe during these chaotic changes of nature clearly said to us, stay home, collect yourself inside, peak inside and know yourself. We saw around the world great community spirit and changes in behaviour in homes, many families came closer together and many fell apart. We were filled with hope that just maybe people would be able to step back and realise what the real necessities were in life and with the limited resources seek a more sustainable way of living.
The reality is that no matter where you live in the world everybody’s actions have the aim of peace or happiness as the root cause of the action whether it be conscious or unconscious. The difficulty is that mostly these actions are engaged with nature which by its very nature is changeable and hence temporary therefore the results of those actions will also be temporary. It leaves humanity involved constantly with a chain of events with unexpected and even unwanted outcomes.
The economic impact will be felt for years to come and is inspiring think tanks across the world to come up with new economic models which ideally will have a more sustainable profile. However, in reality real change will come when each one of us changes the way we think and live.
To come out of the pandemic for the better requires and calls for change on an individual level, an expansion of consciousness, and increased awareness. This is a universal message irrespective of caste, colour, creed, country or gender.
In science we learn that to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. The reaction that has taken place in the world has been unthinkable over the last year and as many developed and lesser developed countries heaved a sigh of relief believing that the pandemic was over a greater and seemingly more devastatingly infectious mutation started spreading. It seems that whatever the lesson in the first lockdowns was to be learnt had not. In many places with various precautions after the first wave of lockdowns came to an end many returned within certain limits to their previous way of life, this apparently wasn’t what nature was hoping for.
So, the big question now is, are we ready to listen yet? Are we ready to observe the consequences of our every thought and action as an individual as well as a collective? Are we ready to embrace an existence beyond the realm of individual thought and ego?
Whether we on an individual level are suffering or not is a limited view of the situation. The ancient Upanishads tell us that existence is like an ocean with waves. The waves are our individuality which identify with being a separate existence but in reality, are always part and parcel of the ocean merging and emerging. In the same we are always part and parcel of that Paramatma, Parambrahma the Universal Supreme Conscious. We can never be separate. If we can turn our eyes inside away from the objects of the senses towards our real Self we can realise the unity in diversity by first of all knowing ourselves.
In these devasting times that engulfed so many it comes with an opportunity to use this precious time to introspect and travel inside. Every breath we have is a divine gift in itself. It is given unconditionally without any expectations and comes from a seemingly infinite source; you have free will to use it as you so wish. So let’s take the opportunity to reconnect to ourselves inside which is the ultimate selfishness where seek to become self-ish like that real self, infinite, full of truth, knowledge wisdom and love. So use this time, journey inwards in-(to the)finite to find that which is without limits and realise that we are part and parcel of one infinite divine energy. It is very simple close your eyes and go inside, find yourself, its closer than you think.