CORONA VIRUS DISEASE 2019:
WHAT IS IT TELLING US?
The COVID19 pandemic is part of our everyday reality. Granted, a situation like this is not an everyday occurrence, but it is very much our new normal, if only for a short time. And, like everything in our daily lives, it has a symbolism of its own. This symbolism is explored here, revealing themes we might not have otherwise considered.
Right now, it is likely the word ‘corona’ is the most searched-for word in the world, inextricably linked to the COVID19 pandemic. It’s probably a word most of us feel a distaste for. Yet there are other, and sometimes far more positive associations to consider regarding the word corona, and perhaps hold close.
Corona simply means crown – think ‘coronation’. In pictures of the virus we can see there is indeed a type of crown surrounding the spherical body of the cell. Some might register this as beautiful, others less so given our current circumstances.
Corona is also the term applied to the glow that appears at certain times around the moon or during an eclipse. The moon, although inert, is a reflective tool, reminding us nightly – whether we are aware of it or not or can see it or not – of the magnificence of the star that is our sun. The sun too has a fiery corona of its own, and other planets and certainly stars also exhibit coronas, visual reminders of their symbolic and literal might. Not content with communicating for their own sakes, they are there to remind us of our own power and might, of our own place in an ever-expanding and harmonious universe.
Could this virus with its strange crown be signalling something to us too?
The common cold is a corona virus. In extreme manifestations, usually in the immune-compromised, it can be serious. However for most, it is considered a nuisance. But to shrug off a cold is a mistake.
A cold is a signal, a sign we have pushed too hard and perhaps too long – that we have been living with a level of disregard. This sign, emanating directly from our bodies in a way we can’t ignore, is in truth a thing of beauty. It is a marker that offers us the opportunity to rest, reflect and re-imprint; to renounce and refine how we have been living. It is a message from the part of us that knows.
Another type of corona virus, COVID19, is also telling us something. For those who have this virus there will, as with the corona virus that produces the common cold, be a personal message to understand.
Yet on this occasion there is more to this particular type of corona virus. Clearly, given its global scope and impact, it is relaying a message for us all.
Could it be as a society we have all been living in disregard? That we have been behaving in ways that don’t benefit us all, and that stem from individual rather than collective concerns? That we live seemingly connected but in truth in separation from each other…
That control of the spread of the virus involves ‘social distancing’ suggests we are continuing down this same path of separation – another aspect of this phenomenon to read and understand. That it has also resulted in hoarding behaviours that ensure others miss out on essential supplies is a further confirmation that we have not heeded the message COVID19 is offering us. So too is the closing of borders, the disruption to our businesses and economies that could see people disadvantaged en masse by the loss of livelihoods.
Yes, some of the measures being put in place to restrict the spread of the disease are practical. But are they being implemented from a place of understanding, or from a place of fear, ignoring the deeper communication?
This is a time to read, reflect and ponder on what is happening: to remain informed and respectful as well as aware – and detached from the urgent, panicked messages proliferating the airwaves and dominating our conversations.
Perhaps it is a time to pause and study our celestial companions and their coronas, to understand the messages they are communicating – and to recognise equally that a seemingly unpalatable virus is telling us something important too.