You may feel tired of reading, listening, watching and talking about issues related to the global pandemic.
Listen within. Respect your inner response. Please do not read anything below if it feels like it would be more information to absorb. Sense the aliveness of the day and connect with it – indoors, outdoors or both. I take breaks from Covid, Covid, Covid – despite regular expressions of concern.
Do the same. Take a break as much as possible from the Covid world. Find ways for renewal. Some of you engage in full time service to resolving the suffering around Covid-19. Please remember to connect with life outside the virus.
Don’t hesitate to skip the following. There are straightforward concerns and questions. The critique does not contain the feel good factor. The last short section might serve as a reminder in daily life about priorities.
Has the Future become a Scam?
I find it hard to believe most of what I hear from many politicians. At best, they mean well. With their views about the future, I find it more than hard. The word that comes to mind is impossible. Questionable motivations behind their views vary from instilling fear, instilling hope, promoting self-interest or to avoid addressing the present or the past.
The future has become a political scam, a deceptive scheme to cheat us from learning to live with the unknown. Political leaders express a range of conspiracy theories around the future. They reject the truth of the unknown. Instead, they engage in different fabrications, speculative opinions to huge audiences via the media. They appear cut off from the evolution of the pandemic. We need to develop a community caring for each other, finding out who is infected and providing support. We need a global approach to its resolution not a nationalistic attitude. Instead, politicians offer a delusion, hoax of being in control with no enduring basis to show the evidence.
We listen or read statements of many of our politicians that sound like avoidance or denial. Many would rather conspire to fabricate views than admit they have no idea about what will happen in the future. It does not matter whether such politicians show allegiance to the political right, centre or left or none of those.
Positivity and negativity, fear and hope saturate future perceptions. We can project anything into that big space in the mind called the future. I take the view we cannot address the future if we have not answered the questions about the past and present.
Some 10 million people in the UK continue waiting for surgical procedures. Around 100,000 patients had joint replacement surgeries cancelled during the first COVID-19 wave. Severe pain and limited mobility haunts their daily life.
- How many are suffering including dying from untreated illnesses?
- How many endure ongoing pain because Covid-19 patients take priority over everybody else?
- How many experience clinical depression or feel depressed due to relentless daily pain through lack of medical treatment?
- How many have died due to lack of surgery?
Addressing Difficult Questions
- Are the policies of the government saving lives or giving priority to those dying from Covid-19 rather than to those dying from cancer, heart disease, organ failure and so on?
- Is there a sickness in the collective mindset that supports a medical apartheid of Covid-19 patients above everybody else?
- What percentage of citizens have remained safe from the contagion due to lockdown etc?
- What percentage of citizens have remained safe from the contagion due to the jab?
Millions have received the Covid-19 vaccination, which reduces the number of infected people and reduces the symptoms but the jabs cannot totally stop the spread of Covid. Social isolation, facemasks, lockdown and washing hands also ensures a significant drop in the infection rate.
Many people sincerely believe we get closer and closer to a return to normality despite no change in global or national policy to stop the gathering spread of viruses due to wholesale abuse of animals, birds, mammals and their environment. This abuse led to incredible stress on creatures in the wild and those animals and birds trapped in factory farms. Infections spread between creatures in proximity which led to transference of viruses to the human population.
To shut down a marketplace in Wuhan, to slaughter four million minks in Denmark etc shows only shows a localised response while the global issue of the suffering of animals, wild and factory farms continue. Their vulnerability to viruses increases as their immune system weakens due to the stress and pressure in their environment.
The conditions for the transmission of viruses from creatures to humans remain the same despite decades of neglect of the health of creatures and abuse of their environment. This surely means Covid19, Covid-20, Covid-21 and …………
Are we still at the beginning of this global contagion?
Let us look at mutations of Covid-19. The major mutations starting in UK, Brazil and South Africa have spread at an alarming rate. These variants seem more contagious than the first wave of Covid-19 that got underway early last year. The B.1.1.7 variant started in the UK can change the structure of the spike protein on the surface of the virus. Infected with the UK variant, people experience a higher viral impact. A person can then transmit this higher viral load onto others especially through a cough, sneeze, singing, speaking or breathing close to another. Tiny droplets can then infect a person or group of people in close proximity.
I read in the New York Times that the mutations have more impact on those infected than the original Covid-19. The impact is stronger, lasts longer and contributes to long-Covid – weeks, months and more without a full recovery.
A French citizen first contacted B.1.1.7 on 26 December 2020. Today France experiences 75% of its current infections due to the UK mutation. USA reports 27% of infected citizens have the UK variant. Hospitals in the USA detected the first US citizen with the same variant at the end of January 2021. These are two examples of the rapid spread of B.1.1.7.
Concern grows around the Eek mutation (E484K) which hampers the immune response. This interference makes vaccines less effective. Scientists call Eek an escape mutation because it helps the virus slip past the body’s immune defences. This mutation has infected a few people in Bristol and Liverpool. This faster spreading virus has the potential to be more infectious than original B.1.1.7. Scientists believe they may well need to adapt the current vaccinations to reduce the impact of these fast moving variants. See the British Medical Journal (BMJ) analysis provided for professionals. www.bmj.com
Vaccine scientists keep telling us the current vaccinations show they are effective against the mutations.
- Is there a unified view in medical science about the power of the vaccines?
- If there is, then what is it? Where is the statement of the unified view?
- Will these aggressive variants gradually marginalise the effectiveness of the current vaccinations for the initial virus?
- Will the immune system weaken in the course of time?
- Will there be a need for a booster injection? How often and for everybody?
- What is the response to those who cannot have a jab or decline it?
- What percentage of tests will be positive negative?
- Will citizens require a new vaccination?
- How long can health services endure cycles of high infection rates?
- Will will happen in the autumn and winter of 2021?
We can say politicians and scientists do their best
Politicians and scientists are human after all. A percentage have experienced Covid-19. Some have lost loved ones. Do we thus avoid expressing our concerns to the powerful voices? Do we go quietly into the night? Concerns and criticism provide the challenge to fresh ways of engage with global issues, including the pandemic. It is easy to condemn the critics and submit to the herd mentality. Our species got itself into this situation because we submitted to authority instead of questioning it.
Here are more concerns. The pathogen does not remain the same. Other variants also arise unrelated to the UK, Brazil and South Africa.
Medical scientists decline to treat the variants as a separate epidemics.
- What new mutation may arise if the current variants collide with each other upon a cluster of people?
- Is it time to regard the variations as separate epidemics?
Instead, for example, the UK variant B.1.1.7 remains tied to Covid-19. B.1.1.7. Why can’t we call the variant Covid-20 UK or Covid-20 Brazil or Covid 20 South Africa?
Evolution of Covid-19
Fighting back tears, Director of the CDC (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention), Dr. Rochelle Walensky said she felt a sense of “impending doom” unless Americans kept to masks and social distancing. The arising of the variants has shocked medical scientists at its speed of change and impact. The science says the UK version is 60% more contagious and 67% more deadly than the original Covid-19. The coronavirus variant B.1.1.7, which was first identified in the United Kingdom, has an estimated 64% higher risk of dying from Covid-19.
How did this UK mutation of Covid-19 occur? Powerful Western countries demanded that WHO (World Health Organisation) send their science experts to Wuhan, China, to find out the causes for the first virus.
- Why doesn’t the world insist the same experts go to Kent, south of London, to gather information as to why the new pathogen started in this county?
- Did it start among a cluster of people, wild animals or farm animals?
- Did the mutation escape a laboratory in Kent engaged in Covid-19 research?
WHO Inspectors need to go to Brazil, South Africa and elsewhere to trace origins of new variants. Two more variants were discovered in California in February. Scientists believe other variants will emerge during year(s) ahead.
The vaccine laboratories work round the clock to prepare booster shots to ‘blunt the response’ to various mutations.
In this globalised world, these variants can impact on each other, via contact with a person. Owing to such contact, this produces another variant different from what went on before.
It looks as though science faces an ongoing struggle with Covid-19’s evolutionary process.
The Buddha said: “I teach there is suffering and I teach there is the resolution of suffering.”
Why fuel our suffering and the suffering of other through projections into future either pessimistic or optimistic, which end up as disappointment, even despair?
The future remains uncertain. Scientists and politicians don’t know. Science cannot offer a unified standpoint. I don’t know. Let us make peace with the unknown.
We wish it were all over. We wish it were nearly over. We wish life changed for the better.
A wish confirms a wish. A wish tells us about the one who wishes but not about the future.
Let us focus on ending the suffering of fears, projections and the suffering in the health of people.
Be ruthless. Do not the infect the future with thoughts.
Do not be afraid to doubt the powerful voices interpreting the future.
Keep alive your voice of protest about the political handling of the pandemic, past, present and future.
Learn from countries that have handled wisely the pandemic.
Act today. Take care of today. Take care of each other. Take care of creatures and their habitats.
Create a new future.
Day after Day.