Lockdown has changed the world in 2020. My world, your world, everyone’s world. Coronavirus does not discriminate, it only wants to multiply and depending on your suitability as a host, multiply it will. Slowly, we have put protection measures in place, and we have, in the main, adjusted to our new circumstances. But, for how shall we endure and how will it be at the end?
“Have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:28)
Whether you believe in Creation or accept the Theory of Evolution, you would probably agree that Man has been in charge of the Earth for several millennia.
Why is lockdown so hard?
As the dominant species, we have grown accustomed to choosing our own destiny. This may be more or less the case, dependent on you sociogeographical situation, but we would not be human if our increased loss of freedom were not difficult to endure. This is accentuated but the uncertainty of an end point and the possibility of death for either ourselves or someone close to us.
Just like old times?
Going out during lock down, in my part of small town England, it feels like stepping back in time: a time when there were less people and less cars. I wasn’t alive in the fifties but I could compare it to my parents’ generation. Admittedly, they didn’t have Facebook or Netflix but I can remember the feeling of distance from our wider family when we moved from West Sussex to Surrey in the sixties.
Quieter is better?
I may not have the same experience if I were twenty years younger but personally, I do have a sense of relief that all the noise and crowds are greatly reduced. I wonder how people will cope when things return to how they were before lockdown if, in fact, they ever can.
Have you experienced it? The news is full of it. In times of crises, like this, everyone (well, mostly everyone) pulls together and suddenly there are smiles and small interactions that have replaced frustrations and self-centredness. Long may it last.
A particular joy for me is the opportunism that flora and fauna display in filling the spaces that we leave behind. You can literally feel it in the less polluted air. In the peace and quietness there is more bird song and encroachment of wildlife. It is good to see that people are still naturally drawn to parks and open countryside when the bright lights have gone out.
Bad for business
Regrettably, there have been and will be financial casualties. No doubt, there is a long road back to the way things were in 2019. However, if lessons are learned about the real values of the things that are truly important then maybe 2021 can be a whole lot more ?
Then God blessed the seventh day, and made it holy, because he rested in it from all his work of creation which he had done. (Genesis 2:3)
This day, known in Judaism as Shabbat is observed on Saturday and in Christianity as the Sabbath on Sunday. I don’t think I am the only one who, in isolation or otherwise, has had cause to meditate on the meaning of it all. I am also reminded of the days when shops were closed on Sundays and life on those days seemed similar to the ones we are living in now. I ask myself, was the Sunday Trading Act of 1994 a big mistake? I, for one, would welcome its repeal so that we might regularly remind ourselves of what is important … on the seventh day.