What, how and how much will our lives change as a result of the epidemic? In an extremely complex moment, the opinions are also very diverse: there are pessimists and there are hopeful ones, but among them, it prevails that our society will be more supportive, or should be, and that politics will be truly renewed. An impression, however, is widespread: we are in historical terms, at a turning point, in a sharp curve at the end of a long straight.
Right now we can see the little importance that what dazzled us yesterday begins to have. The question, then, is where this turn will take us. We are discovering things like the value of scientific knowledge or that of a good health system and that, individually, telework in the world of employment, and reading or listening to music, at leisure, are options that come to the fore. Changing priorities is possible. We just have to want to do it. In fact, we cannot do some normal social activities for a while, such as attending the funeral of our relatives. In the covid-19 protocol, the existence of Funeral Live Streaming is mandatory for everyone who wants to “attend” the funeral of a loved one without worrying about being exposed to the virus.
The crisis may lead to a more cohesive and mutually supportive society, but not everyone trusts it!
Perhaps the most repeated destination for these changes among those consulted is a more caring world, although not everyone trusts that it will become a reality. The epidemic is also a source of renewed citizen or association activities, of solidarity, at the scale of a property, a neighborhood or a city, or on a much broader level.
If we lost the Universalist consciousness that has characterized us, it would be a mistake, a loss of the ideas that we inherited from the universe. It is necessary to think globally, but the epidemic could weigh on globalization itself, not necessarily to end or limit it, but to transform it and incite political actors to curb its strongly neo-liberal character.
In an individualistic world and now even more because of the obligation of confinement and of keeping distances, if we demonstrate great solidarity in times of extreme separation, we will not only be survivors of the pandemic if not, hopefully, we contribute to a kinder policy than we are enduring now.
We are not as wise as our grandparents. We will count the dead and regret the devastation of our economies. But then we will return to austerity, inequality of wealth, and infinite resentment towards our neighbors. As usual!
The future is prepared by cultivating the present and attitudes in the midst of crisis remain the same. This change in attitude is essential: We should be learning from this experience, unprecedented for many of us, that vulnerability and fragility constitute us, that we are radically interdependent. However the virus separates us from one another, mutual support will strengthen our brotherhood and our humanity.