In her recent TED talk viewed by more than two million people in just a week, Global health expert Alanna Shaikh talks about the current status of the 2019 coronavirus outbreak and what this can teach us about the epidemics yet to come. She talks about the underlying causes of the pandemic and describes the various ways humans are disconnected from the natural world. “It’s a result of the way human beings are interacting with our planet,” she says. “Part of it is climate change and the way a warming climate makes the world more hospitable to viruses.”
Brother Richard Hendrick, a Capuchin Franciscan living in Ireland posted this poem on March 14, 2020 on how we can recognize our deep connections, even during these challenging times. He calls it Lockdown.
Yes there is fear.
Yes there is isolation.
Yes there is panic buying.
Yes there is sickness.
Yes there is even death.
They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise
You can hear the birds again.
They say that after just a few weeks of quiet
The sky is no longer thick with fumes
But blue and grey and clear.
They say that in the streets of Assisi
People are singing to each other
across the empty squares,
keeping their windows open
so that those who are alone
may hear the sounds of family around them.
They say that a hotel in the West of Ireland
Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.
Today a young woman I know
is busy spreading fliers with her number
through the neighbourhood
So that the elders may…