People Matter

The world is changing. 

Whether you think our current COVID-19 crisis is an overblown hoax or the great equalizer of modern society, we can’t deny this crisis has suddenly and dramatically altered the state of our lives.

So what do you do?  How are you coping?  What does social distancing mean to you?  Are you sheltering in place?

This short narrative is not meant to be an antidote for collective helplessness and/or further confusion, but rather a message of comfort to our collective human fragility. During these tumultuous times, I often think of my friend Clara Knopfler, who is under mandatory lockdown in the assisted living community where she lives.  Clara survived the Holocaust with her mother.  She chronicled in her book, “I Am Still Here: My Mother’s Voice” accounts and pieces of her past.  I have been fortunate to observe firsthand, how Clara is slowly healing the world with her message of hope.  Her mission is to educate others, advising everyone around her to be aware of what is happening in the world.  She captures the attention of each person she meets with her stories of survival. I spoke with her a few days ago and her hopefulness is contagious.

Hope can also be the counterweight to the heavy sense of our relationship with the unknown.  We hope, precisely because we are aware that terrible outcomes do happen.  Everything is possible and often probable, whether it is good or bad.  However, the decisions we make impact our desired outcomes.

Can a cosmic timeout offer insight into the miracle of our reality?  Maybe I am overreaching but it does intrigue me on how easily the evolution of our existence can be taken away.  It is a choice to understand our capacity to transcend suffering,  We can find true freedom and survive trying times by not only helping ourselves, but others.  When we begin to explore how easily we imprison ourselves in our own minds, the healing begins.  As we look within during this public health crisis we are living through, let’s together understand and pay attention to the signs being shown to us find freedom from our muddled minds. 

Life is both beautiful and bittersweet.  Our physiological precariousness to our survival can be sobering.  We are forced to learn how to be vulnerable in order to keep our sanity.  Thank goodness for technology and its ability to globally connect everyone.  How lost and alone would we feel if our devices were “timed out” too?

Our unique human paradox is living more empowered lives with those we love, even in the most crazy circumstances.  As we feel our way through this new era, when both hope and fear are at a global high.  Let’s never forget what Clara endured and a an ornamental plaque perched up on her desk displays.  Learn from the past. Live for the moment. Hope for the future.  We must regularly remind ourselves to recognize the love, wisdom, beauty and truth in all people – during times of chaos and crisis.

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