Whenever a system shuts down, it affects every level. First of all, economically and simultaneously, psychologically; it’s not a physical ailment alone. Physical is on one side. But what happens with the psychological side, when things are denied? Sometimes when people have to face poverty, they tremble, they shiver. They can’t handle it; even potential poverty; it may not be even poverty. If people say, “Hey, look here, food will not be available after 10 days”, people will go crazy. Even if that thing is not true, people will go crazy.
So we have a strong instinct for survival just like any other species. Plus, we would like to survive by keeping all our habits, all our likes and dislikes, all our usual patterns. This is human life, but for an animal, as long as they get the food, it’s fine. If the food is not coming, they’ll starve, they’ll keep quiet. But for us, we cannot tolerate that. We are an advanced species. We are much more evolved apparently. So we would like to have all those things in control. But that’s not the case always, especially now with this Corona virus situation. Most of the factories are shut down; banks are working on a skeletal basis. The whole economy has shifted. I believe the economy will never be the same again. This is what I feel.
People have to reinvent this time. People have to think again and revise, reinvent their whole life. And this is the time for that. This time we have to understand and also accept reality and adjust accordingly. Now, will there be somebody dominating this? It is possible because in every situation you can see a predator or a predatorial aspect; even in competition, in corporate business, there are predatorial activities, definitely. And will there be a victim? There will be victims. We still have victimhood. Many of us do not have choices. We think we have choices, but it’s always the same wine in different bottles. We are bound by fast food, fast food system. We are bound by various aspects of life.
So will there be a kind of slavery? Possible as we are already experiencing it. Will there be predators? Yes, possible as we already have predators. I think many of the governments are still controlled by war machine makers, drug manufacturers, medicine manufacturers, food industry etc. Food industry decides the taste of a generation. Food industry binds people with the salt and sugar; dairy industry, meat industry, big violence, big-time control. All of these are there. So how do we know that it will be different? It may not be different. And a difference can happen provided purchasing power is affected. People will go for more durables because they don’t want to change it all the time. If purchasing power is not affected, they will continue to buy things as per the use and throw items (disposables). But if there is a restriction in the income flow, then people will go for more durables, which means less exploitation of Earth. More use and throw, more disposables means more exploitation of Earth. I hope to see less exploitation of the Earth’s resources.
So all these factors are possible, but I strongly believe the economy will never be the same again. People will have to think twice and so many people may lose their jobs. Many people may find or may have to adjust to continue to work. Many of the production units will have to reboot. Many countries will have to reboot themselves, reinvent, innovate or re-start their whole process. And sometimes countries like China and the huge producers may have to readjust to the world’s economy or they will make the world economy to readjust to their system or their plan and pattern. All this is possible. We have to wait and watch.
I’m not interested in predictions, but logically, whatever is possible, I have just said. It is definitely going to be a new world; take it for granted. It will be a new world. It has to be. People may try to go in their old ways, but it may not be easy because we have a shut down for almost a month now and to reboot, it will take time, at least this year. Next year onwards, probably if we go back to our old ways etc., we will see.
But then if we really go back to our old ways and start living an unconscious existence, nature is going to hit very hard, harder than now. At that time, we would not care whether it was human intervention or nature’s intervention. It is basically a small, invisible virus creating panic in the most intelligent community, species on earth. A small, invisible being is literally bringing one species to its knees; nations to its knees. Total shutdown.
So this is very important to understand. We’ve got to renovate, we’ve got to reinvent ourselves, our life. We’ve got to re-organize this whole thing. This is important. Also, our communication system has to change now. We have to use the internet, phones and other communication channels more than physical contact. So the next generation could be mostly non-physical contacts because people are used to it now. People know that you don’t have to really meet, probably we will get used to it and we will say, “Oh, can I come and meet you?” or “You really want to come? Let’s talk on the phone.” Possible, that life is possible; or “Can I show you a presentation?” “OK, send it on email.” which was happening before. Now it will be more accented. Why do you have to travel? Because then in that way, if we look in that case, then again the pollution levels will be less. Emissions will be less, etc. But it’s a tall order. I’m just hoping, it’ll happen that way.
Transcribed and proofread
by Rekha Murali
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