Covoid – 19 Thoughts From a Rural Location Part 2

countrysiderainbowI should have been ‘banging’ the drums with a Big Band at this time; two weeks of playing throughout each day, with more informal playing during the night. But, as with everything else, the reaction to the virus forced its cancellation. Undoubtedly I would have enjoyed this as I have done in previous years but I am also content being outside my home reading. And thinking. And listening — as some magpies shout in their vulgar, guttural fashion. Have they noticed the change we are all experiencing? And now I am inside writing.

My mood is good and I wonder how much of that is due to blue sky and nascent sun. How much are we creatures of the weather we live under? How much of our thought and language and even culture is tied to temperature and scudding clouds? The flora and fauna that surrounds us is surely a product of our seasons — the weather of our particular part of the world. I can feel spring rising. And what must spring think of these times — less noise, less pollution, fewer humans out and about. There is palpable silence at times in an air that seems clearer and sharper. Maybe this is fancy upon my part. I am lucky for sure.

My imagination (and I trust empathy) reveals situations others must find themselves in. Perhaps YOUR situation. This is a time we are forced to confront ourselves. How many people love to ‘go out’ to escape themselves and their life? Perhaps it is only in silence that we can evolve spiritually. How can we evolve if we don’t know ourselves and how can we know ourselves in a world of noise and confusion? But now we are turned in and this might be both positive and negative. We must evaluate every relationship we have (human or otherwise) — be that a mother, alone with three young children; an old person alone peering from a bedroom window at an empty park opposite; a husband and wife quarrelling over lack of money; a young man desperate for the company of his friends…We have to assess our inward and outward life. Others, of course, are still ‘out there’ doing invaluable jobs — their time for reflection will come later.

It’s odd in that it feels as if a sky-sized shroud has been lowered upon the earth. This shroud allows the sun to penetrate — it both warms and freezes us. It is a comforting blanket and a winding sheet for the dead. This shroud has deadened sound but in its fibres also carries the deadly virus. The world is enfolded by and with this danger. Thankfully the great majority of us will be there to see it cast aside and thrown away as we are resurrected from this collective experience. The Everyman corpse will rise and — I hope — greet its new world with a different attitude and approach. But for the moment we rest in peace — or not.

For those of you encountering deep boredom be rest assured that boredom always gives way to creativity. We ALL have this potential no matter how simplistic. It’s good for children to be bored — because that boredom will become the mother of invention. We live in an age of passivity. It wasn’t always like this. We also live in an age of passive and individual entertainment. Many of us are tied to a ‘smart phone’ that is a magical box of potential. Yet this spring of knowledge allows us only to drink alone for the most part. There ARE things we can do in communion — but we really need to restore equilibrium and have connexion with our fellow beings. Okay, normally I am content alone — but that includes listening to great artists and reading books. The latter is NOT a passive act — it requires commitment and re-imagination as my mind translates printed symbols created by another’s mind to enter my own where I ‘magically’ translate these symbols into the most beautiful or complex of ideas. The greatest minds lie dormant on my bookshelves until I breathe life upon them as I take them down and open their pages. It is TRULY wonderful.

Once confined folk have grown irritated by a succession of films or a diet of fast-food television then perhaps their creativity might shoot along with those of spring. It’s simply a matter of activating our brains into ‘action’ rather than ‘reception’. But it’s also, perhaps, a matter of tempering the passions of our brain. I’m not advocating acceptance here but rather restraint that can lead to creativity. Imagine a fully blind person whose concept of the ‘outside world’ is limited to the extent of their body (including hearing and smell). They live in a constant interior world. For the moment we are tied to dwellings — houses that can become homes. Families that can become fully connected. Relationships that can become fully honest. This is our time to change.

Confinement is not without risk and we could feel ourselves tethered and chained both mentally and physically. It is our relationship with these tethers with which we must come to grips. You’ll notice that the generic title for these thoughts is Co-Void 19. Co represents: cooperation, coexistence, correspondences and Void — that which we encounter. We are being given the potential to refill this void in a new way. We stand at its periphery and gaze inwards in uncertainly. But the void is filled with everything we exude. Every thought and action. Every creative act.

The world as was, has been voided. Even if this experience is shortened quicker than anyone might think and with fewer folk dying or being affected than we might have projected — something tangible has happened. The void we stare into is potentiality. Maybe as creatures brought to life again through a great shock we might slump back into our old ways. The void then instantly becomes but a shared hallucination and the old world is revealed to our tired eyes. But maybe not. We can step into this void with courage and common-sense and re-imagine and re-furnish our existence anew.

‘Spring Steps’
https://youtu.be/6FBpppYulmg

By Tim Bragg
Tim Bragg is the author (amongst many books) of Lyrics to Live By – Keys to Self-Help Notes for a Better Life available from Amazon

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