Coronavirus 8 Suggestions ENG .pdf
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8 suggestions not to suffer too much
and humanize the point of view on events
at the time of the coronavirus
This short essay come from another previous one. This other one was longer and written in a
somewhat difficult language, because directed at some "insiders" friends already accustomed to a
specialized language. Some of these friends suggested me to simplify the last chapter of that work so
as to make it useful or at least understandable to as many people as possible.
So I did it. These suggestions includes some proposals, such as trying to set a humanizing point of view
on the emergency health situation we are going through.
In the hope that they will be useful, I share them with pleasure.
If life is but pursuit of security for those who fear the future, self-affirmation for the disoriented, the
desire for revenge for those frustrated with the past—what liberty, what responsibility, what
commitment can be held aloft as an unvanquished banner?
(Silo, The Internal Landscape, XII, Compensation, Reflection, and the Future)
I’m writing in this March 2020, in Rome, during the lockdown arranged as an emergency measure to
contain the spread of Covid-19. Like others, I also believe that this coronavirus can bring something
good. And I also guess how this circumstance leads us to reflect on how much we are linked to each
other, not only from an environmental or health point of view, but also existentially. Yes, like many
other peoples, I see too good chances for the future.
Both, persons and populations, faced with moments of "crisis" have different possibilities. They can
bring out the worst or the best.
We all knows very well this mode in our personal experience. In very tough situations, under pressure
situations, which “has been tested us", we have sometimes become paralyzed, other times we escaped
or we have become anesthetized. At other times, we have struggled against the world and in other
moments, we have found unthinkable resources and solutions in our self that have even changed our
way of being for the better. This can happen to the persons as well as to entire society. In Italy, we
have a sentence about food: "What doesn’t choke get fat".
Like the critical moments, the waves of social emotion can also block or help certain good mental
paths. Certain critical moments can support imagination, make us feel less alone or feed good
feelings; critical moments can also feed visceral emotions or excite a certain mental inflexibility, a
certain "intransigence" so to desire strict rules. Critical moments can give courage, open your heart
and head or they can produce censorship and self-censorship. It is possible that this depends on which
feeling or mental atmosphere is stronger at that moment, such as: panic, hope, fear, empathy,
resentment, competition, solidarity… So as innocent it may seem, cultivating good feelings both as
individuals and as society, it seems to be the best thing we can do for ourselves and others. Good
feelings generate good ideas and good actions. Besides, this positively contaminates those around us.
8 suggestions not to suffer too much
And become an healthy carrier
If reason is to be at the service of life, it will help us leap over death. Let reason, then, produce a
meaning exempt from all frustration, all exhaustion, all accident.
(Silo, The Internal Landscape, XIII, Provisional meanings)
These suggestions refer to a mental "posture". Just as a postural gymnastics for the mind.
First: Reject, with unbreakable trust in the human being, any position that recall the old vision of guilt
and sin. Reject the idea that this virus is the punishment by the nature for the human being who has
disobeyed his laws. Whether it's nature to punish … or life … or the universe … or God, that way of
thinking has generated a lot of obscurantism and a lot of suffering. Reject anything that has the taste
of punishment and guilt. Reject the cruelty that animates that judgment.
Second: Give your contribution to the community, not your compliance with those responsible for the
impoverishment of the common good. Virtuous behavior is important and contributes to build a better
world. Give your contribution, do your part, respect all the health recommendations of the competent
authorities but do not confuse responsibility with domestication, civic sense with fanaticism, prudence
with surveillance. Do not submit to all those immoral insinuations that blame citizens by shifting
attention from the current indifferent and inhuman economic model. Do not believe all the moralities
that charge persons and their habits of responsibility while they take it away from governments,
multinationals and big capital. Do not allow them to turn you against your own people through
intransigence and denunciation. Where this "system" destroys the social net, you together with others,
try to work to rebuild it. Do not turn criticism of the "system" into criticism of people. Remember: they
presented public debt because of a consumerist life of the people. They associated the ecological
disaster with what people buy and throw in the trash and how often they use the toilet drain. Now in
front of this health emergency, they are shifting attention, once again, to individuals' behavior without
mentioning government cuts in public health spending in favor of the war industry and other similar
Third: Don't be alone. Neither in yourself, nor in the restricted circle of people around you. Take care
of people you are able to reach. Help them overcome fear, open the future to them. If you don't know
how to do it, start talking about yourself and tell them how you feel and then, without insisting, invite
them to do the same. Together with others, try to create networks of reciprocity, where everyone put
at the service of others his knowledge and skills, to let them learn something new (tutorials,
neighbourhood or international meetings, meditations, courses, workshops, seminars, projects,
games, etc. …) using the technological communication resources available today. This will be good for
your mental health and for those around you.
Fourth: Let’s defuse, deactivate the exasperation of social confrontation. Try to be an antidote to any
poisoning in the general atmosphere. Try to convert yourself into a living example of clarity of mind,
tolerance and compassion. While feeding yourself with strong convictions, do not humiliate people
however conservative or superficial certain belief may seem to you. You know, the growing popularity
of the most intransigent parties is the expression of an attitude already rooted in a part of the
population. It is an attitude present in both, noble and ignoble reasons and has no political color. Just
remember to treat others in the way you would like to be treated and not put down yourself if you
can't: the time will come when your failures will be rewarded. Do not force yourself or others. Let’s
aspires to persuade and reconcile.
Fifth: Keep your mind clear. For yourself and to set a good example. Even the attempt will be enough.
Observe: mental lucidity allows you to proportion, de-suggest, delimit fear and improvisation. It allows
you to remain true to yourself and to notice what happens to others. Mental lucidity is contagious and
activates the desire to imitate it. Mental lucidity deactivate the absent-minded behavior, short
thinking, mechanical thinking, visceral and cold conduct, showing their ugliness. Clear-minded behavior
illuminates like the sun, absent-minded behavior glitters alone with a dim light in the dark basement
of one's motives. If you can't do that, just exercise attention in a pleasant way, without forcing. Help
yourself by keeping in mind the position of your body in the space where you are. Do it as relaxed as
possible and when you start to tire you stop immediately. Start with easy and above all pleasant things.
It is absolutely within your reach: do not underestimate yourself, be shameless.
Sixth: Prefer the example rather than ideas. Prefer attitude to opinion. There is a difference between
endorse to an “idea” or choose a “behavior”, a mental attitude. Just be an example. You don't need to
hide what you think. You don’t need to censor or limit yourself if you need to express yourself. Just
follow a positive emotional channel with people.
Seventh: Resist negative thoughts and emotions. Reject the apocalyptic and discouraging mental
constructions. Consider how pessimism (disguised as realism) can be naive as the optimism that
disguises exorcism. Do not accept catastrophic analysis of the situation; prefer a good mental
frequency, a positive harmony that put yourself in a good and lucid psychological health. If you had to
choose between a superficial and positive position and a negative and profound one, choose the first
one because it has more possibilities of evolution. The negative representations seem more “real” for
their visceral anchor. They seems so real cause of the strength of the contractions of our bowels, but
they do not help to know neither our internal reality nor even the "external" one. Positive
representations are light, higher, above the lungs and therefore sometimes seem inconsistent, unreal,
but they change lives for the better and give soul to the future. Quietly consider that many things are
going well: despite intolerance and concern, responsibility and good feelings prevail.
Eighth: Let’s follow this suggestion of Silo: – “In some moment of the day or night inhale a breath of
air, and imagine that you carry this air to your heart. Then, ask with strength for yourself and for your
loved ones. Ask with strength to move away from all that brings you contradiction; ask for your life to
have unity. Don’t take a lot of time with this brief prayer, this brief asking, because it is enough that
you interrupt for one brief moment what is happening in your life for this contact with your interior to
give clarity to your feelings and your ideas...."
“…This recipe says that you have to ask—but whom do you ask? That dependson what you believe. It
may be your internal god, or your guide, or an inspiring and comforting image”.
I hope it is useful