Almost three billion humans are confined, which makes a lot of people. Almost all countries seem to be affected by this viral threat. And at this time, there are only two ways to deal with it. Either we isolate affected individuals from the rest of the population until they are well, or we have the rest of the population confined until the threat passes. Ideally, a combination of the two options works best.
Certainly, sanitary lockdown is a limitation of our freedom with the ultimate goal to protect us from the invisible threat. But in the end, are we going to get tired from being confined for extended period of time? Governments keep asking their citizens to “stay at home”, but they ignore that this home has lost all of its dimensions. In fact, “Home” is usually where we rest and enjoy the freedom that is restricted outside, “Home” is where we have control over how create comfort in our place away from all the disorder outside that we have no control over it. As a result, our habits are directly intertwined with our habitation. Also, in order to keep a certain balance in our daily life and responsibilities, we were forced to telecommute, distance learning…etc. this new reality, invited the public domain inside our home, with its obligations, schedules, cadences, tasks, rewards and blames. Since the beginning of history, humans have always strived to connect the outside with the inside, because if there is no outside, the inside no longer exists.
During this lockdown, we started losing conversation. Everyone only talks about “Coronavirus”! and all the aspects of our life which surrounds us refer to it (news, derogations, fines and penalties, police forces, leaders' media outing, social networks, medical staff …etc.) to an overwhelming degree. The lockdown therefore puts everyone in the most anti-human form of loneliness. Caught in his own trap, man risks becoming nobody, and humanity who fights against the invisible will be threatened to extinction. When we are fighting the invisible, we become anxious. If we do nothing, we are prisoners, we are frozen. If we start to think, we can either create wonders and invent another way of survive, or add more stress to the existing situation.
For centuries, we see how epidemics, by killing many people, modify civilizations and force us to think differently. Discernment dictated by the lockdown, the fact of not being carried away too far by events, of being able to make precise decisions on the experiences we live, of being able to see a little more clearly so as not to leave a place for the anxieties which can go up from the interior, shouldn't makes us forget that whoever is supposed to be a physical protection, could be a mental attack on itself. In neurology, we know that a single brain loses its ability to function properly. The brain needs another one to interact with and keep it awake, to start functioning. To be stimulated, our brain needs the presence and speech of others.
Under the pressure of liberal globalization, our modern societies have launched into the passion of acceleration. And there, this lockdown constitutes a “stopping point” which is not affecting a single individual, as would be an illness or a retirement. It is rather, a collective stopping point. Each of us is discovering another side of reality, which already affected individuals who are sick, elderly, or living in isolation and have been dealing with confinement and anxiety. We are witnessing a violent and radical awareness of the fragility of our world and our system in which we believed in. Some will even have a rather mystical indoor dive, because it is neurologically proven that prayers and beliefs help us to fight anxiety.
During these two months of lockdown, our societies are transformed, our human connections have been reconfigured and reinvented. The virtual is gradually replacing the real, by intensifying exchanges via the internet, writing, photos, conversations …etc. A virtual proximity is established, with an increase of civility, politeness, and we are happy to see from distance that the other is doing well. We were prisoners of social time and we are rediscovering intimate time. At the moment, there is a revival of human relationships, which strangely goes through “technostructure”.
As the epidemic gradually takes over the entire planet in a greatest confusion, the ultimate question of the end of lockdown takes on a cosmic dimension. From this perspective, it could be related to globalization itself and to the forms it has developed over the past fifty years. Before rushing to the “next day”, the lesson would be to agree to retrace our steps and recognize our mistakes. With seriousness and modesty, without complacency or “double talk”, and keeping a good vigilance in post COVID crisis. Ideally, whether in the economic or health field, to make up for lost growth, there will be a risk of sudden re-acceleration, quite simply to not risk losing our previous achievements. We could fall into a post-crisis productivism, which would enforce the flaws of the previous period.
Finally, failure and barriers are part of the human condition. Until we accept death, we will be maddened with each pandemic. We have to keep each other and focus how to make a better future with less superstition and more rationality, which can only be achieved by sticking to rule of three things: “action, affection and reflection”.
Published online: June 05, 2020
Received in revised form:
Publication stageIn Press Journal Pre-Proof
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