Updated: Mar 25, 2020
Now that COVID-19 has hit just about everywhere, we'd like to take this opportunity to wish you a safe and prudent time weathering the storm.
Prudence and preparedness really are the name of the game. That means thinking through your exposure, minimizing it as far as you can, and planning for contingencies. Seniors and those with preexisting conditions are at the highest risk.
Minimizing your exposure, and avoiding exposing anyone else, is right now the most important thing you can do. Witness the dangers of waiting until the last moment in Italy's case:
It is difficult for many people, especially those in certain types of jobs which require close contact with lots of people or which don't provide sick leave.
And that brings up contingency planning. Sick leave, childcare, supporting family members and friends while minimizing contact, all of these are things to think through now. Investigate supports offered by your governments or community organizations.
Flattening the Curve
By reducing our individual exposure, we collectively help to 'flatten the curve', that is, reduce the rate of transmission to avoid our health systems being overwhelmed, which is the main danger:
Mistakes of the Past
Finally, make sure your sources of information are reliable.
The erroneously-named 'Spanish Flu' of 1918-19 spread to the world from US Army camps because both the army and the press were heavily self-censoring against any information that might reduce wartime morale. Arguably, nothing is quite as bad for morale as dying, but the result was that the disease was brushed off, and precautions ignored, until it was too late.
In the case of COVID-19, the Chinese government's habitual censorship of bad news led to a fatal delay in containing the outbreak. National leaders in many other countries, fearing economic disruption, have likewise been slow to take necessary measures.
Having said all that, staying calm, taking care of yourselves and remaining positive are just as important. We are at our worst when fear takes over, which was certainly the case in 1919.
On a cheerier note...
With all of that out of the way, let's wrap up with a selection of the standard content we like to bring you.
1. Advances in Light Therapy
Our interest in this one began with Brent Baum's work on the use of colour and light to heal trauma. It now seems that more and more uses are being found for this kind of therapy.
2. Buddhist Texts Sung in Sanskrit
Indian musician Vidya Rao has set the Sanskrit versions of many classic Buddhist texts to an Indian classical music style, including the Heart Sutra: