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Open Covid letter from a white middle class guy whose luck of birth has run out but that's OK

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Message Gary Lindorff
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My sense is that this winter is going to be very hard on our country and very challenging for each and all of us. I'm talking about the next 4 or 5 months. OK, that is not hard to imagine! But what I am saying is, those who are going to ride this out the best (and are faring the best) are the ones who are applying all the best lessons they have learned over the past 6 months with Covid in our lives. Namely: How bubbles work, how to reduce risk factors, how to eat well (stock up on healthy food to reduce trips to the store), learning new skills (i.e., meditation, [for me, meditation and learning piano], new skills that will facilitate our re-entry into a post-covid world when the threat of covid subsides . . . Using the internet creatively to consolidate new contacts and explore new possibilities, pursue new interests. With more educational programs and taking advantage of trainings on-line it is possible to expand our expertise in certain areas, (for example: interested in wild-crafting? Expand that to studying medicinal properties of plants or cooking with wild plants . . . If art: study color theory or new techniques and media).

Try not to get sucked into ruts, old patterns, dark thoughts about what isn't working or isn't possible . . . I am a therapist trained in Jungian dream work: I happen to know there are a lot of great counselors and therapists who are not being utilized and Zoom can work for therapy. It's not as good as one-on-one, but it is 100% better than self-help books or just thinking positively in a vacuum, and therapists should be reducing their rates. Some might even offer to work for free. (I have been known to do that.) I believe in the benefits of therapy!

This is the time to share our gifts.

What I am saying is, the next 4 months may be the hardest, but they don't have to be. Even though we are going to see our society stressed to the limit and many people bottoming out, try to look for all the silver linings and possibilities in investing in ourselves and expanding beyond what was possible when we were caught up in our routine pre-covid world. There really is an incredible opportunity to batten down, be good sailors and ride out this gale, and be the better for it come April or May. (It is not the end of the world, but let it be the end of the old provisional world with its old limitations.)

A word on privilege of birth and race, stage in life and occupation: I am a middle class white guy, retired. I cannot pretend that I am somebody else. Any one who has been paying attention to the news and what's been going on in the streets and communities and cities, state by state, sees that our caste system (systemic racism affecting all sectors of our income-divided opportunity-lopsided economy and society) is less a shadow-problem now than it is a problem of working for and fighting for real change from ground up. Many of us were born lucky. I know from my experience, that luck actually worked for decades of my life and my parents' and grandparents' life, but the problem was we were creating a monster of a collective shadow that did enormous damage in our name!

Now that collective shadow has been exposed and we can't live by luck any more but by waking up to the work of reforming our system so that it works for everyone. But that doesn't change anything I said above. So I won't say "good luck" but feed your visions and your dreams, feed you gifts, invest in yourself, create resilient trustworthy bubbles, explore new interests, develop new skills, take care of yourselves and each other, batten down, and above all -- stay in touch! We will soon see the light at the end of this tunnel.

 

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Gary Lindorff is a poet, writer, blogger  and author of several books, the latest: 13 Seeds: Health, Karma and Initiation. Over the last few years he has begun calling himself an activist poet, channeling his activism through poetic (more...)
 

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