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  • YAM Patel

Ask the Questions: Why was Humanity Jailed?

Although our home quarantine has been lifted on the island of Sal, Cabo Verde, our ocean remains closed. I must confess that I do wince every time I think that the controls over my freedom have extended to large bodies of water that really are not ours as humans to own. And yet here we are, banned not only from connecting with humans but from connecting with nature as well.

I have thought a lot about our present predicament, and no matter how many different ways I try to see it, on my head, in shoulder stand, on my back, on my hands, with a cold beer, without a cold beer, I always come back to this.

Six weeks on we still have NO cases in Sal, an epi centre of European tourism before our boarders were closed on March 19th, 2020. I don’t believe this is because we are all off springs of the Bionic man and Wonder women, but because we already had it here in December and January. Based on multiple conversations, I know that a large amount of people got sick here in December and January, many working in the hotels, but also in Santa Maria as well. Some just got minor symptoms like myself and others were knocked out for 7 to 14 days. I am sure some died, but we did not document it as we weren’t really aware of the virus back them. It makes sense, we have many Chinese here, and those that got sick all claim that it was a sickness like none they have had before. Even I remember thinking how strange the symptoms were that I was feeling. And yet we got sick, we recovered, some did not, and we still managed to carry on without the country shutting down, or the aid of fear and stress to heighten the effects of the virus and create panic. We just dealt with it, as we must deal with all the ills that come with being alive.

As of today, April 7th, 2020, of all the cases that have shown up on the other islands that make up Cabo Verde, over 70% are asymptomatic. Meaning we have been jailed for less than 30% of the population, and off those 30% only 2 have died, in a population of over 500,000 people. I have heard similar stories from friends across the globe.

With that in mind how have a few in power, and a handful of hospitals managed to put nearly 7 billion people in jail, without any protest or unrest at all. We have invented rockets, the internet, fax machines, robots and yet we are so dumb that in order to deal with a virus we had to be jailed and our free will (whatever little is left of it) removed. We are so brain washed to see the world from the perspective of media and those in control of marketing that in fact our free will was jailed well before this happened.

There will always be good and not so good. Even with all the restrictions, those that wanted to defy it did, those that wanted to pee in elevators, run around the streets touching and licking everything did so. Why were we not trusted to continue to live, but with a little more caution and consideration for others? Why were those infused with fear or with medical problems or in the at risk group, given all the information and asked to voluntarily stay home or be more vigilant. Why were we not given the choice to live or die. Why were we not asked? Because if those few in power were so smart and so enlightened we would have a world without wars, conflicts, poverty, hunger and terrorism, to name a few predicaments that those in power keep placing us in. It is not to say we don’t need some direction, being such a large population, but what if all those in power practiced yoga, meditation, looked at all the perspectives, indulged in empathy, had awareness, etc. Our world sure would look different.

Why now? Having been raised nearly my entire life on the continent of Africa and all the ills that come with it, I repeatedly ask myself this question. Why have we not shut the world down to get rid of mosquitos that cause malaria, the flu virus, to improve water to stop cholera, dysentery? But more importantly why have we not put in a state of emergency and removed all guns and weapons from our world. Why have we not invoked all these restrictions to stop all the meaningless deaths by guns. Why have we not put in a state of emergency to limit how much we consume so that no one dies of hunger.

Why have we closed the world to aid hospitals with over loading, but not put restrictions that would reduce our stress levels to decrease deaths by cancer, heart attacks , strokes, and even this virus etc. Why have we not used this power to find a way to have a universal income for everybody, so no human is left without access to shelter, food, and water. In doing so, humans would stop seeing each other as competition, would stop killing themselves just to survive, and maybe just maybe the human race would be allowed to be happy, happy for each other and kind to each other. There are more ways to exist beside socialism, capitalism or communism.

Because what has jailing us truly achieved in the balance sheet of life. From where I sit we are in a spiritual deficit, we have lost more than we have gained. I watch it every day as I watch poor people struggle to make ends meet as their entire lives have disappeared over night as the country has shut down and in all likelihood will not rebound even slightly for 6 months. In a country where nearly all its income is derived from tourism, this jail sentence will devastate an entire population of good humans. I watch as people no longer connect with others physically, not family, not friends, not strangers, because of our new found fear of getting close to another human. In my view, that is an enormous price to pay, in our endeavor to control death?

We have really lost trust and faith in humans and their inherent intelligence and goodness to act with compassion. It is not that we are inherently evil, it is the way our lives have been set up to compete, to think that happiness comes in things, to look and live a certain way, that makes us selfish, angry, and mean. In turn we have lost faith in ourselves to know what is good for us and allowed fear of fines, jail, and failure as defined by those in power, along with loss of material wealth to guide our lives.

There are a large number of ways we could have reacted to this virus, but this is the path a few took and the rest of us followed. Why? And what are the consequences of this path. More restrictions, more fear, or a global shift to free ourselves of this system which so deeply influences how we live, or actually exist.

Ask the questions. Do you live? Or for the most part do you exist? Do you live fully, with happiness, compassion, and kindness. Do you love what you do or does it make you angry and stressed all day. Do you embrace change or do you fear it, and if you fear it, ask yourself what is it you really fear, where does that fear come from, and what is the basis of it.

I have followed the yoga, I have trusted all that it has taught me about life and living it. I had no choice, I could not truly teach it without believing it and living it 100%. What has happened in my life has shown me that yoga is truly magic. Those that try and control us, by telling us what will make us happy are often wrong. Happiness can only come from you and from the inside. No one else can hand it to you or sell it to you. And I don’t mean happy 24/7, I mean being at peace with your life, feeling contentment with what you have, having faith in the power of kindness and love to change our lives and others. It does not mean you will never cry or be sad or make mistakes, it just means changing the way you deal with all those emotions and bumps in the road when you fall over.

So take this time to ask the questions. To not just accept all these controls without asking what is it we really fear so much that we had to jail humanity to deal with these deaths and not others. Why did I not have a say? Where has personal responsibility for our health gone to? Why did my voice not count? Why did nobody ask us? Why did we accept being treated as if we were stupid. Cause when we say things like: humans are stupid, or greedy, or terrible, we are actually talking about ourselves. If we say something enough times, we begin to think it a truth and a reality and then we just accept it. Like if someone calls us ugly or stupid enough times, we begin to think we are. So the more we view humans in a negative way, the more likely we are to accept when we are told we need controlling.

We humans are smart, we are kind, we are compassionate, we are giving, we are funny, happy, amazing people, we just need to keep reminding ourselves and each other that, every single day! Post it everywhere in your house, at work, on your child’s forehead, or your partners back, on your dog’s head, everywhere. We are smart, We are kind, We are beautiful, We are light, We are love, We are compassionate, I am enough just the way I am.

So let us out, open the doors to the jail cell and trust that one way or the other, it will all balance out and it will go down the route it is supposed to go down. Give us back our choice, give us back our humanity and let the dice roll. Because our lives ARE connected to everything else in the universe, so let that connection play out. We are not inanimate pawns on a board for men and women in power to move around. We are human and you are killing the collective humanity and souls of 7 billion people in an effort to preserve the bodies of a few, and the perspectives and fears of those in power. Really, how did we get here?

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