THE CONSUMER VIRUS
The Consumer Virus
I did some research to find the function of viruses in the natural world. The number astounds:
“An estimated 10 nonillion (10 to the 31st power) individual viruses exist on our planet—enough to assign one to every star in the universe 100 million times over.” (National Geographic Magazine)
380 trillion viruses live in the human body, along with 38 trillion bacteria. Viruses attack the harmful bacteria in the body. The healthy bacteria, not the ones responsible for illness, prevent the intrusion of diseases. An infinitesimal number of viruses are directly harmful to the human body, primarily those that mutate and those that cross the barrier from animals.
The coronavirus seems to have crossed between animals and entered the human body, becoming virulent – an interesting word. If we allow ourselves to see with imagination, however, this crossing is more like an event of Nature caring for herself by lessening the harmful predators, us, who are attacking her. We don’t need nor want to ascribe anger or emotion to such an event – it is only Nature being Nature, and the law of balance.
Viruses have to do with the constant and necessary dying away of the body, with decomposition, in their invisible bond with the coming-into-life, always happening. The dying-away of the body correlates with fear, while the coming-into-life of the body correlates with love. We are made of love and fear. When fear that is other than intrinsic fear begins to more and more invade the body, the law of balance begins to falter and fear overtakes us and becomes the attractor of further fear. The coronavirus is one such attracted fear.
The difficulty lies in our taking in fear that does not look like fear at all – this taking in of death is called consumerism. We are being consumed by consuming. (An ultimate image of being consumed in this way is the “selfie” – where we are consumers of ourselves.) I remember when the word “consumer” first began to be applied to people and how offensive it was to hear humans being called “consumers”. Now, it is commonplace to be called a most ignoble name.
The coronavirus can be characterized as the consumer virus. Since its appearance, a huge decrease in consumption and all the harm consuming does to Earth is being revealed. But, as the world begins to open up again, the death instinct of consumerism and the accompanying virus comes roaring back.
Consuming and being a number in collective (un)consciousness go together. And in becoming statistics we lose connection with soul and spirit individuality, our access to soul and spirit presences. It takes inner work to become a human being (a Person); we are not automatically human by having this form. And we cannot be taught how to be human – it is a matter of the awakening of consciousness – that is, of being conscious of being consciousness -- developing connection with the inner life of soul and the urge and longing of soul for spirit. Further, the awakened soul and spirit must become ways of sensing, perceiving, and thinking. We are not separate from the Whole, though we are the only beings that can act as if we are. Everything is conscious, something that is immediately apparent when in soul-spirit-body connection with Earth.
The great impending danger concerns the arrival of the new consumerism – techno-consumerism. It is well on its way, but it consists of way more than the digitalization of consciousness. It is technical food, made in the laboratory, it is tourist flights to the moon, it is consciousness-dulling vaccines for attacking increasing numbers of viruses as described above, it is “health-uncare” taking the place of oil as the primary commodity to be purchased, it is artificial intelligence and it is all those technological regressions (not advances) of consciousness. Technology is another word for ‘unconsciousness’.
The only hopeful response consists the utterly necessary work of developing the inner life – without trying to ‘get something’ out of it, for the inner life constitutes the essence of being human, being free – not free from something or free to do what we want, but pure freedom, the capacity to do things out of pure spontaneous but fully conscious creativity – because these inspirations do not arise from us but are the presence of the spiritual beings who do care for us, and through them an integral soul-spirit-embodied-Earth becomes possible.