Talk About

Whoever said ‘may you live in interesting times’, please take it back.

people, alone, girl

I think I’d like to live in ‘boring’ times now. Despite the rise of misinformation, in itself another symptom of our interesting times, it is fair to say there is a lot happening in the world right now. Like, a lot a lot. With the global coronavirus pandemic, and the east african swarms of locusts causing a crisis in the region, among issues of wealth disparity, social inequality and environmental ruin. 

The phrase “may you live in interesting times” is often purported to be a Chinese curse meaning to live in interesting (thus busy and unrested) times. Fair to say that this year has met those requirements. Another proverb that comes to mind that “it’s better to be a dog in a peaceful time than be a man in a chaotic period.”  No one really knows the correct origin of the saying, but I have a feeling that this phrase is so emblematic of the times we live in today. The total lack of security and clarity we have today is symbolic of the saying, and could suggest that it is actually the omen it purports to be. 

Where there used to be brief respite in times of crisis, it now seems as if there is an almost relentless onslaught of events and crises. Which brings me to my initial point, if this is what interesting times look like, I think I am done with them and would like to return to boring times. Whatever is the total opposite of the nature of the world today, I would much prefer that. 

When looking at all the things going on in the world, we can look at the fact that most of it originates with us. Where we have been able to change and progress our world with technological advancements, there still remains issues that we cannot prepare or account for. 

The (false) information around the clearing of Venician bodies of water shows that, even within positivity, there is generally misinformation and confusion in our world today.  

That being said, in times of crisis, there is a general sense of shared values that I can appreciate. That we can come together and be somewhat united, I think this almost makes our ‘interesting’ times bearable. For example, the government’s call for 250,000 NHS volunteers saw over 405,000 applicants within 48 hours. Where times may be hard, or interesting, there is always the consideration of unity and general synchronicity amongst us all.  

So, as I have said, I am ready to go back to living in uninteresting times. 

To those concerned with the state of the world today, please know you are not alone. Your despair and confusion is shared. For those looking to gain some sense of peace, find attached below some sources for mindfulness, calm and therapy to help us all through these testing times:

Headspace app with free Covid-19 meditation – https://www.headspace.com/covid-19

Mind Coronavirus which has a wellbeing notice – https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus-and-your-wellbeing/

BigWhiteWall an open space to share thoughts – https://www.bigwhitewall.com/


Tadiwa Ndlovu

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