No, I am not another Greta knocker, but my question is serious. I have always taken what could be best described as a metaphysical approach to the human experience. Forty years in ‘natural’ healthcare, the last decade of which has been focused on western mindfulness, has provided plenty of evidence to support this notion. Obviously for some time I have tried to make sense of Covid19 and the global pandemic from a metaphysical perspective. This last week the penny finally dropped.
A part of my perspective of the human experience is open to the idea that what manifests in physical form was first created energetically. From the human perspective, what the mind and heart (consciousness) are aligned with forms our reality. I have personally worked with enough people over the last decade to see that when people shift their state of consciousness, their reality changes. If this holds true, then in terms of our global pandemic, it begs the question, “What global alignment of consciousness could be powerful enough to have caused a pandemic?”
In the context of social dynamics, critical mass is when a sufficient number of people become so aligned with an idea that it causes a tipping point or threshold where the perceived reality of a community or population is impacted. It’s my theory that in 2019 Greta Thunberg reached a critical mass of the global population with her passionate message to ‘save the planet’. In just one year she was presented with seven prestigious awards including Time magazine’s Person of the Year 2019. Called ‘the Greta effect’, Thunberg in one year created more global awareness and gathered more support about the need to reverse global warming than any other person in human history. The breadth of her influence, it could be argued, reached that all important global critical mass.
This much change in consciousness, meaning that a critical mass of the global population has been impacted, meant that in the context of metaphysics, reality had to change, it could no longer stay the same. Since it came across that the agenda for change was primarily fear driven, then fear would infuse this collective shift in consciousness. Fear inspires urgency, which on this scale would be the catalyst for an almost immediate dramatic global shift in reality.
Enter, the pandemic.
Thunberg didn’t create Covid19. But, here is one example of how the pandemic mirrored Thunberg’s rhetoric. Greta was responsible for bringing to prominence ‘flight shame’, an anti-flying movement promoting train travel over flying in-order to help reduce the accelerating greenhouse emissions created by the airline industry. This movement already existed before Thunberg’s prominence, having been started by Swedish Olympian athlete Björn Ferry. It only became globally noticed (critical mass) when Thunberg refused to fly to her international engagements, choosing to sail instead. You may have already guessed where this was going. One of the biggest impacts of the pandemic was essentially the shutting down of almost all air travel. The reduction in air pollution was unprecedented and was achieved much more quickly that anyone ever thought possible.
Thunberg clearly identified capitalism and consumerism as major causes for escalating greenhouse emissions. Once again the pandemic was more powerful than any capitalist as they couldn’t stop its ability to curtail consumption. All the while, the key motive that allowed the pandemic to bring about these changes was the global fear of imminent death. Ironically, Thunberg was also talking about death, but the difference was, she was talking about global mortality that was relatively more remote. That said, the poignancy of her message was heard by teenagers and the young adults who would be most impacted in the future by the rapid deterioration of the ‘health’ of the environment.
The challenge when change is the result of fear and scarcity is the lack of sustainability. In spite of the critical mass buying into Thunberg’s message, the critical mass has also suffered from the forced loss of those things that they relied on most; their freedom to consume, to socialise and to travel. The very things that if limited, in terms of travel and consumption, could make a significant contribution to healing the environment.
On a slightly different angle, these priorities were the primary distractions of choice that made it possible for most people to function day to day despite their personal suffering. Most people are struggling with scarcity in terms of wealth, autonomy, feeling loveable and acceptance. Having had a taste of what will be required to ‘save the planet’, there will be many people who aren’t so sure that what they experienced at the hands of the pandemic, is what they are prepared to do voluntarily. This is the point where the support for saving the planet begins to wane and the critical mass can no longer be sustained. That being the case, the world quickly returns to its habitual ways of avoiding those things that are responsible for their personal suffering, thus dropping the environmental agenda.
The question has to be asked, “Can a critical mass of the population be inspired to want to ‘save the planet’ motivated by love and not fear?’
If the weakest link in the ‘Greta effect’ is the lack of sustainable commitment by the critical mass because of their need to avoid their suffering, then it makes sense that the sustainable remedy must be to have the critical mass shift their perceived reality from one of scarcity and fear to one of abundance and love. Imagine for a moment a critical mass whose values had permanently shifted from the need for wealth, power, love (eros) and fame to minimalism, self-realisation, agape (brotherly love) and social justice (for anawims and the planet). Imagine a critical mass with sufficient self-worth that their lives are filled with peace, joy, love, kindness, temperance, patience, gentleness and mercy, lives where feeling discombobulated is a rarity.
The ‘church’ had a mandate to champion that state of consciousness, but because of its own greed, abuse of power, fear-centred teachings and self-importance, it forfeited that mandate. What the world needs now is the ‘Agape effect’, a global critical mass that is committed to remembering in each moment that they have a choice to be more loving to themselves, to others and to the planet.