The new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has spread to more than 200 countries and regions since December 2019, and has claimed more than 300,000 lives to-date; experts warn that more than 1 million people will be killed by the end of the year. It is akin to World War III without smoke, guns, artillery, or guns. It has created havoc around the world, and many countries are enforcing national lockdown, closing the borders, implementing various epidemic prevention measures such as restriction of movements, stay at home orders etc in order to control the spread of this virus and reduce the number of casualties. In facing the virus, everyone is equal, regardless of nationality, race, religion and wealth. The COVID-19 has raged around the world for more than five months now and has noticeably resulted in the following unique positive and negative chain reactions:
- Economy in recession or shrinking, and many big corporations have started to collapse.
- Rising of unemployment rates, causing stress and panic in the society.
- Increasing domestic violence, and rising divorce rates.
- Disruption of food supply chains, shortage of funds and uncertainty of the future, coupled with the locust plague, has prompted the World Food Administration to raise the alarm of a possible famine.
- Air pollution is gone, re-appearance of a clear blue sky.
- The oceans and rivers are clear.
- Global warming and the melting of arctic glaciers are slowing down.
- The ozone layer has shown signs of improvement.
- Wild animals are wondering the streets freely.
- There are more birds in the sky, marine life is more active, flowers and trees are also flourishing.
- Mother Nature is able to enjoy the temporary peace.
- We can be quiet and still, meditate, purify, and repair our body, mind, and soul.
- We get to appreciate the unconditional acceptance of family love, peace at home that comes from understanding, love at home that comes from affection and care, and homes blessed by filial practice.
- We get to experience the truth that blessing comes from simplicity: stable and peaceful family, loving father and filial son, kind husband caring wife, joyful grandchildren, all enjoying the blessings of togetherness.
The Universe has formed the celestial body, including the Galaxy, Sun, Earth and so on, which is the status of “Two”. The Earth accommodates all forms of life, which is the status of “Three”.
When this balancing act is lost, then it will bring disaster and humans are going to suffer immensely. A very good example is the COVID-19 epidemic that we are currently experiencing.
The sages remind us that we must reflect on our attitude towards others and learn not to repeat the same mistake over and over again. Unfortunately, human beings have suffered from many viruses (i.e. Spanish flu, AIDS, SARS, Ebola, H1N1 flu, COVID-19 & etc.) and natural disasters (earthquakes, tsunamis, storms, blizzards, floods, forest fires & etc.). These devastating events should serve as reminders and warn us to stop all the unacceptable behaviors towards other living creatures, plants and environment, but mankind had so far blatantly ignored the warnings and therefore, plagues and disasters will continue to happen over and over again, and the consequences are worse every time.
The chain reactions of the positive and negative sides of the COVID-19 pandemic also confirmed the “natural theory of Taoism” that Lao Zi advocated. The power unleashed by nature is often immense and devastating. When nature is angry, mankind is vulnerable and quite often no one is going to be spared from the consequences. Just like the current COVID-19 pandemic, no country can escape from the impact and as a result, mankind is paying an extremely high price. The World Health Organization (WHO) has consistently called on the world to unite and fight against this pandemic, to overcome the spreading of the virus and its devastating effects. If mankind is not awakened from this lesson and continue to go against nature, plagues and disasters will continue to happen and there will be no peace and more suffering will be experienced. Conversely, if we learn from the lesson and start to awaken, begin to understand, and begin to coexist peacefully with nature, I believe all these epidemics and disasters will also gradually decrease, or even disappear.
There is a famous ancient saying: First be self-disciplined, care for the family, govern the country, bring peace to the world. Most of us do not possess the power to rule a country or change the world, but we can contribute by applying good self-disciplined and taking care of our own family.
If a person really strives to cultivate himself for morality, he will find his own moral realm. If a person is associated with a pessimistic loser every day, he will naturally become a pessimistic loser as well.
Apart from self-cultivation, Lao Zi also reminded us to associate with people with positive attitude and thinking, distancing ourselves from the pessimistic or evil thoughts where possible.
In this chapter, Lao Zi stressed the importance of self-cultivation and the connections between physical, psychological, and behavioral cultivation.
We must ensure that our heart is as broad as the ocean, kind enough to help less fortunate people, accept all opinions and be ready to face challenges.
Once we understand the true meaning of honor and disgrace, we should be more tolerance and gain more wisdom to deal with challenges. The mind is clearer and can accommodate all obstacles just like an empty valley.
This quote is to advise mankind to let go of all our egos and conflicts. Our mind and heart need to be calm and pure so that we can start to experience Tao’s infinite presence amongst us. This would help us get rid of our negative thoughts of the past, and our wisdom will progressively increase.
meaning our character was mainly influenced by the acquired environment over the years, it is starting to obscure our “true self” and is causing most of us to become more stubborn and difficult to change the bad behaviors. We must therefore continue to practice Tao and cultivate ourselves to follow the law of nature in order to return to the “true self”.
The COVID-19 virus is a real test to every one of us. Unless it disappears quickly or a vaccine is successfully developed, the human race will need to coexist with the virus, and we are forced to accept this “new normal” life, which is also impacting on our daily qigong practice. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) data, 95% of the deaths are elderly and people with chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and other diseases, and unfortunately 80% of our Infinite Qigong practitioners belong to this so-called “high-risk” category. Assuming that Infinite Qigong activities (daily practice, courses and various group activities) are suspended for one to two years, the question is will you continue to practice daily? Will you continue to perform self-study? Will you continue to self-cultivate? These questions will definitely test each and every one of us physically, mentally and spiritually.
The road ahead is full of difficulties and challenges; those who can see a clear path ahead tend to be more peaceful and calmer, and ready to pounce on the new opportunities. Conversely, many of us are under stress and anxiety because we think that the path ahead is unclear, and we see no light at the end of the tunnel.
It is therefore important for us to understand that all things are equal, the destiny of mankind is interdependent with the universe, if everyone can follow the law of nature and practice self-cultivation, self-assessment, self-awakening, allow the balance of yin / yang and heaven / earth to take place naturally, humans and nature can live in peace, coexist and prosper together, then the disasters of the world will gradually decrease or completely disappear and mankind will no longer need to suffer from these disasters.
I would like to conclude by sharing this message with you –
Finally, I wish all of you much blessings, peace, good health and happiness!