We find ourselves in a time that we have to spend it living with ourselves. The world isn’t calling us anymore with its glamor and revelatory experiences. The world rejected us and condemned us to find the glamor and the revelation of self-experiencing. The lockdown due to the coronavirus, the COVID-19 pandemic, stopped us form keep running from ourselves into the world. We should use this time and descend into the depths of our own conscience and decide who we truly are.
“The childhood of the human race is far from over. We have a long way to go before most people will understand that what they do for others, is just as important to their wellbeing, as what they do for themselves,” said William T. Powers, the Perceptual Control Theory developer.
William T. Powers’ theory led to a form of therapy called the Method of Levels (MOL) that aims to guide the patient to reorganize the perception about his/her inner conflicts by enhancing his/her awareness of that perception.
Things don’t mean anything unless someone gives that meaning to them. Things can only exist they don’t have intrinsic meaning. Only humans can give, find, search, prove that there is meaning in something. And doing that is a propensity that the human being is struggling with from the moment they become aware of themselves and the world. Meaning is the invisible cord humans tie themselves to the world.
What does this pandemic mean? Could we evolve a new cooperative consciousness? Is it about me? Is it about the world? Is it about me in the world?
Should I change or is it the world that should change? Who must take the first step? The world or myself? What do I mean to the world and what does the world mean to me? An individual means nothing for the world, the world has no conscience, the world is a concept. For the same conceptual reason, the world could mean everything for the individual.
The humans after the COVID-19 Pandemic
All around the world, people are cooperating and contributing to the collective effort to overcome this threat together as better human beings. Better as in generous, caring, reliable, trustworthy, creative, supportive, understanding, enduring, forgiving, foreseeing, etc.
But do we do it just because we are frightened of what this pandemic might mean? Or do we do it to make this pandemic mean something more than just untold havoc? Will it last? We’ll still be all those things when the threat will be gone?
We can’t control our behavioral variables. Not to the extent we define as “control”. Mostly, we try to bargain with our behavior. We can intervene and make adjustments, but we don’t control it. Nor can we control the external environmental variables.
The only thing we can control is the perception we have of those variables. In this equation, behavior becomes the instrument through which we can manage perception control. At the same time, the behavior is changing under the influence of perception.
We decide who we are through the power of perception. The universe doesn’t care what all of this means to us. Neither does the world. But we, as singularities in this world, are more than just concepts. We can find meaning in this. And if each of us would find similar meaning in this havoc, that could give the world the chance to have meaning too.
All purposeful behavior may be considered to require negative feed-back. If a goal is to be attained, some signals from the goal are necessary at some time to direct the behavior. In a psychology context, during the COVID-19, on the other hand, negative refers to the valence of the feedback – attractive versus aversive, or praise versus criticism.