As I was helping mí abuela with the groceries the other day, she was telling me about how the grocery store is totally empty. Entire aisles are empty due to fear of the COVID-19 virus causing everyone to want to stock up on supplies. But there’s a certain irony about this: the fear is quite irrational in its timing.
Viruses don’t appear out of nowhere. While biologists often quibble over calling them organisms, they do have a significant presence in every ecosystem alongside entities more properly classified in life’s various kingdoms. The Ebola virus was present for many years in the jungles of the Congo before it struck fear in the hearts of Americans in 2014. They’re out there. Waiting. Evolving. Thriving beyond the confines of your home in foreign lands whose names and peoples you know not until you deign them worthy of note. Such as it was with COVID-19. You should have been ready long before it came to your door. Long before it was delivered to bread-eating mortals on the leathery wings of Wuhanese bats.
Businesses are closing, people are in quarantine, travel bans have been enacted, and society seems to all be tearing at the seams. What brought the nations of the world to their knees? What has the power to cripple empires? Tiny strands of ribonucleic acid. That is how fragile our ivory towers are. This is the power of nature that reminds us that it does not take much at all to topple giants.
There’s only one thing we can do in our dark hours: turn to the Gods. We are at Their mercy at all times; plague or no. We should take a moment to be in awe at the raw power of the world the Gods gave us. Powers that can give or destroy on a whim. Powers beyond our grasp.