Vice President Venkaiah Naidu has underlined the need to adopt new ways of living in the times of coronavirus and suggested a framework for this “new normal” to deal with the virus. In a Facebook post, he stressed on the need for new attitudes towards life and humanity amidst indications of the virus likely to stay for longer than earlier expected. In a post after the government extended the lockdown on Sunday evening, the Vice President dealt with the philosophical and moral issues thrown by the Covid-19 pandemic and the way life needs to be lived henceforth. He underlined that life cannot be lived in isolation and the virus outbreak highlighted the inter-connectedness of lives.
Vice President’s12 points:
- Living in harmony with the nature and fellow beings,
- Knowing that safety and security of lives are interconnected,
- Rationally analyzing the impact of every movement or action on the spread of virus,
- Not responding impulsively to the situation and instead living in confidence keeping faith in science which can come up with a solution to the problem,
- Strict adherence to the behavioral changes ushered in so far like wearing mask,
- Maintaining physical distance and ensuring hygiene,
- Preventing stigmatization so that the infected volunteer for treatment,
- Checking disinformation and prejudices against fellow citizens as carriers of the virus
- Replacing the sense of collective helplessness by the spirit of the virtue of living interconnected with shared destiny
- Our society is based on human relations, for everything we need people to justify our actions and this is going to change in future.
- Lockdown brought on by the Covid pandemic have struck people as a painfully long period of isolation. Social distancing seems to be hitting people even more than the scare of the deadly virus.
- People are getting highly restive and agitated in spite of social media connectivity.
- Cases of domestic violence have more than doubled in the country during this period.
- Humans have evolved to be social creatures and are wired to live in interactive groups. Being isolated from family, friends and colleagues can be unbalancing and traumatic for most people and can result in short or even long-term psychological and physical health problems.
- An increase in levels of anxiety, aggression, depression, forgetfulness and hallucinations are possible psychological effects of isolation.
- Mental conditions may be precipitated for those with underlying pre-existing susceptibilities and also show up in many others without any pre-condition. Personal relationships help us cope with stress, and if we lose this outlet for letting off steam, it results in a huge emotional void which, for an average person, is difficult to deal with.
- Just a few days of isolation can cause increased levels of anxiety and depression. Add to it the looming threat of a dreadful disease being repeatedly hammered in through the media and you have a recipe for many shades of mental and physical distress.
- Prisoners in solitary confinement and patients in isolated hospital units have often shown adverse psychological effects, including increased anxiety, panic attacks and increased levels of paranoia. Social isolation has been found to have a correlation with higher alcoholism.
- The Covid lockdown has brought forced isolation to many. There are youngsters living away from their families, trapped in small apartments with abysmal cooking skills. Many senior citizens living by themselves found companionship by meeting up with age mates in neighbourhood parks. They find themselves marooned, deprived of social interaction and also the occasional visits by their children. Lack of playtime with peers is making children irritable and edgy.
- It can be extremely oppressive and claustrophobic for large low-income families huddled together in small single-room houses. Children here are not lucky enough to have many board/electronic games or books to keep them occupied. Add to it the deep insecurity of running out of funds for food and basic necessities.
- On the other hand, there are people with dysfunctional family dynamics, such as domineering, abusive or alcoholic partners, siblings or parents which makes staying home a period of trial. Incidence of suicide and physical abuse against women has shown a worldwide increase. Heightened anxiety and depression also affect a person’s immune system, making them more susceptible to illness.
- Long-term lockdowns bring along a series of social, economic and religious upheavals in societies.
- Lower classes were worse off for living in closely packed, unhealthy environments. A large workforce had been destroyed; farms and factories were abandoned. Wages for labour shot up as did the cost of manufactured goods. There were some positive outcomes too, though at a huge price of death and destruction.
Role of society:
- Society plays a very important role.
- Our society has different classes, different strata’s of people, different people with different age groups.
- Today’s media is very active, with the increase in awareness the copping mechanism has also increased.
- As we have different strata of people, for some strata it is very easy to maintain social distancing.
- For groups with no resources, home or private vehicles, it becomes difficult to maintain social distancing.
- Culture has 2 components i.e material and non- material culture and for the nonmaterial to cope up with a material culture, it takes a long time, lag and gap and in this lag different strata of people get affected in different ways.
Physical distancing not social distancing
- When the phrase “social distancing” is used, it is likely to convey a wrong message.
- Physical distancing is what we need.
- It said people need social support, however, they are not supposed to meet other people.
- Social togetherness, can be practised while maintaining physical distance via online mediums.
Long-term social behavior effects:
- As the pandemic becomes a bigger and bigger part of daily life, researchers are warning of changes in how we think, behave and relate to one another – some temporary but others potentially permanent – could be the new normal
- This crisis may be unprecedented, but there are always patterns in how humans behave when thrust into long periods of isolation and danger.
- Research hints at what the coming months may look like. Our ability to focus, to feel comfortable around others, even to think more than a few days into the future, may diminish.
- Large gatherings are going to be rare. Many weddings, sporting events or concerts would be ruled out. And a full return to commuting by public transit will also be delayed. Malls, gyms, restaurants, bar and places of worship, the list is endless.
- Our country is very diverse both in terms of population composition, culture and expectation of each other, needs are different, we must try and change our thought process.
- Everyone should work together. Planning tends to become tentative and short-term. People cultivate moments of joy when danger recedes, knowing it might not last.
- Basic behavioral change should be done. The greatest psychological shift amid widespread crisis may be toward simple social tasks, like checking in on neighbors, caring for the needy, cooking for friends.
- Due regards should be given for sanitation and disciplined life.