A Pandemic of Love – deeply adapting to corona

I’ve not been breathing so deeply recently. I’ve been checking news sites every hour. I’ve been wondering how best to protect myself, loved ones, and participate in wider efforts at change. I’ve felt anger as I witness slow and ethically dubious responses from people with the power to make decisions that matter – if made fast. But rather than get stuck with blame, I am also hearing of heart-warming action from people all around the world. As we face exponential impacts from viruses, climate chaos and financial markets, we can become part of an exponential pandemic of love.

This time last year I founded a network which helps connect people who believe that the breakdown of societies is either likely, inevitable or already unfolding in this decade. People have been changing their lives to live more in their truth and love. Over 50 of them have become volunteers in a Deep Adaptation Forum which already engages over 15,000 people around the world. All for free. Our context is the climate emergency and our aim is to reduce harm, save what we can and experience joy in the process.

Then Covid-19 started to engulf the world. How can the Deep Adaptation movement, and the Forum in particular, embody and enable loving responses to this predicament?

Many people are going into isolation, losing income, becoming stuck a long way from home, and experiencing difficult emotions. The situation is going to get much worse over the next 3 months and could trigger nastiness and pain. Expressing our emotions with others is helpful, as then we can witness those emotions and not necessarily be driven by them. It is also helpful to make sense of things by telling others. There is a chance to use this slowed-down moment in our lives for reflection and learning rather than frustration and fear. The technology for online video meetings means we can try to do that right now. But it needs people like you to take initiative.

Therefore, myself, colleagues and volunteers in the DA movement are inviting you to hold a space online for people to share how they are feeling.

Yes, you.

Perhaps you will invite friends, colleagues, neighbours, or anyone who wants to show up from around the world at the time you choose. It’s easy and the participants in Deep Adaptation groups can help you. Please read more about this ‘Deep Listening’ initiative here.

In the rest of our work, the Deep Adaptation Forum will remain focused on the climate predicament, as sadly the future entails far greater disruption. It is currently unclear if climate change is influencing the likelihood of epidemics, but this pandemic is certainly bringing problems into the present like never before in living memory. There is the opportunity for us to engage with each other from the psychological, emotional and perhaps spiritual places we have arrived at in our lives through having already accepted a challenging future.

I know many people in the Deep Adaptation field are already taking action, too diverse to chronicle here. Widening the online Deep Listening is just one response. Please consider creating your own ideas, whatever they are, find collaborators for them, go for it and tell us about it on any of the Deep Adaptation groups.

However, if you like the idea of convening people online to express together what’s going on for you, please visit this link and give it a go yourself. What have you got to lose?

It is time to balance ‘social distancing,’ with efforts at ‘social instancing’ that exemplify how life is all about connection. It is time that you and I join a pandemic of love.

With that, I am going to practice breathing deeply.

And treat myself to a day without news!

Love, Jem

IF YOU KNOW PEOPLE WHO MAY BE INTERESTED, POINT THEM TO WWW.DEEPRELATING.SPACE

IF YOU CAN HELP US TO PAY PEOPLE TO HELP COORDINATE AND SUPPORT THE VOLUNTEERS HOSTING THESE SPACES, PLEASE CONSIDER SUPPORTING THE DEEP ADAPTATION FORUM ON PATREON.

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