This coronavirus stuff is really getting to me. I try not to think about it too much, but that’s not realistic. It just seems every time I turn on the news, I’m bombarded by statistics – those relevant to my life in Israel and those pertaining to the global pandemic hitting a whole world of fragile people. The moment you walk outside in Israel, you see that everyone is wearing a mask. That brings it all into constant consciousness. It’s clearly not my own private preoccupation and hysteria.

Right now, being a part of the human race includes facing this outrageous uncertainty. We don’t quite seem to know what it is exactly, how you contract it exactly, and how exactly to ensure that if you do, you survive it. The effects seem so random and capricious. I cannot recount the number of times I’ve cried in the last few months watching mass burials or hearing people describe what they went through and how they still don’t feel like they’ve successfully shaken it off; at the same time, there are many people who experience just a light version of the illness or are entirely asymptomatic. How is it determined who lives and who dies, who suffers and who doesn’t?

There’s something bizarre and insidious about the remnants coronavirus leaves on its victims. The personal testimonies I’ve seen show many ordinary people talking about how their lives have been irreparably altered by what has happened to them.

Is there a message here from the universe we’re not necessarily grasping? I spoke to my cousin in Florida recently about this very subject. I had called when I heard about the surge in cases there, concerned about her husband who underwent heart surgery last year and is in a high-risk group should he catch the virus. She told me that she feels that Mother Earth is disappointed with her children.

Personally, I don’t like to think in terms of punishment. I would prefer to think of this as an opportunity for spiritual expansion, to actually enlarge your feeling of who you are in this world and what your true nature and purpose are. We surely need the spiritual component as we face this huge undertaking for the entire planet.

And yet, it is a real struggle to figure out what the spiritual message is here. I certainly feel connected to the brotherhood of all man in our shared vulnerability. I see, as well, all those who have volunteered to help each other, strangers coming forth to donate their time and money to those who have been directly affected by this.

Is that a sufficient takeaway under these dire circumstances?

It seems, tragically, that it is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. I hate to sound so doom and gloom. I wish I had some way to uplift the spirits of those of you who are reading, offering something wise, and powerful, and valuable. But I myself am still struggling to make any positive sense of this. Stay tuned. Maybe I will evolve.