The sociocultural adjustments we have been enduring, due to the CoVid19 shutdown, could possibly herald the biggest social adjustment of our generation.
Decisions in the next few weeks, made by people in power, in their attempts to control the coronavirus, will shape not just our healthcare systems but also our economy, our politics and probably our future way of life. You should increase your awareness to exploitation that could be riding on the wave of this immediate social challenge.
We must all be aware that many of the present short-term emergency measures that have been enacted could become a fixture of our lives—that is one of the spin-offs of the nature of emergencies. When decisions, that in normal times could take years of discussion to get balanced results, in emergency situations extreme measures can be quickly passed, without debating the long-term consequences.
Of course these types of quick decisions do have their risks, but in the present CoVid19 crisis, it has been well assessed that the risk of doing nothing could produce an unacceptable health risk for the mostly old and ill people in our society. So we are now in a large-scale social experiment to protect people at risk.
What could be the social changes that come out of this? For example, what if more and more employment occurs from the home base, rather than the institutions? This could be good, and it could be bad—who knows! Will schools and universities in the future split student contact between the physical school room, and an online school at home? Will the government allocate billions of dollars to improve the life quality of older Australians in care? These social changes are more likely to occur now, and it could bring good experiences into our lives or bad experiences—we just don’t know.
We are now being faced with new choices such as: Should we agree to increased totalitarian adherence through increased technological surveillance of our health, or should we agree to return to the more individual and private lifestyles? Should we agree to keep our Australian way of life, or join in global solidarity using technology as the glue? Should we depend more on the health system with drugs, operations and replacements of body parts, and less on personally taking responsibility to maintain our health—or a combination of these?
An experiment is going on right now. There is an isolation-hypothesis that is being tested. It is not scientifically proven that isolation will stop CoVid19 from killing older people with compromised immune systems, or people in general with immune scarring to specific pathogens. The data is being globally collected right now. It has a high probability that the isolation experiment will definitely help with this—but then when the data is examined, we will also ask “Is this the best method to protect vulnerable people, if it negatively impacts most other people’s lives”.
For this hypothesis to be tested requires entire populations to comply with strict guidelines determined by the researchers and the administrators. One method to get this compliance to occur is for the government to monitor people and punish those who break the rules. In some countries they are using communication technology (smart phones), and face-recognising cameras, as well as ordering people to check and report their body temperature and medical condition if it changes. The possibility of this becoming a way of life in Australia has just taken a leap. This type of monitoring could have benefits and it could have detriments, depending on your social position. Realise, you may not have a choice in deciding this in the future.
You might suggest that surveillance is not new, because governments and corporations are currently using ever more sophisticated technologies to track, monitor and manipulate us for profit and control. However, this pandemic might make the deployment of mass surveillance tools a reality, in those countries whose politicians have so far rejected them.
Where do you stand on being continually monitored? It must be remembered that none of us know exactly how we are being monitored at this moment, by the government, organisations, or hackers. Surveillance technology has developed at an incredible rate in the last few years, and what seemed science-fiction a decade ago has become reality today.
Here is an idea: What if the medical system determines that every citizen must wear a smart-watch, that transmits daily data about their health (blood pressure, heart rate, immune activity, sleep, stress levels). This could be suggested as a way of preventing the next pandemic, by determining who has to be isolated and medicated quickly, to stop the spread of the disease. Everyone would have to wear one, either by voluntary compliance, or by penalty of fines or imprisonment. This is just an idea, but I am sure some medical science boffin has thought of that, and if money can be made from this idea, well, then some research company will get working on it.
You could, of course, suggest that you would accept biometric surveillance as a temporary measure, to be taken only during states of emergency. It could be removed once the emergency was over. But temporary measures have a nasty habit of outlasting emergencies, especially as there will always be a new emergency lurking on the horizon.
Even when infections from coronavirus are down to zero, some data-hungry governments could argue they needed to keep the biometric surveillance systems in place because of the possibility of a second wave of coronavirus or something nastier. There has been an ongoing battle in recent years over individual privacy. This coronavirus crisis could be the battle’s tipping point. For when people who aren’t competent at maintaining good health, are given a choice between their privacy and their health, they will usually choose health over privacy, and we all must conform.
But asking people to choose between privacy and health is really a false choice. We can, and should, enjoy both privacy and health. We can choose to learn how to protect our health and stop the coronavirus epidemic, not by instituting totalitarian surveillance regimes, but rather by empowering citizens with the age-old tools to maintain good health as they age—teach people how to be healthy from a young age.
The decision makers behind scientific medicine, have chosen not to teach mental and physical techniques to individuals—so that they can maintain better health. While doctor means “teacher” your GP and specialists don’t teach you—they prescribe drugs, tests, and operations.
One of the components of complementary medicine is to teach clients how to maintain better health. Scientific medicine attempts at every corner to shut down complementary medicine, without examining the value that—Traditional Chinese medicine, osteopathy/chiropractic, yoga, massage, homoeopathy, herbal medicine, massage/shiatsu, psychotherapy, hypnotherapy, and other modalities—have to offer. The government does not supply one dollar to complimentary medicine, yet more than 50 percent of Australians regularly use complementary medicine in some form, and most people indicate that they have better control of their health because of complementary medicine.
While the scientific methods of inquiry eliminate superstition and fanciful explanations, science doesn’t provide answers to the ethical questions of how one should use the products of scientific research. Because of this, science can never stand by itself. It will always be harnessed to power, not simply the quest for truth that individual scientists may be personally interested in exploring—but the power that can bestowed to those who can control the fruits of the scientific enquiry.
The power provided by scientific inquiry can be applied to coerce or control the lives of individual people, a community, a country or the world’s population. The power can be applied to direct and control institutions (the military, banking, political ideology), or to control and farm the animals and plants of nature, The practical aim of science is about providing power for one person over another; one group of people over another group; one institution over other institutions; or power over nature. For it to maintain its power and authority, it needs to be harnessed to some form of alliance between individuals or institutions. These always have their agendas—their ideologies. This is the reality of scientific inquiry in the world today. It can’t occur without some connection to money and power.
Larisa and myself are complying with the coronavirus isolation requirements and have stopped face to face consultations until the pandemic is over. We are doing virtual clinic appointments.
• We can still assess causal relationships through symptoms (rather than through testing), and give advice on lifestyle changes.
• We are still able to mix and supply natural medicines (which we can post, or leave at the entrance to the clinics).
• We are still able to do psychotherapy/hypnotherapy/samyama yoga and counselling.
• We are able to teach corrective exercises.
• We are still taking people through our health programs:
Signature Diet Trials.
The Kickstart Program.
• I am now offering an online Master Class in Raja Yoga, for yoga teachers and yoga students who wish to delve into the finer points of yoga.