To the Editor,
These days I’ve had several things on my rather devious mind!
First was stoicism once thought to be almost extinct or, at the least, out of fashion. After all, in a modern world where there’s a solution, a way to fix it all — to everything!! Just let science and American ingenuity loose and all your problems were solved!
Well, in these days of pandemic, one keeps hearing all the, “Oh, that horrible virus. Don’t know how I’m going to stand it,” etc. and worse than that, “Oh, Canada needs a leader, someone like Donald Trump” — no need for further comment!
So stoicism is part of the answer. Now stoicism does not mean that one lies down and lets everything roll over them. After all, one of the greatest, in not-the-greatest, Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius was a stoic along with the twice-exiled Seneca and others.
What it means is an ability — a mindset that lets one “roll with the punches” after the virus could care less about your feelings. It just multiplies, infects and, quite possibly, mutates at its own leisure!
The second concern is Carl Jung’s synchronicity. This theory by which seemingly unrelated forces move together to produce a result (or something like that?) some disernable influence on living events!?
Ironically, I learned about Jung’s theory the first time by watching The Eagle Has Landed by Jack Higgins. In my own lifetime sychronicity has appeared to play a role. But in some ways, it’s a little like wondering if you’ve ever seen a ghost?
Maybe, maybe not?
Due to the re-opening of our fine library and its great staff and a 25 cent book sale, I obtained a copy of Dennis Schane’s The Yuen Day. It starts at the end of WW1 — a ship appropriately named “Liberty” (how American) pulls into the harbour. On it are these sick soldiers, then there are five who are taken off the ship. What is it some flu? But it only seems to infect soldiers?
Dennis Schane’s account of how the “Spanish Flu” swept over the U.S., starting with the east coast, is so relevant to today’s pandemic with all it’s hype and confusion. Me reading it at this time = coincidence. Carl Jung’s synchronicity — your guess is as good as mine!