COVID Whispering

Letter from Tara Bennett-Goleman, Teacher at The Aligned Center

COVID Whispering

The human species has been taking great pains to defend against you.

You have challenged everything we’ve known and relied on. You have shaken our foundation, separated us from each other, and sometimes take people away forever.

We are wearing masks and gloves, and struggling to find a vaccine to block the destructive effects you’ve had on our species. We’re missing connecting to the beautiful blossoming of spring as we hide in our homes.

In quieter moments, though, I sometimes wonder if you could also be a messenger, a mirror that reflects the destructive impacts humans have had on the natural world and on each other. Could this be how other species have felt about our indifference to the consequences for them of human behavior?

Perhaps this is a taste of what could be the beginning of more challenges to come if we don’t hear how we need to change our collective habits.

Is this a glimpse of a possibility of being a species with constructive compassion rather than destructive bewilderment? You have forced us to rely on positive human traits to survive: empathy, humility, kindness. People are more altruistic, the air is cleaner, animals are freer to reclaim their natural habitats.

Only a few months ago humans were glued to their mobile screens, even when together. Now in our Zoom visits we yearn to put our screens aside and hug each other.

Maybe if we respect you as a hidden messenger, even while we urgently seek to protect ourselves from you, there might also be a way to wisely reframe this suffering as an opportunity, and a greater urge to include the protection of all species – and our shared natural home.

Tara B. Goleman

About Tara:

Tara Bennett-Goleman, M.A., is a teacher at The Aligned Center, a leading light in the mindfulness movement, a psychotherapist, and an esteemed author. She is the author of the New York Times best-seller Emotional Alchemy: How the Mind Can Heal the Heart (Harmony Books, 2001) and  Mind Whispering: A New Map to Freedom from Self-Defeating Emotional Habits (HarperOne, 2013). Please see for more information.
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The Aligned Center, 1 Bridge Street, Suite 64, Irvington, NY 10533, United States
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