Comforting Thought: Within crisis is opportunity for growth, compassion and love

The Maori legend of Pania: Kaitiaki and taniwha of the reef retold in street art

This crisis that everyone is in right now poses a range of unique opportunities for us as the dominant species on earth. This is the first time in human history that we as a sentient and conscious species have a three opportunities for growth as a collective:

  1. Limitless capabilities for (virtual) communication across time and space.
  2. A universal struggle shared by all people.
  3. A health vulnerability that affects all people and pays no mind to wealth or privelege.

He waka eke noa

Throughout history where something truly bad has happened to a large group of people – the great depression, the world wars of the last century. Or more locally the Christchurch earthquake or the Christchurch mosque attacks. People turn away from individualistic, opportunistic ‘me-first’ ways of thinking. Instead they realise their vulnerability, the vulnerability of others around them, the importance of looking after their neighbours – the people in their immediate vicinity.

By looking after our neighbours, our community, the circle of people who we don’t know but who we interact with in our local area, the people in our online neighbourhood – inside we feel better about the uncontrollable aspects of our world. Also we soothe others, making them feel stronger, more secure. This is a surefire way to psychologically heal ourselves and each other and make it easier to weather the storm together.

Te Ao Maori and the aesthetics of cosiness
Maori proverbs about cosiness and happiness

It’s good for the soul and good for your mental health to help others

It could be just leaving your phone number in the lobby of your apartment building on a piece of paper and saying – if you are feeling isolated, give me a call.

It could be smiling and having a chat with your neighbour and asking them how they are – from the requisite 2-3 metres of distance.

It could be putting the word out there on social media that you are here for a chat with your online friends, if they want to talk to someone.

I’ve noticed that when people ask ‘How are you?‘, or ‘How are you going’, in recent weeks, there is a genuineness, an authenticity in the question that didn’t exist before this crisis.

When I ask ‘how are you going?‘ and when others ask me – inherent in that question is a mutual feeling of concern, compassion and love. It is this, this softness, this love for people that sustains us all. This form of kindness, care and concern is the pillar of our society, the invisible glue holding us all together. Without it, we are simply just like animals living off instinct, easily swayed or manipulated by fear.

Look after yourself and each other. Namaste. Arohanui

Te Ao Maori and the aesthetics of cosiness
Technology provides us with the opportunity to remain close together, even despite the crisis.

A really inspiring podcast on this topic. Conversations with Richard Fidler and Sarah Kanoski

Published by Content Catnip

Content Catnip is a quirky internet wunderkammer written by an Intergalactic Space Māori named Content Catnip. Join me as I meander through the quirky and curious aspects of history, indigenous spirituality, the natural world, animals, art, storytelling, books, philosophy, travel, Māori culture and loads more.

8 thoughts on “Comforting Thought: Within crisis is opportunity for growth, compassion and love

    1. Thanks Sean…so glad this resonated with you. Do you follow the ABC’s Conversations with Richard Fidler? the inspiration for this post comes from the podcast I have embedded here…definitely worth listening to as it’s so uplifting. Hope you had a nice Easter Sunday take care


  1. This is inspirational — it’s not easy to find the good at times like this. A reminder was needed; thanks 🙂 -Neri


    1. Thank you so much Neri, really glad you found this inspirational, I really love your blog too, so glad I found it and I have a lot to catch up on. Hope you have a nice Easter 😁


  2. Very much in agreement with the sentiment and I think many are becoming aware of the opportunities that are coming out of all this. Can’t say I’m that optimistic that much will change after this blows over as people have short memories and shorter attention spans but still, who knows!?


    1. Yeah me too….hope that people who live through this time remember it and the wisdom of looking after each other…thank you for your comment, stay safe too. 😊


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