By Sister Agnes Therese Brennan

A few evenings ago, as I was eating my supper, I noticed the deep, thick, dark clouds enveloping the sky. Yet as I continued gazing, I noticed Light peeking out in various places throughout the thick clouds. Just as I would look at one glimmer of Light, a dark cloud would envelop it, but lo and behold, the Light found a new opening in the sky. The heavy dark clouds continued to have the greater hand, but the Light never ceased to find a footing. About two hours later, when I looked out again, the sun in all its glory broke through for a moment as Earth was turning to the darkness of space and this half of the world was entering nighttime.

As I reflected on my experience, I realized that it was a metaphor for the COVID-19 virus. At present, the virus has held many of us in the darkness of fear and panic, and so it is time to reflect on what gifts this virus might hold.

In her online course Healing with Spiritual Light, author and Shamanic teacher Sandra Ingerman tells about her scientific experiments with toxic water. When a group gathered together and focused on the Light in the water, there was almost a 100 percent decrease in the level of toxicity. What this suggests to me is that one way that we might find our way through this pandemic is to focus on the Light that is present in the virus.

Poet May Sarton says that, “Without the darkness, nothing comes to birth, as without light nothing flowers.” As I consider the COVID-19 virus and its dire consequences, I couldn’t help but remember how the Light kept peeking through the dark clouds.

A seed is planted in the darkness of the soil. When the darkness has accomplished its work, a sprout breaks through the ground and, with the sun’s light, becomes whatever potential was embedded in the seed. So too, this COVID-19 virus holds great potential for us humans. We do not know how long it will take for this potential to unfold, but we need to hold onto the hope that whatever is to be birthed will come to pass in exactly the right amount of time that is needed. Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a man who experienced much darkness in his life, wrote that Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.”

Amid the current darkness, we are already perceiving Light in the way that people are attending to one another. There is a new sense of interconnectivity among us. We are in this together, regardless of race, gender, creed, etc. In other words, this virus is teaching us more than anything else that we are one human family.

Yes, we do need to continue to follow all of the guidelines that have been given us for staying well. In addition to that, we are aware that that which we focus our attention on grows in strength. Learning to focus on the Light within us and on the Light that is in the virus can be a positive force that will enable the health of all.

The futile promise that things will “go back to normal” or to “life as we have known it” simply will not and cannot be fulfilled. We will be changed in ways we could never have been able to predict or to accomplish on our own. The Great Unknown beckons, and if we open ourselves to that Mystery, we will be born as a New Human into a New World, as the futurist Barbara Marx Hubbard predicted.

The metaphor that came to me about the COVID-19 virus is the Light amid darkness. Other metaphors that people have set before us are a fight, a battle and a war. This is to focus on darkness and to live in the illusion of control.

What is your metaphor? How will that metaphor lead you into the new future that beckons? What potential lies hidden in you that longs to be born?