Covid19 Pandemic: A Ghastly yet a Generous Reminder!

April - May 2020

Sharanya is a 15 year old College goer, who likes to dabble in art of various forms from painting to sketching, playing the piano and also dancing. This piece by her on art was submitted way before the lockdown and reflects the inner sanctum of our individuality and our need to connect with our creative urge and in turn with Nature.

Art gives us that route or that cathartic outlet to let loose the surge of these emotions that is otherwise ineffable.
Art helps connect and asks for no approval or disapproval, it simply is.

And if this grain of reflection permits us to do so much with ourselves without commodyfying ourselves to the brazen want of fitting in the moulds cast by an absolutely competitive and arrogant society, then be it, let this act in itself bring us closer to who we are and what we are capable of – that is Being in Nature, with Nature.

Let us accept that this Covid 19 pandemic is a ghastly yet a generous reminder of what we have become as “ghouls of insatiable greed” and if we don’t get our act together now we never will.                                                                                             

We live in a world where life seems to move on rapidly, with no time for comprehension or contemplation. This dynamic environment does not allow us to kick back and give ourselves time for self-care. As we delve deeper into the depths of technology, we wander far from the roots of our culture: We wander further away from the essence of our being.

Art is defined as the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination. It is the means by which we are able to express ourselves, our ideas and our emotions. It is a form of communication far more powerful than words in the form of speech, serving as a connection between the past and present while helping us grow into the future. Art helps us give our thoughts a physical form. It gives us the power to become more empathetic and acceptive human beings. By expressing our ideas, we can reach out to like-minded people and use our creativity for the greater good. Our art is a manifestation of our raw emotions. Sharing such an intimate part of ourselves with the world, although intimidating helps others realize that they are not alone in how they feel and think.

In today’s day and age, we are concerned primarily with climbing to the top of the ladder while beating everyone on the way there. We fail to realize that the rungs of the ladder are made of stress, and the higher we go, the more we stray from happiness and satisfaction. Even children are caught up in this struggle to be the best, and are overburdened with unnecessary anxiety as they bear the load of their overflowing syllabus. As we get caught up in this competitive obsession, a stress-free life becomes a myth.

The solution to this obsession is simply art. Pursuing any form of art gives us a platform to express ourselves and be heard. We discover a new way to put forward our thoughts and emotions. Music, Dance, Literary art and Painting are just a few of the creative faculties in the hands of man. They act as escapes that seep in all our negativity and help create something beautiful with it. Using these faculties, we are given the power to let go of all our stress and manifest it into a physical form replenished with positive energy. Any interaction with art is the most understanding conversation one can have. It allows us to escape into a magical world where all our troubles are absorbed by its atmosphere. When we feel stressed out due to excessive work, studies or even emotions, art becomes a safe haven where we can seek refuge until we are relieved of our troubles. Furthermore, all of our culture is preserved in the various forms of art.Ancient architecture, prayers, numerous dance forms, languages, sacred books, traditional clothes and instruments are all forms of art that have been preserved through the years, passed on through the generations. As we continue to learn these age-old art forms, we continue to preserve our culture, ensuring that it does not get lost and forgotten in the expanses of evolution.

Art is an escape from reality. When we are overwhelmed by the world, we can lose ourselves to it and then gradually come back to reality when we feel capable doing so. We can rid all of our anxiety and live a balanced and happy life by embracing it. It helps tune our mind, enhancing our mental health. It is art that ties us together while setting us apart, giving us unique identities while connecting our souls with its invisible yet substantial bonds. It is art that keeps us alive.

~Sharanya Shankar

All the art work, including the nearly finished puzzle on top are a part of the author’s repertoire.