Morality and Law
The Latest Cult or the New ‘Normal’

Fear and panic are the basic characteristics of the Consumer – the first human being whose identity comes from the future, writes Valdai Club expert Kancho Stoychev. The Consumer is responsible only for his future choices as a buyer of future identities. His power is unlimited because it’s that power which drives the growth of the capital. This historical creature wants to live better than himself and the only limit in his absurd aspiration is the limit of his body. That’s how the body becomes the goal, the supreme essence of life.

We, humans, have always been proud that our main difference and advantage leading to supremacy over the animal world lays in our heads, not in our bodies. Our causal rationality makes us what we are. We are minds, we are beliefs, we are virtual, we are time and space, we are spiritual...

Covid-19 or the new old SARS changes completely the above. Now we are only bodies, we are the guardians of our bodies and especially of a specific one – our own. My body is my fortress but my fortress is not mine – it belongs to the doctor. Not to a specific one but to a collective, global one. In history the shaman always was a concrete person, now it’s a guild. And when a guild is entitled to protect a cult we normally deal with the phenomenon of religion.

The Covid-19 pandemic situation does not exist in formal definition terms yet – at least 350 million people globally should all have the same disease. We are desperately far from that. In the country where I was born the definition for epidemic state is 20 thousand ill citizens per million or about 150 thousand overall and we are now getting out of the emergency situation with less than 3 thousand tested positive (which, by the way, is quite different to being actually ill). About 100 persons have been announced dead from Covid-19 in the last three months in Bulgaria and because that figure is so small it’s easy to check every single case. And such a check reveals a remarkable fact – about 60% of those persons had advanced cancer, another 20% suffered heavy stage of diabetes, and all the others had either heavy respiratory problems or any other heavy chronic problems. The only criteria to put all those dead people in one group is that they have been tested positive to Covid-19. Or, maybe, if we take into consideration the preciseness of the different tests available on the market.
Don’t hurry, please – I am not one of those monsters who advocate that Covid-19 doesn’t exist. It’s definitely here. Moreover – it has never been out if we consider the Corona family. If there is something new it’s our reaction, it’s the substitution of the common sense by fear and panic.

Fear and panic are the basic characteristics of the Consumer – the first human being whose identity comes from the future. This historical personage arises from the welfare society concept and practice and is entitled to the so-called disposable income – a given amount of money per month above what is basically necessary for his reproduction as a genuine trader of his labour force. Which makes him a quasi-capitalist (a far better position than the capitalist himself – no need to be responsible for the permanent growth of the economy which is keeping the system alive.) The Consumer is responsible only for his future choices as a buyer of future identities. His power is unlimited because it’s that power which drives the growth of the capital. This historical creature wants to live better than himself and the only limit in his absurd aspiration is the limit of his body. That’s how the body becomes the goal, the supreme essence of life.


Freedom becomes obsolete because it’s in the mind. Rationality disappears because death is not rational. Health becomes a physical and not a spiritual state. Doctors become magicians and final treasurers of the truth because they are the ones responsible for the bodies.
A new religion is born – the religion of the body. It requires a permanent fear and panic: about the water we drink, about the food we eat, about the air we breathe, about the climate, about the ozone hole (which by the way disappeared silently), about the sex we belong to...

I am a researcher of global mass consciousness and as such I always was very doubtful about the existence of my research topic. In the past two months I am relaxed – it exists. Covid-19 is the proof. Gallup International Association (currently I am serving a term as a President) initiated and realized the first global study of Covid-19 perception in mass consciousness. In brief we found out approximately that:

80% are panicked everywhere
80% love their government everywhere
80% are ready to give up their freedom everywhere
80% more or less stopped working everywhere

The vague and bizarre thoughts above are due to those results.

I don’t pretend to be ready with answers. But it will be productive enough if I manage to formulate the questions.

Are we going to be the 22nd civilization which will destroy itself as fundamentally shown by Toynbee on the examples of the previous 21?

Do we want to “upgrade” science to religion?

Are we so naive to believe that we are able to eliminate all viruses from the face of our planet?

Are we going to hold our elected (or not so much) leaders responsible for all completely unconstitutional measures they applied? Do we need panicked elites at all?
Does the personal desire to be elected bring whatever benefit to the society in a crisis moment?

Are we ready to give the ultimate decision to live or die in the hands of people who advised us (more precisely – forced us) not to go to the parks and mountains for a walk, not to travel with our personal car to the next city while the underground fully functions, who stopped or postponed the regular medical care for all those of us who have a serious disease, who closed our business without appropriate or any compensation, who are publicly creating day and night mass panic and are deeply harming our psyche?

Are we so foolish to embrace a false dilemma like “health or economy”? 

A classical Chinese philosopher once said thousands of years ago that an idiot is a person who can’t make the difference between small and big. Are we idiots?
Morality and Law
COVID-19 Pandemic: Global Risks of More Complex Character and the Visions of the Future World
Sergey Kravchenko
The new cosmic fear produced by COVID-19 becomes a great challenge for mankind. Its overcoming is connected to a large extent with the establishment of effective cosmopolitan solidarity and global humanely-oriented medical surveillance with the aim to work out effective means to prevent fake news that traumatize the social consciousness, writes Sergey Kravchenko, Head of the Department of Sociology at MGIMO University.
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Views expressed are of individual Members and Contributors, rather than the Club's, unless explicitly stated otherwise.