Life topics

How an Ancient Tale Can Help Us Now

It suggests a Mantra for our comfort

Image shows an Ancient Eastern Square with a clever mix of the Ancient and Modern
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence, to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: “And this, too, shall pass away.” How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! How consoling in the depths of affliction!

Abraham Lincoln

This has changed over time to become  ‘This too shall pass’ .  How appropriate this phrase seems right here and right now.  And I bet none of us who have ever thought about things that will end eventually, whether using that particular phrase or not, believed we would find ourselves in the middle of a pandemic which is turning our whole way of life upside down.

When I was in hospital after being in a coma for two weeks because of sepsis, various things happened as a result of kidney failure for one, and not being able to breathe on my own for another, I had a mantra that I repeated in my head all the time.  ‘This must end’.

I knew that, somehow, having emerged from the coma alive, that at some time, I would come out the other side.  I remember one of the doctors went on holiday for two weeks.  I think he expected me not to make it because when he returned he did a double take when he saw me still there, and what’s more, I was breathing on my own! 

But there is no doubt in my mind that repeating my mantra to myself day after day (I was in hospital for eight weeks) helped me keep my positivity up through what was a very unpleasant time.

Something is needed now

There are many of us who have found the lockdown situation really, really hard.  As I have written before, it was not so bad for me as I am used to being mostly housebound.  The worst thing was not seeing my family. (

For others it has been so much more than that. Elderly people are alone and super vulnerable to Covid-19, some have at least a visit from a carer but some don’t. Loneliness can be a killer for anyone isolated at home whatever age.

As the lockdown begins to ease here in the UK, I am hearing stories from my friends, my carers and other people who help me in the house. 

These stories involve families who have been forced to be apart for months because parents or grandparents have been ‘shielding’. Even worse, people having been furloughed from their jobs but have been made redundant now because of their employer’s struggles.

Then I heard of someone who had continued to work throughout the lockdown period out of loyalty to her employer for whom she’d worked for some years, only to be made redundant with no explanation.

These are just some of the stories emerging now people are able to meet up and talk together. We’ve all heard them.  These are the people who need to try to remain positive now, more than ever.  Mantras can help.

How we can use mantras

A mantra is an idea, a philosophy or a world overview, concentrated in a sentence, a phrase or even one word. (

I believe strongly in mantras.  I have a few that I keep in mind, and I always read new ones which inspire me.  Since I am all about self-care, living and working towards my best life, and hopefully inspiring others to do the same, mantras are the perfect tool.

A fellow blogger posts her ‘daily affirmations’ which are inspiring. For example:

  • I am in love with myself and my body.
  • I am proud of myself.
  • I am becoming more confident everyday.
  • I believe in myself.
  • I will not worry about things I cannot control.
  • I will be kind to myself and others today.
  • I love myself.
  • I am grateful for all that I have.   (

Any of those affirmations can help with positivity.  

A lot of people use mantras for meditation but my personal thing is just to repeat something silently to myself throughout the day.  I also use breathing at stressful moments.  

I would love to meditate properly, but in a house full of noise and distraction it’s not easily achieved.  My dream is a retreat, but my disability does not make that easy either.

So mantras are the thing for me, and I have proved (to myself, at least) that it works.   Keep this one in mind: ‘This too will pass’.

Image shows a girl sitting on decking by water, eyes closed in a meditative pose
Photo by Alie on Unsplash

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