The global COVID-19 pandemic has pushed the pause button for humanity and stopped the world in its tracks. It has brought all of us down on our knees, but as we struggle to cope with it, we are also slowly learning to live with it. Even though all over the world lockdowns and restrictions are being eased out progressively, it doesn’t mean that the virus is gone. Our respective governments may have granted us some relaxations, but COVID-19 hasn’t. This is a long-drawn battle and we should continue to be on the vigil and fight on till we defeat the enemy and emerge victorious.
Today I present to you “Labyrinth,” the last artwork of my Corona Series, as we embrace the “new world order” of a dangerous world in the midst of a perilous virus. This one is inspired by the most brilliant yet dangerous military formation in Indian mythology, the mythical “Chakravyuha.”
To give a brief account of the Chakravyuha, it is a multi-tiered defensive formation chronicled in the Hindu epic, Mahabharata. It is believed that it was a seven-layered circular maze where each of the layers is rotating in the same or opposite direction, with strategically placed weak and strong soldiers. The warriors at each interleaving position would be in an increasingly tough position to fight. Each of the layers are presented with possible openings which are closely guarded by one of the main highly ranked warriors and his personal troops.
It is this brutal form of assault that I have adapted in my artwork as an attempt to depict all the strategies and tactics that are being implemented by us in order to keep the virus at bay. The Chakravyuha was not just an allegory or a physical labyrinthine disc, but a representation of a ferocious form of defense. This ring formation could hover across the battlefield and consume opponent soldiers from within, like a tornado or typhoon moving unhindered and destroying everything in its path.
Just like the Chakravyuha rotates on its axis as well as revolves in its trajectory, thus making it a great defensive as well as offensive mechanism, we too have devised a labyrinth of preventive and counter attacking measures that can be as impenetrable as the deadly Chakravyuha itself if implemented effectively. Each layer of this maze is our defense against the virus and their potency keeps becoming stronger as you move inwards. The innermost layer represents our ultimate defense against the virus – a vaccine. Even though we are still working on this aspect, I am sure the day is not far away when we will succeed in completing this layer of defense.
I have depicted the other six layers as our current lines of defense, namely, personal hygiene measures like washing hands, sanitization, etc., personal protective gear like gloves and masks, healthy eating to build up immunity, social distancing, quarantine/isolation and medical treatment for the infected. Together all these layers need to be set into motion, in unison, moving continuously across the COVID-19 warzone.
This spinning spiral of death can also be put into action as an offensive tactic to attack the seemingly invincible Corona virus from all sides. If we manage to enforce and carry out this plan incessantly, we stand a chance at defeating the fatal virus and ending the pandemic. All it requires is a collective effort from one and all so let us all stand together, for all of us are soldiers in this global war.