The Miracle of Aligned Purpose
The COVID-19 pandemic mobilized countries from every continent to change the way citizens lived their lives in a matter of months. Sheltering in place, wearing masks everywhere, and not moving beyond our immediate familial bubbles; the world as we knew it changed.
From the time information began surfacing from Wuhan in the last months of 2019, to the staggering loss of life sweeping across the globe, to the frantic race for the development and distribution of life-saving vaccines, the momentum of the world’s response to the deadly virus built at a speed most of us have never witnessed before in our lives.
Then two weeks ago on February 24, Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine began, and in a matter of days, NATO and the Western allies mobilized unprecedented sanctions against Russia, and increased their deliveries of military aid, weapons, and protective equipment to Ukraine.
In January, Germany still following their decades-old foreign and defense policy preventing the supply of German-made weapons from the EU or themselves to Ukraine, instead sent helmets and a field hospital. By February 27, they reversed their policy with one speech from Chancellor Olaf Scholz and a decision to unite for the sake of democracy, and instead are now supplying anti-tank weaponry and anti-aircraft defense systems to Ukrainian soldiers.
On February 28, Switzerland abandoned its historic neutrality in favor of condemning Putin’s invasion and imposed the same sanctions against Russia as the EU. The pace at which these defensive moves are happening is dizzying. The world is aligning with a common purpose, to defend democracy and defeat Vladimir Putin.
And let us not overlook Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his citizens demonstrating an inspirational alignment of purpose in standing together and putting their lives on the line against an invading army that dwarfs them in sheer size and resources.
Despite the horror we’ve seen waged against Ukraine and its people in the past two weeks, and the looming threat of even worse things to come, there is one element of hope that’s been demonstrated at macro-levels in both the world’s response to Putin and to the pandemic.
When humans are aligned with purpose, they can break down barriers and accomplish seemingly impossible feats with unimagined speed and efficiency. And in the darkness of today’s challenges, the miracle of aligned purpose is one we believe holds out hope for us all.
“True freedom is where an individual's thoughts and actions are in alignment with that which is true, correct, and of honour - no matter the personal price.”
-Bryant H. McGill