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Reflection under the new crown epidemic: “How disease has changed our history”

  The wheel of history is often changed by an inconspicuous pebble; disease, perhaps the most common pebble.
  Disease can affect history. In the past, this topic was only a distant echo of history, but now it is felt by people all over the world. Reading this book at this moment is sure to resonate with you a lot.
  History is a subject that provides humanistic thinking, and history is a subject of human-to-human relations. In addition to affecting health, diseases also have an impact on social stability, social structure and human thinking. Every major disease in history is accompanied by great changes in politics, economics and ideas, especially the latter, which is often the outbreak of human true emotions in the face of death and fear, and the differences of thought that were previously concealed in a peaceful and peaceful atmosphere will also be increasingly noticeable.
  At this point, everyone immediately thinks of the Renaissance after the Black Death, which is probably a famous example of disease changing the world and changing minds. In fact, similar things exist on a global scale: the rise and fall of disease and civilization, disease and war, disease and economy, disease and great changes in medical thought, disease and social differences… There are countless examples. Disease is the progress of human society. The result is the growth price that human beings must bear.
  Perhaps in the imagination of ordinary people, primitive people lacked medical means and were vulnerable to infectious diseases. A typhoid fever or flu would kill countless people. But not necessarily. Primitive society “old and dead do not communicate with each other”, there is a lack of communication between tribes, the population is sparse, and infectious diseases are not easy to spread. Throughout human history, plagues are precisely the result of civilizational progress, a by-product of a population reaching a certain density and an increasingly developed transportation system.
  With the advent of the era of civilization, the population has gradually become denser, trade and war have gradually increased, and infectious diseases have begun to gain a broad stage. It can be said that without the age of civilization, there will be no frequent occurrence of interpersonal infectious diseases. However, infectious diseases have their own history of development. The same disease has different forms in various historical stages. Pathogenic microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, spirochetes, chlamydia, mycoplasmas, and protozoa are actually from their point of view. The purpose is the same as that of human beings, which is to reproduce and survive. As far as viruses are concerned, nature also has a screening mechanism for viruses. Killing all hosts is not the best choice for viruses: the virus itself will mutate randomly. Among them, those that are too virulent will become extinct because they kill the host too quickly, and those that are weak infectivity will become extinct. The virus cannot be effectively spread and becomes extinct. The viruses left behind are highly infectious and weakly virulent. This is the law of the development of many viral infectious diseases, multiplying as much as possible and killing the host as little as possible. Therefore, some diseases are very severe at the beginning, but will gradually decrease in intensity as they evolve, such as syphilis, AIDS, and the new coronavirus pneumonia that is raging around the world. Now coupled with the widespread vaccination of vaccines, the final development direction of the new coronavirus should not deviate from the development law of general viruses.
  In the early stage of human society, the size of each civilization was not large enough, and often a disease could destroy a civilization. As the civilized entity continues to grow, the ability of human beings to resist famine, plague, and climate and geographical changes also increases, so the development of civilization can provide more powerful means of dealing with diseases. Of course, the higher the level of civilization, the faster the spread of the plague, but at the same time, the means of coping with human beings will be more advanced. In general, infectious diseases have begun to decline as a proportion of the human disease map and are no longer the leading cause of human death.
  With the improvement of human nutritional conditions, the advancement of modern medical technology and public health system has made infectious diseases take a back seat. gradually emerge. Nowadays, people often complain about “how come there are so many cancers now”. In fact, the increasing number of cancers is precisely the embodiment of human progress. Disease is like the enemy on the ground, medicine is like the attacker, the attacker has already taken the outer positions of smallpox, plague, malaria, cholera, etc., before facing the core position of cancer. Moreover, cancer is generally more common in elderly patients, and the prolongation of human lifespan is also a major cause of cancer. In ancient times, most people did not live to the age of high incidence of cancer.
  The changes in social structure and thinking brought about by the epidemic have yet to be revealed and verified, but what is now evident is the reflection on globalization on a global scale.
  The most striking thing about the new crown pneumonia epidemic is its globalization. With the help of modern transportation systems, the virus can spread thousands of miles away in days or even tens of hours, and then spread into a global epidemic. Although there are many problems, it is undeniable that after the Second World War, human beings have achieved unprecedented achievements in material civilization, and the overall level of human nutrition and medical care has reached a record high. However, this also created a relaxed atmosphere of “wen Tian Wu Xi”, people looked around at a loss when faced with a new public health disaster, and were caught off guard. On the other hand, the psychological endurance of the public has also changed significantly compared with before. The opposite of full confidence in technology is the unacceptability of the fact that the virus cannot be quickly eliminated. Coupled with the information concentration and amplification effect of the Internet, a huge amount of information is pushed to people at one time, making people’s psychology more sensitive and more vulnerable, which has also produced various conspiracy theories and pessimistic theories, and even produced “globalization is here.” end” conclusion.
  All of this is actually unnecessary.
  The epidemic of globalization is an accessory of globalized life, and it has been so since ancient times. Globalization has greatly promoted the improvement of human civilization, and it can also provide more means of coping with diseases. From this point of view, failure is also small, success is also small. Since human beings cannot develop in a closed model, they must face the world. the global epidemic brought about by This is the necessary price for human progress. Moreover, with the technological and organizational capabilities of modern human beings, this hurdle must and must be overcome. The history of mankind, especially the history of the past 100 years, is a history of constantly restraining the plague, and any new epidemic will not completely reverse the trend of globalization. It’s only a matter of time before it gets over.
  What this book provides is not a “history of Chinese medicine” or a “history of diseases in China”, but takes diseases and the means of coping with them as a window to “reading history”, from which readers can not only see the impact of diseases on the historical process, but also I can see the impact on the course of history of the various measures people took to fight disease and pursue health and longevity, as well as the impact of disease on ancient Chinese thought, and the life-changing effects of many people – although they may sometimes be completely unaware of this. Changes stem from disease. This book strives to explain the profound things in simple terms, to be close to people’s hearts, to present details, not to make a general overview, but to combine some historical fragments as much as possible to show the relationship between diseases and historical processes. The boring historical materials come alive, showing some details of the “other side” of human life history. The details are sometimes the most moving.

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