Does the Pandemic Have a Purpose?

Stephen T. Asma in the New York Times:

Many religious people see something benevolent in nature, or at least see purpose dimly grasped in the interworking of biology. But there’s something even deeper than religious optimism. There is a broader conception of nature — shared by monotheists, polytheists, Indigenous animists, and now politicians and policymakers. It is the mythopoetic view of nature. It is the universal instinct to find (or project) a plot in nature. A mythopoetic paradigm or perspective sees the world primarily as a dramatic story of competing personal intentions, rather than a system of objective, impersonal laws. It’s a prescientific worldview, but it is also alive and well in the contemporary mind.

More here.