The BiSC team wishes you a happy summer and a nice holiday!

The last text before reopening the news section in September is a reflection that Maria Torres, predoctoral researcher for the BiSC project, wanted to share with all of you.

Summer is coming again and with it, a well-deserved holiday for everyone. This year, it has continued to be weird and unusual.

To be able to deal with the current situation in which we find ourselves, from time to time, I like to remember the meaning of two words that our language has given us: resilience and hope. Resilience is the human ability to overcome and regain stability in adverse situations and learn to overcome them, in a more psychological environment, not only through resilience one is able to cope with extreme situations, but also it can be strengthened. On the other hand, hope is an optimistic mood that arises when one thinks that it is possible to achieve what one wants. Right now, I think we all want to see the light of day at the end of this storm that has been going on for almost a year and a half, although it is often difficult to maintain that “optimistic spirit.” However, I must say that I am not a big fan of the mythological origin of the word “hope” and the expression “hope is the last thing lost”. In Greek mythology, its origin is explained through the myth of Pandora’s box. According to myth, Prometheus stole fire from Zeus (God who ruled Olympus) and gave them to men. This did him no favors to Zeus, who in revenge created Pandora and gave her to Prometheus’ brother along with a closed box containing all the evils in the world. Pandora, with an innate curiosity aroused by the Gods, opened the box to see its contents and this is how it released all diseases, suffering, wars, hunger, envy, anger …, humanity. Pandora, frightened, quickly closed the box, leaving only hope (hence: “hope is the last thing lost”). As I mentioned, I’m not a big fan of this origin, basically because of the very common misogynistic view in Greek mythology, in this case, I put Pandora, a woman, as “the source of all evil.”

Also from what possibly means the fact that hope is included in the box of all evils, I don’t like to see hope as an evil, but as a positive mental state that helps us get closer to achieving our vital goals. I must also comment that in the same myth there are multiple interpretations and theories around the meaning given to hope inside the box, whether it is evil or not. This issue is therefore open to debate.

With all of that, I just wanted to share a snippet of our history and culture as human beings and wish you and the BiSC team a happy summer vacation.

Thank you very much for being part of this project, for being part of the scientific knowledge, and for continuing to focus on health and science.

We hope all of you have a great summer and holiday!

Maria Torres Toda