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Abstention 2016, a Post-Mortem Reflection

What happened?

What happened is that ninety seven million eligible voters underestimated the danger and did not exercise the most basic right and duty of democracy. Some may call it a mortal sin of omission.

How have things changed?

We have not even seen the beginning of it yet: regression on all fronts and for all realms. Mental drunkenness and dissociation are now at the helm of RMS Titanic and hate speech now has a president.

How did it affect, me, my family, my friends, my community, my nation, the world?

It threw me into a hard-to-shake state of depression at the realization that a small step forward for a demagogue will translate into a giant step backward for the entire planet, minerals, plants, animals and humans included. Ecological strategy must urgently be shifted from preventive to palliative.

What have I learned that I did not know before and perhaps should have known? How can this knowledge help me?

I have learned not to underestimate danger when my guts tell me it is looming and not to overestimate the level of awareness and political maturity of those who claim to be at the pinnacle of democracy and like to hold the moral high-ground of freedom and be THE model for all to follow.

What obstacles, problems, or perils lie ahead?

We are entering a world in which instead of being “great again,” America has lost credibility and respect and has ceased to be the envy of many nations around the world; this will certainly not induce restraint among the enemies of democracy.

What openings, possibilities, or opportunities lie ahead?

Confrontation with one’s shadow is an opportunity to mature and grow. For an individual, that process is called individuation and requires a regression followed by rebirth and growth. It takes years, if not a lifetime. For a nation, the process of confrontation with the shadow and the regression it entails is called middle-age and it takes centuries.

How have I changed? What new commitments or decisions have I made?

I have lost the faint hope that my direst intuitions of the last 40 years about the dead-end of the materialistic frenzy could be delusion on my part. I wish they had been. My commitment to actively pursue fall sowing and planting has been reinforced to levels it has never reached before. So has my singing of the Canticle of Creatures.

What do Ecozoans need to do collectively now? What is the Great Work now?

To sow with passion seeds of faith, hope and compassion that may germinate in several hundred years.