Post Election: Where do we go from here?

I know I speak for many when I say whew! Thank the good Lord that November 3rd has passed and the election day is now over. While it is true that the results of the Presidential election may take a while due to the closeness of the count, it is nonetheless over. The relentless campaigning is over. The radio and TV advertisements can now go back to auto insurance and laundry detergents. This has been a long election cycle and we have had enough.

Of course, the dark cloud of the outcome will be fought in court battles and the animosity will continue for a short while, but for the most part, we the people have spoken. Though it remains to be seen what the courts think we have said.

We are now after the elections and if you are like me, you have freed up about 50 billion neurons and 400 billion glial. What should I do with all the brain space that I now have? Can you imagine if you were a laptop? You would have so much more room for useless GIFs.

Psychology as well as applied Kabbalah teaches that empty minds lead one to empty or even worse debased thoughts, which will lead someone down to the moral abyss. Therefore, we need to take this newfound space and quickly fill it with something worthwhile.

My humble suggestions are as follows:

DO & DON’T’S

DO turn off the radio and TV and swear off the politics for a while. It is done and over. The vitriol and venom being spewed is not healthy. Do as I do and take a well-deserved break. It is time to heal.

DO apologize to anyone you may have hurt in the heat of an argument. Ask yourself, was it worth it? Did you change their mind? Did they change your mind? Does it pay to still have the bad feelings and bad energy wafting around the atmosphere?

DO take some of the free brain space you now have and use it to read up on a self-help book or a book on spirituality. After this election cycle (and the last for that matter), we need to spend time on self-improvement. There are plenty of books that I can recommend.

DO volunteer and do something worthwhile. Our country is blessed because it is built on kindness and compassion. We must never lose these noble traits. While many of us have been preoccupied, it is now time to go back to basics. Help is sorely needed.

DON’T go around gloating if your candidate/s won their election. You had one vote among many and it is not yours to triumph. You can and should be happy but not revel in someone’s face. After all, the candidate is not yours per se but rather ours. Instead, pray that he or she does the right thing for the constituents.

DON’T despair if the candidate you voted for lost their election. It was clearly not the people’s will and undoubtedly not God’s will either. You will survive. You do not have to run to Canada out of fear. Maybe a trip to Bali will do you good though. There are a few anti-Semitic candidates that I wish were voted out; I am not going to fret and shake in my boots that they were reelected. I am going to stand up to them if they continue along their previous noxious past. I won’t be silenced and I will not fret.

Having said the above, I will always tell my fellow Jews (no matter which country) who have repeatedly been the catalyst of much hate to always have unexpired passports ready. It was smart in Germany, France and the rest of Europe back then. It is prudent now. Jews have always been canaries in the coalmine. Unfortunately, the attacks start with Jews, but do not end exclusively with us. Even recent history has taught this perilous lesson. Hopefully, we will not have to flee anytime soon. Just be prepared. This is especially true for the Jews in France.

DON’T knock democracy. It works and it is extremely powerful. While nothing is perfect, it is the closest thing we have to perfection. Of course, things can be tweaked here and there and they should be and hopefully will be, but it is far better than what else is out there. I am always awed by both the wisdom and humility of the Founding Fathers. You can tell that they were steeped in faith and were absolutely open to change.

I apologize if I offended anyone during the heat of the moment. Humanity is a work in progress.

Please feel free to share.

About the Author
Rabbi Yakov Saacks is the founder and director of The Chai Center, Dix Hills, NY. The Chai Center has been nicknamed by some as New York's most Unorthodox Orthodox Center.
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