With Tsibweni Chalo:
Mdzukulu, Car l Jung, the pioneer psychiatrist who proved the deepest workings of the human psyche, said: “We must not pretend to understand the world only by intellect; we apprehend it just as much by feelings.”
Possibly he was right!
Mdzukulu, the practice in historic chain of events for people who wish to make better decisions of any kind is that feelings are never absent from the process.
And Malawi Congress Party (MCP) supporters and leadership and some disgruntled but now wingless UTM-turned- MCP ‘followers’ are no exception to this law of human mind.
It is a cliché to say there could only be one winner for every position for which the aspirants were contesting in the May 21 Tripartite Elections. However, it is natural for each of the aspirants who won and their supporters to rejoice and for those who lost to grieve, fume and even complain, provided there are not only necessary but also sufficient causes.
So, mdzukulu, according to Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) results announced on May 27 on the just-ended presidential election, the jubilations from Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) members and politburo cannot be faulted. Their candidate Peter Mutharika won.
Neither can one condemn the groaning and whimpering by MCP and UTM enthusiasts. Their candidates Lazarus Chakwera and Saulos Chilima, in that order, lost.
But earliest scholars such as Aristotle, Socrates and Confucius in their theory of the ‘golden mean’, mdzukulu, recommend that there be a desirable middle between the feeling and intellect, as it should be with any human traits and operations, because, if one is taken to excess, it would result in destruction.
Perhaps also the three are right!
Mdzukulu, the mythological Cretan tale of Daedalus and Icarus is the best allegory of how disproportional medley of acts would lead humankind into a shattering fall.
‘Daedalus, a famous artist of his time, built feathered wings for himself and his son so that they might escape the clutches of King Minos. Daedalus warned his beloved son whom he loved so much to fly the middle course, between the sea spray and the sun’s heat. Icarus did not heed his father; he flew up and up until the sun melted the wax off his wings. For not taking his father’s advice of flying the middle course, Icarus fell into the sea and drowned.’
Mdzukulu, whatever role Tipp-Ex and polling staff played in the either perceived or actual DPP rigging of the votes in May 21 elections is not the subject of this write-up.
However, despite the polls being rocked by controversies bordering on a rigging myth that has for a long time been imbedded in not only the national psyche of Malawi but Africa as a whole, the obvious reality is that DPP’s Mutharika was declared winner, hence given mandate to govern Malawi for five years.
And, Mdzukulu, to the losers, ethicists suggest coping as a healthy defence mechanism in the event of misfortune such as loss of election.
Logical analysis, objectivity, tolerance of ambiguity, empathy and suppression of harmful emotional responses are all examples of healthy ways of coping.
And, Mdzukulu, DPP needs to balance what it ought to do for the country and the people against what it shall gain for itself after being in perpetual ridicule of the losers. Civil celebrations will do the country good.
There should be proportional mixture of feeling and intellect among the parties’ adherents and their persons-in-charge.
It is time to move forward.
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