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ABSTINENCE, the fact or habit of refraining from any thing, usually from indulgence of the appetite. A "total ab stainer" is one who takes the pledge to abstain from alcoholic liquor (see TEMPERANCE). Abstinence in the Christian Church, is a moderate form of fasting (q.v.).

"Abstinence" was also a term in economics, now fallen into dis use, applied to the postponement or sacrifice of present satisfac tion for the sake of future gain. It remains true that no person will save except for the purpose of securing some future advantage for himself or for others. As Taussig puts it, "present resources will not be cancelled for future resources unless some inducement be offered." This is true equally of individual or of communal saving; thus, a Collectivist or Socialist Government could only provide capital for the prosecution of industry or for future social satisfactions by drafts upon current income, i.e., by performing an act of national abstinence. (See ECONOMICS.)