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Part 5: Cultivating Empathy > CHAPTER 19: Conclusion: Turning What Is and What ...

Conclusion

Turning What Is and What If into What Can Be

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail…. Dream. Discover.

Mark Twain

IF I WERE TO WRITE OUT THE DEFINITION OF THE WORD RIPPLING AS I use it, this is how it would go:

Rippling

Throwing a stone into the pool of social change by shaking the foundations of poverty, inequality, and injustice and spreading sustainable system change solutions that meet the necessities of the present by giving those in need the ability to determine their own future.

By the time you read this chapter you probably don't need a definition; chances are, you've absorbed exactly what rippling means, in the true sense of the way I apply it, by experiencing the examples in the book. But if it is going to shake the foundations of poverty, inequality, and injustice, rippling doesn't solely refer to spreading an idea that is powerful enough to spill over borders—it also means “shifting the frame” within which a problem is stuck. It requires going beyond a cause-and-effect approach. It is the theoretical “making lemons out of lemonade,” the practical “waking up in the morning and appreciating being alive, rather than grumbling that you'd rather sleep more,” or (in the frame-shifting words of Thomas Edison) it is the rational “I have not failed. I have merely found ten thousand ways that won't work.”


  

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