Monday, November 30, 2015

Ripples, pt. 2

I wrote here about the ripple effect, about how what and how you say things affects people and events around you.

Sometimes, it's what's being said that causes a big splash.  Something controversial, something heartfelt, something that strikes a chord.  It almost doesn't matter who says it, because it's the words themselves that cause a response in other people.

Sometimes, it's who's saying something that causes a big splash.  Group leaders and founders, teachers, people who've been in the community for a long time, and others like this are able to cause great ripples.

Most of us feel passionately about something, or many things.  And we wouldn't be sorry for causing some ripples, especially when they're positive!  Unfortunately, often the biggest ripples are the negative ones.

The most powerful ripples are those about the former from those in the latter.  Good or bad, they are heard and they are felt the fastest, the deepest.  That's just how it works, taiko or otherwise.  But sometimes the effects aren't really felt for a while, bouncing around under the surface, bouncing off each other, making new ripples that begin the process all over again.

When you drop a stone into a small body of water, the ripples extend outward.  When they finally hit an object, they bounce off it to create new ripples.  And those ripples bounce off each other.  It's much the same with how words get out from a speaker into the group or the community, and people talk about what they've heard, creating more ripples.

When those ripples are negative, it can be really hard to deal with them.  Maybe they come from someone you respect.  Maybe it makes you reconsider a group you enjoyed watching.  And now you're likely to create more ripples from your own experience, talking to others, furthering the process.  These are the ripples that wind up going back to the source, hurting their reputation, causing people to lose respect, or even outright shun. 

I've ranted a lot in my blog and realize that I may have had this effect myself, so I try to be a lot more careful these days.  My words don't have the weight of a lot of others in the taiko community, but they can cause ripples nonetheless.  And because of my blog, even the things I say to people in person can have the same effect.  It's not always easy to be a better person, but I feel I have a responsibility to try.  Otherwise I'm being a hypocrite.  This blog is as much about me getting thoughts out of my head as it is a way for me to better myself, after all!

Positivity begets positivity, negativity begets negativity.  What you say and do comes back to you, if not directly then in ways you don't notice at first, but in the ways other people think about you and react to you.  What ripples are you causing?

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