Friday, October 4, 2013

Incremental waves

Capillary waves by Roger McLassuss
Picture a single stone dropping into a glass smooth lake and the expanding concentric ripples which flow away from the center point. This mental picture usually has us envisioning a relaxing image of gently flowing ripples gradually fading into the distance. But, what if the stone were the size of a cement truck, our vision would be one of horror as tsunami-size waves powered out from the core of impact.

Now, let's use this stone as a metaphor for our personal actions and the concentric ripples, the consequences of these actions... Whether our initial action, the pebble drop, was socially acceptable or not is irrelevant, since the wave effect will disperse energy across the water irrevocably. The stone's velocity will also cause unseen waves beneath the surface of the lake to flow incrementally outward.

Consider then, the impact of raindrops on a lake generating the very same ripples, which spread out from the center droplet intersecting with the ripples from other raindrops. With no two droplets identical, no two ring patterns are the same and with millions of raindrops falling, the lake is choppy with intersecting waves.

Sometimes the actions we put out into the world come back to haunt us. Our every action has a consequence either positive or detrimental. These rippling consequences interact with those of everyone else on the lake of life. Think what a pummeling rainstorm creates... a potentially massive and destructive wave surge. I think Washington had better prepare for a flood.

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