War is no way to resolve our most problematic group, community, and societal issues, but neither is a peace that simply sweeps our problems under the rug.
To create lasting change we have to learn to work fluidly with two distinct, fundamental drives that are in tension: power—the single-minded desire to achieve one’s solitary purpose; and love—the drive towards unity. They are seemingly contradictory but in fact complimentary. As Martin Luther King put it, “Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic.” Using revealing stories from complex situations he has been involved in all over the world—the Middle East, South Africa, Europe, India, Guatemala, the Philippines, Australia, Canada and the United States—Kahane reveals how to dynamically balance these two forces. Just as when we are toddlers we learn to shift from one foot to the other to move ourselves forward, so we can learn to shift back and forth between power and love in order to move society forward.
About the Author
Adam Kahane is a partner in Generon Reos LLC, an international consulting and capacity-building firm based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Generon Reos is a member—together with colleagues in Johannesburg, London, and Sao Paulo—of REOS Partners, a global partnership that supports innovation in complex social systems. Adam is a designer and facilitator of processes and has worked in more than fifty countries, in every part of the world, with executives and politicians, generals and guerillas, civil servants and trade unionists, community activists and United Nations officials, clergy and artists.