Chapter 3

Defining the Context

The world cannot be governed without juggling.

—John Selden, The Table-Talk of John Selden, 1892

Jugglers captivate audiences. Even juggling just three balls is an elegant and artistic act that is seemingly out of the reach of 95% of the population, given requirements of technical skill, great coordination, and focus. This is why we watch the juggler with great envy and admiration.

Yet there is a way to simplify this complex and challenging act so that everyone can do it. (Honestly, everyone.) Michael Gelb’s brilliant discussion of juggling as a metaphor for human learning applies three key principles: (a) breaking the complex into simple pieces, (b) getting repetition on the pieces and then building them into ...

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