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Jeremy Rifkin is president of the Foundation on Economic Trends. Rifkin has been an advisor to the European Union for the past decade. He’s a senior lecturer at the Wharton School’s Executive Education Program at the University of Pennsylvania. Rifkin has an intensely optimistic perspective on the upcoming generation. He says, “a younger generation is fast extending its empathic embrace beyond religious affiliations and national identification to include the whole of humanity and the vast project of life that envelops the Earth.”
Rifkin introduces the idea of an empathetic civilization. In close observation of brain activity, scientists have discovered something known as ‘mirrored neurons.’ When the brain recognizes an activity or an emotion, the same neurons acting in the observed will occur within the observer.