[asa] Organistic science

From: wjp <wjp@swcp.com>
Date: Sat Apr 25 2009 - 14:51:35 EDT

Relative to discussions we've recently had regarding a variant
view of a "natural" science, I've been reading Mary Hesse'
Forces and Fields, a book I recommend.

In it she describes something of later Greek science and its
continuity with Medieval science. She says,
"Stoic philosophy too, in spite of its denial of immaterial
substance, was by no means a materialism in the modern sense,
for its 'corporeal being', which is all that is, is not
inanimate matter: the 'primary being' was likened to a seed;
and pneuma and fire, as efficient causes, were living and even
divine (p. 77)."

Essentially, there was a reduction, but not a reduction in a
mechanistic model, but rather in an organistic model.
The distinction between the animate and inanimate was
dissolved, but dissolved into organism, not the mechanical.

It seems that such a model could not, or was not, worked into
a detailed and specific science, resulting in its rejection.

In DesCartes' original mechanistic science everything was
mechanical and inert, except for the "soulful" aspects of
man, God, and angels. Having put God aside in our understanding
of the world, rejecting "spirits", man is left alone to be
absorbed into the machine.


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Received on Sat Apr 25 14:52:05 2009

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