Sunday, 7 July 2013

A Human-Centred view of Science

'Purity' is one of my favourite XKCD comics.

It summarizes a particular view of science - that of 'Single vision and Newton's Sleep' from William Blake.

Taking a more human-centred view of science is in line with Aristotle - "The proper study of man is man", or Protagoras' statement that "Man is the measure of all things". Such a view gives us something more like this.

"I maintain that the human mystery is incredibly demeaned by scientific reductionism, with its claim in promissory materialism to account eventually for all of the spiritual world in terms of patterns of neuronal activity. This belief must be classed as a superstition. . . . we have to recognize that we are spiritual beings with souls existing in a spiritual world as well as material beings with bodies and brains existing in a material world."
Sir John Eccles --Evolution of the Brain, Creation of the Self, p. 241