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Encyclopedia > Holism in science

Holism in science, or Holistic science, is an approach to research that emphasizes the study of complex systems. Two central aspects are: Research is often described as an active, diligent, and systematic process of inquiry aimed at discovering, interpreting, and revising facts. ... Complex systems have a number of properties, some of which are listed below. ...

  1. the way of doing science, sometimes called "whole to parts," which focuses on observation of the specimen within its ecosystem first before breaking down to study any part of the specimen.
  2. the idea that the scientist is not a passive observer of an external universe; that there is no 'objective truth,' but that the individual in a reciprocal, participatory relationship with nature, and that the observer's contribution to the process is valuable.

This practice is in contrast to a purely analytic tradition (sometimes called reductionism) which proports to understand systems by dividing them into their smallest possible or discernible elements and understanding their elemental properties alone. The holism/reductionism dichotomy is often evident in conflicting interpretations of experimental findings and in setting priorities for future research. The term scientific reductionism has been used to describe various reductionist ideas about science. ...

Contents

Features considered central to the holistic approach

The term holistic science has been used as a category encompassing a number of scientific research fields (see some examples below). The term may not have a precise definition. Fields of scientific research considered potentially holistic do however have certain things in common.


First, they are multidisciplinary. Second, they are concerned with the behavior of complex systems. Third, they recognize feedback within systems as a crucial element for understanding their behavior. Interdisciplinarity is a type of academic collaboration in which specialists drawn from two or more academic disciplines work together in pursuit of common goals. ... Complex systems have a number of properties, some of which are listed below. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Feedback loop. ...


The Santa Fe Institute, a center of holistic scientific research in the United States, expresses it like this: The Santa Fe Institute (or SFI) is a non-profit research institute dedicated to the study of complex systems in Santa Fe, New Mexico founded by George Cowan, David Pines, Stirling Colgate, Murray Gell-Mann, Nick Metropolis, Herb Anderson, Peter A. Carruthers, and Richard Slansky in 1984 to study complex...

The two dominant characteristics of the SFI research style are commitment to a multidisciplinary approach and an emphasis on the study of problems that involve complex interactions among their constituent parts. Santa Fe Institute's Research Topics. Retrieved on January 22, 2006.

January 22 is the 22nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

An alternative to reductionism

Some advocates of holism refer to orthodox science as reductionist science or the reductionist paradigm or greedy reductionism. This is a compact way to allude to a tendency of classical science towards the modular: that is, to break systems down into manageable parts for study. Holism (from holos, a Greek word meaning all, entire, total) is the idea that all the properties of a given system (biological, chemical, social, economic, mental, linguistic, etc. ... Greedy reductionism is a term coined by Daniel Dennett, in the book Darwins Dangerous Idea, to distinguish between acceptable and erroneous forms of reductionism. ...


The holistic premise is that there is a possible qualitative difference between an entire system and its parts: that modularisation may fail. As applied to science, holists may generally assert that this difference can warrant the kind of rigorous scrutiny typical of scientific inquiry. The distinction of approach then lies not so much in the subjects chosen for study, but in the methods and assumptions used to study them. For example, in the field of quantum physics, David Bohm pointed out that there is no scientific evidence to support the dominant view that the universe consists of a huge, finite number of minute particles, and offered in its stead a view of undivided wholeness. Fig. ... David Bohm. ...


Though considered by some as alternative, holistic methods are not generally at odds with the classical scientific method. Where holistic scientists come from a standard science background, holistic work in science tends to be, to varying degrees, a marriage of the two approaches. For example gestalt psychology grew out of early experimental psychology. When the terms are used constructively in the science context, holism and reductionism refer to how empirical evidence is interpreted, and not only to the methods used to produce such evidence. Gestalt psychology (also Gestalt theory of the Berlin School) is a theory of mind and brain that proposes that the operational principle of the brain is holistic, parallel, and analog, with self-organizing tendencies. ... Experimental psychology is an approach to psychology that treats it as one of the natural sciences, and therefore assumes that it is susceptible to the experimental method. ...


Examples of holism in various scientific fields

Many scientific disciplines are affected by the holistic paradigm. Some of these are widely accepted parts of mainstream science, while others are variously considered to be protoscientific or even pseudoscientific. Part of a scientific laboratory at the University of Cologne. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Phrenology is regarded today as a classic example of pseudoscience. ...


Quantum physics

Physicist David Bohm put forward an interpretation of quantum theory that reconciles it with an idea of the universe as an undivided whole, any division of which (e.g. into observer and observed) can only be arbitrary. Despite its elegant simplicity and distinct advantages, this holistic interpretation was given at best an ambivalent reception by mainstream scientists. Recently, however (from the 1990s to the present) Bohm's reputation in the field of quantum physics has grown, though many of his holistic ideas remain in dispute.[1] David Bohm. ... The Bohm interpretation of quantum mechanics, sometimes called the Bohmian Mechanics or Ontological interpretation is an interpretation postulated by David Bohm in 1952, which was an extension of the de Broglie-pilot-wave theory of 1927. ... Quantum theory is a theory of physics that uses Plancks constant. ...


Systems biology and systems ecology

Fledgling transdisciplines which apply holistic approaches to the study of biology and ecology to gain insights into the functioning of entire biological and ecological systems (i.e. plants, animals, organisms). See Systems biology and Systems ecology articles for more information. Biology (from Greek βίος λόγος, see below) is the study of life. ... Ernst Haeckel coined the term oekologie in 1866. ... Systems biology is the study of the interactions between the components of a biological system, and how these interactions give rise to the function and behaviour of that system (for example, the enzymes and metabolites in a metabolic pathway)[1][2]. Typically, a cellular network is modelled mathematically. ... Systems Ecology is a transdiscipline which studies ecological systems, or ecosystems. ...


Chaos theory

Limits to reductionism have become apparent in recent years, most strikingly in the Mathematics of Chaos Theory, and from the work of Benoit Mandelbrot. These ideas are best known in the metaphor of the "butterfly effect"[1], first recognised by a meteorologist, Edward Norton Lorenz, who noted that his deterministic differential equations model of climate systems was unexpectedly sensitive to initial conditions. This finding was expressed famously (and variously) as implying that the flap of a butterfly's wings in a jungle in South America was enough to "cause" a hurricane on the other side of the world. This insight, that complex non-linear systems can produce inherently unpredictable behavior, seemed to set limits on the ability to "explain" complex behavior by any deterministic description, by setting limits on their "predictability" and "measurability". Subsequently, the work of Stephan Wolfram, Stuart Kaufmann and others explored how chaos can be "harnessed", by exploring how organised behaviors can arise in a structured way from complex systems, giving rise to the modern concepts of emergent behavior and self-organisation. Descartes held that, unlike humans, animals could be reductively explained as automata – De homines 1622) Reductionism in philosophy is a theory that asserts that the nature of complex things can always be reduced to (explained by) simpler or more fundamental things. ... A plot of the trajectory Lorenz system for values r = 28, σ = 10, b = 8/3 In mathematics and physics, chaos theory describes the behavior of certain nonlinear dynamical systems that under certain conditions exhibit a phenomenon known as chaos. ... Beno t Mandelbrot was the first to use a computer to plot the Mandelbrot set. ... Meteorology is the scientific study of the atmosphere that focuses on weather processes and forecasting. ... Dr. Lorenz at work Edward Norton Lorenz is an American mathematician and meteorologist, and a contributor to the chaos theory and inventor of the strange attractor notion. ... In mathematics, a differential equation is an equation in which the derivatives of a function appear as variables. ... Prediction of future events is an ancient human wish. ... Stephen Wolfram (born August 29, 1959 in London) is a scientist known for his work in theoretical particle physics, cellular automata, complexity theory, and computer algebra, and is the creator of the computer program Mathematica. ... Emergence is the process of deriving some new and coherent structures, patterns and properties in a complex system. ... Self-organization refers to a process in which the internal organization of a system, normally an open system, increases automatically without being guided or managed by an outside source. ...


Complexity theory

Another area of intense holistic scientific research is complexity theory. Research in this area began in 1984 with the establishment of the Santa Fe Institute by physicist Murray Gell-Mann, and this institute remains a driving force in the field. Complexity theory can refer to more than one thing: Computational complexity theory: a field in theoretical computer science and mathematics dealing with the resources required during computation to solve a given problem Systems theory (or systemics or general systems theory): an interdisciplinary field including engineering, biology and philosophy that incorporates... The Santa Fe Institute (or SFI) is a non-profit research institute dedicated to the study of complex systems in Santa Fe, New Mexico founded by George Cowan, David Pines, Stirling Colgate, Murray Gell-Mann, Nick Metropolis, Herb Anderson, Peter A. Carruthers, and Richard Slansky in 1984 to study complex... Murray Gell-Mann (born September 15, 1929 in Manhattan, New York City, USA) is an American physicist who received the 1969 Nobel Prize in physics for his work on the theory of elementary particles. ...


Cognitive science

The field of cognitive science, or the study of mind and intelligence has some examples for holistic approaches. These include Unified Theory of Cognition (Allen Newell, e.g. Soar, ACT-R as models) and many others, many of which rely on the concept of emergence, i.e. the interplay of many entities make up a functioning whole. Another example is psychological nativism, the study of the innate structure of the mind. Non-holistic functionalist approaches within cognitive science include e.g. the modularity of mind paradigm. Cognitive science is usually defined as the scientific study either of mind or of intelligence (e. ... Unified theories of cognition is a book written by Allen Newell in 1987. ... Allen Newell (March 19, 1927 - July 19, 1992) was a researcher in computer science and cognitive psychology at the RAND corporation and at Carnegie-Mellon’s School of Computer Science. ... Soar (also known as SOAR) is a symbolic cognitive architecture, created by John Laird, Allen Newell, and Paul Rosenbloom at Carnegie Mellon University. ... ACT-R (pronounced actor) is a symbolic cognitive architecture, created by John R. Anderson and others at Carnegie-Mellon University. ... A cognitive architecture is a blueprint for intelligent agents. ... A termite cathedral mound produced by a termite colony: a classic example of emergence in nature. ... In the field of psychology, nativism is the view that certain skills or abilities are native or hard wired into the brain at birth. ... A typical phrenology chart depicts the modules of the human mind as compartmentalised physical locations in the brain. ...


Cognitive science need not concern only human cognition. Biologist Marc Bekoff has done holistic, interdisciplinary scientific research in animal cognition and has published a book about it (see below).


Neural networks and artificial intelligence

Another category of holistic research consists of attempts to simulate the human brain or build systems that function along the same lines as the human brain. The field as a whole is called artificial intelligence and the subfield neural networks in particular can be considered holistic, as it is based on the assumption that connections and feedback between simple nodes arranged in a system, or network, can give rise to behavior similar to intelligent or cognition-based behavior. Hondas humanoid robot AI redirects here. ... Simplified view of an artificial neural network A neural network is a system of interconnecting neurons in a network working together to produce an output function. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Feedback loop. ...


Integral theory

Not a scientific field in itself, and interdisciplinary by definition, integral theory is the pursuit of knowledge through a combination of scientific and spiritual approaches. The fundamental proposition of integral theory is that both science and spirituality are legitimate domains of human experience and are both essential to an understanding of the world. Mainstream scientists, by contrast, when interpreting scientific findings typically subordinate, ignore, or deny spiritual experience. Integral theorists believe that their new approach will open new avenues of scientific inquiry in the future. Prominent integral theorists include Jean Gebser, Teilhard de Chardin, and the contemporary thinker Ken Wilber. Interdisciplinary work is that which integrates concepts across different disciplines. ... This article is about integral theory in philosophy and psychology. ... Part of a scientific laboratory at the University of Cologne. ... Spirituality, in a narrow sense, concerns itself with matters of the spirit. ... Jean Gebser Jean Gebser (August 20, 1905 – May 14, 1973) was a prodigy, a student of the transformations of human consciousness, a linguist, and a poet. ... This article needs cleanup. ... Ken Wilber Kenneth Earl Wilber Jr. ...


Medicine

In addition to the wealth of complementary and alternative approaches to medicine, many of which are viewed with suspicion or even outright hostility by the mainstream medical community, orthomolecular medicine and orthomolecular psychiatry, pioneered by noted physicist and peace activist Linus Pauling, represent an alternative approach to medicine that makes greater use of laboratory testing to vary the concentration of substances normally present in the body to prevent and treat disease. It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Alternative medicine. ... Orthomolecular medicine and optimum nutrition are controversial medical and health approaches[1] that posit that many diseases and abnormalities result from various chemical imbalances or deficiencies and can be prevented, treated, or sometimes cured by achieving optimal levels of naturally occurring chemical substances, such as vitamins, dietary minerals, enzymes, antioxidants... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Linus Carl Pauling (February 28, 1901 – August 19, 1994) was an American quantum chemist and biochemist. ...


Other examples

  • Ecology, or ecological science, i.e. studying the ecology at levels ranging from populations, communities, and ecosystems up to the biosphere as a whole.
  • The study of climate change in the wider context of Earth science (and Earth system science in particular) can be considered holistic science, as the climate (and the Earth itself) constitutes a complex system to which the scientific method cannot be applied using current technology. The first scientist to seriously propose this was James Lovelock. [2] (URL accessed on 28 November 2006)
  • Princeton University hosts a holistic science project entitled "Global Consciousness Project" that uses a network of physical random number generators to register events of global significance, testing the hypothesis that there is a collective human consciousness at work in the world. [3]
  • Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's 1810 book Zur Farbenlehre (Theory of Colors) not only parted radically with the dominant Newtonian optical theories of his time, but also with the entire Enlightenment methodology of reductive science. Although the theory was not received well by scientists, Goethe — considered one of the most important intellectual figures in modern Europe — thought of his color theory as his greatest accomplishment. Holistic theorists and scientists such as Rupert Sheldrake still refer to the Goethe's color-theory as an inspiring example of holistic science. The introduction to the book lays out Goethe's unique philosophy of science.
  • In system dynamics modeling, a field that originated at MIT, a holistic controlling paradigm organizes scientific method, but uses the results of reductionist science to define static relationships between variables in a modeling procedure that permits simulation of the dynamics of the system under study. As mentioned above, feedback is a crucial tool for understanding system dynamics. [4]
  • Another example of how holistic and reductionist science can be mutually supportive and cooperative is free choice profiling.

Ernst Haeckel coined the term oekologie in 1866. ... Variations in CO2, temperature and dust from the Vostok ice core over the last 400,000 years Climate change refers to the variation in the Earths global climate or in regional climates over time. ... Earth science (also known as geoscience, the geosciences or the Earth Sciences), is an all-embracing term for the sciences related to the planet Earth. ... Earth science (also known as geoscience, the geosciences or the Earth Sciences), is an all-embracing term for the sciences related to the planet Earth. ... James Lovelock in front of a statue of Gaia in 2000 Dr James Ephraim Lovelock CH CBE FRS, (born July 26, 1919) is an independent scientist, author, researcher and environmentalist who lives in Cornwall, in the south west of Great Britain. ... Princeton University is a coeducational private university located in Princeton, New Jersey in the United States of America. ... Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. ... Theory of Colours (Zur Farbenlehre in German) was a work published by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in 1810. ... Sir Isaac Newton, FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, alchemist, and natural philosopher, regarded by many as the greatest figure in the history of science. ... Table of Opticks, 1728 Cyclopaedia Optics ( appearance or look in ancient Greek) is a branch of physics that describes the behavior and properties of light and the interaction of light with matter. ... The Age of Enlightenment (from the German word Aufklärung, meaning Enlightenment) refers to either the eighteenth century in European and American philosophy, or the longer period including the seventeenth century and the Age of Reason. ... This article or section may contain original research or unverified claims. ... Rupert Sheldrake Dr. Rupert Sheldrake, born 28th June 1942 [1] is a British biologist and author. ... Philosophy of science is the branch of philosophy that studies the philosophical assumptions, foundations, and implications of science, including the formal sciences, natural sciences, and social sciences. ... System Dynamics is an approach to understanding the behaviour of complex systems over time. ... Mapúa Institute of Technology (MIT, MapúaTech or simply Mapúa) is a private, non-sectarian, Filipino tertiary institute located in Intramuros, Manila. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Feedback loop. ... Free choice profiling is a method for determining the quality of a thing by having a large number of subjects experience (view, taste, read, etc. ...

Writers on holistic science

A text often referred to by writers on holistic science (and by all who recognize the existence of scientific paradigms) is The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas Kuhn. While this book does not address holistic science directly, it is relevant because, in it Kuhn originally coined the term "scientific paradigm" and introduced the concept of opposing, or even warring, paradigms in science. Since the late 1960s, the word paradigm (IPA: ) has referred to a thought pattern in any scientific discipline or other epistemological context. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Thomas Samuel Kuhn (July 18, 1922 – June 17, 1996) was an American intellectual who wrote extensively on the history of science and developed several important notions in the philosophy of science. ...


The following have written influential books which treat non-reductionist or holistic science:

  • Rachel Carson ecologist, biologist and author of Silent Spring
  • Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955), French paleontologist, biologist, philosopher
  • David Bohm (1917-1992), American quantum physicist
  • Francisco Varela (1946-2001), Chilean biologist
  • Rupert Sheldrake, biologist and prolific author
  • Mae-Wan Ho, biologist
  • Stephen Wolfram, author of A New Kind of Science
  • Eric Margolis of Rice University, co-author of Concepts: Core Readings (with Stephen Laurence of the University of Sheffield)
  • Ken Wilber, American philosopher, psychologist and author of The Marriage of Sense and Soul: Integrating Science and Religion
  • Fred Alan Wolf, American physicist, author of Taking the Quantum Leap
  • Marc Bekoff, American biologist and cognitive ethologist, author of Species of Mind (with philosopher Colin Allen)
  • F. David Peat, physicist and writer, founder of the Pari Center for New Learning
  • Murray Gell-Mann, physicist and Nobel laureate, wrote The Quark and the Jaguar, Adventures in the Simple and the Complex on complexity
  • Henri Bortoft, physicist who did postgraduate research on the problem of wholeness in quantum physics with David Bohm, wrote The Wholeness of Nature: Goethe's Way Toward a Science of Conscious Participation in Nature on Goethean science
  • Kenneth E. Boulding, economist and system scientist
  • Willis Harman, former President of the Institute of Noetic Sciences
  • Humberto Maturana, Chilean biologist and philosopher
  • Ilya Prigogine, Belgian physicist, chemist, and writer, 1977 Nobel laureate in chemistry
  • Tim Reid, Dialectical Materialist Maoist Philosopher, wrote Forward With Revolutionary

Rachel Louise Carson (27 May 1907 – 14 April 1964) was a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-born zoologist and marine biologist whose landmark book, Silent Spring, is often credited with having launched the global environmental movement. ... This article needs cleanup. ... David Bohm. ... Francisco Varela (Santiago, September 7, 1946 – May 28, 2001, Paris) was a Chilean biologist and philosopher who, together with his teacher Humberto Maturana, is best known for introducing the concept of autopoiesis to biology. ... Rupert Sheldrake Dr. Rupert Sheldrake, born 28th June 1942 [1] is a British biologist and author. ... Please wikify (format) this article as suggested in the Guide to layout and the Manual of Style. ... Stephen Wolfram (born August 29, 1959 in London) is a scientist known for his work in theoretical particle physics, cellular automata, complexity theory, and computer algebra, and is the creator of the computer program Mathematica. ... A New Kind of Science is a controversial book by Stephen Wolfram, published in 2002. ... Lovett Hall William Marsh Rice University, commonly called Rice University and opened in 1912 as The William Marsh Rice Institute for the Advancement of Letters, Science and Art, is a private, comprehensive research university located in Houston, Texas near the Museum District and adjacent to the Texas Medical Center. ... Stephen Laurence is a scientist and philosopher, currently at the University of Sheffield, whose primary areas of research interest are the philosophy of mind, the philosophy of language, and cognitive science. ... The University of Sheffield is a leading university, located in Sheffield, UK. // History The University of Sheffield was originally formed by the merger of three colleges. ... Ken Wilber Kenneth Earl Wilber Jr. ... Fred Alan Wolf (December 3, 1934– ) is a theoretical physicist (Ph. ... F. David Peat is a physicist and author who has carried out research in solid state physics and the foundation of quantum theory. ... Murray Gell-Mann (born September 15, 1929 in Manhattan, New York City, USA) is an American physicist who received the 1969 Nobel Prize in physics for his work on the theory of elementary particles. ... For the Computer Science term, see Computational complexity theory. ... Kenneth Ewart Boulding (January 18, 1910 - March 18, 1993) was an economist, educator, poet, religious mystic, devoted Quaker, systems scientist, and interdisciplinary philosopher. ... Willis Harman was President of the Institute of Noetic Sciences in California. ... Founded in 1973 by astronaut Edgar Mitchell, the Institute of Noetic Sciences explores the frontiers of consciousness through rigorous scientific research, bridges science and spirit, and seeks to support a fundamental shift in human consciousness to create a world grounded in freedom, wisdom and love. ... Humberto Maturana (born September 14, 1928 in Santiago) is a Chilean biologist whose work crosses over into philosophy and cognitive science. ... Ilya Prigogine (January 25, 1917 – May 28, 2003) was a Belgian physicist and chemist noted for his work on dissipative structures, complex systems, and irreversibility. ... Tim Reid (born December 19, 1944 in Norfolk, Virginia) is an African American actor and film director best known for his roles in prime time television programs. ...

Holistic science in academe

Perhaps due to the inherent multidisciplinary nature of holistic science, academic institutions have been slow to come forward with degree programs for it. Those that have done so include Schumacher College in the UK, which offers an MSc degree program in Holistic Science. Several universities have set up centers dedicated to one or more scientific fields where holistic approaches are common. These include the University of Michigan's Center for the Study of Complex Systems, Princeton University's Global Consciousness Project, Rice University's Cognitive Sciences Program, the London Metropolitan University's Centre for Postsecular Studies, and the Hang Seng Centre for Cognitive Studies in Sheffield. Schumacher College was founded in 1991 in Dartington, Totnes, Devon, UK by Satish Kumar. ... UM also has campuses in Dearborn and Flint. ... Princeton University is a coeducational private university located in Princeton, New Jersey in the United States of America. ... The Global Consciousness Project, (GCP) also called the EGG Project, is an international collaboration of about 100 research scientists and engineers. ... Lovett Hall William Marsh Rice University, commonly called Rice University and opened in 1912 as The William Marsh Rice Institute for the Advancement of Letters, Science and Art, is a private, comprehensive research university located in Houston, Texas near the Museum District and adjacent to the Texas Medical Center. ... London Metropolitan Universitys Campus North. ... For other uses, see Sheffield (disambiguation). ...


There are also several non-university academic institutions and societies that are dedicated to holistic science or open to holistic ideas. For example, Santa Fe Institute (a major center of holistic scientific research in the U.S.), the Scientific and Medical Network (in Europe), the Pari Center for New Learning (in Italy), and the System Dynamics Society in Albany, New York. The VERITAS Research Program, affiliated with the University of Arizona, uses holistic approaches to test the existence of an afterlife. There is also the Institute of Noetic Sciences in Petaluma, California. Brazil has its Willis Harman House in São Paulo. The Santa Fe Institute (or SFI) is a non-profit research institute dedicated to the study of complex systems in Santa Fe, New Mexico founded by George Cowan, David Pines, Stirling Colgate, Murray Gell-Mann, Nick Metropolis, Herb Anderson, Peter A. Carruthers, and Richard Slansky in 1984 to study complex... The System Dynamics Society is a not-for-profit organization based in Albany, New York whose mission is to further research into system dynamics and systems thinking. ... Location in Albany County and the State of New York Coordinates: Country United States State New York County Albany Founded 1614 Incorporated 1686 Mayor Gerald D. Jennings Area    - City 56. ... The University of Arizona (UA or U of A) is a land-grant and space-grant public institution of higher education and research located in Tucson, Arizona, United States. ... The afterlife (or life after death) is a generic term referring to a continuation of existence, typically spiritual, experiential, or ghost-like, beyond this world, or after death. ... Founded in 1973 by astronaut Edgar Mitchell, the Institute of Noetic Sciences explores the frontiers of consciousness through rigorous scientific research, bridges science and spirit, and seeks to support a fundamental shift in human consciousness to create a world grounded in freedom, wisdom and love. ... Petaluma is a city with a well preserved historic city center [1] in Sonoma County, California, in the United States. ... Motto: Non ducor, duco (Latin: I am not led, I lead) Administrative division of the city Country Brazil Region Southeast State São Paulo Mayor Gilberto Kassab (PFL) Area    - City 1,522. ...


Opposing views

Holistic science is controversial. One opposing view is that holistic science is "pseudoscience" because it does not rigorously follow the scientific method despite the use of a scientifically-sounding language. Bunge (1983) and Lilienfeld et al (2003) state that proponents of pseudoscientific claims, especially in organic medicine, alternative medicine, naturopathy and mental health, often resort to the “mantra of holism” to explain negative findings or to immunise their claims against testing. Stenger (1999) states that "holistic healing is associated with the rejection of classical, Newtonian physics. Yet, holistic healing retains many ideas from eighteenth and nineteenth century physics. Its proponents are blissfully unaware that these ideas, especially superluminal holism, have been rejected by modern physics as well". Look up Controversy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Phrenology is regarded today as a classic example of pseudoscience. ... hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha ...


Science journalist John Horgan has expressed this view in the book, The End of Science 1996. He wrote that a certain pervasive model within holistic science, self-organized criticality, for example, "is not really a theory at all. Like punctuated equilibrium, self-organized criticality is merely a description, one of many, of the random fluctuations, the noise, permeating nature." By the theorists' own admissions, he said, such a model "can generate neither specific predictions about nature nor meaningful insights. What good is it, then?" John William Horgan (15 July 1834–8 July 1907) was a Member of the Western Australian Legislative Council in 1888–89. ... 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. ... The theory of self-organized criticality (SOC) claims that whenever a self-organizing dynamical system is open or dissipative, it exhibits critical (scale-invariant) behaviour similar to that displayed by static systems undergoing a second-order phase transition. ... Punctuated equilibrium (or punctuated equilibria) is a theory in evolutionary biology which states that most sexually reproducing species will show little to no evolutionary change throughout their history. ...


Bibliography

Arizona State University (ASU) is a public institution of higher education and research with several campuses located in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area. ...

See also

Articles related to holism

Cognitive science is usually defined as the scientific study either of mind or of intelligence (e. ... Complexity theory can refer to more than one thing: Computational complexity theory: a field in theoretical computer science and mathematics dealing with the resources required during computation to solve a given problem Systems theory (or systemics or general systems theory): an interdisciplinary field including engineering, biology and philosophy that incorporates... Holism (from holos, a Greek word meaning all, entire, total) is the idea that all the properties of a given system (biological, chemical, social, economic, mental, linguistic, etc. ... Philosophy of biology (also called, rarely, biophilosophy) is a subfield of philosophy of science, which deals with epistemological, metaphysical, and ethical issues in the biological and biomedical sciences. ... The term scientific reductionism has been used to describe various reductionist ideas about science. ... Systems thinking is an approach to analysis that is based on the belief that the component parts of a system will act differently when isolated from its environment or other parts of the system, and argues against Descartess reductionist view. ...

Articles related to the classification of scientific endeavors

Cartesian anxiety refers to the notion that, ever since René Descartes, Western civilization has suffered from a longing for ontological certainty, or feeling that scientific methods, and especially the study of the world as a thing separate from ourselves, should be able to lead us to a firm and unchanging... The demarcation problem in the philosophy of science is about how and where to draw the lines around science. ... Hard science is a term which often is used to describe certain fields of the natural sciences, usually physics, chemistry, and many fields of biology. ... Philosophy of science is the branch of philosophy that studies the philosophical assumptions, foundations, and implications of science, including the formal sciences, natural sciences, and social sciences. ... Phrenology is regarded today as a classic example of pseudoscience. ... The Science wars were a series of intellectual battles in the 1990s between postmodernists and realists (though neither party would likely use the terms to describe themselves) about the nature of scientific theories. ...

External links

UM also has campuses in Dearborn and Flint. ... London Metropolitan Universitys Campus North. ...

References

  • Bunge.M., Demarcating Science from Pseudoscience. Fundamenta Scientiae, 1982, Vo. 3, No. 3/4, pg. 369-88
  • Lilienfeld,S.O. et al. (Eds.): Science and Pseudoscience in Clinical Psychology. New York / London 2003
  • 1 Olival Freire Jr., Science and exile: David Bohm, the hot times of the Cold War, and his struggle for a new interpretation of quantum mechanics (Online article)
  • 2 Definition of System Dynamics and Systems Thinking on System Dynamics Society homepage
  • Stenger.V.J., (1999) The Physics of 'Alternative Medicine'. The Scientific Review of Alternative Medicine Spring/Summer 1999 Volume 3 ~ Number 1

  Results from FactBites:
 
Science; reductionism - holism (1122 words)
Science provides humankind with a most powerful tool; a way of explaining the world which transcends the explanations of religion, mysticism and myth.
The way in which science is practised and scientific truths arrived at, the craft of the scientist - was considered critically by Ravetz (1971) and many other authors, who discuss the problems involved in the pursuance of scientific knowledge.
Western science is characterised by reductionist principles; but we reach a point at which the reduction becomes disassociated from the phenomena it is trying to explain.
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