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A holistic aesthetic for science.

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Bruce K. Kirchoff, Associate Professor (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: All scientific work takes place within a community of specialists who define what types of studies, evidence and modes of presentation are accepted as valid. A number of factors influence these decisions. Among them are tacit assumptions hidden in the language and practice of science. In recent years, philosophers, historians, linguists and feminist critics of science have elucidated some of these assumptions. The result has been a recognition that at least some scientific decisions are made simply because they "feel right." In other words, science possesses an aesthetic. After reviewing the evidence for the role of a scientific aesthetic, I suggest the conscious adoption of a new aesthetic based on love. Adoption of this aesthetic can lead us to change our relationship to the phenomena we study. Where Western science has mainly been concerned with the control of nature, an aesthetic of love can lead to an appreciation of the wisdom of nature. Instead of searching for causes, a science based on love can lead to a study of the patterns of phenomena. Within these patterns no single element is determinative. Rather, the pattern as a whole determines the role of the individual elements. Traditional Chinese Medicine serves as a powerful example of the capabilities of this pattern thinking approach.

Additional Information

Publication
Journal of Scientific Exploration. 9: 565- 578
Language: English
Date: 1995
Keywords
Scientific work, Aesthetic of love, Traditional Chinese Medicine