Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Emergent, Pre-Determined Purposes and "Truth"

In the science/religion debate, there are many ways of understanding the interface. Does science define religion, as science is the only truth? Or is religion to drive science, as science is the ultimate end? I believe both with reservation.

In the biological sciences, there is an attempt to describe organizational structure with "emergent properties". These scientific explainations to social constructs are problematic. The emergent properties just happen to be the place that those who have a creative bent, or disagree with the vision or are "pre-determined" of/by the organized structure find themselves. These "emergent" properties, while technically being "free" are "determined" by the "system". The "system" is the social structure that determines what the plan or vision will be and those who don't fit the system find themselves 'creatively' determined as "emergent". This means that the "emergents" are those who don't have a voice other than outside the mainstream, which is like the scapegoat in family systems....Is this a "just form of governing" others?

In utilatarian terms, the ends justify the means, so therefore, determining another's place within the structure is for the greater good of whatever purpose the organization deems fit. My question is; is this ethical or just? Would anyone want another determining their response, their future, and their purpose? I don't believe so. This is why applying the "truths" of biological science is misguided, if not downright evil.

In my husband's John Templeton course, he talks about social construction of reality through models. His students are taken through many ways of understanding that concept and when they get through, they understand that one must live by faith...not by reason alone!! This statement does not negate reason, but helps the student understand the limitations to reason. I find this especially fruitful in a religious institution, as it upholds "faith". And helps the student to understand that sicence does not hold ultimate truth....

No comments: