Humanist Manifesto #3       ?
Posted: 26 December 2008 10:01 PM   [ Ignore ]
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THIRD: Holding an organic view of life, humanists find that the traditional dualism of mind and body must be rejected.


Can someone explain this?

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Posted: 27 December 2008 06:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Organic is a word I avoid.  It has some useful, well-defined applications (such as in chemistry).  But its more often used in vague ways by new age types.  In some connotations “an organic view of life” is redundant and doesn’t say anything.  That introductory phrase is weak.

Dualism is the view that mind and body are two different “substances”: that mind cannot be explained as a physical process.  In contrast, physicalism is the view that everything, including the mind, can be understood in terms of physical entities, forces, process, etc.  It is the view most compatible with the scientific outlook.  Another contrasting idea is idealism.  Here, everything is a product of a disembodied mind.  There are no bodies.  There is nothing physical.

All three stances are responses to our experience that mind and body seem to be different things.  Once it was inconceivable that mind could be a product of mere biological “machines”.  To propose a process of mind in any way comparable with the process of digestion would have been taken as demeaning to our identity.  The ideas of spirits and souls took hold in our language and understanding.  Humanism, and more specifically the scientific outlook, seeks to replace these traditional views with a more rational and evidence-based view.

Is that what you were looking for?

PC

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Posted: 27 December 2008 08:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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the PC apeman - 27 December 2008 06:21 AM

Organic
Is that what you were looking for?

PC

thanks,
Some nice definitions and I guess it’s good.
but, what I was pondering was what it meant in context with Humanism.

I need to spend some more time looking at the Humanist Manifesto, then I’ll figure out a better question.
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Ah, good old
“Organic”
Here’s my addition to the lexicon of vague meanings.
I’ve coined a certain construction style as organic.
Especially with remodels
I go into the project knowing the desired outcome, and roughly the steps to get there.
But the project presents itself, takes over and I fill the needs of the project as I discover and understand those needs, 
often discovering quite unexpected complications.  (Or just the slamming into the cold reality of mentally anticipated complications) that strongly influence the next steps above and beyond any previous “plans.

I think in this context my “organic”  means the process presents learning & specific-limited (occasionally unanticipated) resources that I then accommodate.

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Posted: 27 December 2008 08:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Ah.  You wanted to key on organic.  Good luck with that.  I can’t be of much help there.  I think the following definition reveals the silliness of the opening phrase.

6. Philosophy. having an organization similar in its complexity to that of living things.

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Posted: 27 December 2008 09:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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PS. I see the sentence in question is taken from the 1933 Humanist Manifesto.  So at best you should look for a 1933 understanding of organic. Later versions of the Humanist Manifesto seem to have wisely avoided the word.

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