Zygon: Journal of Religion & Science
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Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science
13 (1), March 1978

Table of Contents


Adaptation and the Technological Society: A Value Context for Technology Assessment by Mark W. Lipsey

The National Academy of Sciences in its 1969 report on technology to the House of Representatives began by noting widespread concern “that continuation of certain technological trends would pose grave dangers for the future of man.”¹ Such critics of modern technology as Jacques Ellul, Lewis Mumford, Herbert Marcuse, René Dubos, and Theodore Roszak have described some of those dangers in graphic detail and often brought a note of profound pessimism to the discussion.² The well-known Club of Rome studies have depicted some of the alarming, worldwide consequences that may be extrapolated from developments now under way, and Robert L. Heilbroner’s recent work amplifies that theme.³ One need consider only the effects of advanced technology on the natural environment to confront some of the grave dangers of which the academy speaks.4 We clearly have much reason to be concerned about “certain technological trends.” …
¹ National Academy of Sciences, “Technology: Process of Assessment and Choice” (Report to the Committee on Science and Astronautics, U.S. House of Representatives, July 1969); excerpts reprinted in J. G. Burke, ed., The New Technology and Human Values (Belmont, Calif.: Wadsworth Publishing Co., 1972), pp. 255-66.
² E.g., Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society (New York: Vintage Press, 1964); Lewis Mumford, The Myth of the Machine (New York: Harcourt, Brace & Co., 1967); Herbert Marcuse, One-Dimensional Man (Boston: Beacon Press, 1964); René Dubos, Reason Awake: Science for Man (New York: Columbia University Press, 1970); Theodore Roszak, Where the Wasteland Ends (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Co., 1973).
³ Donella H. Meadows et al., The Limits to Growth (New York: New American Library, 1972); M. Mesarovic and E. Pestel, Mankind at the Turning Point (New York: E. P. Dutton & Co., 1974); Robert L. Heilbroner, An Inquiry into the Human Prospect (New York: W. W. Norton & Co., 1974).
⁴ See, e.g., P. R. Ehrlich and A. H. Ehrlich, Population, Resources, Environment (San Francisco: W. H. Freeman & Co., 1970).

Mark W. Lipsey is associate professor of psychology, Claremont Graduate School, Claremont, California 91711.
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00318.x

The Complementarity of Theology and Cosmology by Harold H. Oliver

The title of this essay, “The Complementarity of Theology and Cosmology,” juxtaposes three terms whose meanings are not self-evident; thus the claim it makes is subject to misunderstanding. The danger of poorly defined terms in such a claim is either that one will agree too readily with it, where in fact differences are real and deep, or that those who agree on the state of affairs may seem to be in disagreement. Where there is general agreement on definitions—and such a consensus is a requisite for intelligent discourse—a different set of problems arises. Either the theologian may seem to be conceding too much to the cosmologist, thereby surrendering the distinctiveness of religious claims, or the cosmologist may seem to have abandoned the scientific rigor of his profession which has been achieved in a hard-fought struggle against religious authoritarianism. Two tasks emerge from the outset: to seek to achieve some agreement on the meaning of the terms “complementarity,” “theology,” and “cosmology” and to defend the claim that is made by their juxtaposition in the title. …
Harold H. Oliver is professor of theology, Boston University, 745 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02215.
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00319.x

The Argumentation of Psychology by R. Harré

In posing our question in the form “What does psychology leave out?” I do not think we express exactly the relationship of psychology as it recently has been practiced to a study which would yield an adequate knowledge of the nature of man. I believe we can reformulate this question as follows. There is, first of all, the question as to what psychology has as a matter of fact left out and, second, whether it must leave out of account those aspects of human life and human nature which it currently leaves out. This question is made all the more poignant in that currently we take it to be obvious that psychology is science and we are inclined to assume that when we identify some item which psychology currently leaves out, that item is not susceptible of scientific investigation. There is, of course, no a priori reason why the extent of the scientific study of man should match exactly the extent of the current state of the study of psychology. It will be part of my purpose to show in this paper how that which quite patently has been left out of psychological study can be incorporated without any loss of scientific standing. Indeed, as I have argued elsewhere, much that we currently think of as scientific psychology is scientific in name only in that it violates many of the canons of the physical and biological sciences as we know them.¹ …
¹ R. Harré and P. F. Secord, The Explanation of Social Behaviour (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1972).

R. Harré is Fellow of Linacre College, Oxford, England.
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00320.x

Unity versus Diversity by Angie M. Guggenberger Nelson

Many futurists speak of a world culture as the only uniting force which can save our planet Earth from a nuclear holocaust. Yet these same and other futurists speak of the necessity of diversity, of a plurality of cultures, for the continuation of sociocultural change; without change humanity would ossify and join the ranks of extinct species eventually. W. Warren Wager maintains that the current world situation allows us two choices: to build a world civilization or to “revert to primeval anarchy.”¹ He defines civilization as a world order, “an effort to unify the ecumene, to bring the whole known world under one law and one cultural configuration.”² …
¹ W. Warren Wagar, The City of Man: Outlines of a World Civilization (New York: Grossman Publishers, 1971), p. 28.
² Ibid., p. 29.

Angie M. Guggenberger Nelson is director of medical services and research, Minnesota Medical Association, Suite 900, American National Bank Building, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55101.
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00321.x

Unity and Diversity among Humans: A Framework for Interpretation by W. Widick Schroeder

Both biological and sociocultural factors contribute to human unity and diversity. Differences in sex, racial characteristics, physical vigor, and some aspects of intellectual prowess are rooted primarily in the biological dimension of human experience. Differences in basic values and forms of social organization are rooted primarily in the sociocultural dimension.¹ The two dimensions together contribute to the emergence of creatures who, relative to other creatures on this planet, possess very substantial capacities for self-initiation and for novelty of response to circumstances.²

Three aspects of the unity-diversity problem are addressed here. The first section sketches a broad framework to interpret our common human experience of the complex unification of diversity in the unity of an emerging creature. The second section delineates the hierarchy of creatures and the order of nature discernible on this planet. The third section, the longest of the three due to its primacy for this topic, focuses on the characteristics of human beings and their social institutions. …
¹ The debate on the relative importance of the biological and sociocultural factors in human life emerged earlier in the history of Western thought, and it has continued to the present day. In The Republic Plato opted for the predominant importance of heredity, and he proposed an elaborate eugenics plan. In Politics and Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle emphasized the importance of the environment and proposed to focus on the sustaining environment to cultivate good habits leading to virtue. In various forms the debate is still carried on today. Some will emphasize one factor but may not eliminate the other, blunting the sharpness of the debate. If it is held that both factors are inextricably and interrelatedly involved in human experience, as it is held here, the debate will be interpreted as an endless one.
² This volitional emphasis relates this point of view to the strand of social scientific theory rooted in the tradition of Max Weber and some nineteenth-century English liberals (see, e.g., Max Weber, Theory of Social and Economic Organization, trans. A. R. Henderson and Talcott Parsons [New York: Oxford University Press, 1947], and John Stuart Mill, On Liberty [Chicago: Henry Regnery Co., n.d.]). It contrasts with the causal strand of social scientific theory rooted in the traditions of Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, and Émile Durkheim (see, e.g., Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Basic Writings on Politics and Philosophy, ed. Lewis S. Feuer [Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday & Co., 1959]; A. A. Brill, ed., The Basic Writings of Sigmund Freud [New York: Random House, 1938]; and Émile Durkheim, The Rules of Sociological Method [Glencoe, Ill.: Free Press, 1938]).

W. Widick Schroeder is professor of religion and society, Chicago Theological Seminary, 5757 University Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60637.
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00322.x

An Appraisal of a Psychological Approach to Meditation by Stephen Kaplan

Meditation and the experiences attained from meditation often have been considered by many as experiences which only the experiencer is truly qualified to understand and to explain. Evelyn Underhill expresses this position in a passage on mysticism and the mystical experience—an experience which one may associate with the fruits of meditational practices: “Now in dealing with this [mysticism and mystical experiences], we are of course trying to describe from without that which can only adequately be described from within; which is as much to say that only mystics can really write about mysticism.”¹ Scholarship on this subject—meditation, meditational experiences, or the closely related subject of mysticism—has produced detailed analyses of the material; but in the end some of the finest works still leave undecided the exact source of religious experiences in general and meditational experiences in particular. For example, in The Varieties of Religious Experience, William James wants to leave room for both the traditional religious answer and the more empirically scientifically based answer.

There are, however, psychological theories which do not hold the opinion that meditation and the experiences attained from meditation are comprehensible only to the subject of the experience. Modern psychology feels that it has the tools to explain the nature of the experience, and this explanation of the nature of the experience leads one to believe that it can explain the source of the experience. …
¹ Evelyn Underhill, Mysticism (New York: E. P. Dutton & Co., 1961), p. 49.

Stephen Kaplan is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Religion, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19122.
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00323.x


Death, Dying, and the Biological Revolution by Robert M. Veatch, reviewed by George J. Agich

George J. Agich; Southern Illinois University
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00324.x

The Way of Discovery by Richard Gelwick, reviewed by Jerry H. Gill

Jerry H. Gill; Eastern College, Saint David’s, Pennsylvania
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00324.x

In Memoriam

Chauncey Depew Leake, September 5, 1896-January 11, 1978

DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1978.tb00325.x

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