Re: The scientific status of PCP

Gary Blanchard (
Sat, 15 Jun 1996 13:08:28 -0700

Dear Mike -

I've just read your post, with interest. I am unclear about a couple of
things, evidently about some written/unwritten rules of PCP operation.

>You write: > Yes, according to the individuality corrollary, individuals can create
> wide variety of dichotomous constructs, including religion-science.

Why is a corrolary needed to recognize that? We humans just do it, in
language, constantly, with no permission, concern, even awareness, often.

> question is: Is that the only dichotomy that can be created?

Of course not, given the nature of human nature (see above).

> Is it somehow a valid or natural one?

Who is to decide such a question? On what authority?

> Is science *really* in opposition to
> religion? -- well in some ways yes, in others no.

I could be wrong, but it looks to me like this is just your opinion---but
you are treating it like a fact.

> It seems to me, as others
> have articulated, the dogmatism-critical reflection dichotomy (and > others) like it are more useful in describing and evaluating systems >
that purport
> to describe the world.

You're certainly entitled to your opinion. I still disagree. I have
given my grounds, what are yours?

>Some versions of religion embody much critical
> reflection and little dogmatism; some people who call themselves > scientists
> do otherwise.

Now, just exactly how do we operationalize 'much critical reflection and
little dogmatism.' If we can't, then how can one make defensible
statements about the matter? So this must be just another opinion...but
presented as if it is somehow authoritative. Not nice.

> Remember: I can define individuality in contradistinction to dependence
> -- I get a very different construct if I define individuality in opposition
> to interdependence, or if I define dependence in opposition to lonliness.

Yes, or if you define it in contradistinction to Eskimo Pies. So what?

> There are many ways of parsing our experince.

What do you mean by that, and why can't you say it more plainly? I have
learned that the purpose of communication is to evoke the other to an
understanding like the one I am intending to evoke them to. In other
words, to be other-focused. Many of these conversations are not like
that, in my opinion. This is simply one example.

Mike, remember please, I intend no personal offense. I just want to get
at the truth of this matter. I thought you PCPers were Constructivists;
I'm getting real concerned that you're only constructivists. In which
case I'm in the wrong place, and simply interrupting your mind games.

On the other hand, as Dennis Miller says, I could be wrong.

Besr with me, okay? Best, Gary