IThink was originally envisioned as a website focusing on philosophy. However, just as philosophy can lead us in unexpected directions, so did this site have ideas of its own.
Though philosophy remains a primary focus, there is an emphasis on thinking, which overlaps with the scientific discipline psychology. Another related area of emphasis is mind control and propaganda, which also overlaps science and philosophy. However, I would like to suggest a distinct domain to serve as mind control’s home base—politix.
So we have three domains, cogni-spheres, or whatever you want to call them—philosophy, science and politix. But where do spirituality and religion fit in?
Taxonomy of Thought?
By now, you may have deduced that I’m working on some sort of classification scheme. But exactly what am I trying to classify?
Just as carrots, tomatoes and lettuce are vegetables because they share certain things in common, so are there some striking similarities between science and philosophy. Can you guess what they are?
Whether or not politix merits equal status as a member of this category I’m trying to define isn’t clear. Spirituality is even more difficult to classify, because I’m not even sure what it is. Moreover, even if I could come up with a concise definition of spirituality, it would never be universally accepted. Spirituality simply means different things to different people.
Religion is a little easier to define, though it overlaps with spirituality and philosophy.
And so we wind up with two solid pillars, science and philosophy, along with a third more confusing pillar, spirituality. In addition, we have politix and religion, which may either be ranked alongside science and philosophy or characterized as something else.
And the list isn’t finished, because we could (possibly) add language, music and fantasy, among other things.
Think About It
But before I get ahead of myself let’s go back to science and philosophy. What is the magic ingredient that unites them?
Scientists and philosophers don’t flip coins and roll dice. They exercise their minds in trying to find answers to a variety of questions.
Science and philosophy may also share a common goal.
Of course, there isn’t unanimous agreement on the goals of science or philosophy. Some might argue that one or the other (or both) don’t even have goals.
However, I think most people would agree with the statement that science is a tool that helps us understand and manipulate the world around us.
Many people similarly pursue philosophy in a quest for a better understanding of life, or the world around us. Just as scientists unearth secrets that enable people to manufacture goods from raw materials, so can philosophers ponder ethics in an attempt to help us establish a moral foundation for civilization.
Observable vs Invisible
But how are science and philosophy different?
Simple: Scientists focus on tangible objects, while philosophers focus on the intangible.
The above statement is simplistic, and there are probably many exceptions. However, scientists generally study things that can be somehow observed or quantified. If something can be seen, heard, felt, smelled or tasted, scientists can probably find a way to study it.
Of course, scientists are certainly capable of exploring theoretical worlds. They might join philosophers in contemplating the existence of multiple universes, or they might try to imagine what life on other worlds might look like.
Philosophers, of course, focus on things that can’t be seen through a microscope. Good and evil, time and logic are among the things they ponder.
Looking at it another way, we might say that scientists and philosophers alike attempt to connect with the universe. And that, in my opinion, is what spirituality is all about.
Thought vs Intuition
The difference is that spirituality is primarily intuitive. Instead of rationally analyzing a question about a particular element or ethical value, a spiritualist may sit on a beach with eyes closed, seeking communion with Nature.
But is that really an example of intuition, or could it be more accurately described as a sensory experience?
I’m simply sharing my thoughts on a personal quest. When I was in college, I got a degree in science, though I also took a class in Philosophy 101. When I was about forty years old, I became a little obsessed with politix, something I scarcely knew existed when I was in school.
I later took another look at science, at the same time wading into philosophy, in an effort to help me understand politix.
I’ve always considered myself spiritual. In contrast, I generally despise religion.
For me, spiritualism (in the broad sense of the term), is a beautiful thing. I generally view science and philosophy as noble endeavors as well, though they can lead us down the wrong path.
Politix and religion are more sinister. Propagandists and religious kooks have infiltrated and corrupted science, philosophy and even spirituality to an alarming degree.
In fact, I view religion as a malignant offshoot of spirituality.
You are, of course, free to judge the above as boring, irrelevant or blatantly absurd. However, it helps to explain where I’m coming from, so to speak.
The taxonomy of thought is not this website’s sole focus; far from it. However, it’s a convenient starting point for me.