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#4162
Elisabet Sahtouris
Participant

I just wrote what ended up longer than intended as a comment in the Definitions Doc, and am wondering if it belongs more appropriately here?  I would like all of us in this Living Universe group to see it and don’t know that we will all participate in Definitions.   So here is the same post:  

I still believe it essential that we work on coming to some agreement about fundamental assumptions in science as the essential basis for our definitions work. In the two international symposia I co-convened on this topic, no one even suggested that science could be done without such assumptions– a basic set of statements conceptualizing the universe to be investigated scientifically and how it can be so investigated (statements that are by definition unproven, but ‘obvious’ by agreement).
     This is a critically important matter, since this foundation of science both suggests and restricts what can be hypothesized. Unfortunately, it is given little and vague attention in science education, especially since the contextual philosophy of science is scarcely taught at all any more.
      In the first symposium, the participants were self-identified as paradigm shifters, and each of us  first listed the assumptions (or axioms) we were taught in the course of getting our PhDs. We ended up with some 176 overlapping but differently worded assumptions which we eventually reduced to the ten we agreed were most essential.  We then repeated the process with the assumptions we had put in place of those we were taught (some diametrically opposite, such as
a) Consciousness is a late emergent property of material evolution
b) Consciousness is the source of material evolution
In the course f this symposium we recognized that very different sciences could b built on very different sets of fundamental assumptions, and shifted our thinking from paradigm shift (replacing one set of assumptions with another) to parallel sciences, even the possibility and desirability of a Global Consortium of Sciences. (Note that ‘paradigm shifters’ including those in this group, got their fundamental assumptions mostly from Eastern Vedic or Taoist sciences.)
      For this reason, a second symposium was held for Islamic scientists to list and come to agreement on their fundamental assumptions in Islamic science. (Note that both Western science and Islamic have strong roots in Arabic science.)
      As things stand, Western science claims to be the only science and gets away with it by insisting its fundamental unproven assumptions are the only reasonable ones possible. In a globalized world, this is no longer tenable.