THE HIDDEN CONNECTION
The Hidden Connections: A Science for Sustainable Living
Frit jof Capra, 2002, Harper Collins Preface
The purpose of the book is to present a conceptual framework that integrates life’s biological, cognitive and social dimensions – to offer a unified view of life, mind and society and a coherent, systemic approach to some of the critical issues of our time. Beliefs/focus of the book – that the philosophical school of deep ecology which does not separate humans from nature (i.e. that humans and their social life evolved out of the biological world) and that recognizes the intrinsic values of all human beings is an ideal philosophical and spiritual context for the new scientific paradigm. Capra’s focus is on the processes and patterns of organization of living systems: on the hidden connections between phenomena that his extension of the systems approach to the social domain explicitly includes the material world because”…the key challenges of the new century – for social scientists and natural.
In Hidden Connections, Fritjof Capra applies aspects of complexity theory, particularly the analysis of networks, to global capitalism and the state of the world.
Assuming no knowledge of the subject, Capra opens the book with an all too brief introduction to complex adaptive systems, contrasting it favourably with the reductionist trend which remains dominant within the scientific community. The first part of the book looks at the origins of life, mind and consciousness and the nature of social reality, showing both that the network (and hence connectedness) are the central structure of life. He also shows that life, consciousness and society are emergent properties, in other words they are, in some senses, by-products of simpler processes embedded in the chemical and biological networks that are the building blocks of life.
In many respects this introductory part of the book feels very rushed. In attempting to summarize and synthesis the...