Reply To: Systems Thinking and Easter Philosophy2018-10-02T05:34:58+00:00

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Jae Hyung WooJae Hyung Woo
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This reminds me of one psychology experiment findings from the book “Geography of Thought,” where the researchers found that people from East were more likely to employ relational view whereas people from West were more likely to employ entity-oriented thinking. I think they were given three items “Cow”, “Rooster/Hen”, and “Grass” and made to group two items which are most related to each other. Westerners grouped “Cow” and “Rooster/Hen” together because they are both animal category, but Easterners grouped “Cow” and “Grass” because cow eats grass. I’m not sure about the details, especially how the distinction between “East” and “West” were made , so you can look up the rest in the book. But personally I do think this is a general cultural difference between the two (when I think of my experience). Crudely speaking Asian countries have been traditionally associated with collectivism (i.e., giving the group which one belongs to a priority over oneself) so it seems natural to think that Asians tend to perceive reality as relation. “Eastern Philosophy” then is just one manifestation of such tendency expressed in intellectual realm.