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Robert Segal vs. Eliade
Eliade, an anti-reductionist, argues that Religion cannot be explained as a byproduct of some other need, tendency, or desire. It can only be understood on its terms as something religious.
Thesis statement: Religion is not wholly unique; therefore, it cannot only be understood on its own.
Methodologies and Resources
In conducting a study of the topics, the methodologies to be used encompass a review of the available literature that discusses the topics. The resources that the study will utilize include books, which document information about anti-reductionism, as well as issues that relate to religion. The school of thought that informs my research is individualism, which is based on powers that relate to the self. Individualism emphasizes the powers that a person has over other people in authority. This school of thought is essential while addressing anti-reductionism since it stresses some of the crucial aspects, which relate to religion.
Advocates of anti-reductionism make several claims that reductionists argue against. Reductionists believe that to explain the existence of something, one needs to establish the universal principles that hold together its components. Epistemologically, anti-reductionism moves that just the ability to isolate the universal principles that hold together the components of something is not enough to understand it (Chan and Roland 223). Ontologically, anti-reductionism argues that there are forms of high-level existence that require going beyond the principles governing their constituents (Jones 118).
Reductionism insists that everything comprises of the same element and that there exists an ultimate account for everything that happens. About higher forms, reductionists believe that they are aggregate forms of lower-level ones thus they are reducible to lower-level realities (Stausberg 54). Anti-reductionism maintains that there are instances when people’s understanding of a phenomenon is limited. In such instances, humans are left with the option to outsource explanations to supplement people’s mental capacities (Kunin 64).
Chan, Mark L. Y, and Roland Chia. Beyond Determinism and Reductionism: Genetic Science and the Person. Adelaide: ATF Press, 2003. Print.
Jones, Richard H. Reductionism: Analysis and the Fullness of Reality. Lewisburg: Bucknell Univ. Press, 2000. Print.
Kunin, Seth D. Theories of Religion: A Reader. New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press, 2006. Print.
Stausberg, Michael. Contemporary Theories of Religion: A Critical Companion. Oxon: Routledge, 2009. Print.