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PSYC85H3 (138)
Chapter 2

Chapter 2 hjispsych.docx

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Michelle Hilscher

Chapter 2 - The origins of psychological Thought b/t=between *make sure to understand the link between these theories and psychology; not necessary to know the technical details of the mathematical theories & calculations touchstone – any criterion by which the value or something is measured Pythagoras (570-495 BCE) – o no evidence if he was a real person or myth; the myth of him was enough to be an influence o created a secret society that believed in unity, harmony, explaining the natural world with math (ex. finding a correlation b/t a hammers weight and the pitch it produces when hit) main features of Pythagorean view: 1. nature of opposites 2. importance of numbers, math, in regulating phenomena; a structure of reality o idea of proportion is central to the pythagorean doctrine o a proportionate mixture of opposite tendencies together create harmony – a union of opposites o these harmonies from our world can be s common and simple that we often overlook it many ancient world views were similar; Chinese ancient world philosophies considered opposites (yin/yang) to be important as well cosmology – the study of the development of the universe examples of Pythagorean opposites: o limit vs unlimited; regarded as crucial to the process of creation o good vs evil, square vs oblong, odd vs even, unity vs disunity st nd o the 1 quality is positive while the 2 is negative (in terms of mathematics) gnomon – addition or subtraction of one figure from another figure of the same shape the problem of the irrational – the Greeks had a hard time dealing with the idea of irrational numbers -every thing is an illustration of the ideal thing. Nothing is perfect, it can only be a faulty example of the perfect ~ Fibonacci numbers & golden ratio Socrates (469-399 BCE) – o since this time, they have been thinking about the idea of nature vs nurture Plato -perfect forms* vs imperfect appearances -theory of forms – there is a world of ideal forms existing independently of the world of ordinary experience -both Plato and Wertheimer support idea of innate knowledge. o to problem solve, we must remember what we already know and see those essential relationships, and use that knowledge to solve new problems o what we call ‘learning’ today, plato calls ‘remembering’ and ‘recalling’ what we already innately know. there is no such thing as learning new information Lao-tzu (6 century BCE) – ancient chinese sage; also a potential mythical figure o Taoism – the wisdom of Lao-tzu o less explicit than confuscianism o the social and natural world are governed by same laws, they are continous o any situation is always
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