VICTOR Z. CHEN

In pursuit of the profound, the innovative, and the visionary

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                     (Left) Sasāra                                     (Right) Dancing Shiva

 

One thing all resistant values share in common, sometimes implicitly, is their pursuit of some sort of end value(s) of comfort as well as sustainable means to achieve it (them).

 

Although I’m not religious, I have a great interest in the diversity of resistant values, including religious thoughts and underlying assumptions (e.g., randomness) in science (as a core component of my research on institutional diversity perspective across societies). I believe all resistant values share a common raison d'être, which explains the comfort we are seeking ultimately. Instead of seeing different resistant values as competing or alternative assumptions of the world, I am developing a new holistic and reconciling religious thought. Such a religious thought, if it is still religious, should comfort our anxiety and confusion by explaining the diversity and evolution in resistant values as different components and evolutionary paths of the common denominators billions of us inherited from our common ancestors in East Africa about 50,000 years ago (or more ultimately from the physical world of big bang).

 

To find such common denominators, I am collecting a list of scientific readings on human biological and social universals, to be combined with my original research on global institutional diversity (with Dr. John Cantwell). Please write to me if you have any good scientific readings on these topics and would like to join the discussion.

 

Below is a rough structure to organize all the readings into a unifying theoretical framework of human biological and social universals:

 

 

Source of End

Choice of Means

Phylogenetically Innate

Socioculturally Learned

Present

Innate Self-Interest Rationality

(Zweckrationalität)

Learned Nonself-Interest Rationality

(Wertrationalität)

Absent

Affectual

Nonrationality

Traditional

Nonrationality

 

Source: Wallace (1994) A Weberian theory of human society: Structure and evolution, New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.

 

 

 

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