On the one hand, we experience the world as a kind of predictable system. We seek to gather data and knowledge so that we might better understand the world. Science, maths, economics and other such disciplines, attempt to use this way of engaging with our world to bring clarity, definition, understanding to the structure of this system. Over perhaps millennia, this approach to engaging with our world, and the knowledge we gain from that, has given us the technologies and advances we often take for granted; medicines, transport, food production, computers, drugs etc.
The key posture, when we approach the world as an empirical system, is that of objectivity; the ability to investigate the world without letting our own prior prejudices, opinions or beliefs cloud the discovery. Neutrality, detachedness are what are required. Evaluation.
On the other hand, we also experience the world as a kind of community, a network of connection. As a community, we find ourselves members of the family, group, team, organisation, country etc. This community has other members. We are all participant members of the human community. We see things from within the community, from a certain committed, somewhat bias, perspective. This posture involves us knowing things, such as whether we belong, whether our partner loves us. We do this, not by putting them in test tubes and analysing them as a scientist might do, but through a kind of knowing, gleaned from feeling, experiencing, sharing, intuition. This kind of knowing is very different from the ‘evaluative’ kind of knowing.
I have just eaten lunch. Eating lunch in a space where many are gathered to dine, you are likely to notice a background hum of chattering human beings. Much of the dialogue will be about weekends, lunch choices, hobbies, work priorities, colleagues and friends use of time, choices, decisions, activities etc. Groups of diners gather in communities.
How much of this chatter is about the ‘science’ of gathering through our senses what appears to be objectively true, and how much is intuited as a means to affirm place, belonging, connection, beliefs, values, who we are?
Both are valuable. Notice how much of your time is spent gathering perceived proven data and how much is spent making meaning and connection.