Outline Section TTP 1.6.3. to


I.                    Criteria for A Scientific Theory of Psychology

a.       Organicity

b.      Objective Reality

c.       Operational Definition

d.      Empiricism

e.       Usefulness

II.                 Organicity

a.       Defn: proposed theory must be biologically grounded; no function without structure, medium, or substance.

b.      Examples

                                                               i.      APA approves psychotherapists to be thoroughly knowledged in the field of biology and medical science.

                                                             ii.       Swedenborg was trained by the finest European anatomist of the 17th and 18th centuries; his books predate the work of Fechner and Wundt on sensation and perception.

c.       Difference between psychology and philosophy

                                                               i.      Psychology = science; due to mental functions and organic operation.

                                                             ii.      Sensations, thoughts, feelings are described as mental operations or processes.

                                                            iii.      Any operation must have function and medium/structure; or must have a sphere, field, medium, or locus of movement, repetition and change.

1.      Medium (in which mental operations take place)

a.       Materialistic/monistic- conscious awareness of feelings and thoughts is an epiphenomenon or unreal/ not having its own real independence.  For example the reflection in the mirror is not real compared to the actual image of your face.

b.      Dualist/substantive- standard requirement for scientific objectivity can be reinstated to the idea of the mind and the spiritual world according to the accounts of Swedenborg of the afterlife.

c.       Mind (spiritual organ) constructed out of the spiritual substance >>> from the spiritual sun >>> spiritual world. (All human minds are born in the spiritual world and grows in the mental age)

d.      Substantive dualism makes TP into an empirical science.  Mental anatomy & mental physiology = spiritual psychobiology

III.               Objective Reality

a.       Defn: facts of the system must come from objective observation and verifiable by others.

b.      During 27 years of daily explorations in the spiritual world Swedenborg made many companions to consult with or interview, or act as assistants—everyone present was able to see what he reported.

c.       Swedenborg’s system is based on universal law between the natural and spiritual worlds “law of correspondences”.

IV.              Operational Definition

a.       Defn: proposed theory must offer concrete measurement procedures for assessing the magnitude of effects indexed by dependent measures under various known independent conditions.

b.      Swedenborg described the attendant conditions during resuscitation, who is there, what are their roles, different reactions when they wake up, what is taken from the natural world in terms of attitude and knowledge.

V.                 Empiricism

a.       Definition: every step of the explanation/theory must be able of being understood and verified by the person’s own experience or self-witnessing observations.

b.      Every step of Swedenborg’s accounts or explanations were intended to be understood and verified by the person’s own experience or self-witnessing observations. 

c.       Proved that the language of the Bible is written in correspondences that are uniform across the Old and New Testament although the authors of the two texts varied tremendously.  He mentions that when the correspondences are analyzed, the literal historical meanings disappear, and are replaced by spiritual counter parts which in turn are scientific descriptions of the human mind (its anatomy and functional operations).

VI.              Usefulness

a.       Definition: theory must be applicable to all people and beneficial to society and individuals.