Fritjof Capra: The Theory of Living Systems

Part 3 - Conclusion

By James deSantis
a paper for a Political Science class at Athabasca University, Alberta. March 11, 1999

  The continuous theme of Capra's many books is the breaking of the obsolete mechanistic worldview and the
  advent of the ecological philosophy of life. In 1975, Capra published the book The Tao of Physics (1975). In
  it, he explored the relationships between the concepts of modern physics and the basic ideas in the
  philosophical and religious traditions of the Far East. He argues that the implications of modern physics goes
  well beyond that of technological advance and that it extends to the realm of thought and culture where it has
  led to a deep revision in our conception of the universe and of our relation to it(1). In The Turning Point
  (1982), he went into great detail about the limitations and adverse consequences of the mechanistic worldview,
  and he advocated the concept of the System Theory of Life, the only theory able to reconcile science and
  religion. Capra's determination and contribution for an alternate philosophy to the "survival of the fittest"
  continued with the book Green Politics (1984) where he described the success of the newly established Green
  Party in West Germany. His latest book, The Web of Life (1997), is the fruition of his lifelong search for a
  unifying and comprehensive theory of life which would include all the sciences, Nature and the Universe. This
  book provides a credible scientific basis supporting the systems theory of life, and he refers to various
  disciplines and related breakthroughs including fractal geometry, quantum physics, biology, cybernetics, and
  Gaia Theory. Most importantly, he referred to the latest works of the biologists Humberto Maturana and
  Francisco Valera on their theory of self-organization and intelligence of the nervous system.
  The systems theory of life is now well grounded into a scientific foundation, and its implications on our
  societal, political, economic and educational organization are of great importance and a necessity for building
  sustainable and healthy communities. There is no possible criticism for this system theory of life, it provides an
  harmonious relationship of man with Nature, nurture our intelligence, and it is the only theory which reconciles
  science and religion. The only possible criticism would not refer to the theory, but to the abuse of this theory
  for obtaining questionable economic objectives where short term and long term implications find themselves in


The Tao of Physics, by Fritjof Capra, Shambhala, page 18 (1975; 3rd updated ed., 1991)