Prolegomena 4 (1):3-27 (2005)

Andrej Ule
University of Ljubljana
We discuss the role of the pre-conceptually complex thought in scientific knowledge and in the development of science. The heterogeneity and imaginativity of complex thought enables the preservation of a conceptual structure and helps in the reshaping of some whole theoretical nets, however it 'pays' for these qualities by its latent contradictority and inconsistency. This paper attaches to our earlier analysis of the relationship of between complex and conceptual thought in the Aristotel's Physics. If by Aristotle the notion of 'place', and the distinction of movement and rest are the central complexes then by Galileo the notion of '(mechanical) movement' and the distinction of natural and non-natural (forced) movement are the central complexes. Yet Galilei didn't have an elaborated conceptual structure of mechanics, and thus we can say that his theoretical basis is 'drowned' in the level of complex thought but it is relying on the mathematical structure and experiment. Thus he is succeeding in shaping of a stable theoretical organization, and he gets the basis for the new theoretical systematization, and for the shaping of a conceptual structure such as Newton's. We can say that with this change the complex thought in science has been lifted up to a higher level, and conveyed to a pre-paradigmatic stance.
Keywords complex, concept, scientific knowledge,  physical movement, inertion
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