How Psychologists Think

by Liam Marsh

It has become a struggle for psychology to determine whether or not it is a science.

Psychology has long believed itself to be a science despite the fact that psychologists do not think nor act as scientists. In its presentation of ideas; in its self-justification within the business community; in its academic classification, psychology continues to be influenced by the scientific fantasy. In academic journals the psychologist writes in a style which requires cross referencing statements and making connections between ideas and research. While its science is, in general, absurd with its lack of statistical understanding and disregard for true experimental method, psychology dances on believing whole heartily that it is making sense. In the profession world the psychologist sells her wears by continuing the illusion of scientific objectivity. Insurance companies and politicians are entertain with data and studies all of which support the psychologist's fantasy that their beliefs are grounded in scientific truth. The reality of the origin of the psychologist's beliefs is actually quite different.

Going back to the original psychologist, Freud, a man with an extensive scientific background and understanding of the scientific method, psychologists have recklessly abandoned scientific methodology in favor of basing their theories on intuitive observation. In practice there is no conflict for psychologists base their ideas on countless years of experiencing the human phenomenon. After extensive interaction with a particular aspect of the human malaise, intuition automatically kicks in and repeated patterns become conscious and become the bases for ideas and theories which follow. These theories are going to naturally reflect not only the world that seemingly surrounds the psychologist but the world of the psychologist himself. The fantasy that the ideas are simply accounts of an objective reality, does not have weight for the creator of ideas can not be separated from the ideas themselves. An inherent aspect of an idea, is the person who is having it. The ideas say more about the individual having them than they do about their subject.

There is no problem with the natural process by which the psychologist thinks. It is the way all humans gather and process information about the world. The problem comes from trying to meet the criteria of science's fantasy of objectivity. The psychologist is in the business of knowing something about human nature. This knowing is held accountable to the ideals of science and academia. Knowledge becomes of secondary importance as the human mind forces itself to comply with certain forms of thought.

Going Back:

Science and Psychology
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Other Readings:

Ideas and Managed Care
The End of Therapy

Copyright 1996 The Ares Press and Hermes Systems