Holism

Jan Smuts“Field Marshal Jan Smuts,  (24 May 1870 – 11 September 1950) was a South African statesman, military leader and philosopher. In addition to holding various military and cabinet posts, he served as prime minister of the Union of South Africa from 1919 to 1924 and 1939 to 1948. In 1919, Smuts replaced Botha as prime minister, holding the office until the South African Party’s defeat at the 1924 general election. He spent several years in academia, during which he coined the term “holism“, before eventually re-entering politics as deputy prime minister in a coalition with Hertzog; in 1934 their parties subsequently merged to form the United Party. Smuts returned as prime minister in 1939, leading South Africa into World War II at the head of a pro-interventionist faction. He was appointed field marshal in 1941 and in 1945 signed the UN Charter, the only signer of the Treaty of Versailles to do so. His second term in office ended with the victory of the reconstituted National Party at the 1948 general election, with the new government beginning the implementation of apartheid.” (Wiki)

‘The termholism was first coined by Jan Smuts in his 1926 book, Holism and Evolution. Smuts defined holism asthe tendency in nature to form wholes that are greater than the sum of the parts.” The holistic perspective is based on the belief that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. This means that the whole system is more than the sum of the individual parts. The parts cannot be understood without reference to the whole. The holistic perspective is often used in the study of complex systems. Complex systems are made up of many parts that interact with each other. These systems are often difficult to understand because of the number of variables involved. The holistic perspective can help to simplify the study of complex systems by looking at the system as a whole. The holistic perspective has been used in a variety of fields, including ecology, psychology, sociology, and engineering. In ecology, the holistic perspective is used to understand how ecosystems function. In psychology, the holistic perspective is used to understand how the mind works. In sociology, the holistic perspective is used to understand how societies function. In engineering, the holistic perspective is used to understand how complex systems work. The holistic perspective is not without its criticisms. Some critics argue that the holistic perspective is too simplistic and does not consider the individual parts of a system. Others argue that the holistic perspective is too vague and does not provide enough specific details. Despite its criticisms, the holistic perspective is a useful tool for understanding complex systems. The holistic perspective can help to simplify the study of complex systems by looking at the system as a whole.” (TEWAI)

References:

Smuts, J. C. (1926). Holism and evolution. London: Macmillan.
Klein, D. (1999). The challenge of holism: How the concept of holism is changing our view of the world. London: Routledge.
Waldrop, M. M. (1992). Complexity: The emerging science at the edge of order and chaos. New York: Simon & Schuster.
Capra, F. (1996). The web of life: A new scientific understanding of living systems. New York: Anchor Books.
Lovelock, J. (1979). Gaia: A new look at life on Earth. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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