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March 11, 1933


JAMA. 1933;100(10):753-754. doi:10.1001/jama.1933.02740100047023

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Harmonious Thinking in Biology  Prof. August Bier addressed recently the Berliner Medizinische Gesellschaft on the subject of "Harmonious Thinking in Biology." Bier, to whom all members of the medical profession listen eagerly on all occasions, expressed himself somewhat as follows: Harmonious thinking presupposes consideration from widely different points of view, and, particularly, from opposite sides of a question. The world thus far has done but little harmonious thinking. In fact, science, during the past hundred years, has got quite out of the habit of thinking harmoniously. Our great theories, and, particularly, our biologic theories, are suffering from a onesidedness. The fate that all great theories, more or less, must suffer of being first dogma, then rejected and finally again recognized to a limited extent, Bier illustrated by citing the history of darwinism. The fundamental weakness of all great theories is the belief of their proponents that the theory constitutes the

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