Is Psychology a science? It is now. Although initially a study of “the mind,” new psychology studies include the brain, biology, physiology and much more.
But is has not been for most of the last 100 years. Now we have Ecopsychology; based and connected directly to Biology and associated with every aspect of the laws of nature in the Cosmos. Ecopsychology observes that we evolved on a planet with a unique biosphere, we are dependent upon that biosphere for air, water, food, and soil, and when we attempt to exploit or create any imbalance in that biosphere, we suffer physically, emotionally, communally, and mentally. In other words, we are animals that can have very real brain disorders, and some genetic predispositions, but that a large part of our “dis -ease” is based on our separation from our belonging to the abundance and beauty of the natural world.
Most of us are already quite familiar with the different theories and founders of most psychological theories. Freud never thought of looking beyond his window, and instead peered deeply into the unconscious and the mind. Skinner looked at behavior and how we can be programmed by stimulus and response. The humanists look at people as individuals and in need of human dignity and respect. Guess what? Each one is at least partly right.
We are not just programmable machines, but we are programmed to believe we should control and dominate nature. Thus we project onto nature our guilt and loss of being disconnected. We blame nature which created earth with volcanoes, earthquakes, fires, and floods for being hostile and destructive. We forget these are not experienced daily, and if there are other disasters, wars, pollution, climate change, extinction, our defense mechanisms prevent us from owning the responsibility for those things. But if we see and admit our denial, (very Freudian) we can empower ourselves to live righteously. If we admit we do program some of our behaviors (Skinner) we can learn to program better behaviors. If we respect ourselves, (Humanist) and other living things, we can align our destiny with natural laws and this is where real, empirical, solid science comes in.
Ecopsychology depends upon the realization that the Universe runs on the laws of attraction. After the Big Bang cycles and spheres of worlds were born and by gravitation formed the raw materials that became planets and life, systems arose based upon further attractions. Trees are attracted to light. Animals are attracted to food, warmth and shelter.
Humans are attracted to all Eros and Thanatos. Look at the Italians with art, opera and movies if you have any doubts at all.
There is nothing in Ecopsychology that denies a Creator. In fact, the Creation is looked upon the biggest proof of nature’s laws loving us into being and making life sustainable on earth. The eminent sociobiologist Dr. E.O Wilson argues passionately in his books such as Biophilia and the Future of Life that in this extremely critical period of life on earth we need to protect cherish and defend it no matter how it came to be. We need it to survive, and we need biodiversity to also teach lessons of cooperation, collected energy, and resource management.
Even Economics is a science extremely important to Ecopsychology. If we can learn to use the frugality and wisdom of nature’s non-wasteful ways, we can economize and build a green job, and clean energy revolution that builds upon the laws of nature. In nature there are not artificially created toxins, petrochemicals, pollution, or waste of any kind. All dead and dying “resources” are “recycled” to provide nutrients for life and living. Even rocks and minerals, glaciers and oceans have their time as contributions of life.
We are in fact about two thirds water, in Psychology classes it was confusing therefore, to be told we are products of lusting for our parents, being born third, or like rats who seek cheese in artificial mazes. We are in fact, natural beings. What a relief!
We are not creatures designed to conquest inferior nations or tribes, forests, or coal. We are designed to ultimately learn to live cooperatively within a sustainable world or suffer until we perish.
That is all. Without Science from Astronomy to Zoology, there is no human psychology of any kind. It is obvious that as residents of earth we need to become better scientists, and that requires us to listen to the voice of the earth.