Dr James Willis

Dr James Willis – Author of “The Paradox of Progress” and “Friends in Low Places”. Writing in a medical / healthcare context, but spot on the main theme of recoiling from hyper-rationalism.

[Quote] Most of all we need to keep technology in its proper place, as the servant of the individual person, not the master. To make use of its enormous potential to enhance life. Whilst protecting ourselves from its enormous potential to diminish and imprison us.[Unquote] Conclusion – The Paradox of Progress – 1998

[Quote] James Willis’ book says something so essential and vital that it needs to be shouted from skyscrapers. It also, however, is about something as simple as the emperor wearing no clothes. This is that a denial that life-as-it-is-lived is wonderfully, hopelessly, chaotic and complex – is not just doomed to failure, but will inevitably cause untold damage. Our society is not only attempting to deny, but to constrain life to become structured, controllable, controlled. There seems to be an insane belief that life can be controlled by ticking boxes, by diligently reading instructions, before doing anything, thinking anything, being anything.[Unquote] Gillie Bolton’s review of “Friends in Low Places” – Medical Humanities, June 2002. WOW!!!

He also says “Rules can never describe life, they can only set limits” Very evocative of the phrasing I used here !!! [Quote] …. scientific truth brings little except a few physical boundary conditions. [Unquote]

Also has a link to David Boyles Guardian article “You Can Count Me Out – The Tyranny of Numbers”. And also to Andrew Marr’s “Painting by Numbers” Both of which I seem to recall blogging earlier ?

Robert Pirsig was a major influence says Willis in the December 2000 issue of Medical Humanities in the series Medicine through the Novel.

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