Is constructivism a theory or a religion? Why? This is one of the most difficult topics that I have dealt with in this class and I still need more time to think, but time is running out for blogging this ninth week.
These questions have consumed a substantial amount of reading and thinking time for me. Sadly, I don’t feel as though I can give a good answer. I should have more to produce for the amount of time that I have invested in this topic. But, here goes…
Both constructivism and religion offer formats for trying to make sense of the world around us. I think as humans we want to believe what we want to believe and try our best to hold onto whatever framework we have established as reference for what we think we know. I suppose our ultimate goal is to find the truth.
Theory is a type of construct that we use to try to prove what we believe is true – we observe and experiment to try to confirm our beliefs. Those who don’t accept our theory perform their own experiments. Finally, a group decides that they have enough evidence, even if not complete, to propose an explanation for some phenomena. These theories lead to sets of rules or principles to build upon for further research.
Religion also involves sets of beliefs that share the foggy area of theory where it is not completely proven, but groups of people have decided to follow it. I think the big difference between religion and theory is that we include moral principles in the religious belief system. We could begin a debate about what constitutes moral principles at this point, but I have to do other work. So, for now, I’m going to go with constructivism as a theory because I think of theory as something that has scientific basis with religion having a spiritual basis.