I think most of you would agree that I am not speaking nonsense in saying this, or introducing some "magical" element into my description of my son. Is a straightforward statement of fact, of the kind that would usually pass without any notice.
But what I wish to note here is that no sense can be made of this statement without the larger context of the notion of "a basketball team." It is not possible for a human being to be a point guard in isolation. He might dribble a basketball around, and even pretend to pass to others. But without the larger context of a basketball team, he is not a point guard.
The truth of reductionism is that sometimes good explanations of something larger can be given in terms of breaking down that larger thing into smaller entities. I did this all the time in analyzing the workings of the programs I was writing: when I found a bug, I looked for a particular line of code to explain the bug. But if taken as a methodological dictate, which in the reductionist program it is, its falsity is demonstrated by the fact that sometimes the smaller thing can only be explained in the context of the larger thing.
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