Saint Augustine and Michel De Montaigne's Approach To A Multifaceted Universe and Inner Nirvana Chinese scholars abandoned the idea of a Supreme Being with personal and creative properties. No rational author of nature existed in their universe; consequently, the objects they meticulously described did not follow universal principles...In the absence of a compelling need for the notion of general laws - thoughts, in the mind of God, so to speak - little or no search was made for them.
In other words, according to the author of this citation, Edward Osborne Wilson, although the Chinese excelled in developing many technological innovations, such as magnetic compasses and rockets, their failure to develop a scientific corpus that explored nature's phenomena was caused by their lack of belief in nature's unity. Wilson does not confine his argument to Chinese pagan culture. He argues that even the Greeks, who advanced in logic, philosophy, geometry and astronomy, ultimately made no discoveries of nature's general laws because of their pagan beliefs.
While I do not know enough to challenge or defend Wilson's hypothesis intelligently, I nonetheless find Wilson's proposal fascinating because one of the implications of Wilson's assertion that monotheistic pantheism might have sparked general scientific exploration is that theologians might have to reconcile our complex universe, with its seemingly infinite and sometimes pernicious forces, with one God.
Indeed, much of Saint Augustine's philosophical writings in The Confessions are an attempt to resolve one of the principal problems engendered by stating God exists within nature; namely, if everything derives from God how can anything be corrupt? He eloquently addresses the problem in book 7 in regards to evil's source: Who put this power in me and implanted in me this seed of bitterness, when all of me was created by my very kind God?...