On "correlative thinking:"

From Joseph Needham, Science and Civilisation in China, vol. 2: History of Scientific Thought (Cambridge University Press, 1956), pp. 280-81:

A number of modern students -- H. Wilhelm, Eberhard, Jablonski, and above all Granet – have named the kind of thinking with which we have here to do, “coordinative thinking” or “associative thinking.” This intuitive-associative system has its own causality and its own logic. It is not either superstition or primitive superstition, but a characteristic thought-form of its own. H. Wilhelm contrasts it with the “subordinative” thinking characteristic of European science, which laid such emphasis on external causation. In coordinative thinking, conceptions are not subsumed under one another, but place side by side in a pattern, and things influence one another not by acts of mechanical causation, but by a kind of “inductance”. In the Section on Taoism (pp. 55, 71, 84) I spoke of the desire of the Taoist thinkers to understand the causes in Nature, but this cannot be interpreted in quite the same sense as would suit the thought of the naturalists of ancient Greece. The key-word in Chinese thought is Order and above all Pattern (and, if I may whisper it for the first time, Organism). The symbolic correlations or correspondences all formed part of one colossal pattern. Things behaved in particular ways not necessarily because of prior actions or impulsions of other things, but because their position in the ever-moving cyclical universe was such that they were endowed with intrinsic natures which made that behaviour inevitable for them. If they did not behave in those particular ways they would lose their relational positions in the whole (which made them what they were), and turn into something other than themselves. They were thus parts in existential dependence upon the whole world-organism. And they reacted upon one another not so much by mechanical impulsion or causation as by a kind of mysterious resonance.

On "the problem of providing modern science with an ethic of contemporary validity:"

From Joseph Needham, Science and Civilisation in China, vol. 5, part 5 (Cambridge University Press, 1983), p. 20:

Knowledge should be developed within a context of universal cosmic meaning, not simply for the purpose of domination and power over Nature. Knowledge and power have been too much separated from meaning and morality. But now the idea of man as the perfect observer, and hence the all-powerful controller, has broken down, because observation is known to imply perturbation, necessary paradigms are liable to be fundamentally incompatible, and science without ethics will clearly lead to self-destructive situations.... How to combine wisdom with power is the great problem now before humanity.