From Big Medical Encyclopedia

ANTHROPOMORPHISM (grech, anthröpos of people + morphe a look, an image) — likening to the person, investment with human mental properties of objects and phenomena of inanimate nature, celestial bodies, animal, mythical beings.

Naive and dogmatic A. Neodushevlennye, including space was a basis of the arising world view of the primitive person who did not allocate himself from the nature yet, bodies were allocated with ability to live and die, have similar human a rhythm of life and experience. Incentive motives of behavior of animals were identified with human and vice versa. Thus, in parallel with anthropomorphous ideas of the environment there were zoomorfny ideas of the person, of a possibility of his transformation into an animal and back. The zoomorphism in a world view of primitive people was a consequence of almost complete dependence of their existence from wildlife, productive opportunities a cut were incomparable to the level of development of productive forces of the person (society). Animals became subject to worship and magic, anthropomorphous in essence, but yet not religious practices.

And. is characteristic feature of the majority of religions. Anthropomorphous fundamentals of religion deeply are also in details opened by L. Feuerbach. He specified, in particular, that «Romans constructed temples even in honor of such affects as fear and horror. Christians turned the sincere phenomena in a being too, feelings — — in the passions dominating over the world, in a word, turned properties into qualities of things, and the affects own, known or unknown, entities in independent beings». Most brightly And. it is shown in religion of ancient Greeks which gods possess the morpho-physiological organization of the person, his ethical merits and demerits, but are immortal and as powerful as natural and social elements.

And. it is characteristic also of modern religions, especially of Christianity. In a Catholic and orthodox iconography god is frankly humanoid: God the Father, God the Son and the blessed virgin are represented in equally fine images of an old age, infancy, men's spiritual maturity and womanly beauty. In Judaism and Islam gods (Yahweh and Allah) speak and act as people. Religious And. it is closely connected with anthropocentrism, according to the Crimea the person is the prime target of the universe.

In modern specific and scientific understanding anthropocentrism and And. (in its extreme form of expression) are used as synonyms. At early stages of development of medicine And. it was shown in views of a disease as on independent corporal, but invisible essence, and then — as on the evil ghost, the demon, a demon who are installed in a human body. Treatment of a disease came down to exile of an evil ghost spells, prayers, plots etc. (shamanism, sorcery). Conviction in lack of a basic difference between the person and an animal, in a possibility of mutual resettlement of their souls generated views on a disease as on punishment for the acts made in former regenerations (mongolotibetsky medicine). Anthropocentric representations were reflected in Paracelsus's views of the Universe, according to-rymi it represents a drugstore, and god is the Supreme druggist who created drugs according to diseases.

Anthropomorphous representations exist also in modern science, especially in a zoopsychology. Some foreign scientists-zoologists identify gregarious and population animal communities with human society, than bourgeois ideologists for «justifications» of the immemorial nature klassovo the caused relations of domination and subordination use. V. N. Beklemishev fairly considers anthropomorphous ideas of diseases of animals only as about disaster while these diseases and even an epizooty mostly belong to number of normal vital departures of a biocenosis, maintain qualitative and quantitative constancy of its structure. Elements A. meet also in theoretically developed natural sciences where the objective maintenance of concepts, such, e.g., as force, work, tension (physics), affinity (chemistry), adaptive, defense reactions and properties (biology, medicine) «thinking» cars (cybernetics) is combined with their anthropomorphous expression. Some biologists (e.g., B. A. Dombrovsky) in these elements A. and some other concepts (relative expediency, natural selection) do not see anything, except primitive And., and therefore suggest to refuse them, impoverishing thereby the content of scientific knowledge. Fundamental concepts of medicine (disease, pathology, etc.) sometimes also appear the anthropomorphous, generated only subjective experiences. However in these empirically settled concepts there can be a nek-swarm an objective contents and discard them, without having subjected to the scientific analysis, it is impossible.

Any scientific concept is a subjective image of the objective world, and objective keeping of each of them reveals practically only in system of concepts of scientific knowledge. Patterns of its knowledge are that that «From the subjective idea of people goes to an objective truth through „practice” (and to the technician)». (Lenin V. I. Half-N of SOBR. soch., 5th prod., t. 29, page 183). On this way history of science overcame also anthropomorphous representations.

Bibliography: Marx K. and Engels F. Compositions, 2nd prod., t. 3, page 1, M., 1955; Anisimov A. F. Stages of development of primitive religion, M. — L., 1967; Davydovsky I. V. A problem of causality in medicine (etiology). page 77, M., 1962; Dombrovsky B. A. O patterns in development of a biological thought, Alma-Ata, 1965; JI about with e in A. F. Antique mythology in its historical development, M., 1957, bibliogr.; Semenov Yu. I. As there was a mankind, page 282, M., 1966; Spinoza B. The chosen works, the lane from Latinas., t. 1, page 394, M., 1957; Feuerbach L. The chosen philosophical works, the lane with it., t. 2, M., 1955; Tsaregorodtsev G. I. Science and religion about health and diseases of the person, M., 1965; Shternberg JI. Ya. Primitive religion in the light of ethnography, page 4, L., 1936.

V. D. Zhirnov.