The culture of science, and technology which finds expression in domination, control, manipulation and the exploitation of everything (including man) and turning same into standing reserves, is to say the least, dehumanising and robbotizing and does not count as human development. Essentially understood, science and technology are autonomous organizing activities within which humanity itself is organized.
Modern science and technology have enhanced man’s power of manipulating and controlling nature, of reducing drudgery and improving the quality of human life, though, its uses unveils several difficult questions; it has generated many problems and has solved some as well. Today, the historical dialectics of science and technology are increasingly assuming paradoxical dimensions, more purposeful and purposeless, more meaningful and bizarre, and more useful and destructive. While the achievements in science and technology have served to prolong life, they have also served to provide resources for its brutal extermination. Science and technology provide the material ingredients which human development requires though, happiness, ethical values, spiritual well being and wholesomeness of the human person are no less needed as important elements of a humane society.
We argue that, a pro-active ethical approach to scientific and technological endeavours guarantees a sustainable and more human friendly development which transforms the quality of human life on earth. Sustainable human development is not, and should not be a journey outward away from the essential human nature but the integral well being of man in his material and spiritual life. It involves shifting the balance of human development towards improving the quality of human life on earth. We argue further that, a civilization qualifies as development, if and only if increase in knowledge is accompanied with increase in wisdom.
The work explicates the healing power of the science of human conduct (ethics) and recommends the morality of human integration (African humanism) as a catalyst that conducts humanity back into its essential nature on earth, to live a life that is in harmony with other members of the biotic community. This is an African communal ethic which views man, in his existential quality, as the totality of the beauty of life, the beauty of all and the plenitude of cosmic life in whom exists the basic attribute of being externally and realised.