Despite early optimism about the role of self and nonself in understanding the nature of organic tolerance, the fundamental paradigm on which classical immunology stands or falls has yet to facilitate any resolution of the field's major concerns. This chapter discusses the adoption of a more assimilative model of the self—one that is widely known in various forms in other times and across cultural boundaries. Though Maxwell's demon and the dendritic cell have allowed science to separate itself from God, they both actually adopt a way of thinking that has all of the trappings of another religious form. This form of thinking posits that the world is motivated by many forces that sometimes function independently, and that matter of any sort can be the conveyor of spiritual power.
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