reductionistic (adj) 1. breaking down [reducing] a complex system, such as a living organism, into its component parts in order to better understand how the parts work to gain a better understanding of how the system works. 2. the attempt to explain all biological processes in terms of chemical and physical processes
the attempt to explain objects or events in one domain by using terminology, concepts, laws, or principles from another domain. Explaining observable phenomena (domain 1) in terms of atomic theory (domain 2) would be an example; explaining human behavior and cognition (domain 1) in terms of biocheical principles (domain 2) would be another. In a sense, it can be said that events in domain 1 are reduced to events in domain 2.