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Process Studies

Volume 47, Issue 1/2, Spring/Summer-Fall/Winter 2018

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  • Issue: 1/2

Displaying: 1-13 of 13 documents

1. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Dwayne Schulz The Extensive Continuum versus the “Extensive Dis-Continuum” in Whitehead
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In this article, I argue for the redundancy of Whitehead’s Platonic notion of the extensive continuum, counterposing it to his related notion of an atomic “ether of events.” I argue that Whitehead’s atomic ether is more compatible with orthodox general relativity than generally supposed and remarkably close to the contemporary idea of a discrete manifold in the causal set theory of quantum gravity. I argue that the method of extensive abstraction complements Whitehead’s atomic hypothesis by demonstrating the ultimately fictive nature of any continuum.
2. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
David Rambo Interstitial Life and the Banality of Novelty in Whitehead’s Process and Reality
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Whitehead’s metaphysical conception of life in Process and Reality is elucidated. The article is about neither biology nor psychology, but about how Whitehead’s view of interstitial life might account for these scientific disciplines’ range of phenomena. Whitehead’s view of the universe as always novel but rarely original will be clarified, as will the role of eternal objects.
3. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Tamar Levanon The Trails of the Unspoken: Bergson and Whitehead on Language and Time
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The goal in this article is to compare Bergson’s and Whitehead’s treatment of language and in particular the extent to which each believed that language is capable of expressing the temporal dimension of experience.
4. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Andrew Kirkpatrick Merleau-Ponty’s Reading of Whitehead: A Romantic and Invisible Influence
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What bearing did the works of Whitehead have on the late Merleau-Ponty and his emerging ontology of flesh? When gauged by analysis of citations alone, Whitehead’s influence on Merleau-Ponty appears to be a brief and minor encounter. However, despite the paucity of explicit reference to Whitehead, there is an argument to be made that Whitehead’s philosophy played a pivotal role in the development of Merleau-Ponty’s late thought. This can be understood in relation to Whitehead’s theory of education, which consists of three stages: romance, precision, and generalization. It will also be shown how Whitehead’s theory of education corresponds to Merleau-Ponty’s incomplete phenomenological reduction. From this, we are provided with access to a metaphenomenological reading of Merleau-Ponty’s oeuvre, which can be understood as an ongoing movement between phenomenology and ontology, a movement in which Whitehead’s thought played a significant—if largely “invisible”—role.
5. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Palmyre M. F. Oomen God’s Power and Almightiness in Whitehead’s Thought
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Whitehead’s position regarding God’s power is rather unique in the philosophical and theological landscape. Whitehead rejects divine omnipotence (unlike Aquinas), yet he claims (unlike Hans Jonas) that God’s persuasive power is required for everything to exist and occur. This intriguing position is the subject of this article. The article starts with an exploration of Aquinas’s reasoning toward God’s omnipotence. This will be followed by a close examination of Whitehead’s own position, starting with an introduction to his philosophy of organism and its two-sided concept of God. Thereupon, an analysis of Whitehead’s idiosyncratic view on God’s agency will show that, according to this conception, God and the world depend upon each other, and that God’s agency is a noncoercive but persuasive power. The difference between coercion and persuasion will be explained as well as the reason why God, according to Whitehead’s conception, cannot possibly coerce. Finally, a discussion of the issue of divine almightiness will allow for a reinterpretation of divine almightiness from a Whiteheadian perspective, which will show how, despite Whitehead’s rejection of God’s omnipotence, his concept retains essential elements of God as pantokrator (and thus markedly differs from Hans Jonas’s concept).
6. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
L. Scott Smith The Worship of God as “Sick Men’s Dreams”: A Response to David Hume
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This article analyzes David Hume’s influential critique of worship from a process point of view informed by the thought of Whitehead and Hartshorne.
7. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Haipeng Guo A Taiji-Bagua Diagram for Whitehead’s Categoreal Scheme
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The present article illustrates the well-known affinity between Whitehead’s process philosophy and Chinese thought by mapping the category of the ultimate and the categories of existence in Whitehead’s categoreal scheme onto the Taiji and Bagua diagrams as developed in The Book of Changes, or I Ching. The Taiji-Bagua diagrams are models of organic unity that provide a framework and structure to better understand the category of the ultimate and the categories of existence—particularly how these categories are related to each other. They illustrate more clearly the coherent nature of Whitehead’s speculative philosophy as stated in Process and Reality.
8. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Glen Veitch Process Perspectivism and Linguistic Relativity
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A thorough appreciation of the Whiteheadian subjectivist principle necessitates both a doctrine of panexperientialism as well as a metaphysical perspectivism. Employing a dialectical analysis of these two, this article argues that reality—as understood by the Whiteheadian term “actual world”—is largely misunderstood. Far from representing a singular concrete world, reality is multiplicitous and subject-dependent. As a result of this and the core tenet of process metaphysics—that all existents can be understood as event—it is argued that human language, as its own species of event, interacts with reality in the same way all other events do, and as such must be considered genuinely ontologically creative.
9. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Jason Brown Theoretical Note on the Nature of the Present
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This article is an extension to a theory of the present based on a model of mind and brain that began with studies of disorders of language in cases of focal brain damage and the analysis of symptoms in general neuropsychology. These studies developed into a model of the mind/brain state and its relevance to most of the central problems in speculative psychology and philosophy of mind. A new interpretation of the aphasias in relation to brain process and the application of this interpretation to the dynamic structure of action (in which phases in word and act production are mapped onto evolutionary patterns in forebrain growth) was extended to an account of perceptual disorders and a theory of normal perception that involved a radical revision of classical perception theory (see Brown, “Microgenetic”). In effect, by turning the standard account of object formation upside down, the process of object development could be aligned with that of act and language formation, such that all cognitive systems could be framed in terms of a unitary model of brain and mental process. The scope of application was such that it constituted a Bauplan or general model for the organization of mentality and the nervous system that led, organically, to a theory of the mind/brain state, then to the nature of process, change, and subjective time. Since the account was based on symptoms in relation to evolutionary concepts, it was essential to work out a theory of symptom formation, which gave rise to a more comprehensive view of the link between microgenesis and phylo-ontogeny.
10. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Jon Paul Sydnor God Is Not Eternal, Nor Are We: On the Blessedness of Being in Time
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The association of God with eternity, and eternity with timelessness, harms Christian spiritual life. If eternity is superior to time, then God’s placement of human beings within time is ungenerous. Fortunately, the Christian concept of God as triune commends divine becoming through time. In particular, the social Trinitarian view that God is three persons united through love demands divine temporality. Relationality relies on change for its content. So, for God to be internally related, God must be internally timeful. Moreover, to assert that the Trinitarian persons relate through time places a high value on human relationships. Created in the image of God, we are called to create ever-closer community through time. This effort sanctifies time, rendering kairos of chronos. Kairos is the experience of time as sacred, whereas chronos is the experience of time as purposeless. For the three persons of the Trinity, all time is kairos. For us, every moment contains the potential for kairos because God sustains the universe continually. Through faith, the moment-by-moment progression of time can become the grace-by-grace gift of God.
11. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Maria Regina Brioschi The Event Universe: The Revisionary Metaphysics of Alfred North Whitehead
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12. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Will D. Desmond Intuition in Mathematics and Physics: A Whiteheadian Approach
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13. Process Studies: Volume > 47 > Issue: 1/2
Alexander Haitos The Philosophical Foundations of Ecological Civilization: A Manifesto for the Future
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