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Process Studies

Volume 45, Issue 2, Fall/Winter 2016

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Displaying: 1-10 of 15 documents


1. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
John B. Cobb, Jr., Whitehead, God, and a Contemporary Rift Among Whiteheadians
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This article addresses a contemporary rift between Whiteheadians who are theists and those who defend Whitehead without God. The origins and nature of this rift are explored, as is the possibility of rapprochement between the two positions.
2. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Daniel Athearn, Physics and Philosophy in Whitehead
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An essay first published in 1917 presents key insights and ideas that shaped Whitehead’s physics and metaphysics. It also displays his apparently lifelong view that science cut off from philosophy (which for him meant, or at some point led to, metaphysics) will fall short in its vital mission of explaining facts and phenomena—a view dissenting sharply from reigning doctrines of the modem era. His largely implicit criticism of the modem assumption that science as such can do without philosophy merits clarification and evaluation.
3. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Donald Wayne Viney, God Almighty and God All-Loving: A Review Article of David Ray Griffin’s God Exists But Gawd Does Not
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Griffin’s book contributes to the literature of cumulative arguments for God’s existence, revealing the deficiencies of the “God Almighty” of traditional theism (i.e., Gawd) and the strengths of a Whiteheadian process theism (i.e., God). Since the concept of omnipotence is central, it is imperative to note that there are three ideas of divine power in traditional theism, not always carefully parsed by Griffin. Evolutionary theory requires rethinking theism, but, contrary to Griffin, many of the problems posed by the theory are less for belief in Gawd than for fundamentalism. Nevertheless, an interactive dipolar deity fits most naturally with evolutionary thinking to provide a concept of God All-Loving. Griffin is at his best discussing the ground of abstract truths. He does not, however, avail himself of some of the best arguments against traditional theism found in Hartshorne’s work; there is also the question whether Griffin would accept Hartshorne’s idea of the modal coincidence of God’s existence and all possibility and how this would affect his cumulative case.
4. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Robert E. Ulanowicz, Process Ecology: Philosophy Passes into Praxis
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Mechanical reductionism, which deals entirely with homogeneous variables, will constrain and enable the activities of richly heterogeneous living systems, but it cannot determine their outcomes. Such indeterminism owes to problems with dimensionality, dynamical logic, intractability, and insufficiency. The order in any living structure arises via an historical series of contingencies that were selected endogenously by stable autocatalytic processes in tandem with, and usually in opposition to, conventional external influences (natural selection). The development of living communities thereby resembles a Heraclitean dialectic between processes that build up and those that tear down. Investigating this unconventional dynamic requires metaphysical assumptions that are complementary to those that have guided science over the past three centuries. The new dynamics can be represented in terms of weighted networks of interacting processes, which facilitate the statement of testable hypotheses. Network analysis thereby implements and tests ideas that heretofore could only be addressed as verbal propositions.
5. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Lisa Landoe Hedrick, The Structure of Rationality and the Ideal of Aesthetic Harmony in Whitehead's Pragmatic Philosophical Theology
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Whitehead’s metaphysics provides resources for understanding a world in value-realist terms. Central to this value realism is an aesthetic conception of rationality that sees a hope implicit in our practices—the hope that our linguistic tools are suited to the task of getting things right in our fields of inquiry. This pragmatic hope entails an understanding of individual freedom and responsibility to participate in a patient restructuring of the world toward the highest retention of value. It also enables an understanding of individual freedom as obstructive to this restructuring. One task of this article is to show that attunement in theory to the hope implicit in practice can ameliorate this obstructiveness. A subsequent task is to show that, insofar as this preliminary hope is not a metaphysical premise, but a regulative ideal seeking satisfaction, it can serve as a warrant for an implicit theology in linguistic pragmatism. In this way, I argue that we can come to see pragmatism as a method lending itself to a philosophical theology of the Whiteheadian variety. We can do this precisely insofar as rationalism is seen as predicated on an aesthetic ideal of harmony—a harmony between what is and what ought to be our matters of concern. We can come to see the structure of rationality in terms of an aestheticism corrective of analytic conceptions of meaning and truth.
6. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Brian G. Henning, Moral Vegetarianism: A Whiteheadian Response to Andrew F. Smith
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In this article the work of a recent critic of moral vegetarianism (and veganism) is analyzed: Andrew F. Smith. Smith s work is significant for process thinkers who defend moral vegetarianism for various reasons. One of these is that he forces process thinkers to consider in more depth Whitehead’s view of plant ontology; another is that Smith adds insightfully to the conversation within process thought regarding the relationship between claims regarding animal rights and the ecoholistic concerns of environmental ethicists.
7. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Richard McDonough, Wittgenstein and Whitehead Revisited
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In this article I criticize the treatment of the relationship between Wittgenstein and Whitehead asserted by Jerry Gill in a 2014 article in Process Studies. I argue that Wittgenstein s later philosophy is much more sympathetic to Whitehead s view than Gill thinks.
reviews
8. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Austin Roberts, The Shock of the Anthropocene: The Earth, History, and Us
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9. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Adam C. Scarfe, Beyond the Bifurcation of Nature: A Common World for Animals and the Environment
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10. Process Studies: Volume > 45 > Issue: 2
Daniel Dombrowski, Faith, Fallibility, and the Virtue of Anxiety: An Essay in Religion and Political Liberalism
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