Quotes & Sayings

We, and creation itself, actualize the possibilities of the God who sustains the world, towards becoming in the world in a fuller, more deeper way. - R.E. Slater

There is urgency in coming to see the world as a web of interrelated processes of which we are integral parts, so that all of our choices and actions have [consequential effects upon] the world around us. - Process Metaphysician Alfred North Whitehead

Kurt Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem says (i) all closed systems are unprovable within themselves and, that (ii) all open systems are rightly understood as incomplete. - R.E. Slater

The most true thing about you is what God has said to you in Christ, "You are My Beloved." - Tripp Fuller

The God among us is the God who refuses to be God without us, so great is God's Love. - Tripp Fuller

According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater

Our eschatological ethos is to love. To stand with those who are oppressed. To stand against those who are oppressing. It is that simple. Love is our only calling and Christian Hope. - R.E. Slater

Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger

Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton

I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – Anon

Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII

Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut

Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest

We become who we are by what we believe and can justify. - R.E. Slater

People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – Anon

Certainly, God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater

An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater

Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann

Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner

“Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh” means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14) or, conversely, “I AM who I AM Becoming.”

Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton

The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens, we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – Anon

The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul

The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah

If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer

God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – Anon

Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson

We can’t control God; God is uncontrollable. God can’t control us; God’s love is uncontrolling! - Thomas Jay Oord

Life in perspective but always in process... as we are relational beings in process to one another, so life events are in process in relation to each event... as God is to Self, is to world, is to us... like Father, like sons and daughters, like events... life in process yet always in perspective. - R.E. Slater

To promote societal transition to sustainable ways of living and a global society founded on a shared ethical framework which includes respect and care for the community of life, ecological integrity, universal human rights, respect for diversity, economic justice, democracy, and a culture of peace. - The Earth Charter Mission Statement

Christian humanism is the belief that human freedom, individual conscience, and unencumbered rational inquiry are compatible with the practice of Christianity or even intrinsic in its doctrine. It represents a philosophical union of Christian faith and classical humanist principles. - Scott Postma

It is never wise to have a self-appointed religious institution determine a nation's moral code. The opportunities for moral compromise and failure are high; the moral codes and creeds assuredly racist, discriminatory, or subjectively and religiously defined; and the pronouncement of inhumanitarian political objectives quite predictable. - R.E. Slater

God's love must both center and define the Christian faith and all religious or human faiths seeking human and ecological balance in worlds of subtraction, harm, tragedy, and evil. - R.E. Slater

In Whitehead’s process ontology, we can think of the experiential ground of reality as an eternal pulse whereby what is objectively public in one moment becomes subjectively prehended in the next, and whereby the subject that emerges from its feelings then perishes into public expression as an object (or “superject”) aiming for novelty. There is a rhythm of Being between object and subject, not an ontological division. This rhythm powers the creative growth of the universe from one occasion of experience to the next. This is the Whiteheadian mantra: “The many become one and are increased by one.” - Matthew Segall

Without Love there is no Truth. And True Truth is always Loving. There is no dichotomy between these terms but only seamless integration. This is the premier centering focus of a Processual Theology of Love. - R.E. Slater


Note: Generally I do not respond to commentary. I may read the comments but wish to reserve my time to write (or write from the comments I read). Instead, I'd like to see our community help one another and in the helping encourage and exhort each of us towards Christian love in Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. - re slater

Friday, February 11, 2022

Index - Process Philosopher Alfred North Whitehead

A.N. Whitehead, Mathematician, Philosopher


Alfred North Whitehead

A Short Introduction to Whitehead

by R.E. Slater

Below are linked articles to A.N. Whitehead found on this website here, Relevancy22. In the early years of contemporary Christian research and website development Whitehead's name continued to pop up in random discussions as I was beginning my quest to better understand the Christianity I had inherited, attended, was trained, studied, and ministered within. At first the Lord began my journey in a spreading fog of disturbed spiritual darkness and seeming divine abandonment. This lasted nearly a year which I describe as my time in a wilderness of God's making. Out of this dissettling stage of self-deconstruction began the real work of deconstructing my religious Christian heritage. It began with a writing campaign begun here around 2012 for approximately six months before shortly thereafter turning to reconstruct the Christianity I had envisioned during my wilderness days of darkness and abandonment. Since then, I've been going back-and-forth between both processes attempting to sharpen my concerns and Spirit-led theological focus. During the first several years of my journey recorded here in Relevancy22 I sought to find a comprehensive centralizing hermeneutic to the Bible beyond the more general approach of a "grammatical, historical, contextual" reading of Scripture (I quickly had gotten rid of the "literal" approach to the Bible for sundry reasons).

Sure, reading the Bible from a Covenantal redemptive approach helped as did following upon the themes of Christ as the midpoint of Salvific history. But there were other inductive biblical approaches as well which formed my senior capstone project for graduate studies. Biblical themes such as Redemptive Typologies; locating the Discontinuities & Continuities between the Testaments; a Kingdom of God approach (my choice here was to go with the God of Love approach rather than the God of wrath and judgment approach). Some few other biblical approaches were to look at the Redemptive changes occurring between Covenanted Communities (the Mosaic/Judges period, Monarch/Kings era, Priests/Temple communities, Jesus/Church, and Kingdom era). Or, even to combine this latter with the Promises of God approach to each covenanted community. But none seemed to help me discover a clearer reading of the bible for today's contemporary, polyplural societies. They were still stuck in their sheltered worlds of Christian apology (sic., the "defense" of its faith).

The problem I determined was that of an insufficient philosophical base. For instance, the mechanistic, non-organic approaches of Western philosophy felt artificial, plastic, and just plain empty. Switching to the Continental philosophies I found them to be much more helpful in dislocating ourselves as the centralizing perspective for all worldviews. Moreover, its narratival approach to anthropological cultures proved very helpful when reading through the bible's many polyplural "biblical" cultures throughout Israel's - and the Church's - era-specific histories. I could easily make use of those insights from Continentalism than I could of Westernized syllogism and formulaic statement when separating out genre, literary type, and culturally redactive elements in biblical storylines. This approach also proved adept at helping me separate my own sociologically-based church culture from its denominationally located forms of "myoptic" Scripture study and Gospel proclamation.

Additionally, I did not wish to exclude my African, Middle Eastern, or Oriental brethren on this website. I needed a foundational philosophy which could reach out and include their own cultural perspectives, philosophies, and religions if I were to create a contemporary reading and proclamation of the God of Love from the biblical page to all the world. Thus and thus I tumbled into process theology by the circuitous route of Arminianism --> Open & Relational (Process) Theology --> Whiteheadian Process (Relational) Thought. It took about eight years of examining the bible, church history, traditional and contemporary church doctrines and dogmas, and my own current neo-religious evangelical movement which seemed to me to be going "cross-wise" against the grain of the Gospel of Good News in Christ. But by-and-by, the scales fell off my eyes and heart and by the guidance of the Holy Spirit I came to Process Thought by way of the Bible rather than by way of the Process Philosophy of Whitehead itself. And in doing so have felt that I had kept to the best of my Christian traditions while opening it up to a far more healthier perspective of life.

Mostly, I think, I was writing myself towards the process perspective all along which is where the Whitehead and the Process communities eventually met up with me. Towards the end of my eight year journey I had finally decided it wasn't a newer, more comprehensive bible hermeneutic I needed but an altogether different philosophical foundation on which to build a more responsive, enjoining, comprehensive theology of Jesus. Though I was unaware of it at the time, the process community had done a lot of the heavy lifting by resetting the bible upon a non-Westernized, but importantly global, philosophical foundation. A foundation which easily embraced theology... sic, ANY theology, not just a Christian theology... which to me afforded an efficient, yet effective, philosophical-theology basis to proclaim Christianity in a new light utilizing the common language of organic process thought. One that was relevant and contemporary with the societal times we live unlike my own regressive and defensively-minded apologetic Christianity with nothing to learn as it built higher, thicker fortress walls to keep its inquisitive flocks from wandering away. I needed to be outside those apologetic (defensive) bastions, tearing them down where-and-when possible, while searching out new paths of globally communal enlightenment and blessing.

These all I have found through what I am declaring as Process Christianity. A Christianity upon which "progressive Christian" movements, schools, churches, and individuals, might rebuild in healthy, holistic ways leaning into divine Love, selfless service, and resistance to messages of exclusion and unwelcome. 

Just as progressive evangelical Christianity is a much healthier response of church to culture than conservative evangelicalism's response, so too is Process Christian Theology a more holistic progressive response to both when applying Whitehead's Processual Philosophy to Scripture rather than using evangelicalism's non-processual Hellenisation of Scripture. In Process Theology churches and global religions of all types might together embrace a spiritual path to the sublime in community with one another. Towards a future of eco-sociological hope and healing amid a commonwealth of conjoined communions and fellowships with one another in common physical and spiritual cause. It also removes the Westernization of Hellenized Christianity by removing Platonism et al from its theologic structure by recapturing ancient cultural organic thinking (Judaism et al) while striping from these earlier, ancient religions their legalism, violence, and exclusionary practices.

As a Christian, I write as a Christian for a broader, trans-global form of Christianity... all the while advocating by theological structure to non-Christian religions that here, in Process Theology, might their own religious theologies, communities and fellowships find greater interior consistency and common comportment with Christianity and other religions through this integrating metapath of divine enlightenment and non-tribal local and global communal works. For such are the qualities of the myriads of process elements undergirding both Process Philosophy and it's subset of Process Theology. Elements which are communal, consensual, and radicalizing to the very inner workings of the world in their display of the Creator-God of Love and his divine Communion with all who seek redemptive awakening within the fraught eras of human history.


R.E. Slater
February 11, 2022
edited and updated July 18, 21, 2022

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The articles below are nominally listed in reverse chronological order. That is, from newest to oldest, where a knowledge base is built-up article by article having assumed a reading of all earlier articles. Too, these listings have resulted from an indiscriminate search under separated topical categories as found at Relevancy22, and are related in some way to A.N. Whitehead or Process Philosophy & Theology.

* * * * * * * *

Related Process Indexes
(newest to oldest)

Index - Process Metaphysics

Index - Evolution of Man & Religion

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The Philosopher, Alfred North Whitehead
(newest to oldest)

Alfred North Whitehead Quotes

Jay McDaniel - Observations on Process Philosophy: Art, Nature, and Light

John Cobb - "Whitehead's Constructive Postmodernism"

John Cobb - Whitehead's Process & Reality, Part V - not completed

John Cobb - Whitehead's Process & Reality, Part VI - not completed

* * * * * * * *

Miscellanea re Alfred North Whitehead
(newest to oldest)

Matt Segall & John Cobb - Whither Science? - incomplete draft

Process Poetry - Charles Olson (c.1910-1970) - incomplete draft

Barth & Whitehead - How They Saw The World - incomplete draft

What Does It Mean to Be Human? - incomplete draft

Classicism v. Process Attributes of God - incomplete draft

Hegel, Whitehead, & Chardin: Trailblazers of a New Cosmology - incomplete draft