“The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.”
–Alfred North Whitehead

Integrating Panpsychism and Eliminativism in Processual Panentheism

I’ve just watched a good chunk of Shaviro’s lecture at OOOIII. I agree with his premise concerning the fork in the philosophical road between eliminativism and panexperientialism created by speculative realism’s anti-correlationism [See Adam over at Knowledge-Ecology’s recent post for a refreshingly novel perspective concerning the supposed courageous soberness of eliminativism]. There is no middle ground here; Meillassoux‘s dilemma concerning the meaning of ancestrality and extinction for human thought can only be resolved through the negation/elimination of thought/meaning or the hypostatization/eternalization of thought/meaning. Shaviro does, however, end his talk by leaving the door open to some kind of integration between eliminativism and panpsychism. He doesn’t make this connection, but to my mind, such an integration would look a lot like a processual panentheistic scheme, wherein the ouroboric universe is perpetually birthing/dying, both wholly and incompletely divine at once (whereas panpsychism proper suggests pantheism–a determined, already completed universe/divinity, and eliminativism suggests atheism–the death not simply of God, but also of Man and Cosmos). I aspired to something like this integration here (see especially the sections on the logics of incarnation and of extinction): Thinking the Correlation with Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Owen Barfield

Here is one of my earlier takes on eliminativism: The Myth of Eliminativism 







7 responses to “Integrating Panpsychism and Eliminativism in Processual Panentheism”

  1. Jason Hills Avatar

    I have responded on my blog.

  2. Jason Hills Avatar

    p.s. The articles on pragmatic imagination that I recommended should make my post clearer.

  3. Adam Avatar

    Matt Segall’s standing answer to everything: “God!”

  4. Jason Hills Avatar

    I give a naturalistic answer that is not “God.” (Why assume that God is not natural?)

  5. Reuben Avatar

    Speaking of Meillassoux I think his concept of Hyperchaos offers an alternative to God and Naturalism (nature is necessarily causally closed and uniform, and is very much related to the truth of PSR), anything CAN (but by no means will happen) not because God did it but for absolutely no reason at all. I am sympathetic towards panpsychism however if it is true it is only contingently true it could have been the case that there never was any consciousness at all.

    1. Matthew David Segall Avatar

      Hyperchaos is an alternative to spiritual and naturalistic metaphysical schemes, but not a very stable one, imo. If I and a few others are right (see AfterxNature) about him being a covert process theologian, I think Meillassoux articulates hyperchaos as a sort of temporary position that reveals the anti-scientific AND anti-philosophical implications of failing to hypostatize the correlation in some way. The notion that only contingency is necessary, and that anything could happen at any moment regardless of commonsense intuitions concerning the continuity of the causal nexus, is, frankly, incredible. I cannot bring myself even to imagine it, much less believe it. It is a brilliantly logically coherent position, but it is an entirely inadequate notion in regards to actual experience.

  6. Thinking Through Atheism in a Religious Cosmos (response to professoranton) | Footnotes 2 Plato Avatar

    […] Anton’s aims, but I don’t see how these two positions can hang together coherently. Like Steven Shaviro, I’d argue that the only two coherent positions remaining after traditiona…. Rather than trying to imagine (since I’m not at all convinced it can be coherently […]

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: