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

Category: Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

  • The Ethics and Esotericism of Eating

    Bourdain says the analogy between animal and human flesh (PETA: “you eat cow, eh? so would you eat human meat, too?”) is the last irrational wail of the animal rights activist. His response: “If I were two weeks out on the life boat, hell yeah I would!” Gill then makes an especially poignant response about […]


  • The New Reformation: Whitehead on Christian Metaphysics

    “…if you want to make a new start in religion, you must be content to wait a thousand years.” -Alfred North Whitehead I’ve been thinking through my recent posts on the philosophical import of religious experience, and in light of some of the concerns brought up by Jason Hills, I wanted to further unpack the […]


  • Religion and Philosophy: The God Problem

    The discussion continues over on Levi Bryant’s blog. Bryant agrees with me that Whitehead’s conception of God does not fall prey to many of the ethical and epistemological criticisms he levels against traditional theism. But he fails to understand the problem that Whitehead’s God is purported to have solved. Whitehead’s style of philosophizing has much […]


  • OOO and Anthropos: Graham Harman responds

    Adam Robbert and Graham Harman have both posted responses to my post about the anthrodecentrism of object-oriented ontology. I think Adam’s summary of my position as regards the relationship between divinity, nature, and humanity is quite accurate. He chose Raimon Panikkar‘s term “cosmotheandrism” to describe my approach. I’m definitely sympathetic to this characterization and have […]


  • Cosmos, Anthropos, and Theos in Harman, Teilhard, and Whitehead

    Knowledge-Ecology has written a reflection upon finishing Graham Harman’s new book The Quadruple Object. Adam writes that “OOO is greatly enriching our sense of cosmos, whilst (somewhat) impoverishing our sense of anthropos.” I’ve had similar reservations about Harman’s anthrodecentrism (if I may diagnose it): Harman and the Special Magic of Human Knowledge. Harman’s is an ontology […]


  • Soul and World: Fragments written upon reading “Thinking with Whitehead” by Isabelle Stengers

    Stengers has succeeded in bringing Whitehead back to life. Whitehead’s speculative cosmology succeeds, if it does, by avoiding bifurcations between disassociated categories. Instead of placing “subjective illusion” and “objective reality” in irremediable conflict with one another; instead of separating “man” and “nature,” “mind” and “matter,” or “God” and “the World” in order to explain one […]


  • Towards a Christological Realism: Thinking the Correlation with Teilhard and Barfield

    Preface Quentin Meillassoux‘s lucid text, After Finitude (2008), comes at a time when Continental philosophy finds itself engaging more closely with what might be called  “poetico-religious” modes of thought. Rationality of the Cartesian sort has been thoroughly deconstructed, and no longer seems capable of providing what it once promised: a clear and distinct picture of […]


  • Teilhard de Chardin and the Christ-Cosmos Correlation

    Speculative realism has emerged out of a phenomenological tradition that originally sought to provide a transcendental defense of human existence against any scientific reduction to the merely natural. Phenomenology succeeds in this defense (on some accounts) to the extent that it is able to convincingly reduce the objects of “nature” to their human correlates. Pierre […]


  • Objective Caricatures

    The following is my response to a colleague and friend’s recent post on object-oriented ontology over at The New Knowledge Ecology. ————————————— It is probably possible to distinguish between a defense of OOO from an unfair caricature and a defense of OOO proper. I think what you’ve done here is a solid mixture of each. It is […]


  • Harman and the Special Magic of Human Knowledge

    Among the most often tagged names on this blog are Rudolf Steiner and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, both of whose cosmologies privilege the position of human beings relative to other beings. The reasons for this elevation of human consciousness are complex, but in a word they issue from an intuition about selfhood. Both men dwell […]


  • Divine Imagination

    I’ve been having a very stimulating discussion with a Christian theologian named Jason Michael McCann. He has held up a mirror to my ideas and allowed me to see them in a new light. His criticisms are fair and I hope we will each benefit from continued exposure to what may turn out to be […]


  • Power and Presence in Theology

    Another response to NRG’s questions for me on Pharyngula: I have trouble conceiving of God as all-powerful because of the problem of evil and my experience of human freedom. I associated God’s omnipresence with “will” even though, for God, there is really nothing to “do.” From the “perspective” of eternity, God is already everywhere and everywhen […]


  • Fragile Gaia: a gift for God?

    “Truth, and beauty, and goodness, are but different faces of the same All.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson I’ve just returned from the lawn outside the postern here at Schumacher. Sean Kelly lead a discussion circle with several of us that was intended to be a space for us to reflect on how the knowledge we’d internalized […]


  • A comment to Hyper Tiling concerning anthropocentrism

    You can find Fabio’s blog here: http://hypertiling.wordpress.com/ Fabio, You’ve succeeded in getting me interested in speculative realism and object-oriented philosophy. Kantian skepticism is perhaps the main obstacle I must overcome in my dissertation, which loosely described is an argument for a more richly textured ontology, such that any full accounting of reality must include its […]


  • “The Luminous Ground” by Christopher Alexander

    Christopher Alexander is an architect, but in order to build living structures resonant with human feeling, he had also to become a cosmologist. “A person who adheres to classical 19th- or 20th-century beliefs about matter,” writes Alexander, “will not be able, fully, to accept the revisions in building practice that I have proposed, because the […]


  • Intimations of an Integral God: A lecture at CIIS

    Slide 1: Prior to coming to CIIS, while studying philosophy as an undergraduate, I always had the sense of being somewhat smothered. As my studies continued, and my understanding matured, I realized why. I was being trained to think in the shadow of Immanuel Kant. [Show Crit. of Pure Reason- You’ve all read this, right?] […]


  • Teilhard and Steiner: Cosmogenesis in Light of Anthroposophy

    Teilhard and Steiner: Cosmogenesis in light of Anthroposophy Introduction: As Above, So Below    The human is a spiritual being of universal significance. If my reader lacks the courage required for such an affirmation, they need read no further, because though one may have ears to hear and eyes to see, without an open heart […]


  • Gnostic Consciousness: Knowing with Spiritual Beings

    Introduction Despite my resolute sense of the sacred nature of earthly existence, religious belief has yet to strike me as a particularly appropriate form of response to the presence of the holy. Belief is to be distinguished from Faith, in that believing implies conceiving of the existence of spiritual beings without the perceptual experience to […]


  • Seeing With Teilhard: Evolution and the Within of Things

    Preface “Like the meridians as they approach the poles, science, philosophy and religion are bound to converge as they draw nearer to the whole.” –Teilhard de Chardin, The Phenomenon of Man, p. 30 “To see and to make others see” (p. 31)—such is the mission of Teilhard’s masterwork, The Human Phenomenon. But what is it […]