Pre-Defense Dissertation Draft Completed

My dissertation defense is on Monday morning. I’ve just finished the “pre-defense” draft. I have until April 11th to finalize the published version. Below are the abstract, table of contents, and acknowledgements.  Jacob Sherman, PhD, Chair Associate Professor, Philosophy and Religion Department, California Institute of Integral Studies   Sean Kelly, PhD Professor, Philosophy and Religion Department,…

My first course, Spring 2017 at CIIS

I’ll be teaching my first graduate level course next Spring at CIIS. I have a lot of reading and research to do between now and then.Please do add to my list of books or articles if you have resources relevant to the topic. Speaking of which, poet-activist Drew Dellinger gave me a ton of leads in…

Whitehead’s Non-Modern Philosophy: Cosmos and Polis in the Pluriverse (draft)

The following was an early draft of a talk I gave in my own track at the Whitehead/Ecological Civilization conference in Claremont, CA. For video of the actual talk, click HERE.  This track has been given the task of re-imagining late modernity, and in particular, of re-imagining what John Cobb has called late modernity’s reductive monism. In my…

“William James: Politics in the Pluriverse” by Kennan Ferguson

I’ve just finished Ferguson’s book on James’ pluralist contribution to political theory. I can’t recommend it highly enough to those interested in the political implications of ontological pluralism. Ferguson contrasts James’ prescriptive pluralism to the far less radical liberal understanding of multiculturalism. For liberalism, pluralism is a problem to be overcome, whereas for James, pluralism…

War of the Worlds: Cosmos and Polis in the Pluriverse

What is reality? Seasoned metaphysicians will be quick to point out that the phrasing of this question already assumes too much. The copula “is” implies that reality is a species of being or existence. Does this mean reality excludes nonbeing, nonexistence? That, in other words, reality includes only what is already actual and nothing of…

Pluralism as the Choreography of Coexistence, with William James and Co.

There’s been quite an uproar recently across the philosophy blogosphere regarding the possibility of a pluralist ontology (see Critical Animal’s recap of this cross-blog event). The multitude of angles being offered got me thinking, and eventually sent me back to William James’ A Pluralistic Universe, from which I quote below (lecture 1): The theological machinery…

“Nature is a priori” -Schelling

Thanks to milliern for his commentary on and reflections about an exchange Professor Corey Anton, myself, and others have been having on YouTube. I’m reposting my comment to him below: I wanted to offer a few clarifications of my own position. I don’t normally think of myself as a “Heideggerian,” though I suppose most people…

Etheric Imagination in Process Philosophy from Schelling and Steiner to Whitehead

I’ve just submitted my dissertation proposal for review. Click on the title below for the PDF. Etheric Imagination in Process Philosophy From Schelling and Steiner to Whitehead I welcome suggestions, critiques, sources, and/or extensions. Basically, I’m doing a comparative study of the philosopher Friedrich Schelling, the esotericist Rudolf Steiner, and the mathematician and cosmologist Alfred North…

Phenomenology and Process Ontology: Evan Thompson, Merleau-Ponty, Whitehead, and the Growing Together of the Flesh of the World

I had a friendly exchange yesterday with the cognitive scientist and philosopher Evan Thompson about his debate earlier this year with another cognitive scientist Owen Flanagan. The two distinguished thinkers disagreed about whether physicalism as currently understood can provide an adequate account of consciousness. I wanted to revisit several of the themes Evan and I…

Reflections on nihilism as a belief system

Levi Bryant initiated a string of blog posts on nihilism with his “axioms for a dark ontology.” Attempts at Living followed HERE, and Bill Rose Thorn HERE. Both of them accept Bryant’s ontological purposelessness, but raise the important issue of developing a “post-nihilistic praxis” (see this great post by Michael/Archive Fire from last year on what…

“American Philosophy and Rudolf Steiner” ed. by Robert McDermott

A note for those interested in American philosophy: my adviser, mentor, and friend Robert McDermott is editing a text to be published later this year by Lindisfarne Books entitled American Philosophy and Rudolf Steiner. It includes essays on Emerson, Thoreau, Peirce, James, Royce, Dewey, Whitehead, and a chapter on feminism. I’m currently copy editing several of…

Thinking With Whitehead: Science, Sunsets, and the Bifurcation of Nature

Thinking with Whitehead: The Scientific Revolution and the Bifurcation of Nature   The scientific revolution, beginning perhaps with Copernicus’ rediscovery of the heliocentric model of the solar system early in the 16th century, and culminating perhaps with Newton’s formulation of the laws of motion and universal gravitation towards the end of the 17th century, fundamentally…