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

Tag: christianity

  • HomeBrewed Christianity podcast with Tripp Fuller

    Had a great time discussing Whitehead’s cosmology with Tripp. Check it out here: https://trippfuller.com/2021/09/13/matthew-segall-cosmology-consciousness-and-whiteheads-god/ We discussed topics including: the allure of Whitehead’s vision of mind in nature (knowledge as ‘an adjunct within things known’) the potential of a process engagement with different natural scientific problems, including the origins of life the problems with reductionism what […]


  • The Side View podcast

    The Side View podcast

    Adam Robbert interviewed me over on The Side View Podcast. Check it out HERE. We discussed speculative philosophy, panpsychism, politics, and more.


  • Religion, Ecology, Race, and Cultural Evolution

    “Today we cannot ignore that a true ecological approach always becomes a social approach and should integrate justice in discussions on the environment to hear both the cry of the Earth and the cry of the poor.” -Pope Francis (n.49) Pope Francis released his encyclical last week. The English translation is HERE. I have only […]


  • Pope Francis an Integral Ecologist?

    Next week, Pope Francis will release an encyclical on the role of Catholics in the ecological crisis.  According to John Grimm (Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale University), “Francis will likely bring together issues of social justice and economic inequity into relationship with our growing understanding of global climate change and environmental trauma.” By […]


  • Love, Death, and the Sub-Creative Imagination in J.R.R. Tolkien (revised)

    Love, Death, and the Sub-Creative Imagination in J. R. R. Tolkien Written March 3, 2013, Revised September 20, 2014 by Matthew David Segall In the year 1951, as recorded by the calendar of our world, J.R.R. Tolkien wrote to a potential publisher of his Lord of the Rings trilogy to describe the origin of his […]


  • More on Bill Nye’s market-based defense of science

    Someone started a reddit thread about my post last week on the Ken Ham v. Bill Nye debate. The user hpyhpyjoyjoy brought to my attention that Nye has promoted Bill Gates’ philanthropic projects, in particular his Foundation’s effort to eradicate disease among poor people. Hpyhpyjoyjoy writes: “Nye was shilling for Bill Gates in his Gates […]


  • Audio from International Whitehead Conference in Krakow

    Here is the audio of my presentation at the IWC last week in the philosophy of religion section: Here is a PDF of the paper I read, titled “Worldly Religion in Whitehead and Deleuze: Steps Toward an Incarnational Philosophy” Related articles 9th Annual International Whitehead Conference in Kracow, Poland (footnotes2plato.com) Also, thanks to Leon over […]


  • [Final Draft] Worldly Religion in Deleuze and Whitehead: On the Possibility of a Secular Divinity

    Below I’ve written a paper using the ideas of Gilles Deleuze and Alfred North Whitehead to construct a secular divinity. For Deleuze, this is an especially serious act of buggery on my part. Deleuze of course approved of that method in his own projects, but I wonder if he would approve of the baby jesus […]


  • “The Hermetic Deleuze: Philosophy and Spiritual Ordeal” (2012) by Joshua Ramey

    I’ve just been made aware of this very new book on Deleuze and the Hermetic tradition. As the commenter who brought it to my attention already guessed, it couldn’t be more relevant to my current project. Hermeticism has long been an interest of mine; I’ve even described myself as a Christian Hermeticist in the past. The […]


  • After Finitude and Fideism comes Speculative Christianity?

    Quetin Meillassoux is an important philosopher, according to Graham Harman, “not from the fact that he is plausibly right about so many things, but because his philosophy offers such a treasury of bold statements ripe for being radicalized or reversed. He is a rich target for many still-unborn intellectual heirs, and this is what gives […]


  • Rudolf Steiner and the Angelic Hierarchies

    In a recently posted essay on Christian Ecosophy, I referred repeatedly to angels. Though they are as prevalent in today’s popular imagination as they ever were in the past, the secular intelligentsia tend to dismiss them as relics of our pre-scientific childhood. I think it is important that lines of communication be opened between secular […]


  • The Difficulty of Christianity (a response to ProfessorAnton)

    Professor Anton will probably respond to my response, as is his kind habit. I’ll post it here when he does. (Be sure to visit the YouTube link so you can read the comment threads beneath my video. The dialogue is getting rather interesting…)


  • The Mysticism and Cosmology of the American Genius Howard Thurman, a lecture at CIIS

    Last night I had the privilage of attending a lecture by Brian Swimme and Bonnie and Kashka Wills on the thought of Howard Thurman. Brian is a mathematical cosmologist who teaches at CIIS here in San Francisco. Bonnie is a Restorative Justice Facilitator in Oakland. Her brother Kashka is a former literature professor turned poet. […]


  • 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 […]


  • Feelings Matter because Motion Emotes.

    ConferenceReport (or Fred in the meat-world) likes to take his visuoaudiences on a walk through metaphors of mind. In this video, he draws on the work of the cognitive scientists George Lakoff, Thomas Nagel, Antonio Damasio, Thomas Metzinger, and William James, among others. I’m most interested in what Fred has to say about the relationship between consciousness and […]


  • Buddhist and Christian Soul-Making

    So far as I know, John Keats coined the phrase “soul-making” in a letter to his brother and sister in May of 1819. He writes: “…suppose a rose to have sensation. It blooms on a beautiful morning. It enjoys itself–but there comes a cold wind, a hot sun–it cannot escape it, it cannot destroy its […]


  • The Spirit of Intrahuman Dialogue: A Meditation

    The following is a short personal reflection written for a course on inter-faith dialogue with Prof. Jacob Sherman. ————————– “Any interreligious and interhuman dialogue, any exchange among cultures,” writes Panikkar, “has to be preceded by an intrareligious and intrahuman dialogue, an internal conversation within the person” (p. 310, 1979). My personal interest in religion, broadly […]


  • 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 […]


  • 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 […]


  • Belief in a Personal God

    The following is my response to the theologian Jason Michael McCann’s blog post about the personal nature of God in the Christian tradition. Yesterday, he posted a critical response to one of my short essays on materialism and imagination that I will also respond to soon. JMM, The distinction between truth and fact (which I understand […]