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being nontemporal. not the true Reality. And if he was not. In some of its popular varieties Hinduism can fairly be called theistic." "cause" is the independent term in a cause-effect relation. The Mahayana often seems close to Advaita Vedanta. The University of Texas at Austin. not the descendants. dependent-independent. Murti.Charles Hartshorne Theism in Asian and Western thought Of the great religions at least three are commonly regarded as theistic: Judaism and its two offshoots. an Advaita Vedantist. no. (. the dependent things are also independent (of some things). immutable. Professor T. Philosophy East and West 28. The logic of this famous "negative way" of characterizing deity was less than transparently consistent. V. he could not be influenced or conditioned in any way. a number of other dichotomies were used in the West to contrast the Eminent or divine reality with all else. R. in some relationships. Instead. These dichotomies include the following: contingent-necessary. Isvara or the Lord is at best only a supreme form of maya." as it has been used theologically connoted "impassible. The second or negative term in each contrast was the one applied to deity. relative-absolute. finite-infinite.103. nonspatial. Surprisingly enough. once said. The categorical contrasts listed above are not such that one can take one of the contrasting poles off by itself and apply it to something. though it emerged quite earlyin Parmenides-did not have the importance it had in Asia (especially India). passive-active. totally devoid of unrealized potentialities. or when he defined God as simple.68. impassible. as Aristotle saw. or take account of. and where there is activity there is passivity.163 on Thu. the Thomistic theory has similar implications. The causes we know are equally." For a strict follower of Safikara. "India is the most theistic country of all. In the first three contrasts the second term may not seem. untroubled pure bliss. pure actuality. but is entirely beyond plurality and relationships. Charles Hartshorne is Ashbel Smith Professor Emeritus. To know something is." incapable of being moved or influenced by another. extended-inextended. effect-cause. 4. In a certain technical aspect. We are effects of our ancestors and part causes of our descendants. negative. Raja Rao. as when Thomas wrote that relations between the world and God are relations for the world but not for God. but really is. In the West the appearance-reality contrast. October 1978. Only by passivity or by being partly an effect can an activity relate itself to. God could influence or condition. to be affected or influenced by it. to put it gently. mutable-immutable. that is. perhaps I cannot be.( by The University Press of Hawaii. All rights reserved. Thus "necessary" means "could not have been or be otherwise. and "active. Yet Suzuki once remarked that he was not sure about this. effects. This content downloaded from 111." But another Vedantist. but it is the ancestors of whom we have definite knowledge. Buddhism is commonly taken to be nontheistic. Christianity and Islam. also when he interpreted God's knowledge of the world as identical with his awareness of himself as eternal. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . takes a rather unfavorable view of the idea of "God. other activities. to Safikara's view that the highest reality is not like a person loving other persons.
Such was the favored doctrine in classical Western theism. Similarly. or writing books is good but reading them bad. This implies a theory of value and. it is not surprising that it led to no enduring consensus. without our doing anything appreciable to the insect or the sun! Worse." These are not changes produced in God by anything in any way independent of God. It is simply false that value is all on one side of the categorial contrasts and disvalue all on the other side. independent rather than dependent. It is also to say that it is good that God causes and influences us but bad if our existence and actions make any difference to God. modifications of an unmodifiable reality. but also so is the world he creates and (in a strange sense) knows. The reason given was that it is better to be immutable than mutable. Like classical theism it tried to treat God as exclusively necessary and immutable. God is to be distinguished by his independence. To say that cause is good but effect bad is to say that speaking is good but listening bad. of which all our empirical knowledge is a development. He returned to the Stoic view that not only is God eternal and noncontingent in every respect. as it were. looked at closely. or the sun that warms us. a strange theory. All freedom or creativity in the genuine sense of determining what previously was indeterminate or merely possible is excluded by this doctrine. There simply is no contingency.103. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . It implies our inferiority in principle to our ancestors. to be seen truly. This content downloaded from 111. and cherishes his creatures! Since the logic of classical theism is at best unclear. they are. though it did face the logical requirement that divine knowledge must embrace and cannot be simply independent of what it knows.68. whereas a creature is independent of some others only. makes us inferior to the atoms that are so much less variously passive. it must be because he is independent of every other reality. The dependence is so absolute that it can be called something else. Plato depended for his existence and thinking not one whit on our existence. and other aspects are mutable. Yet the theologians who implied this also assured us that God knows. must be seen from the standpoint of eternity.163 on Thu. whereas in a human person only some aspects are fixed or immutable (at least for a time-thus the gene structure of the person's cells). as the negative theology held. cause rather than effect. Yet Spinoza thought that the divine dependence upon the world (a dependence not made less real by his using another word for it) is acceptable because it is not dependence upon anything contingent or merely temporal. I call this Stoic-Spinozistic view classical pantheism. (Although Spinoza said that God was extended spatially. the relation of the Substance or God to its "modes" or "necessarymodifications. and it also implies the superiority to us of an insect that interests and thus influences us.402 Hartshorne If. Spinoza made the first great break with (one strand of) this tradition. loves. even our remote subhuman ancestors. in God all aspects are held to be forever fixed. it implies that the versatile human sensitivity. and what are called events or changes are items in a fixed whole that.
by contrast. he did not apply it to deity.) Thus the divine reality is both necessary and contingent. After Spinoza. Although God. For not even the individual essence of the creature is unconditionally necessary. both active and passive. one attributes God's unique excellence to the eminent or unsurpassable way in which he is on both sides of ultimate contrasts-except of course the contrast excellence-nonexcellence. J. meaning that the divine essence (unsurpassability by another) could not fail to be actualized somehow. however.) Happenings in the world are to God as the sides of a triangle are to the triangle.403 he did not say that God endures.68. Thus the divine essence is realized in divine accidents." or "neoclassical" alternative to the medieval doctrine first appeared more than three centuries ago in the Socinian theology. Whitehead). yet there is a difference in principle and not merely in degree between God and anything else. classical theism was more and more firmly rejected by philosophers. Montague. both cause and effect. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . In this new theism. The category of necessity does. being an unbeliever. since it retained the basic paradox and added new ones. taught me something by his "principle of polarity" -though. Until Whitehead they went largely unnoticed.103. apart from some hints by Hume's Cleanthes. also applying. but the class of such accidents could not have been and could never be empty. the teacher of almost a generation of American philosophers. could have been otherwise. "panentheistic. Naturally the world was not convinced by this attempt to overcome the paradoxes of the theistic tradition. At best their views were unclear or ambiguous. like the creatures. Reasonably clear forms of neoclassical or "process" theology have begun to appear in the last 120 years (Fechner. The neoclassical This content downloaded from 111. taken into his own life as cherished data of his awareness. The basic paradox is in the idea that the world and God are exclusively on opposite sides of categorial contrasts-as though one pole of a contrast could retain its meaning without the contrast. P. apply to creatures. Post-Kantian idealisms were the earliest philosophical versions. however. Schelling and Hegel. actual events. Morris Cohen.163 on Thu. and that there be some creatures or other (that God be actually and not merely potentially creative) can be taken as strictly necessary. were only temporarily and mildly impressive to religious persons. instead of trying to exalt God by making him violate the essentially polar structure of categories. W. for (a) its existence is necessary. The nonskeptical. Our ancestors were necessary to us. Lequier. but (b) the particular how of the actualization remains contingent. both necessary and contingent. exists in accidental states the class of which could have been empty. and in two ways. A particular creature. Spinoza thus assimilates relations of extreme abstractions and relations of the most concrete realities. (And in a sense God is on both sides even of that contrast to the extent that the creatures are really his. has both essence and accidents. and hence the other pole. in favor either of agnosticism or of some form of theism which conceives God as both eternal and temporal.
Is there nothing of this in Spinoza? About thirty years ago a book appeared called Spinoza and the Dead God in which the author.163 on Thu. including God. for no matter what happens. "How. but also he makes Substance functionally superfluous. (I am here considering only the cosmology. Substance. For if each mode is necessitated by Substance." This metaphorical reply. nonbeing. one body and another. I assume. not the Buddhistic doctrines about meditation and enlightenment. one nondivine soul and a body. are dipolar. Another. Logically this seems to me to duplicate Spinoza's cosmology. but also not without its point. a Hindu thinker influenced. about as helpful as Thales' dictum. "All things are water. by the earlier and more nearly orthodox Ramanuja to depart from the austere nondualism of Safkara." asked a contemporary of Spinoza. Thus each thing is every other thing. "are the modes in Substance?" "As drops of water (or was it waves?) are in the sea. says Spinoza. interpreted Spinoza as a Buddhist. or the merely secondary role for Buddhism of conceptual theories about reality. and I maintain that what Spinoza effectively has in his system is only the modes. Not only does he thus assimilate relations of extreme abstractions to those of supposedly concrete actualities. the mode logically requires and so strictly necessitates Substance. The fact that Fa Tsang did not have a term corresponding to the word "God" should not mislead us. as represented by Fa Tsang. and therewith all other modes. I am thinking of a form of Mahayana Buddhism called the Hua-Yen tradition. or Substance. thus each thing implicates the cosmic system and is nothingemptiness. Each thing is. parallel to Western forms of theism occurred in India. Nothing can ground alternative possibilities if anything you please requires every other thing to be what it is.) Things are interdependent. It is time to ask. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . though only God is dipolar in an unsurpassable way. I thought the book hilarious. genuine distinctions disappear. Now that I know something about Fa Tsang I see still more point. Madhva. from one point of view. it is all one. necessitates its modes as a triangle necessitates its angles. has a system that rather closely matches medieval classical theism.404 Hartshorne or process view is that all concrete realities. one nondivine soul and another. He says that all things interpenetrate. in medieval China." betrays a lack of any real doctrine of the divine uniqueness. For Spinoza's use of this word is suspect.68. named Melamed. and perhaps closer. So why not say directly that each mode necessitates every other? Where all is necessary. Nature. According to him there are five distinctions: between God as supreme soul and lesser souls. One can find these five distinctions This content downloaded from 111. "What parallels to the foregoing kinds of theism can be identified in Asia?" And at least an apparent parallel is to classical pantheism. Now consider Fa Tsang. each thing influences every other. God and a body. And what validity can there be to distinctions between this and that? So we achieve serenity. whose rigid interconnectedness he calls God. because the entire content of the whole is in every part. and from another it is all being. sunyat--in itself.103.
163 on Thu..405 in European scholasticism. The same pattern is unmistakable in Jules Lequier in the last century in France." 2) A monk named Mahanam Brata Brahmachari belonging to this sect once came to the This content downloaded from 111. fully thought out.103. is not the whole truth. he alone can surpass himself. and his responsive decisions influence us. Since the supreme Lord has such power over all things.. which might have been otherwise. not the supreme actuality. he denies this." 1 (This recalls Fechner's dictum that God's perfection "is not in reaching a definite or limited maximum but in seeking an unlimited progress . According to a disciple the view is that "God is full and has no room to grow.68. that collection of entities over which the soul has most direct power or control. There is thus interaction between nondivine things and the divine reality. though one can perhaps read it into the Upanisads or the Bhagavad-Gitd. Thus there are in God contingent effects the causes of which are contingent happenings in the world. and does it continually. also called panentheism?" In India. but it is a mystery that he grows without cessation. The essence is merely what all possible divine accidents have in common. In both traditions the distinctions are real at both ends and are not relations of appearance and reality. the divine knowledge of our free acts is conceived as contingent upon those acts. Our free decisions influence God. So far so good. the class of which cannot be empty. In European dipolar theism. In both parts of the world there was a problem of understanding how these radically distinguished types of entity could form a coherent whole. This is what is meant by the latter's assertion that God "physically prehends" the world. As I read Ramanuja. He does say that the supreme Lord is immutable. Socinus. Ramanuja did say (as Plato said) that the supreme Reality is both Soul and Body. a reality different in principle from soul or mind. Ramanuja says. but this is an abstraction. "What Asian parallels are there for my dipolar or process theism. A clear statement of such a view in the best-known Indian philosophies is hard to find. A Hindu sect (Vaisnava Vedanta of the Bengal School) that seems to have a dipolar view of deity was founded by Sri Jiva Gosvamin. The whole God is the maximum not only of the whole present but also of the entire past. and later in Whitehead. For the dipolar view. By a soul's body we should mean. the "somehow" common to all possible "hows" of divine actualization. even in the divine case. as early as in F. And Ramanuja so defines "body" that it need not mean. as it apparently did for Madhva. In this process of never-ending augmentation all the values of joyful delight that are realized remain conserved with Him for all time. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the totality of nondivine things is the divine body. Of course. which includes also the divine accidents. A difficult and for me crucial question is this. the essence of God is immutable. the cosmos being the divine body. insists that the soul's power or influence over the body. there is also a reverse influence of the bodily members upon the soul. tautologically. in my view. But this is still not dipolar theism.
It implies dipolarity. To my query. The parallel to the relation between medieval theism and the Bible suggests itself. The alternative is simply to take seriously the idea of multiple creaturely decisions. the Supreme with Qualities. I was delighted with this reply. For. (That this religion has died out is to the credit of our species. although we think we decide our actions." is my basic principle. defended a somewhat contrasting view. One need only see that these qualities must involve contingency to have dipolarity. like Thomas. In popular Christianity some such duality is found. settle the otherwise unsettled. moved toward a less one-sided interpretation of the Eminent Reality." Since Whitehead's category. In our first interview he told me that love was his basic principle. The monistic doctrine of Sankara is not an obligatory philosophical reaction to those scriptures. which posits two superhuman beings.103.68. perhaps most would deny this. Lequier. and Fechner took this view. the Supreme without Qualities. Manichaeism. Robert Whittemore. "feeling of feeling. and what Peirce and Whitehead have done is to generalize it for all creatures. creatures as such. Only This content downloaded from 111. came to the conclusion that Hindu scriptures are ambiguous as between a merely monistic and a panentheistic rendering. there are suggestions of supernatural beings who live to destroy and do harm. or that.163 on Thu. even by God. and in popular Buddhism. What should we learn from all this? The safest inference I take to be this: there is something wrong with the idea of omnipotence. "It is the consciousness of consciousness. Even Madhva said that nirgunaBrahman. in reality all actions are determined by the one supreme Actor. assuming that God loves his creatures. and the feeling of feeling. not God or demons. is not the true highest being. Saikara. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .406 Hartshorne University of Chicago to earn a doctorate. who went to India to find out to what extent Hinduism is open to a panentheistic interpretation. and later many others. The Socinians. Before you or I decide anything something concerning our actions is really undetermined. and wrote a clearly acceptable dissertation (from which the preceding quotation about Sri Jiva Gosvamin is taken). one good and one bad. if the word is used to mean that divine fiat can determine the details of what happens. save that the evil power is divinely created and as created was originally good. Fewer scholars of the Biblical texts than formerly are today ready to swear that the God of Genesis or Isaiah or the Book of Job or the Gospels is the God of Thomas Aquinas. One religion so far not mentioned is Zoroastrianism. and we. yet Ramanuja. in East and West. "What do you mean by love?" he replied. achieved a kind of official status. which is rather saguna Brahman. In an extinct religion. The good spirit is ultimately superior in power but not simply omnipotent. In both East and West the love of tradition is strong but not invincible. if he feels our feelings he cannot be uninfluenced by them and must be effect as well as cause. like the more obscure Socinians. the evil power was the creator of nature. Supernatural sources of evil as well as of good are often hypothecated. Indeed.) In some brands of Hinduism.
an aesthetic evil. For the really good respect the self-determining. intelligible. I feel quite sure. egocentric. for it is essentially anarchic. Multiple freedom is the only answer to the question. Boutroux. how there can be suffering as well as wickedness in a divinely created cosmos.68. or choice of lesser among possible goods) is not explained by the general principle of multiple decision-making. Evil does not require cosmic coordination. any more than they could infallibly find the truth in interpreting evidence. which B and not A determines. Infallibility. but to set limits to the tendency toward chaos inherent in multiple freedom. cognitive or volitional. that of making it. of others.103. The laws of nature are the way we try to think these limits.163 on Thu. or to evade an issue we ought. The cosmic coordinating agent can be thought of as aiming exclusively at good. should be required to explain the facts. not indeed to determine the details of good actions or results. but they do limit what can happen. to face once for all. "Whence suffering and conflict?" Sufferingis. Add the divine decider and the principle still holds. strictly determinative of details. or ethnocentric. as Laplace thought. or a Satan. indeed. and only in some circles. which was always a more or less overt denial of creaturely freedom and. (Here Peirce. Even an infallible creator cannot produce infallible creatures. Good. the creative freedom. and which cannot be known to A until too late? By the time B's decision is made and known to A the joint occurrence of A's and B's decisions will have already produced consequences that neither of them could have precisely intended. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . however. is a divine attribute. and Bergson were prophetic of the later physics. How far this explanation of evil can be found clearly stated in Asia I do not know. natural laws forbid rather than command. in principle. It seems implausible that animals with this higher kind of awareness could all infallibly act morally rightly rather than wrongly. It is not clear why a cosmic conspiracy. does require a coordinating agency. they say what shall not happen.407 with this generalization does the view do the job assigned to it. It was always a weak view that tried to This content downloaded from 111. attempts to talk without saying anything. But this form of evil is confined to animals with a high level of consciousness and awareness of moral principles. In this way one does some justice to the dualistic motifs of Zoroastrianism. I do know that Western thought achieved clarity in this matter only recently. broadly speaking. as candid thinkers aiming at clarity. of the goodness of God. taking them as warnings against the excesses of the omnipotence doctrine. Attempts to conceive some divine magic that enables us to genuinely decide and yet God to decide our decisions are. And from this the risk of conflict and mutual frustration cannot be eliminated. Within these negative limits creatures decide their own and each other's careers. In the idea of multiple decision-making there is an implication of chaos and conflict.) Like political and moral laws. Why should A's decision harmonize with B's. They are not. Moral wickedness (deliberate inflicting of harm.
not theology. and present in less and less degree as one goes down the scale of creatures toward atoms and particles. universal independence. who yet is close to the Buddhist ideas of "no soul. (Whitehead sometimes verbally asserts this last. but at least definite. The statistical laws that are now the operative ones in physics. much less about protozoa and metazoa. noneminent but unusually great in our species. In Whitehead we have at last what has hitherto been lacking. putting aside the male chauvinism that it shared with much Western and also Indian thought. that is hard to make definite. and so in a sense does process theology. especially the higher types. if an apparent discovery of quantum physics known as Bell's Theorem is correct. but in his technical concepts of prehension. is also definite. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .) In one respect Whitehead's system is probably too pluralistic. It is the "middle way. The extreme opposite view.) The combination of mathematics and careful measurement of natural phenomena has produced a sharper logic in the West than Asia has until recently possessed. in principle harmonize with this idea. no substance" and "mind only. and indeed in all science." but who avoids both the extreme pluralism of the Theravada and the extreme monism of the Hua-yen doctrine of universal interdependence. mathematician. I incline to think. but it has its value. ignorant of their work as I am. with which Chu Hsi's has been compared. With Herrlee Creel. logician. (I have tried to remove some ambiguities and inconsistencies in their work. creativity. while supposing a total absence of decision-making elsewhere in nature. the one-sidedness. There are This content downloaded from 111. but I doubt if they achieved the clarity that Western thought is beginning to arrive at. is a comparable degree of definiteness. eminent in God. I take Confucianism to be vaguely theistic. and most of all homo sapiens. Universal interpenetration is a definite assertion. The Confucians sensed the extremism. but if possible more obviously erroneous. I have the impression that the Confucians gave some good hints in the right direction here.68. and physicist. What is lacking on the Chinese side. a philosophical system by a characteristic Western thinker. Contemporary microphysics has not yet achieved omniscience. Chinese thought tends to be this-worldly. though I think it will be necessary to admit some qualifications to the laws of quantum physics in application to organisms. I imagine. correct it with an equally definite doctrine. Wigner and some other important physicists have suggested that such qualifications are not to be ruled out. A strong philosophical theory must take creativity or partial self-determination as a universal category. and Peirce and Whitehead in recent times.163 on Thu. erroneous in my opinion. and time he qualifies it." the genuine golden mean. but they did not.408 Hartshorne explain evil by purely ad hoc assumptions about human action. There is much in Neo-Confucianism with which a process philosopher need not quarrel. This has not saved the West from great mistakes. of the Hua-Yen doctrine.103. such as one finds in Leibniz in early modern times. even about the least elements of nature. especially in Whitehead's system. but with the focus on ethics.
a complete monism like that affirmed by Oriental mystics. or as divine play. who takes a "revised Whiteheadian" view. Capra. and of the general wisdom of nature. but of one-way dependence only. This content downloaded from 111. retains a definite pluralism. there is an open infinity. determining worldly happenings. Western theism has exalted our species in comparison with the rest of nature. science is now approaching. is congenial to a process philosopher. "definiteness is the soul of actuality. one of which seems much more acceptable than the other. this solution of the one and the many has yet to be evaluated by physicists or philosophers. there was never the hard and fast line between human and subhuman that was drawn in the West. though it could never quite reach. Leibniz combined the omnipotence fallacy with an equally unacceptable theory of possible worlds as no less completely definite than the actual world. In this superbly unreasonable piece of rationalism. The term "play" vividly suggests that there can be no unique reason for a particularact. I have never been very happy about the relativistic view. According to one physicist. Only individuals.163 on Thu. As Whitehead says. is incurably lacking in definiteness or particularity. that there are mutually independent contemporary events. as is the focus upon becoming rather than mere being.68. It is neither a doctrine of mutual independence nor one of interdependence. One final comparison. and the "objective immortality of the past" (Whitehead-also Bergson by implication) preserves the additions. It is this idea that Bell requires us to revise. There are no possible particulars. The West is more appreciative of this aspect of the Orient now than it used to be. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . can interact. This is one reason for the prevalence of vegetarianism in much of Asia. accepted by Whitehead as well as Einstein. The other interpretation takes divine decisions as determining only approximate or statistical outlines. But the point of calling the operation play is to reject by implication anything like the absurdly rationalistic view best expressed by Leibniz when he declared that God in creating looks over all possible worlds and gives the nod to the best possible one. Life's problems are not like equations each with but one solution. as creativity keeps adding new actualities. as compared to Europe. leaving details to the nondivine agents. with no definite maximum or optimum. In Asia. sequential groupings of events. The Hindus speak of creation as the dance of Siva. so far as single events are concerned. as Peirce insisted. lacking only some mysterious something called existence or actuality. The unacceptable interpretation makes playful creation a form of omnipotence. deity simply. What possible worlds lack is precisely definiteness. Rather. And there is no basis for the notion that a world could be such that no better world was possible." Possibility.409 a priori philosophical reasons for suspecting that it is correct. This is the tyrant idea of deity. contemporary but not simultaneous. There are two ways of interpreting this. In general the Chinese sense of the naturalness of man. However. though capriciously.103. especially China. But another physicist.
Reasonable motives always. but the relation of this to nirvana is sheer mystery. but it has no need for reincarnation. not our descendants. Aristotle. to replace life entirely by something called nirvana? If all things are impermanent.103. why does this not render all achievement. This was why Kant's definite duties were all negative. In its classical forms theism was not a definitive success. for two reasons: we depend only on our ancestors. and this is true for God as well as for thinking animals. but to Spinoza. Even mathematicians make such decisions when they decide what statements to treat as postulates and what as deducible theorems. were it not so we could not ourselves escape from birth and death. so far as I can see. who could have existed without us. It can agree with Buddhism that what is usually meant by "personal immortality" is beside the point. Finally. or Royce." And will it do to regard the totality of life as having its sole value in the way it makes possible. It was too pluralistic and dualistic in Augustine. and his positive duties (for example.410 Hartshorne The intention. Hegel. including that of becoming enlightened. or India's Madhva. It does not assert universal interdependence. Thomas. but it could not narrow down the possibilities to a definite set of sentences to be uttered and a precise tone of voice and distribution of emphases in the uttering of them. But is Buddhist nontheism a definitive success? Is "escape from birth and death" or from suffering a sufficiently positive ideal? I am thinking of the almost theistic sounding Buddhist text. promote the happiness of others) are all indefinite or." Living cannot be reduced to deductive inference. in his quaint rationalistic language. therefore I do it" can apply only to a class of possible acts. unless in friendly jest. novelty and permanence. "This is the best possible thing. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . leave open options as to their implementation. I believe that at its intuitive core (often partly betrayed by theologies) theism has an ultimate truth. The idea of divine play was therefore a profound theological insight. But it is. through many reincarnations. and too monistic in Spinoza. explicitly affirmed by Whitehead. and we depend for our very existence on God. which was denied not only to Leibniz. unborn and undying. sheer nonlogical decision must come in.68. and was at best only vaguely hinted at by Plato. This is in the logic of what they are doing and cannot be overcome. in other words. a truth that properly relates unity and diversity. Creation must in this sense be play. "imperfect. For the process interpretation of This content downloaded from 111. completely vain? Is the solution of the problem of the ephemeral status of all things to be found in some symmetricaldoctrine of interdependence. not to a single definite one. and causation (including whatever truth there is in karman) and creative freedom. "Let us talk pleasantly and kindly together. or is there a better way of dealing with time's arrow and the contrast between the settled past and the open. and many other Western rationalists. indeterminate future? "Dependent origination" and the goal of bringing all things to buddhahood suggest asymmetry." gives two people a reason for not insulting each other. and this by logical necessity. "There is an eternal being.163 on Thu.
411 theism. the "fellow sufferer who understands. The precious moments of life "perish and yet live forevermore. and linguistics. What cannot be said by one language in one state of culture may differ somewhat from what cannot be said by another language in another state of culture. egocentricity and greed) and attribute suffering also to God. Reese. NOTES 1. Various parts of this annotated book of readings are relevant to the present essay. In the three preceding paragraphs language is stretched to its limits.68. Wisdom is both more and less than literally expressible knowledge. L. and above all for the Eminent Creativity. 2. he holds that social relatedness applies not only among the members of the cosmic society but also between any member and the cosmic whole or inclusive reality.163 on Thu. but in such fashion that the whole of reality. I appreciate the wisdom in these remarks. The entirety becomes Eminently personal. mathematics. 1953). or for that matter in ancient Greece or medieval France or Britain. But I think also that language can mislead us even when it is used to state the limitations of language." Whitehead and Berdyaev independently explain suffering through creaturely freedom (plus. Intellectual progress is partly linguistic. So the theist. v. Like the Greeks. have not left the limitations of language exactly where they were in ancient China or India. Hartshorne and W. C. is taken as both inclusive object and inclusive subject of love. The theist does not. This content downloaded from 111. 252. and the line between the two is not completely fixed. an ever-growing unity. for these tragedies qualify the Eminent life itself. Hartshorne and Reese. Whereas the Buddhist tries to will directly the good of all. p. once and forever. This brings me to Professor Liu's remarks about the need to transcend the merely literal uses of words. Philosophers Speak of God (The University of Chicago. And the perishing of all creatures is also their becoming data for the love that cannot forget or cease. in the human case. and the great discoveries of the West. p. 24 Oct 2013 13:50:01 PM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Philosophers Speak of God.103. the Buddhists and many Hindus think that there is something simply beyond love." Whitehead retains what Berdyaev claims is unique to Christianity. whatever instances there may be. its full acceptance of the elements of tragedy inherent in life as such. in various sciences. increasingly contributed to and shared by the East. life consists of really distinct and additional creative acts or selfdetermining experiences that have as their data previous instances of the same principle of creativity and that offer themselves as data for all future instances. using that word broadly to include logic. the theist wills above all the good of the Eminent One by whom all are cherished. wills the good of all. too.
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