Remembering Whitehead

At one time in my life I was immersed in Alfred North Whitehead. I miss the reading and the creative dialogue with like minds. I pray these conversations will return to me. I remember them with deep gratitude. In the present, so often, I am living philosophy – living breathing wisdom. It is overwhelmingly beautiful. It’s qualities are patients, humility, freedom, trust, acceptance. More and more, I like to look into peoples eyes and find their smiles. Often I feel resonant compassion. I have been living into an experience of selflessness that is at the same time the most expressive and genuine I have ever been. Tears are frequent with joy as much as grief and laughter is medicine.

Where is Whitehead in this? Perhaps Whitehead exists in the construction, the apprehension of intelligence and importance. Whitehead is living in my philosophy, in my conscious constitution. Philosophy goes with me like a mother attending to her child. I can’t wait to remember Whitehead, to find myself in the company of philosophical companions enjoying Whitehead together. Closer and closer. Orbiting the institutions of scholarship and learning, my path is pretty much inevitable. So I’ll end with a quote I dragged yet again from ThouArtThat’s facebook page… without further adue, Alfred North Whitehead, from his book the Adventures of Ideas.

“The Greek philosopher who laid the foundation of al lour finer thoughts ended his most marvelous dialogue with the reflection that the ideal state could never arrive till philosophers are kings. Today, in an age of democracy, the kings are the plain citizens pursuing their various avocations. There can be no successful democratic society till general education conveys a philosophic outlook. Philosophy is not a mere collection of noble sentiments. A deluge of such sentiments does more harm than good. Philosophy is at once general and concrete, critical and appreciative of direct intuition. It is not–or, at least, should not be–a ferocious debate between irritable professors. It is a survey of possibilities and their comparison with actualities. In philosophy, the fact, the theory, the alternatives, and the ideal, are weighed together. Its gifts are insight and foresight, and a sense of the worth of life, in short, that sense of importance which nerves all civilized effort. Humanity can flourish in the lower stages of life with merely barbaric flashes of thought. But when civilization culminates, the absence of a coordinating philosophy of life, spread throughout the community, spells decadence, boredom, and the slackening of effort.”

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