Tag Archives: Pragmatism

The Integral Assumption of American Philosophy

Mind cannot exist without matter; matter cannot exist without mind. This is what I have come to see as perhaps the most essential theme that runs through American philosophy. In the modern western world it is the French genius Rene Descartes that is cited as having definitively cleaved mind from matter res cogitans and res […]

Spiritual Realism and Process Philosophy

As I have read through Emerson’s writing I see two aspects to his metaphysics. On the one hand he describes a spiritual Realism in which the collective human soul of humanity exists in a transcendent and exalted form.  Spiritual development involves finding this higher soul, or Over-Soul as Emerson called it, in our own experience […]

The Holistic Vision of Ralph Waldo Emerson

I  am sorry that I missed a post this week due to travel, but I am excited to share more from Ralph Waldo Emerson. As we understand more how Emerson’s thought developed we see the foundations of our own mind. Emerson was arguably the most significant figure of the American Romanticism that blossomed in America in […]

The Self-consciousness flow of William James

To understand the thinking of William James I have tried to see the world as I believe he saw it – as one continuous unfolding flow. In my own contemplation of James I have followed a line of thought that mirrors in some ways hiw own development from a psychologist to a philosopher. James’ philosophic […]

Cosmos, Consciousness and Culture

It was almost exactly one year ago today that I started this blog so I guess this is my first anniversary post. I started the blog because I wanted to explore the relationship between classical American Philosophy and the teaching of Evolutionary Enlightenment which I have been involved with for 18 years. What I found […]

John Dewey and Cultural Evolution

What I see in John Dewey’s Instrumentalism is a compelling theory of how the evolution of culture can be consciously guided. Dewey’s ideas about directing the further development of culture rest squarely on his understanding of objects as things with meaning and his understanding of meaning as always pointing to some future utility. For Dewey a thing, […]

Embracing Constant Flux

I am on a roll with John Dewey. I was reading through his book “Experience and Nature” for the second time and something finally clicked and I started to see what he was getting at. Once that happpens it is like reading a different book, suddenly I started to be able to understand what I […]

John Dewey and the “ends” of the Universe

The third of the founding American Pragmatists was John Dewey. In the early 1870’s while Charles Sanders Peirce and William James were busy brewing the original conceptions of what would become Pragmatism; John Dewey was a young teenager growing up in Burlington, Vermont. Louis Menand in his book “The Metaphysical Club” refers to Dewey as […]

Scientific Fundamentalism

To finish (at least for the time being) with this idea of Scientism vs. Science. I want to take it a little further so that I hope I am able to make clear what I percieve as a problem that arises  sometimes (and not always) in the scientifically minded. As I attempted to make clear […]

The Individual and Society

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770 –1831) was a leading figure in the movement of  German Idealism initiated by Immanuel Kant and Hegel’s philosophy  expanded on Kant’s theory of knowledge by adding a social and historical element. Kant had recognized that human beings create knowledge by using laws of reason to incorporate new sensual information cohesively […]