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Title: Experience and reality : the idea of process and the case for psychical realism
Author: Owcarz, Gregory
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1996
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Process thought offers vital developments in speculative metaphysics, yet endures unjust neglect due to the technical intricacies of Alfred North Whitehead's contribution and to the theological component of Charles Hartshorne's writings. Whitehead's keen mathematical and scientific orientations preceded his mature metaphysical outlook, and the resultant metaphysical system is burdened by overwhelming complexity. This discourages many from ever investigating his expansive speculative endeavours while encouraging exclusive discourse among the few Whiteheadian insiders. Hartshorne distinguishes process philosophy and theology from unrelated classical doctrines, yet with theism as such in the foreground of his work, many dismiss it as outmoded or irrelevant to contemporary concerns; while others, finding reformulated theistic principles untenable, reject process thinking in its entirety. The present study extends its appeal by establishing a case for psychical realism - the view that reality is made up of experiential events - and by showing that to replace Whitehead's complexity and the Hartshorne's deity with psychical realism in the foreground of process philosophy allows such events to play a crucial part in a more universally acceptable process vision. The work is divided into two parts consisting of two chapters each, bordered by an introduction defending metaphysical endeavours at large and an epilogue of process pointers for speculating at large. The first chapter on becoming and being considers the problem of process, the inadequacy of historically influential substantive accounts, and the potential of an event ontology to ground being in a complementary becoming. The second chapter relates being and becoming to the likewise complementary pairs of first empirical and rational and second objective and subjective. The warranted stress on becoming over being is repeated - the rational emphasised over the empirical, the subjective over the objective - to counteract an analogous bias to the contrary.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available