This article approaches Judaism through Rabbi Bradley S. Artson’s book, God of Becoming and Relationships: The Dynamic Nature of ProcessTheology. It explores his understanding of how Jewish theology should and does cohere with central features of both processtheology and Robert S. Hartman’s formal axiology. These include the axiological/process concept of God, the intrinsic value and valuation of God and unique human beings, and Jewish extrinsic and systemic values, value combinations, and value rankings.
Most process theologians have rejected the creation of the world out of nothing, holding that our universe was created out of some antecedent universe. This article shows how on process grounds, and with faithfulness to much of what Whitehead had to say, process theologians can and should affirm the creation of our universe out of nothing. Standard process objections to this are refuted.
There is a great similarity between processtheology and Chinul’s Buddhist thought. They share the conception of a mutual immanence and interaction between the world and the ultimate reality. They also share the view that the true or sanctified self is an incarnation and expression of the ultimate reality in and for the world. However, Chinul’s Buddhist thought is weak in dealing with the aspect of redemption.
: The suffering of creatures experienced throughout evolutionary history provides some conceptual difficulties for theists who maintain that God is an all-good loving creator who chose to employ the processes associated with evolution to bring about life on this planet. Some theists vexed by this and other problems posed by the interface between religion and science have turned to processtheology which provides a picture of a God who is dependent upon creation and unable to unilaterally intervene in (...) the affairs of the world and avert suffering. In the present paper I seek to critique process theism, focusing on divine action and the aforementioned problem posed by evolutionary suffering. I show that the promise of a more compelling account of a loving God who suffers with creation advanced by the process theist is illusory. Rather, the process God is less dynamic than promised. And on such an account the freedom of both God and the world are significantly more circumscribed than one may find in other forms of theism. (shrink)
A pocket-size (4 Literature citations are restricted to the main work. A first edition. These 11 papers derive from an international conference in honor of Charles Hartshorne held at the University of Texas, Austin, Feb. 1988.
‘ProcessTheology enables us to establish a robust relationship to Jewish scriptures and practice in a context of personal integrity, with openness to contemporary knowledge and insight and with an emphasis on spiritual depth and social engagement’ (61). ‘ …a process approach makes the centrality of love clear…’ (62)Rabbi Artson is Dean of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies and VP of the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. It is important to know, I think, that his (...) interest in processtheology is because he has a profoundly personal commitment to Judaism and his calling as a Rabbi. In his credo online, he writes that he refuses ‘to read halakhah or the Torah in such a way that it makes God seem cruel…’ He turns to processtheology not to escape or dilute his Jewish faith, but because it helps him to articulate Judaism in a way which he believes allows greater integrity and a deeper understanding of the love and justice of God and Torah.Artson has the gift of writing clearly. (shrink)
The notion that God and the world are mutually interdependent is generally taken to be unique to twentieth-century processtheology. Largely, process thinkers have focused on classical theists, rather than the mystics. My thesis, however, is that, centuries before process came along, there were Western mystical concepts stressing that God needed the universe in order to become conscious and complete. In support of my thesis, I will provide a synopsis of the doctrines of God as found (...) in mystics such as Boehme, Dionysius, Eckhart, and then show how Whitehead’s aesthetic provides a coherent philosophical psychology of ecstasy. Key words: aesthetic experience, causal efficacy, consequent nature of God, ecstasy, feeling, German Romanticism, primordial nature of God, reformed subjectivist principle, Nicht, unconscious experience. (shrink)
Processtheology is far less prominent in Britain than in its country of origin, but its central doctrine of a developing God would prove, I think, to be held by many British theologians if one made enquiry. Professor Keith Ward may show which way the wind is blowing when he writes in his recent book Rational Theology and the Creativity of God : ‘only if God is temporal, can he be the free creator of a universe of (...) free creatures; only if he is eternal, can he possess that necessity which is the foundation of the world; only if he is dipolar, can he be both’. To that extent he accepts the Whitehead-Hartshorne position. Why has the the absolute timelessness of God seemed obvious so regularly to thinking religious people down the ages? It must be, I shall say, that they have felt themselves in touch somehow with another world, or rather another state, in which time is absolutely transcended. But I am not concerned only with that in this article. My business is to suggest that processtheology is important for a number of reasons. I shall return to Ward's book at the end. (shrink)
Process thought refers to the mode of thinking rooted in the philosophies of Alfred North Whitehead and Charles Hartshorne. Drawing heavily on Whitehead and Hartshorne, this chapter presents an account of process natural theology. The discussions cover the decline of natural theology's reputation in modern times; processtheology in the broad sense; panexperientialism's avoidance of materialism's mind–body problems; sensationism's knowledge problems; how prehensive perception solves sensationism's knowledge problems; and processtheology in the (...) narrow sense. (shrink)