by Darren Iammarino
Point 2 (Too Academic): My primary concern with this second article is to suggest possibilities for moving process thought forward. This brings us to point number 2; for a listing of the four points, please refer to the previous blog post in this series: Process Theology or Process Yoga Part 1. The obvious move to make process thought less “academic sounding” would be to simplify and cut out all jargon. This, however, would be a major mistake and would crush the beauty of what thinkers like Whitehead and Hartshorne have accomplished. Instead, I propose an initial exposure to the most intriguing and fascinating aspects of process theory and then immediate examples of how theory can be utilized and put into action, as this very website espouses…a lived spirituality.
Whitehead himself proposes a rather Hegelian understanding of what he calls the rhythm of education, which has three components: romance, precision, and generalization. Following Whitehead, I think the most radical aspects of process thought serve to evoke wonder or romance, as he would say. People can make first contact with these concepts through a mixed media format. Textbooks and primary source material from Whitehead and Hartshorne have both failed to find a popular audience, and this was during an era when books were the only real option for disseminating the ideas. Things are different now.
Process ideas can and should be made accessible via the formats that the younger generation actually enjoys using.
There ought to be a main instagram account that pumps out daily picture quotes or quote graphics from relevant process thinkers with recognizable branded backgrounds on each graphic. There also should be images, graphs, and short videos on the instagram account that are relevant to process ideas along with a few well- entrenched hashtags.
As far as Youtube is concerned, the obvious point here would be a unique channel with longer instructional videos that are actually interesting and tied into current events. Getting content onto Netflix from the Whitehead Film Festival would be helpful, but in reality a short 10 episode series with a good budget behind it could be the easiest and quickest way to gain wide exposure to a new generation.
Lastly, podcasts matter because they can be produced quickly, are free and almost every millennial has earbuds in for a good portion of the day. By changing the medium process concepts automatically become less academic and cerebral in people’s minds even if the content is pulled straight from primary source material. Youtube videos and podcasts are a more compelling way to achieve a “precision” or depth of the material.
The Center for Process Studies has already begun to incorporate some of these ideas, but they cannot do it alone. It is up to all of us to “generalize” and help bring about this rebranding of process thought. We can repackage and reeducate the older generation on how to teach the material, as well as introduce a new generation to the truly groundbreaking concepts found within process-relational thought. I will address points 3 and 4 in Process Yoga Part 3—The Christianity Conundrum—coming soon!
For more ideas on how to put process ideas into action check out Darren’s book Religion and Reality available via the following link: http://www.amazon.com/Religion-Reality-Exploration-Contemporary-Metaphysical-ebook/dp/B00FARXAO6/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1448348364&sr=1-3&keywords=darren+iammarino