Weave our Philosophy around The Flux of Things

Musings from an old blog about how a forest flows.  It is a metaphor on life.  

Is thinking the way AN Whitehead argued – The Flux of Things as the essence of it all, with the observer a part of the whole experience – the step we must take in order to stop dismantled the functioning life around us as if it were some machine.  I think it is. We’ve stepped away from that wisdom and called it folk lore.


Think adverbs and verbs – the doing and connecting words as the defining words for life.  Emphasise less the adjectives and nouns – those words for frozen moments.

Edited from A Forest Flows:
View anything and it is as Alfred North Whitehead argued for all objects.  No forest or field or child or cloud or city or community has a simple spatial or temporal location. They shift, they extend, they change, they are influenced from their position within a geography, a history, and through the changing lens of humanity and other beasts.  They are complex, adaptive, alive, and beautiful.  You are allowed to use the word beautiful.  They are verbs, not nouns.  They are defined by process, not structure.  “All things flow” is what Whitehead said, as all things are integrated and connected to each other, and inseparable from the observer.

Is this too deep?  I would like to look into the eyes of those old kuia and kaumatua from a century past; those that lived before the western view clouded our eyes.  I would like to look into the eyes of Heremaima who people still remember from the 1950s.  This old kuia had the ways of the ancients, a knowing that made her one with things.  Heremaima would leave Te Hauke before dawn to walk thirty kilometres bathing in the mist to the battle sites at Whakatu, there to wash herself in the heavy dew she knew would be there then, before a full emersion in the Ngaruroro River.  Can you picture that?  It was a ritual of remembrance and connection.  

 If you had the privilege to look into her eyes, I think you might find Whitehead’s “ultimate, integral experience” there.

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Chris Perley


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