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Panpsychism, Linguistic Consciousness, Transcendent Mind: Book Reviews

Gregory M. Nixon


Following are seventeen book reviews I have written over the years that have been selected by themes suitable to this journal. The thematic sections are panpsychism, language & human consciousness, and transcendent mind. Some have been previously published in journals while others have only been posted online (e.g., Facebook discussion groups or, but this is the first light of day for none of them. I have made minor adjustments to suit the format, but most remain the same as when they first appeared. The majority are highly positive of the books reviewed, but some few are more critical. This should be no surprise since most of us choose to read books we expect will please us. I presume I’m not the only one to like book reviews for their summaries and capsule insights. Book reviews can be insightful, but the perspective of the reviewer must always be borne in mind. My philosophical perspective is easily discernible in what follows, though I am an explorer not a believer, i.e., not committed to it. Metaphysically, I lean toward the panpsychist subcategory of Whiteheadian panexperientialism, now preferring the more dynamic term pancreativism. However, I admit to an inclination toward non-deity cosmopsychism, a universal field of awareness that experiences through individual experiencers. Further, in philosophy of language, I recognize the symbolic threshold that separates our human conscious experience from that of our animal confreres, though we often share a similar emotional foundation. Human symbolic consciousness allows for abstract thought and technological powers of environmental manipulation – with the result that we humans have run amok on this planet and are the greatest danger to it. I believe that our hope is the breakthrough into greater insight and understanding, that is, an awakened consciousness – perhaps an as yet barely foreseen more mutual, transpersonal but not physically transcendent form of awareness. Ontologically, pancreativsm is related to neutral (multiple-aspect) monism, but, more anti-metaphysically, to Merleau-Ponty’s intra-ontology (cf., Nixon, 2021).

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ISSN: 2153-8212