By Donald A. Crosby
An eloquent case for concerning nature itself as religion-as the metaphysical final deserving spiritual dedication.
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Additional resources for A Religion of Nature
Despite this inexhaustible perspectivity of all experience and awareness, however, we readily assume that meaningful reference can be made to objects or events in the world, to ourselves, and to other persons. We can speak of and refer to such things even though we can never directly experience their entirety. There is no compelling reason to think that the same does not hold true for discourse about and reference to the whole of nature. What we do, in fact, and I will have more to say about this later with 19 The Nature of Nature reference to nature, is operate with a general concept, model, or theory of a subject matter and then interpret our particular experiences in accordance with it.
3. Nature as such lacks purpose, sentience, or consciousness. Despite this fact, and despite its prominent destructive aspects, it is not devoid of value but is replete with value, including religious value. 21 The Nature of Nature In this section, I have dealt with some of the problems relating to the concept of nature, indicating how these problems can be resolved. I also have sketched some basic meanings I assign to the concept of nature, in anticipation of more detailed treatment of these and other meanings as our discussion proceeds.
That so-called timeless possibilities can be found in domains of language, formal systems, and conceptualization does not entail their existence as unchanging structures of nature. This is the empirical, down-to-earth view of the character and status of possibility to be found in Aristotle’s philosophy, as contrasted with Plato’s, a view that is highly persuasive. For Aristotle, of course, the basic facts of nature do not change; such change as there is occurs in the context of or is simply an instance of persistently recurring facts.