Hosted by Jay McDaniel, Conversations in Process aims to understand and explore a process outlook on life, with its emphasis on inter-becoming; the intrinsic value of all life; the presence of fresh possibilities; and the need create communities that are creative, compassionate, diverse, inclusive, and participatory; humane to animals, and good for the earth, with no one left behind.
We also aim to learn from people that practice what we call the process way, even if they’re not especially interested in the process outlook. One of the practices of the process way is to listen; it’s to learn from people; it’s to be humble in the presence of others, and realize they may have wisdom we lack. So in these conversations we’ll be talking to some people who know a lot about the process outlook, and some who know very little, but who practice in ways that we want to learn from.
Rabbi Bradley Artson – God almighty? No way. God all-loving? Yes and yes again.
As process theology evolves in the twenty-first century, one of its most important chapters is being written by Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson, Dean of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. In this podcast, he shares the story of his own turning to process theology with its unique understanding of God as a loving presence in the world; discusses the reception of God within his own Jewish community; discusses the importance of appreciation, indeed ‘holy envy,’ for the beauty of other faiths; and makes clear that the generous vision of process theology is, in its way, a generous vision for the world at large.
Robert Mesle – Becoming a Thinker in Process
Robert C. (Bob) Mesle is one of the most influential and talented interpreters of process theology and philosophy in the world. His Process-Relational Philosophy: An Introduction to Alfred North Whitehead and Process Theology: A Basic Introduction have been translated into many languages, helping people around the world learn about the process outlook on life in its philosophical and religious dimensions. In this podcast you meet the author, getting to know how he came to be interested in process philosophy and theology and why it matters to him. You see why key ideas, such as beauty, creative transformation, an open future, and relational power, are especially important to his understanding. And you come to understand how Mesle himself, while deeply sympathetic to the process understanding of God, is not himself persuaded. The podcast stands on its own, and can also be an excellent companion to individuals and groups reading his books.
Christina Hutchins – Trust in Water: Process in a Poetic Mode
Christina Hutchins is an award-winning American poet, deeply influenced by the philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead. What touches her about Whitehead’s philosophy is its attunement to the impermanence, beauty, fragility, and preciousness of life. The flowing of life, she says, is like the flow of water, supportive and beautiful, but not graspable. We can live with its beauty, albeit without clenching it tightly, but instead embracing in a spirit of tenderness. Amid this love-without-gripping there can be a trust in a deeper love, holding but not coercing, conceiving but not containing, addressed as God. In this interview Christina takes us into the depths and the range of longing and loss, mystery and love, gently inviting us, but only if we wish, to share in the journey.
Oluwatomisin Oredein – Care in the Right Direction
Oluwatomisin Oredein is a leading voice in cross-cultural theopoetics. An American of Nigerian origins, she visits with Jay McDaniel about the powerful influence of the Spirit in the Black American church as well as movements like Black Lives Matter; about the role music and poetry play in her own journey of faith; about her heartfelt discouragement over the prevalence of those who care in the wrong direction and prophetic hope for an increase in those who care in the right direction; and about the value of process theology and theopoetics, but also the limits of such movements because they have been dominated by white voices and disembodied habits of thought.
John B. Cobb, Jr. – A Journey of Faith in Process
No, the Bible is not an infallible book of rules; but, yes, it can guide a life. No, God is not an all-controlling power; but, yes, God is a companion to the world’s joys and sufferings, and an indwelling lure to radical love. No, Jesus is not a man to be worshipped as an infallible deity; but, yes, he is a savior for the world, in whose compassionate way of living we can share, and who appeared after his death to his disciples, giving hope for all. These are among the ideas we hear from John B. Cobb, an American theologian, philosopher, and environmentalist, known as the preeminent proponent of process philosophy and theology. In this Conversation in Process, John Cobb, age 95, shares his journey in faith with Jay McDaniel and, along the way, reveals a poignant life in process.