Alfred North Whitehead’s metaphysical perspective, though expressed in a somewhat technical terminology, takes the discoveries of modern science beyond the Cartesian-Newtonian paradigm, and even beyond its lingering materialism, to bring science under the rubric of a generalized psychology unconstrained by the mind-body dichomomy.
Whitehead conceives psychology in its largest sense, as an account of psyche the way it was understood by Plato and Aristotle, rather than the much more limited conception of modern psychology. Whitehead starts with felt experience as the fundamental nature of psyche and develops a metaphysic that comprehends all of modern science, even extending to the vast realms that biology is opening now, that were not even glimpsed during Whitehead’s lifetime. Whitehead’s metaphysic does not just provide scientific support for transpersonal psychology, rather it demonstrates how the most profound transpersonal understanding of the psyche is the foundation upon which a coherent and unified science must be built.
Some of these papers call on Whitehead extensively, others only in a small way.
Whitehead and Grof
Follow the link above to articles that use ideas from Alfred North Whitehead’s metaphysics and Stanislav Grof’s psychological theory to support and extend the work of each. These articles introduce Whitehead in a relatively non-technical way.
Whitehead and Transpersonal Psychology
Follow the link above to two transpersonal psychology papers that discuss the LSD experience and Grof Holotropic Breathwork from a Whitehead perspective. These papers require some technical familiarity for full understanding.
Follow the link above to papers that treat Carl Jung and Wilhelm Reich respectively.
Philosophy and Practice
Follow the link above for two papers concerning personal self-development practices as means to philosophical understanding. They speak both to the history of philosophy from ancient times and to what Stanislav Grof calls “sacred technologies.”