Frases de Alfred North Whitehead

Alfred North Whitehead Foto
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Alfred North Whitehead

Fecha de nacimiento: 15. Febrero 1861
Fecha de muerte: 30. Diciembre 1947

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Alfred North Whitehead, OM fue un matemático y filósofo inglés. Es mejor reconocido como la figura que define a la escuela filosófica conocida como la Filosofía del Proceso, que hoy en día ha encontrado aplicación en una gran variedad de disciplinas, incluyendo Ecología, Teología, Educación, Física, Biología, Economía y Psicología, entre otras áreas.

En su carrera temprana, Whitehead escribió principalmente sobre Matemáticas, Lógica y Física. Sus trabajos más notables en esas áreas son los tres volúmenes de Principia Mathematica , que co-escribió con Bertrand Russell, un ex estudiante suyo. Principia Mathematica es considerado uno de los trabajo más importantes sobre lógica matemática del siglo XX y fue puesto en el lugar 23 en una lista de los 100 mejores libros de no ficción en idioma inglés del siglo XX por la Biblioteca Moderna.

Comenzando la década de 1910 y principios de 1920, Whitehead comenzó a enfocarse más en la Filosofía de la Ciencia y finalmente en la Metafísica. Desarrolló un sistema metafísico que radicalmente salió de la Filosofía Occidental. Whitehead argumentó que la realidad consistía de procesos más que te objetos materiales y que los procesos son mejor definidos por sus relaciones con otros procesos, por lo que refutó la teoría de que la realidad está fundamentalmente construida por pedazos de materia que existen de manera independiente entre cada uno. Actualmente, los trabajos filosóficos de Whitehead, en especial Proceso y Realidad, son conocidos como los textos que fundaron la Filosofía del Proceso.

La Filosofía del Proceso de Whitehead argumenta que "existe una urgencia de ver al mundo como una red de procesos interrelacionados de los que somos partes integrales, por lo que todas nuestras decisiones y acciones tienen consecuencias para el mundo alrededor de nosotros." Por esta razón, una de las aplicaciones más prometedoras de las ideas de Whitehead en los años más recientes, ha sido en el área de la civilización ecológica y la ética del medio ambiente, iniciada por John B. Cobb, Jr.

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Frases Alfred North Whitehead

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„Knowledge does not keep any better than fish.“

—  Alfred North Whitehead
Context: For successful education there must always be a certain freshness in the knowledge dealt with. It must be either new in itself or invested with some novelty of application to the new world of new times. Knowledge does not keep any better than fish. You may be dealing with knowledge of the old species, with some old truth; but somehow it must come to the students, as it were, just drawn out of the sea and with the freshness of its immediate importance.

„The task of philosophy is to recover the totality obscured by the selection.“

—  Alfred North Whitehead
Context: Philosophy is the self-correction by consciousness of its own initial excess of subjectivity. Each actual occasion contributes to the circumstances of its origin additional formative elements deepening its own peculiar individuality. Consciousness is only the last and greatest of such elements by which the selective character of the individual obscures the external totality from which it originates and which it embodies. An actual individual, of such higher grade, has truck with the totality of things by reason of its sheer actuality; but it has attained its individual depth of being by a selective emphasis limited to its own purposes. The task of philosophy is to recover the totality obscured by the selection. Pt. I, ch. 1, sec. 6.

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„The universities are schools of education, and schools of research.“

—  Alfred North Whitehead
Context: The universities are schools of education, and schools of research. But the primary reason for their existence is not to be found either in the mere knowledge conveyed to the students or in the mere opportunities for research afforded to the members of the faculty. Both these functions could be performed at a cheaper rate, apart from these very expensive institutions. Books are cheap, and the system of apprenticeship is well understood. So far as the mere imparting of information is concerned, no university has had any justification for existence since the popularization of printing in the fifteenth century. Yet the chief impetus to the foundation of universities came after that date, and in more recent times has even increased. The justification for a university is that it preserves the connection between knowledge and the zest of life, by uniting the young and the old in the imaginative consideration of learning.

„Some philosophers fail to distinguish propositions from judgments; … But in the real world it is more important that a proposition be interesting than that it be true.“

—  Alfred North Whitehead
Context: Some philosophers fail to distinguish propositions from judgments; … But in the real world it is more important that a proposition be interesting than that it be true. The importance of truth is that it adds to interest. p. 259. Variant: It is more important that a proposition be interesting than that it be true. This statement is almost a tautology. For the energy of operation of a proposition in an occasion of experience is its interest, and its importance. But of course a true proposition is more apt to be interesting than a false one. As extended upon in Adventures of Ideas (1933), Pt. 4, Ch. 16.

„The aim of science is to seek the simplest explanations of complex facts. We are apt to fall into the error of thinking that the facts are simple because simplicity is the goal of our quest.“

—  Alfred North Whitehead
Context: The aim of science is to seek the simplest explanations of complex facts. We are apt to fall into the error of thinking that the facts are simple because simplicity is the goal of our quest. The guiding motto in the life of every natural philosopher should be, "Seek simplicity and distrust it." The Concept of Nature (1919), Chapter VII, p.143 http://www.gutenberg.org/files/18835/18835-h/18835-h.htm#CHAPTER_VII.

„The justification for a university is that it preserves the connection between knowledge and the zest of life, by uniting the young and the old in the imaginative consideration of learning.“

—  Alfred North Whitehead
Context: The universities are schools of education, and schools of research. But the primary reason for their existence is not to be found either in the mere knowledge conveyed to the students or in the mere opportunities for research afforded to the members of the faculty. Both these functions could be performed at a cheaper rate, apart from these very expensive institutions. Books are cheap, and the system of apprenticeship is well understood. So far as the mere imparting of information is concerned, no university has had any justification for existence since the popularization of printing in the fifteenth century. Yet the chief impetus to the foundation of universities came after that date, and in more recent times has even increased. The justification for a university is that it preserves the connection between knowledge and the zest of life, by uniting the young and the old in the imaginative consideration of learning.

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