The Divine Activity of the Future
by Lewis S. Ford
Lewis S. Ford is Emeritus Professor at Old Dominion University, and founding editor of Process Studies Periodical (1971 - 1995). The following article appeared in Process Studies, pp.169-179, Vol. 11, Number 3, Fall, 1981. Process Studies is published quarterly by the Center for Process Studies, 1325 N. College Ave., Claremont, CA 91711. Used by permission. This material was prepared for Religion Online by Ted and Winnie Brock.
A persistent problem Whitehead bequeathed to his followers concerns the interaction of God and the world. In particular, how does his consequent nature affect the provision of initial aims? Various promissory notes are given (PR 32/ 47), such as the sole explicit discussion of "the ‘superjective’ nature of God" (PR 88/ 135; but see PS 3:228f), and the famous "fourth phase" of the last two pages of Process and Reality, which proposes a "particular providence for particular occasions." There is no doubt that Whitehead wanted to employ God’s temporal experience in the specification of initial aims. If there were only a derivation from the primordial nature, the particular conditions of each nascent occasion could not be taken into account. The aims would have to be as general and as vague as the Platonic forms. Yet every discussion, precise enough to enable us to see the mechanisms at work, vests the derivation of initial aim solely in the primordial nature.
Other features in Whitehead’s scheme militate against any easy solution. Taking advantage of special relativity physics, whereby only what is past can be objectified for another, Whitehead has protected the privacy of subjectivity by identifying it with present becoming. If God always enjoys present immediacy, then she is everlastingly becoming and never in being. But if not in being, then she cannot be objectified to provide initial aims. In all other cases, what is becoming (subject) cannot at the same time be being (object), and Whitehead refused to make any exceptions. Two present beings are contemporaries, which by definition cannot causally interact.
The failure to integrate God’s two natures in interaction with the world may explain Whitehead’s decision to introduce only that primordial nature throughout the bulk of Adventures of Ideas, under the name "the Divine Eros." The consequent nature is briefly, and poetically, introduced in the very last section as "an Adventure in the Universe as One" (AI 380). Its relationship to God is not made fully clear.
Given these difficulties, many years ago Charles Hartshorne proposed a modification in Whitehead’s philosophy many, if not most, process theists have adopted. He proposed that God could be reconceived as a personally ordered society of divine occasions. Instead of God being purely subjective and never objective, he is alternately subjective and objective. Since each divine occasion achieves objective being, it is capable of interacting with the world. Let us characterize Whitehead’s own view of God as an everlasting concrescence in terms of "God as present" with respect to its problematic interaction with finite actualities. Then the modification which treats God as a society of occasions shows how "God as past" can interact with the world. This is a very natural modification, since it is the same way finite occasions interact with one another. This is not to deny the present reality of God in each concrescing divine occasion, but simply indicates the way God influences the world.
This proposal has its own difficulties, which we shall not fully enumerate here. The most persistent has been the challenge from relativity physics, which John Wilcox first announced in 1961.1 This is peculiarly a problem for Hartshorne’s modification, and not necessarily for Whitehead’s own position, because that modification calls for a divine occasion that is almost instantaneous and yet fills all space. John Robert Baker has shown just how brief these divine occasions must be in order to interact with all worldly occasions (PS 2:201-08). Every such divine occasion necessarily defines a privileged meaning of simultaneity contrary to relativity physics. It is as if, having accepted an infinite space which has no center (or has "centers" everywhere), we are told that God sits at "the" center. No one has been more concerned with this problem than Hartshorne himself, who has lately adopted the desperate strategy of Henry Pierce Stapp, in which all events are simply serially ordered in terms of before and after (PS 7:183-91). To be sure, Stapp may be proven correct in the end, but that would entail the overthrow of the special theory of relativity. It would seem to be conceptually less costly to retain special relativity and to abandon the societal model for God.
Another difficulty with the society model lies in its excessively static view of the primordial nature. Eternal objects, being purely atemporal, are conceptually entertained by God (conceived as a single everlasting concrescence) at any time, not necessarily at all times. They are prehended only whenever needed or relevant. On the societal model, however, the primordial nature becomes the defining characteristic of the divine person. Each and every divine occasion must then fully exemplify the primordial nature, and with it the entire realm of eternal objects. Thus the eternal objects must always be in existence as always exemplifying the divine society. This view appears to many to accord too much ontological ballast to the realm of forms. If, with Hartshorne, we pare away at this excess by limiting ourselves to that which must be exemplified at all times, the abstract nature of God, we rob ourselves of the means of achieving divine persuasion by the provision of initial aims.
Also, the societal model presupposes that the realm of eternal objects can be completely objectified, in order that each divine occasion can exemplify it. In that case there would be some single complex eternal object containing all others as its proper subsets. But such an alternative contravenes G6del’s Incompleteness Theorem (cf. PS 7:56-59).
For these and other reasons some scholars have abandoned Hartshorne s emendation and have sought to adhere strictly to Whitehead’s own description of God as a single everlasting concrescence. This is William A. Christian’s procedure in his magisterial study, An Interpretation of Whitehead’s Metaphysics, which makes no use of any modification on this point. All of my own essays pertaining to God’s interaction with the world, up until the past year or so, have championed the everlasting concrescence model in more or less explicit opposition to the societal model. Here perhaps the essay on "The Non-Temporality of Whitehead’s God" (IPQ 13:347-76) is the most pertinent. By exploring the implications of the reversal of the mental and physical poles in God’s case, Marjorie Suchocki is able to marshal a strong case for the alternative of a single concrescence (PS 5:237-46). Most recently, Bowman Clarke has used the claim that genetic succession is not in time in any sense to undermine John Cobb’s basic argument (CNT 185-89) for the societal view (JAAR 48:563-79).
In many ways these proposals offer attractive alternatives to the society model, but they labor under two insuperable difficulties. (1) Despite some very ingenious efforts to resolve or to avoid the problem, the central difficulty remains: in Whitehead’s philosophy two concurrent conscrescences cannot prehend each other. If God is an everlasting concrescence, it is difficult to see how it could influence present concrescences. (2) These proposals are put forward as interpretations of Whitehead’s philosophy, not as modifications. But, as a genetic study of Whitehead’s philosophical development would show even more clearly, this is precisely the point at which his system does need modification. He did not hesitate to modify his own philosophy by introducing subjective aim or the consequent nature of God or hybrid physical prehensions when these were needed (PS 8:145-56). We are simply carrying the trajectory of modification one step further in order to surmount one clear problem remaining. On this point the proponents of the societal model are clearly correct: the philosophy cannot simply be interpreted, it must be changed. But whether it must be changed in their direction is another story. Some other alternative needs to be found.
There are not very many alternatives, once we take note of the various temporal modalities involved. The everlasting concrescence model conceives of God as a present activity in causal independence of other activities. The societal alternative sees God as past, insofar as past divine occasions causally affect occasions. Unless we agree with those Whiteheadian nontheists that God’s activity with the world is conceptually incoherent, we are left with only one alternative. God must be conceived in terms of some activity of the future.
Now this phrase, "activity of the future," is intrinsically ambiguous. Is it an activity "now" taking place? If so, why do we speak of its future aspect? Or is it some activity in the future which has "not yet" occurred? I distinguish between two factors: (a) Each event has a unique, constant spatiotemporal locus independent of actualization. Relative to any given concrescing occasion, this locus is either future, present, or past. (b) There is also the moment of concrescent activity relative to any given present occasion, according to which another concrescence has "not yet" occurred, is happening "now," or happened "then." Actual entities in unison of becoming are becoming now together.
Ordinarily we consider actual entities in unison of becoming to be contemporaries, to belong to the domain of the present of the other. That is how Whitehead defined them (PR 12Sf 192), and undoubtedly how he understood God to be "in unison of becoming with every other creative act" (PR 345/ 523). Moreover, I fully subscribe to this principle with respect to finite activities terminating in determinate concreta. This account, however, needs to be modified in the case of God. God’s concrescence is everlasting and does not terminate in any concreta, which is why he cannot be properly prehended. Instead of actualizing a determinate past, which is the basic activity of present activities, I propose we conceive God to be a future activity creating the conditions of the present. As an activity located in those spatiotemporal regions lying in the future of present occasions, God could nevertheless be in "unison of becoming" with them. God then influences" them when her future activity passes over into their own present activity.
On this view, God prehends every actual occasion as it becomes past from every future standpoint. Her prehensive viewpoint is not restricted to some one particular future locus, but includes all loci from which God actively unifies her experience of the past. Moreover, she unifies all these physical prehensions (insofar as they are compatible) in every way that they can be unified. Each of these alternative unifications is felt with divine valuation (either adversion or aversion). Note, however, that God cannot effect the final determinate unity of that particular multiplicity. For this requires the arbitrary, finite decision of particular actualities, deciding for this rather than that. Only the finite can ultimately produce the determinate. So, when God has fully prehended the past actual world for a particular standpoint, and unified it in all the alternative ways it can be unified, she bequeaths that prehensive activity to the nascent occasion, which alone can effect its determinate actualization. That particular standpoint is then no longer future, but has now become present. God on the verge of the present pluralizes his own concrescent activity into the many atomic occasions of the present. (The inexhaustibility of God is not thereby affected. As he transfers portions of his creative activity to the present, he is continuously creating himself anew in the distant future.)
In this transference God is not objectified for the present creature as something to be prehended. Instead he grants it the power of prehending, for it is from God that the occasion receives its prehending of the past, and its future, i.e., the specific ways in which that given past may be unified, and the creative activity of unification. The occasion is a brief present space in which past and future are reconciled. In fact, we may say that the way the present is subjective lies in its capacity of being affected by the future. Once objectified, the actual occasion has lost its future, and with it, its subjective immediacy.
In her prehensive unification of the past God is creating real possibility, not actuality. Only finite occasions are capable of actualizing, i.e., of reducing the manifold alternatives of what might be to one single determinate fact. Only the present can become past. That which is future cannot. It can only become present in that its creativity can be atomized into the many present occasions. If the present occasions are to have their full share of freedom over against the future, the future must be the domain of real possibility in the sense of containing all that could or might be, as yet undetermined as to what will be. Conversely, present actuality accomplishes for future divinity what she cannot do herself: the final determinate unity of the world for that standpoint. Infinite concrescent activity creates only that which is infinite (the domain of real possibilities, which is infinitely diverse for every occasion), and requires the finite to create the finitely determinate, which is the final terminus of the creative thrust. For that reason the creative drive that the many should become one spills over from the future to the present.
For many, this talk of several temporal modalities in the present makes little sense. They suppose, for example, that if the past becomes effective in the present, it is simply transformed into the present. That assumption underlies the frequent proposal that we should limit the effective past to those immediately past occasions which directly impinge on a given occasion. Any more distantly past occasions, insofar as they are effective, are assumed to have been already transformed into these immediately past occasions, when they were present. Except as so transformed, the distantly past occasions are no longer available for prehension. Since this proposal runs counter to Whitehead’s own usage (e.g., PR 226/345,284/435), we are led to think that for him past actualities do not lose their pastness simply upon being taken up into the present. The structure of a physical prehension bears this out: it is a present, subjective appropriation of a determinately unified actuality, which must be past in order to be fully determinate. This is also the structure of memory (the present experiencing of something past), which is an instance of physical prehension. We do not merely experience a present replica of something remembered, but that past event itself, as past.
If in the occasion we say that past and future are reconciled, we have in mind the particular past and future of that occasion. Its past is the entire multiplicity of actual occasions it physically prehends. Its future consists in the entire range of alternative ways that given multiplicity can be unified, for better or worse. Concrescence, in processes of finite actualization, consists in the progressive reduction of these alternatives to one form, which is actualized by the matter derived from the past. Alternatively, the many material Components acquire unity from that final form. Thus past matter and future form coalesce into a single present satisfaction.
Now in all this we may be simply playing a variation on a theme by Whitehead: the provision of initial aims. We need to rehearse some of the reasons for preferring this alternative to Whitehead’s:
(1) First and foremost, is God, as a present everlasting concrescence, ever prehensible? If, on our modified view, God as immediately future is pluralized as nascent occasions, the question of the prehensibility of God is bypassed. The occasions do not prehend God, but what God was just prehending at that same spatiotemporal location.
(2) On Whitehead’s own view, the initial aim is derived from a hybrid physical prehension of God. On the societal model, in particular, this means that the occasion’s own future, given in its subjective aim, must be derived from the past. Hybrid physical prehension, especially in this particular instance, is a somewhat exceptional use of physical prehension. Physical prehension was introduced, in conjunction with conceptual valuation, in order to maintain the empiricist dictum that there is nothing in the intellect which was not first in the sense. As used by Thomas Aquinas in his revived Aristotelianism, it was to exclude Augustinian divine illumination theories as championed by Bonaventura. Now Whitehead smuggles in that divine illumination through the backdoor of hybrid prehension.
Also, we need a sharper temporal distinction to distinguish God from the world. Whitehead has taught us how to differentiate self and world by means of the temporal modalities of present and past. God is different from both, and this difference can be marked by conceiving of God as the unified activity of the future, the self as the activity of the present, and the world as the totality of past actualities.
(3) Frequently the initial aim is conceived as providing a single ideal towards which the concrescence strives. Yet what is needed is the entire range of alternative ways of unifying that past actual world, as valued by God. For full freedom of decision, the occasion needs all possible alternatives, as conditioned by the past, including divine valuation. It also needs whatever novel alternatives it can derive from God, since these cannot be derived from the past. Whitehead seems to have been aware of this multiplicity within the initial aim in his second later account introducing hybrid physical prehension as a means for accounting for the derivation of initial aim (PR 245-247/ 375-377). Since all novelty can then be derived from God, conceptual reversion is no longer needed, so the category of reversion is abolished in Whitehead’s final statement of his system (PR 249f 382; see PS 8:151).
(4) A key difficulty with Whitehead’s theory of initial aim lies in its exclusive reliance upon eternal objects. They are pure forms which tell no tales as to their ingression. These are neither good nor evil in themselves, as they are simply the shapes which actualities might take under totally unspecified conditions. The circumstances are all determining. Water is necessary to life, but in violent times water can flood, overwhelm, drown. "Insistence on birth at the wrong season is the trick of evil" (PR 223/ 341). It is the "season," i.e., the conditions under which an eternal object is actualized, and not its purely formal characteristics, which determine its goodness or evil. Nevertheless the only divine evaluation we hear about is the one primordial envisagement of all eternal objects. That nontemporal envisagement cannot possibly take into account the temporal conditions as they arise.
Instead of eternal objects as "pure possibilities," what we really need are what are often called "real possibilities," possibilities so rooted in that particular situation as to be actualizable. A pure form is simply a pure form, incapable of specifying its relevance to concrete actualization. What is really possible for a given actual world, however, is that range of forms capable of unifying that particular multiplicity of past actual occasions. Forms, by themselves, are purely atemporal, but when linked to the past, they generate the future.
It is these real possibilities and not simply eternal objects which need to be valued by God. Hence I have previously proposed that initial aims be derived from propositional feelings by God, whose logical subjects constituted the entire past actual world of a nascent occasion (PPCT 292n9; IPQ 13:350-52). But this solution has its difficulties. No plausible reason could be found why God’s physical feeling should not be as complete as possible from the start, nor why he should then abstract from this physical feeling the bare indicative feelings necessary for propositional feelings. Also, the very concept of indicative feelings needs further clarification. Instead of relying on divine propositional feeling, it seems better to have the nascent occasion simply take over the divine prehending the world, for God is unifying, and evaluating (in terms of his subjective forms) that world in every way which he can.
In this unificatory process unities are not only created; they create themselves. Finite actual occasions create themselves in the present, affecting supervening occasions as past.-God creates himself in creating real possibility, and the locus of this activity lies in the future. It is only from the future that such real possibility could be created, for that possibility consists in the many ways in which that particular actual world can be prehensively unified, and it can only be fully prehended from some standpoint which is still future.
One concept this theory requires is very counterintuitive: the subjectivity of the future. Whitehead has taught us to extend the notion of subjectivity to all present activities, defining objectivity in terms of pastness. The future is not clearly delineated in terms of subjectivity and objectivity. Eternal objects are objective, to be sure, but they are atemporal, not future. We do not experience the subjectivity of the future, but then we do not experience the subjectivity of any other activity as well; all must be inferred. It may be objected that real possibility, insofar as it is objectified, is a slight and puny thing, hardly evidence for the power of majesty of God. Yet it is through that still small voice that God is able to bring this wondrous universe into being; without God’s directing agency all would remain chaos. Strictly speaking, God is not objectified for us as possibility, for her subjectivity never passes over into objectivity as is the case with present occasions. Rather, a portion of her (future) subjectivity becomes ours. Her prehending, and ways of unifying her prehensions, become ours. Possibilities, as we know them, are discrete objectifications of a very few of these many ways of unifying our experience, apprehended intermittently in its higher phases.
Whitehead’s own analysis of the future is quite different from ours. He did it all from the standpoint of the present: "The future us immanent in the present by reason of the fact that the present bears in its own essence the relationships which it will have to the future. It thereby includes in its essence the necessities to which the future must conform" (Al 250). Thus the future concerns what must be, that invariant core contained in all the contingent might be’s, which alone invite decision and valuation. The future is something the present occasion determines for its successors, not something the occasion receives from what gone on before.
Nor does Whitehead allow the future to have any transcendent status. It is restricted to immanence in the present by virtue of the requirements of the ontological principle. Everything, including the future, must be somewhere, i.e., in some actual entity: "In the present there are no individual occasions belonging to the future. The present contains the utmost verge of such realized individuality. The whole doctrine of the future is to be understood in terms of the account of the process of self-completion of each individual actual occasion" (AI 247).
This argument is valid, but overlooks one possibility: that while all actual occasions belong to the present, the one actual entity which is not an actual occasion may belong to the future. Whitehead is surely correct that all the future we experience lies within present subjectivity, for the evaporation of subjectivity in pastness is also the evaporation of the alternatives the future offers. But the future for a present occasion does not consist in the necessities it generates to impose upon its successors; its future consists in the alternative ways of unifying it inherits to make its own self-decision.
So far we have been considering only the immediate future, for in it alone does God directly impinge upon present occasions. The creativity for the present, which resided in future prehending, becomes creativity in the present once the past actual world for that standpoint is completed. Then there is no further unifying God can do, and the prehensive activity is transferred to the present for finite determinate decision.
In the mediate future God prehends the past from all possible standpoints, but these standpoints necessarily correlate with incomplete pasts. For all the occasions which will happen between now and that future event must first take place before that particular standpoint’s past is complete.
Thus from each future standpoint God directly prehends each actuality once it comes into being. Since her concrescence is everlasting, including every prehending in the immediacy of her becoming, she can bequeath that direct prehending of that entire past to the nascent occasion. Thus the nascent occasion takes over a prehensive activity directly prehending the entire actual world, including the distantly past. This is consonant with Whitehead’s own views, as we have seen, but many have challenged this, arguing that only immediately past occasions directly affect the present.
This objection is based on two assumptions: that being exists only as ingredient in becoming, and that all becoming takes place in the present. For what keeps the distantly past actualities in existence if not the intervening concrescences, when they were themselves present? To my knowledge Whitehead never quite expressed the first assumption, though I think it is in accord with the deepest insights of his metaphysics. Traditional metaphysics treats being as primary, and becoming as only derivatively existent. Whitehead’s metaphysics reverses that relationship in most cases. Why not in all? Perhaps he was checked from claiming that all being depended for its existence upon becoming because this apparently denied the actuality of the distantly past. This would contravene his claim that all past occasions are prehended by the concrescent occasion. However, it is possible to reconcile Whitehead’s concern for direct prehension of the distantly past with the thesis that being exists only in becoming by modifying our second assumption. Becoming takes place not only in the present, but in the future. Such future prehension sustains the distantly past in being from the moment of its coming into being until now, as it sustains its being everlastingly.
Besides the immediate and the mediate future the remote future should be considered. How far does God reach into the future? In terms of eternal objects we may say that he reaches as far as the most distant standpoint he has made relevant by associating it with a specific eternal object (thereby perhaps making that eternal object first relevant). That eternal object is now relevant as a means for unifying divine prehending from that standpoint. But which comes first, the relevant form or the divine prehending? Perhaps we ought to conceive of the future extent of God so far as he chooses to project his prehending. That prehensive activity could generate all the possible ways that multiplicity could be unified. Real possibility is derivative from such activity and is not presupposed by it.
If we make pure possibility in the form of eternal objects fundamental, as Whitehead did, then it is possible to conceive of them as uncreated. But just because eternal objects bear no sign of their origin need not mean that they have no origin. Real possibilities, because they are the means of unifying particular worlds from particular standpoints, necessarily have origins. They come into being as God prehends the world. Pure possibilities can be understood as their formal components, abstractly derived. They may not be as fundamental as Whitehead supposed. However, this does not mean that we therefore espouse a nominalism, which would mean that possibility is a present projection on the future. Possibility is created in the future; we encounter it as already having its character independently of our desires.
With the concept of divine creativity as future we can push rationality one step further in questions of ultimacy. In analyzing the category of the ultimate, with its basic rhythm of the one and the many, Whitehead can only finally conclude: "It lies in the nature of things that the many enter into complex unity" (PR 211 31). So they must, if Whitehead’s analysis is to have full validity, but why? To that question he can only respond: "The sole appeal is to intuition" (PR 22/ 32). Yet we are in a position to give a reason here. "The many become one because they are drawn into unity by the unificatory activity of creativity, initiated by God, and completed by determinate occasions.
This reason is, on the surface at least, more plausible because many philosophers have supposed that God actively unifies all things in the end. What is new, however, is that while God can initiate this activity, its final determination can only be achieved by the world, and the very activity which strives for complete determinate unity (from a given standpoint) contributes to a resultant multiplicity, generating the endless rhythm of the many and the one that Whitehead foresaw.
Viewed in terms of one single standpoint, this is one single activity of unification, initiated by God in the future, and completed by the occasion in the present. Alternatively, thinking of God as a whole, as the one subjectivity of the future, we may say that this creativity pluralizes itself into the many present occasions, thus bequeathing to the occasions their powers of prehension and integration. In this it functions very much like the Thomistic God, which as infinite esse communicates to each actuality its own esse or act of being.2
In order to safeguard the intrinsic creativity of each occasion, Whitehead refused to identify God with (present) creativity. But if God is the only future activity, when creativity has not yet been pluralized the way it is in the present, God may be identified with the creativity of the future. This future exercise of creativity, however, does not encumber its present exercise, for that present exercise is decision amidst the possibilities received from the future. God as creativity in the future can be the source for all present creativity. If it were simply inherent within concrescing occasions, then it would seem to float into the universe from nowhere (contra PR 244/ 373). Concrescing actualities can be the reasons for their own decisions, but not for the creative activity whereby they make their own decisions.
As future, God is forever future. In this our proposal differs from that of Wolfhart Pannenberg, who also speaks of "the power of the future operative in the present. He conceives of God as now in the process of becoming, who at the end of history, however, will finally become fully actual. But the actuality of God in this sense, as unifying within himself all of history, necessarily marks the end of history as well. We conceive of history, and time, to have no end, so that God is always future, never present, thereby never becoming past. He is always subject, never object; always becoming, never being.
Strictly speaking, God cannot be properly characterized as an actual entity. As concrescent activity, he is actual in the sense of being active. But in the sense of being concretely determinate, he is not actual, for he never becomes an entity capable of objectification. On this view we can agree with Buber that God is pure Thou, or with Tillich that he is not a being. This does not mean, however, that God thereby transcends the categories. He fully exemplifies them, but Whitehead has transformed the categories of being into categories of becoming.
CNT -- John B. Cobb, Jr., A Christian Natural Theology. Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1965.
IPQ – International Philosophical Quarterly, for Lewis S. Ford, "The Non-Temporality of Whitehead’s God," IPQ 13/3 (September, 1973), 347-76.
JAAR -- Journal of the American Academy of Religion, for Bowman L. Clarke, "God and Time in Whitehead," JAAR 48/4 (December, 1980), 563-80.
PPCT -- Process Philosophy and Christian Thought, edited by Delwin Brown, Ralph E. James, Jr., and Gene Reeves. Indianapolis: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Inc., 1971.
TPP -- Two Process Philosophers: Hartshorne’s Encounter with Whitehead, edited by Lewis S. Ford. American Academy of Religion: Studies in Religion, 5, 1973.
1John Wilcox, "A Question from Physics for Certain Theists," Journal of Religion 40/4 (October, 1961), 293-300. Wilcox posed this as a problem for process theism in general, but I sought to limit its applicability to Hartshorne’s emendation: Lewis S. Ford, "Is Process Theism Compatible with Relativity Theory?" Journal of Religion 47/2 (April, 1968), 124-35. Paul Fitzgerald then explores the problem in terms of a number of differing models: "Relativity Physics and the God of Process Philosophy," PS 214 (Winter, 1972), 251-76.
2For this comparison between the pluralization of future creativity and the communication of esse, see my essay on God as the (future) source of becoming, forthcoming. See also W. Norris Clarke, S.J., The Philosophical Approach to God, A Neo-Thomist Perspective (Winston-Salem: Wake Forest University, 1979), which has an excellent chapter on "Christian Theism and Whiteheadian Process Philosophy." He argues convincingly that creativity needs a source, butt seeks to understand the transmission of creativity by means of efficient causality. I have criticized this attempt in "The Search for the Source of Creativity," Logos 1 (1980), 45-52.