“Whitehead further identified his God with Eros, the ‘Universe as one’,[xvii] and even, when opposing the Semitic god to Plato’s, Satan.[xviii] Thus, with its panentheism, panexperientialism, divine mischief and intense hedonism, kinship to pagan animism and its Romantic nature worship, we are better to re-designate the god of Whitehead’s philosophy of organism, as Pan. We thereby paganize Whitehead under the symbol of this seducer goat-god, a god whose desire for the evocation of intense experiences is instanced in his boast of coupling with each of Dionysus’ intoxicated Maenads.[xix] The lure of Pan is better befitted to the philosophy of organism than the canons of Christ; the latter referring to the attempted Christian hijack of Whitehead’s metaphysics under the name process theology.
Plutarch relates the story of a sailor who, during the reign of Tiberius concurrent to the lifetime of Jesus Christ, receives over the seas an arcane vocal declaration to propagate the news that “The great god Pan is dead.”[xx] G. K. Chesterton’s pronouncement that ‘It is said truly in a sense that Pan died because Christ was born’[xxi] we now invert across a Nietzschean line. The decline in Christian belief and its offspring, modern cosmology, allows for a revival of a truly naturalistic ontology. God is dead; Pan returns.”
The above passage comes from a great essay written by Anglo-Scandinavian philosopher, Peter Sjöstedt-H, who I first heard of through the Catabombic Machine podcast. He’s definitely an interesting thinker, and I like his use of Whitehead. Apparently his thinking was at least a partial inspiration for the Marvel character KARNAK.
Regarding the passage above, I’m completely fine with drawing out the connections between Whitehead’s thought and pagan animism; I think this is a very cool and creative line to explore. But the Christian hijacking stuff is a bit much, in my opinion; Whitehead was a Vicar’s son for crying out loud!