“In order for anything to exist it has to exist in relationship to something else. This is an important part of the core character of American Pragmatism. We live in a world of relationships. As I said before, things do not exist except in relationship with other things. In fact, things do not exist at all. Relationships exist. You can read any of the Pragmatists from Charles Sanders Peirce to William James, from John Dewey to George Herbert Mead and you will find this same emphasis on the primary reality of relationship…William James was making this point in his own way when he spoke of everything occurring as content in context. That is his way of describing the minimal relationship required for existence. You cannot have pure content. You must always have content and context – foreground and background. And James was astute enough to realize that in our experience of mind mental objects can flip from being content to being context and back again.”
The above passage comes from a blog post from Jeff Carreira. I’ve liked Jeff’s blog for quite a while and, like me, he has a deep appreciation for process-relational thinking and American Pragmatism.
Poster detail above by one of my favorites, Lanny Sommese.