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Radical Nature: Rediscovering the Soul of Matter Paperback – April 1, 2002

4.9 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“So energetic and accessible it definitely needs to be read. The writing sparkles and the ideas sing.”  —Charlene Spretnak, author, States of Grace

About the Author

Christian de Quincey is a professor of philosophy at John F. Kennedy University and is the coauthor of The Scientific Exploration of Consciousness. He lives in Sausalito, California.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Invisible Cities Press Llc; 1 edition (April 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1931229155
  • ISBN-13: 979-1931229158
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,899,501 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
As a lover of animals (I run Ireland's newest, state-of-the-art boarding kennels...), I have always believed that animals have consciousness, and I've been amazed at the narrow-mindedness of scientists who want us to believe otherwise. In this book, Christian de Quincey takes those blinkered scientists to task and shows how absurd it is to believe that humans are so special. What I wasn't prepared for was how much further Dr. de Quincey takes us. Using the power of philosophy he lays out a convincing case that "consciousness goes all the way down"--that not only do animals and plants have consciousness or souls, but that all matter does (perhaps even rocks). I've never read a book that has so deeply challenged my view of things. And it's so rewarding to be taken to new levels of understanding. I was also surprised at how easy he makes it to read deep philosophy. Read this book and be prepared to be swept away into regions of your mind you never knew you had. He makes nature come alive. He saysit just right: "Nature has a mind of its own." Bravo!
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Format: Paperback
Finally, an explanation of mind-body phenomena that is understandable and applicable to any field of endeavor --physics, psychology, medicine, ecology and beyond. I read this book cover-to-cover and was enthralled start to finish. de Quincey takes on all the great thinkers in the mind-body field, historical and contemporary, and then blends in his careful definitions of terms and unique ideas of sentient matter to formlulate his theory of radical naturalism, which posits that matter is not just "dead stuff" but is ensouled. The result is a blessing for anyone interested in the convergence of mind and body, matter and consciousness, and of the concrete with the spiritual.
This book offers a new and essential foundation stone for my own work in soul-body healing, and I have already recommended it to friends and colleagues in medicine, psychology and philosophy. It is a "must-read" addition to the ongoing literature on consciousness and mind-body phenomena.
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Format: Paperback
Radical Nature: Rediscovering The Soul Of Matter by Christian de Quincey (Professor of Philosophy and Consciousness Studies, John F. Kennedy University) is both a scientific and a spiritual treatise that meditates upon the essence of the soul and the spiritual existence of all life forms, including trees, animals, and of course humans. Presenting Professor de Quincy's conviction that consciousness exists down to the level of single-cell animals and beyond, Radical Nature is a intriguing study offering a transcendental viewpoint of living things. Radical Nature is very highly recommended reading for students of philosophy, metaphysics, spirituality, the nature of nature, and how the phenomena of consciousness is present in the physical world around us.
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Format: Paperback
Radical Nature: Rediscovering the Soul of Matter is a brilliant attempt by De Quincey to (re)solve many of the most essential and most meaningful enigmas of philosophy via his own unique synthesis of process philosophy. He intelligently and creatively grapples with most of the great (and ultimately the only really worthwhile) ontological and epistemological questions that mankind has pondered since the pre-Socratic philosophers. But of equal importance to the general reader (who usually finds philosophical explanations to be either too complex or too boring) De Quincey perspicuously explains his solutions in an intriguing, comprehensive and comprehensible way. He may actually make philosophy fun again, or should I say for the first time for most people. This compelling book deserves a very wide audience. I eagerly look forward to more creative syntheses from this astute multidisciplinary author.
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Format: Paperback
Clarity and depth are two of the most important measures of a book's success. Unfortunately, in most books I have read, these qualities seem to be mutually exclusive. In my experience, the more profound a book is, the denser and more difficult it is to grasp; conversely, the more comprehensible the book, the more superficial.
Christian de Quincey's RADICAL NATURE is a happy exception to the rule. De Quincey probes deeply into the most basic philosophical questions of our time. He explores the relationship between mind and matter, the meaning of consciousness in the natural world, and the need for a new way of thinking and being in these times of fragmentation. In his integrative vision, he surpasses both dualism and monism, both the old-time idealism and the old-time materialism. And de Quincey does all this in a brilliantly lucid and original way. So, on a ten-point scale based on clarity and depth, I give Christian de Quincey's RADICAL NATURE a ten.
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Format: Paperback
Christian de Quincey is a philosopher in the original meaning of the word--a "lover of wisdom--and he is not afraid to follow where wisdom leads. In the world revealed by de Quincey's impeccable philosophical eye, the feelings in our bodies are reliable sources of information and higher intelligence is to be found deep within the world around us. If you are interested in the evolution of consciousness and are willing to think outside the box, you'll love this book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In Radical Nature, Dr. Christian de Quincey leads the reader on a deep inquiry into the nature of reality and matter. He looks at some of the problems of consciousness and how panpsychism addresses some of the most difficult questions that come up in philosophy with eloquence and compelling arguments.

I particularly like this book because it is written in a spirit of inquiry, with respect for the sacred nature of the material world and for the importance of relationships. By that I mean, our relationship to each other, the earth and the cosmos.

I also like the book because it is not simple repetition of pop New Age chatter. Dr. de Quincey is a real philosopher who applies rigor to the position he is presenting without sacrificing his humanity on the altar of the need to be right at all costs, a fault that is not uncommon among academic philosophers. In other words, the book is rigorous, but at the same time it has heart.

Interestingly and happily, this book will appeal to both educated lay people and academic philosophers. While it might be a bit of an intellectual stretch for the average lay person, it is still challenging enough for most discerning audience in the area of philosopy and consciousness. It is also so thought provoking that even someone without a strong background in philosophy will find it difficult to put down.

While I don't necessarily agree with everything that Dr. de Quincey says, I enjoy his approach, he asks the right questions and he presents very likely stories about age old problems. His whole approach communicates his respect for the material world, the reality that is behind it and his genuine enthusiasm for his topic.
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