The Source of Human Good is one of Henry Nelson Wieman’s most important works, in which he offers a conception of God as creative value within the context of human interactions and purposeful living. In developing his argument, Wieman introduces a key phrase, “the creative event,” which connotes creativity as operating in human life and giving it qualitative meaning. For Wieman, creativity is not merely identified with the common usages often associated with it, such as solely innovative behavior on the part of individuals or achievements produced by artistic persons (although these would be included as instances of it). Rather, God is creativity, in the sense that God is the character, structure, or form that enables the events of human life to be creative. “The creative event” is a complex term describing a process of how the many discordant parts of our lives are reorganized into a more inclusive whole.
Wieman explains that the creative event, which results in creative good, is a concrete reality embracing four unified but distinct subevents. Briefly stated, they are(1) the emerging awareness of qualitative meaning through communication (2) the integration of these new meanings with those previously acquired (3) the expanding of quality in the appreciable world and (4) the widening and deepening of community.
The first event is the primary context from which the other three emerge. For Wieman, a stream of...
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