Dynamism is term of philosophy and science coined by Gottfried Leibniz (16461716) and developed into a full system of cosmology. Dynamism describes that what exists are simple elements, or for Leibniz, monads, and groups of elements which have only the essence of forces. Interaction between elements takes place without contact, through modes or even harmonics of motion, yielding all phenomena in the Universe.
However, Dynamism can also be found in the works of Baruch Spinoza and Henri Bergson, but also long before them, in the ancient Parmenides, Aristotle, the atomists and later in Plotinus. In more contemporary works, elements of Dynamism also developed into process philosophy, via Alfred North Whitehead and others, as well as systems theory via Ludwig von Bertalanffy and William Ross Ashby. Contemporary thinkers such as Virginia Postrel, describes a social philosophy of cultural change, individual choice, and the open society. More recently, M.R.M. Parrott describes a complex field theory underlying all things, speaking of systemic Dynamism over stasis in the metaphysical functions and adaptation of complex systems. His multi-volume series, "Dynamism", describes the layers of such an interpretation. Currently, Colin Stott argues that many of the problems of traditional western philosophy arise from an unsustainably passive view of both matter and consciousness. His A New Dynamism for Philosophy blog seeks to reveal the potential of a re-invigorated dynamism to diagnose, address and propose accessible solutions to many of Philosophy's oldest questions.
Dynamism was also taken up by Umberto Boccioni and other artists and creative thinkers early in the 20th century. Dynamist artists used the concept as part of a way of representing the complexity of processes, rather than be limited by the discrete and static moments within change, which also illustrated the limits of human perception.
Some content adapted from the Wikinfo article "Dynamism" under the GNU Free Documentation License.
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