Gregory Baus: Dooyeweerd’s Conception of Societal Sphere Sovereignty

Abstract: Abraham Kuyper’s conception of societal sphere sovereignty has received various interpretations. Herman Dooyeweerd’s interpretation of sphere sovereignty develops Kuyper’s conception in terms of its being rooted in and motivated from a distinctly Christian religious orientation, and results in a view of society that is neither individualistic, nor collectivistic. In this paper Dooyeweerd’s philosophically elaborated account is examined in terms of his notions of a basic creational diversity; modality and individuality structures; societal communities; sovereignty over-against autonomy/decentralization, and subsidiarity; distinct inner structural principles, the intrinsic limit of state power, and non-individualism. A consistent application of Dooyeweerd’s conception of sphere sovereignty to the question of the status of education as a sovereign sphere, and the propriety of its tax-based support, results in the conclusion that, according to Dooyeweerd’s view, the state does not properly possess the competence to fund schooling through taxation in any form.

You can find several version of Baus’ paper here.

Choi’s Dialogue and Antithesis now on Audible

(I’m a little late on this one.) Yong-Joon Choi’s doctoral dissertation on the application of Dooyeweerd’s thought to social theory, Dialogue and Antithesis: A Philosophical Study on the Significance of Herman Dooyeweerd’s Transcendental Critique, can now be purchased and listened to as an audio book through Audible.

Should we now expect audio book versions of Kalsbeek’s Contours and Verburg’s Herman Dooyeweerd?

The Review of Metaphysics on Vincent Brummer’s Critique of H. Dooyeweerd

Brummer repeatedly presents Dooyeweerd’s criticism of Kant, that a critical philosophy, to be thorough, must not leave any of its presuppositions unaccounted for and that Kant’s dogmatic assumption of certain positions vitiates the rest of his philosophy. Dooyeweerd opposed Kant’s absolutization of logic, and presented instead a cosmological basis for the transcendental criticism of philosophical thought. Dooyeweerd’s own philosophy appears to be quite complex and elaborately systematic; in principle, nothing is left out. Brummer does show, however, that some areas of Dooyeweerd’s work need further elaboration, notably that of philosophical anthropology. – C. D.

“Books Received: Summaries and Comments,” The Review of Metaphysics 18, No. 1 (Sept. 1964), p. 172.

divineeconomytheory: Is Subjective Valuation Misunderstood?

Subjective valuation is totally misunderstood all of the time in these, the Dark Ages of economics. The empirical ‘economists’ have convinced people that choices are selfish not subjective. They cannot allow the idea of subjectivism (that would undermine their incorrect methodology) and so the only way they can explain choices by individuals is to call it […]

via Is Subjective Valuation Misunderstood? — divineeconomytheory

The Errors of Hume


In fact, when Hume’s various philosophical errors are exposed — the assumptions inherited from bad theology, the conflation of intellect and imagination, the self-undermining character of Hume’s Fork, and so forth — little is left in the way of actual argumentation to support the anti-metaphysical and anti-theological conclusions for which he is famous.  His bloated reputation notwithstanding, Hume is exactly what Anscombe said he is: a “mere — brilliant — sophist.”

Why that reputation is as bloated as it is, everyone knows:  Skeptics simply like Hume’s conclusions, and don’t care to investigate too carefully how plausible, at the end of the day, are the arguments by which he arrived at them.  F. H. Bradley, though a metaphysician himself, famously characterized metaphysics as “the finding of bad reasons for what we believe on instinct.”  Never was it more obvious than in the case of Hume and his fans how true this can be of opponents of metaphysics.