The Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies has permitted me to place its reviews of my books on this website:
RamanaReview: This is a review of my book Ramana Maharshi: Interpretations of his Enlightenment (Calgary: Aevum Books, 2015)
AbhishiktanandaReview: This is a review of my book Abhishiktananda (Henri Le Saux): Christian Nondualism and Hindu Advaita (Calgary: Aevum Books, 2015)
My recent article, “New Research on Groen van Prinsterer and the Idea of Sphere Sovereignty,” overturns many of the accepted ideas in reformational philosophy. The article has been accepted for publication by Philosophia Reformata, but will not be published until 2019 0r 2020. Here is the pre-peer-review version of the article, which I am permitted to self-archive on my website at any time.
The final peer-reviewed version, which will be published in future, is even stronger in its conclusions than the article as archived here. Perhaps the most important addition to the final article is the discussion of how sphere sovereignty is not based on the idea that God’s reign extends to every area of life. It is true that Calvinism valued secular work, as opposed to a spiritualistic flight from temporal life. This has been shown by Max Weber in his influential work The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (1930, originally published 1905). But the idea of a vocation in a secular sphere does not give any basis for the sovereignty of one sphere vis à vis another sphere. Nor does this idea of vocation delineate the spheres in the same way as does the idea of sphere sovereignty. The idea of sphere sovereignty has its source in non-Calvinistic ideas.
My article “Sophia, Androgyny and the Feminine in Franz von Baader’s Christian Theosophy” has been published in “Adyan/Religions”, a bilingual Arabic/English journal based in Doha, in its issue devoted to the topic “Women and the Feminine in World Religions.” Click on the link for the online copy of this journal.
Baader’s view of humanity’s original androgyny is a good counterweight to the early church’s wrongheaded emphasis on asceticism and denial of female sexuality. Baader’s “40 Propositions Taken from a Religious Philosophy of Love” celebrates the ecstasy of sex. It is not quite Christian tantra, but it does provide the basis for a positive appreciation of marriage. His views on the inner feminine and masculine also anticipate Jung by almost a century. But of course Jung read Baader.
The Reformed theologian J.H. Gunning, Jr. adopted Baader’s views, and regarded Jesus as having been androgynous. Abraham Kuyper followed many ideas of Gunning and Baader, but disagreed on this point. Dooyeweerd was silent on this and most other theological issues.
Margaret Barker’s book “The Mother of the Lord: Vol. 1: The Lady in the Temple” discusses the religion of the Israelites prior to the reforms of King Josiah and the Deuteronomists. Many surprises here, including the idea of the feminine consort of G_d, worshipped before monotheism and how this and other ideas were taken up by the early church as one Jewish sect in contrast to others (although most of that will be discussed in Vol 2). She writes from a theological and exegetical perspective, but her views fit with the archaeological evidence gathered by Israel Finkelstein.
Israel Finkelstein shows how recent archaeological discoveries will challenge our previous understanding of the history of events referred to in the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament). These are radical challenges to what most Christians and Jews have assumed to be the facts on which their faiths are based. The entire book, The Forgotten Kingdom, has generously been placed online here:
This relates to my puzzlement when visiting the British Museum last year as to why there are no Egyptian records referring to Moses. But Finkelstein’s evidence discloses many more surprises.
And here is an excellent video summarizing some of the archaeological and textual evidence that challenges history as related by the Old Testament. Controversial? Yes. But watch this and then look at the additional scholarly sources, both critical and supportive.