Linked Glossary of Terms
(references to De Wijsbegeerte der Wetsidee, unless indicated. See concordance for correlation with pages in the New Critique. The concordance is in pdf format.)

hypothesis I, 45, 51-54
II, 421, 485, 487NC II, 596 (hypothesis of a cosmonomic Idea)

Dooyeweerd says that the foundation [grondlegging] for philosophy is its hypothesis. (I, 51). Its hypothesis is the ground-Idea (I, 45). Or as he says in Volume II, the law-Idea is “hypothesis”(II, 485). Only when our selfhood, while thinking philosophically, chooses its Archimedean point in the true totality of meaning does our philosophic thought obtain in its Ground-Idea to the hypothesis which preserves this selfhood from the fall from the totality of meaning and therefore also from the fall of the selfhood. (I, 45)

It seems that by ‘hypothesis’ he means the same thing as ‘Idea,’ except that it is the foundational Idea. It is the limiting concept par excellence (I, 52). He says at I, 53 that he shares Kant’s view of Idea as hypothesis. His view differs from Kant because Kant absolutizes the Idea in setting forth the Idea of the homo noumenon. But although the Idea is hypothesis, this does not mean that it is subject to relativism. It is relative, but not relativism, because it is subjected to an ‘objective judge.’ I believe that he means that there are apriori conditions of validity that make our thought possible, even though our Ideas of these conditions may be relative.

In 1928, Dooyeweerd says that only the law-Idea gives an account of the coherence of law-spheres and subject functions:

Op de vraag: hoe is kennis der wetskringen mogelijk? luidt het antwoord: door dien dieperen goddelijken samenhang aller wetskringen en subjectsfuncties, waarvan alleen de wetsidee “rekenschap aflegt” (het logon didonai in Platonischen zin). De ware kritische methode eischt dus de erkentenis, dat niet de logos, doch de wetsidee de Platonische hupothesis en het anhupotheton beide is van alle synthetisch begrip (“Het juridisch causaliteitsprobleem in ‘t licht der wetsidee,” cited by Verburg 114).

[To the question, “How is knowledge of the law-spheres possible?” the answer is: by the deeper divine coherence of all law-spheres and subject fucntions, of which only the law-Idea “gives an account” (the logon didonai in the Platonic meaning). The true critical method therefore demands the acknowledgement that it is not the logos but rather the law-Idea that is both the Platonic hypothesis and the anhupotheton of all syntehtic concepts]

The law-Idea is both the hypothesis and the “anhypotheton”–the unpostulated principle–of all synthetic concepts.

In 1932, Dooyeweerd says that without the hypothesis of meaning of the anticipated spheres, the anticipated functions cannot be understood. ( “De Theorie van de Bronnen van het Stellig Recht in het licht der Wetsidee” , “Handelingen van de Vereeniging voor Wijsbegeerte des Rechts, XIX (1932).

Revised Dec. 27/04