Tuesday, October 25, 2005

What does "reformational" mean?

As I promised in my last post, I'm conducting a survey. And considering the fact that I may only have about two readers so far, this won't be a terribly scientific survey. But then again, I have my disinclination towards some of the assumptions of the modern scientific method. Still, if you are reading this and know anyone who would be willing to weigh in on these questions, I ask you to invite them to respond; I'm eager to hear as much feedback as possible on this question.

I have my own answer to both questions, but I've certainly heard some differences of opinion and I'd like to see how widely such opinions range.

Here's my survey:
1) What does "reformational" mean or to what does it refer? (And I invite you to consider it with reference to the terms "reformed" and "neo-calvinist.")
2) Should it (and the other two terms) be capitalized or not?


At 8:13 AM, Blogger Steve Bishop said...

Hi Paul,

Welcome to the blog world!

I've always assumed that reformational and Dooyeweerdian are synonymous. Though I suspect that there are some who would describe themselves as reformational but not Dooyeweerdian. Reformational I would see as a subset of Reformed.

I tend not to capitalise reformational and not hyphenate neocalvinism.

At 7:12 AM, Blogger Steve Bishop said...

I have drawn a Venn diagram attempting to show how I think Reformed, reformational and Dooyeweerdian relate on my blog:


At 12:47 PM, Blogger Nevada said...

Hi Paul (or should I say Prof. Otto? :)

Hope Oregon is treating you well!

I think Steve's analysis is essentially right.

Regarding capitalization...hmm... It depends on the moment for me...I suppose I tend to capitalize both of them.

At 1:01 PM, Anonymous Rudi said...

Hi Paul,

I would disagree with Steve because "reformational" seems to cover a moving tradition, whereas to be Dooyeweerdian one would have to substantially hold to Dooyeweerd's systematic philosophy. Reformational must cover more than Dooyeweerd i.e. you could be a Vollenhovian. Also if Dooyeweerd is right that philosophy is driven by pre-theoretical commitments then reformational should refer to more than philosophy, it should be fundamentally about those commitments and here Al Wolters book "Creation Regained" is important.

At 1:46 PM, Blogger Paul Otto said...

Nevada from Wyoming?

At 2:17 PM, Blogger Nevada said...

Yes, that would be me...the one who picks up arrowheads from time to time, and used to write obnoxious Latin phrases on the chalkboard before American history :)

At 5:53 AM, Blogger Steve Bishop said...


I'm not sure that being Dooyeweerdian is as static as you seem to be implying.


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