© J. Glenn Friesen 2003-2006
Glossary of Terms
Dooyeweerd says that the selfhood is "the invisible player on the instrument of philosophic thought." Our selfhood is our center, and it expresses itself in its temporal functions. Although our thinking is such a central act, Dooyeweerd sometimes also refers to the function of thought. In any event, the Idea of the selfhood being the player on the instrument relates to the organic relation between the central head and its peripheral limbs. A clearer expression of this is:
It is because the temporal cosmos is the instrument that Dooyeweerd says that history is significant "forming." When our supratemporal self moves into the temporal cosmos by acting, we may form it in a significant way. He calls the individuality structures in the temporal cosmos "plastic" because they can be formed.
Baader makes many references to this type of reasoning. He distinguishes among principle, organ and instrument. God is the principle of revelation, man is the organ; nature is the instrument (Werke 4,81; 7,90 ff). We should not confuse organ and instrument. God has a different relationship to each region of being: indwelling [Inwohnung] as love, bydwelling [Beiwohnung] when an intelligent agent cooperates with God and acts as God's organ and Durchwohnung [throughdwelling]: this is God's presence through power alone; God treats these beings as instruments. These are inanimate nature and free agents who resist God (Werke 1,283 ff; 2,38; 4,348; 5,355; 8,317; 9,171 ff; 10, 294; 14,71ff,120; Betanzos 90).
Baader frequently uses the phrase "amor descendit ut elevet "or "Love descends in order to raise up" (Zeit, 30). In the kenosis, the Center, the inner One, descends to the level of Organism or periphery without ceasing to be the Center or Principle.
There is a quotation from Plotinus' Enneads which may be of interest here:
Kuyper says that even the human nature of Jesus is instrument:
Kuyper also says that our bodily eye is a subordinate instrument, which he contrasts with our inner eye of perception:
Bavinck speaks of our volition and our knowledge. He also speaks of reality as an instrument:
Revised May 17/06