Articles by John von Heyking
January 30, 2020
Political philosopher John von Heyking bids adieu to Roger Scruton, the English thinker, critic, and leading conservative voice who was drawn to conservatism by looking out his window at the 1968 riots in Paris.
Scruton explains he became Roger instead of Vernon at age 10 after he accidentally bloodied the nose of the school bully, who had wished to punish Scruton both for his “sissy” name and his red hair His critique of scientific reductionism and defence of the human person in books, including Soul of the World and The Face of God, constitute perhaps his most formidable defence and account of what (and who) is good and therefore fragile Indeed, Scruton confesses that though all his published work is under Roger’s name, Vernon is the real author of his words: “Everything that I have written that has come from the heart rather than the head has been the work of someone officially dead aged ten
May 6, 2017
Hearing the seductive, loon-like call of so-called postnationalists who claim Canada is without identity, political philosopher John Von Heyking insists the Fathers of Confederation would have seen the “ironic pose of non-identity as infertile soil for heartfelt protection of rights.”
If we genuinely want to be a self-governing people under the regime of responsible government, I can think of no better way of celebrating Canada 150 by than rereading and thinking about what the Fathers of Confederation can teach us about our regime But responsible government is predicated upon pol...
April 25, 2016
University of Lethbridge political theorist John von Heyking reads in Saint Augustine the stark warning that the violent will always bear it away among broken human beings. The good news? That’s the start of peace.
As deficient as the political societies are that human beings organize themselves into, and as monumentally difficult (if not impossible) it is for human beings to get control of the instruments of violence, Augustine did acknowledge that the small differences among regimes (small in comparison to t...
December 1, 2014
F.H. Buckley's book on the necessity of government by conviviality
The same concentration of power has been going on in Canada and Great Britain, but the Canadian system of Westminster government is better equipped to check executive power than is the U.S Our Westminster parliamentary system protects liberty better because responsible government gives members of th...
October 1, 2014
John Von Heyking traces the classical roots of the Calgary Stampede and finds that even Muslims celebrating Ramadan are treated fairly at the fair
Moreover, the Calgary Stampede is, in important respects, something rarely found in modern civilization: a civic festival, or a festival of the civil religion of a specific area, namely Calgary and southern Alberta Cross and Archibald McLean (the so-called Big Four), inaugurated the first Calgary St...
June 1, 2014
What Prof. John von Heyking would say if these were his last words
All these great texts operate under the kind of insight Søren Kierkegaard offers when he states in Works of Love: "Alas, many think that judgment is something reserved for the far side of the grave, and so it is also, but they forget that judgment is much closer than that, that it is taking place at...
November 1, 2012
Why loneliness is always part of tyranny.
Friendship as the form of politics is predicated on three Aristotelian insights: 1) the highest kind of friendship, virtue friendship, is a practice whose moral goal transcends politics; 2) a citizenry unpractised in virtue friendship is incapable of habitually practising justice, and therefore, of ...