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A challenge human existence is confronted in contemporary society is the justification of a coherent social order. Most of these justifications have been grounded, over time, on natural approach to the neglect of the African ontological practice. This natural reference fails to account for the ontological practice premised on African belief system which reconciles the natural and spiritual aspects of human existence. The study adopts the analytic approach in philosophy which evolves a clarification of the ontological concept within the African context.The African ontological practice hinges on Dukor’s perspective which provides for a coherent interconnection among social structure, law and belief system towards the certitude and trust making for harmonious human well-being.Social order is enhanced by this African ontological practice and should, therefore, be incorporated into the public sphere.
The concern of this paper is to argue against Maduabuchi Dukor’s conception of African philosophical ideas of man, universe and God as“theistic humanism”. Dukor’s submission is an anti-thesis of the claims by many pioneer scholars in African philosophy who claimed that if Africans do not live in a religious universe perhaps one can affirm that their universe is theistic. But indeed the Africans’ perceptions and attitude to life in their various manifestations reveal an idealistic metaphysical orientation without an attenuation of humanistic elements. It is argued in this paper that Dukor’s philosophical idea of reality in the African context though contributes to knowledge, it is in sharp contrast to African metaphysical theories such as Placide Temple’s theory of vital forces, Olubi Sodipo’s theory of mystical causality, Dagogo Idoniboye’s theory of spiritism among others. Even Sophie Oluwole, who argues that the Yoruba idea of morality is humanistic, still concludes that in moral issues the gods act as agent of sanction. In situating the African idea of reality in context, the Yoruba example is used in this paper with a view to establishing, contrary to Dukor’s“theistic humanism”; that reality among the Yoruba is better construed as“humanistic theism”.