Naive Metaphysics: A Theory of Subjective and Objective Worlds was originally written for six people — all relative beginners to philosophy — who came to my home once a week on Thursday evenings during the Winter and Spring of 1988-9 to hear the latest chapter. It amazes me now to think that we managed to keep this going for eighteen weeks.
Naive Metaphysics was published by Avebury in December 1994, in the Avebury Series in Philosophy.
Avebury relinquished publication rights on 15th June 2001. In 2016 Naive Metaphysics was published in a Kindle Edition. A Preview consisting of the first four chapters and Preface to the new edition is available for download in Adobe PDF format, or you can read the complete book online.
The Preface to the 1994 Avebury edition tells the story of the book's meandering progress through successive drafts to eventual publication. I learned a lot from my students during that time. Their comments — sometimes sharp, sometimes off-the-wall, sometimes downright peculiar — taught me something that I could never have learned from my training in academic philosophy.
In Chapter one there is a summary and overview of the theory of subjective and objective worlds. Those who get past the first paragraph will find that the basic idea is not that hard to explain. In a nutshell, the idea is that the sense of sheer wonder that there is a world rather than no world is different from the sense of wonder that there is I rather than no I. The fact that there is a world and the fact that there is I are two facts and not one. It may seem obvious to common sense, but philosophy reveals some disturbing paradoxes.
Finally, I have reproduced the contents of the original Avebury flyer which includes a short review of Naive Metaphysics by Professor David Hamlyn.