There are synonymous terms although conceptually the ‘divine economy theory’ is significantly richer. Some of the synonymous terms are ‘unhampered market economy’ which is referred to by Ludwig von Mises in Human Action and there is ‘laissez-faire’ championed by Anne-Robert-Jacques Turgot. Basically the gist of the meaning of these terms (including ‘divine economy theory’) is that the market process captures most perfectly the will expressed through human action of all of the human beings on the planet.
Conceptually the ‘divine economy theory’ is significantly richer and part of the reason for this comes from the power of refining natural law. Early in the history of Western Civilization as witnessed in Thomism and later in the works of the Spanish Scholastics, science included religion and theology was regarded as the queen of the sciences. Within this harmonious relationship between science and religion the Aristotelian logic was applied to all fields of knowledge for the purpose of advancing human understanding.
In a similar manner the divine economy theory recognizes the limitations of humans yet at the same time it recognizes that humans have a spiritual nature. According to natural law, then, there will never be a time or place where any human being will be omnipresent and omniscient such that the infinite dynamism of the market process can be comprehended.
In no way does that negate the magnificence and irrepressible potency of the equilibrium forces inherent in the market process. In the physical sciences there are forces like magnetism and light which are partially understood and which have known properties, but gaining absolute knowledge of its origin lies beyond reach. The same is true with the harmonious equilibrium forces at play in the market process. Trusting that magnetism operates and that light operates and that economic equilibrium operates is a sign of wisdom, not a weakness!
Those who ignorantly or arrogantly claim to know better than the equilibrium forces operating as part of the market process are ego-driven and have no moral authority to interfere with the economy. This is the obvious conclusion of the divine economy theory.
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