Panentheism in World Religions

Saturday, 30 Apr 2016

Panentheism is characteristic of Hinduism (which is polytheistic) and Buddhism, which goes so far as to consider the world an illusion. Neo-Platonist philosophers such as Plotinus believed that a ‘World Soul’ animates the cosmos. Since then, many panentheists have thought of the relationship between God and the world as analogous to that between soul and body. The world, then, is God’s body’the visible manifestation of the invisible divinity. That’s rather different from saying, with the Apostle Paul, that the world manifests the attributes of its Creator.

This philosophy has come down to us through radical mystics like Meister Eckhart and Jakob Boehme. It was revived in the modern age, especially through the idealists and romantics, particularly Schelling, Hegel, and Goethe, as well as Blake, Coleridge, and Emerson. Today, it is the preferred view of many thinkers engaged in the theology and science conversation.’

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