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5 years ago  ::  Jun 02, 2010 - 10:29AM #1
Jcarlinbn
Posts: 7,102

What leads you to a Panentheistic God rather than a traditional anthropomorphic God?  Or perhaps I should ask what leads you away from that antrhopomorphic God?  If you are a member of a traditional Christian Church, do you even attempt to reconcile the Trinity with panentheism?  


If you come at panentheism from the atheist side what makes a Panentheist God more useful than no gods or humanism?  


Please note this is not a discussion thread, in the sense of challenging statements.  Questions are welcome for clarification, but please respect your fellow members as they try to articulate a relatively new theology.  


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Jcarlinbn, community moderator
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5 years ago  ::  Jun 02, 2010 - 10:41AM #2
karemiss
Posts: 24

I guess that for me it was the inability to answer the question, if there was nothing before God, what did God used to create the material world, if not Itself -either as divine thought, word, magic, Big Bang, or whatever. The second question was, if God is everywhere, how could it not be in me? As new discoveries in the field of quantum physics cross my way and the more I read about ancient religions and mystery schools, the more I am convinced about the panenthesit Divinity, in whom I exist, whose divine spark I share, but  who is so much more than words can say...

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 14, 2011 - 11:51AM #3
ExPluribusUnum
Posts: 61

Firstly, I would like to say that panentheism is not a new theology. It has been present as a way of understanding divinity in many belief systems since ancient times.

Having said that, I guess that I have always been a panentheist, but only in the past 10 years did I discover that there was a word for my belief that God is greater than the universe but also exists within me, as soul and consciousness for example.

I was raised in a traditional trinitarian Christian denomation but never quite understood the concept of the Trinity. God the father was an unpleasant tyrant in my view, and Jesus the man-god was raised to such a high place as to seem unreachable, not to mention unrealistic. The only part of the Trinity that spoke to me was the Holy Spirit, and today that is the only part that I still hold on to as deity.

The Holy Spirit is mystery. This aspect of God, from a trinitarian perspective, is Almighty...yet is with us (and within us, I would say). To me, that is panentheism.

After leaving the church I grew up in, I had a very brief (and disingenuous) stint as an atheist - but that did not work for me, because I don't feel that atheism holds enough space open for mystery, wonder and emotion and gives too much space to intelligence and observable, provable facts. Today, as a Unitarian Universalist, I feel very comfortable considering myself a panentheist, and I believe this helps me connect in some way to people of many different stripes, as there will be at least some shred of belief held in common between myself and others. What I mean to say, is that I find panentheism to be a good half-way point between people on opposite ends of the theological spectrum, and I'm happy sitting right here.

Lastly - I don't think that panentheism is exclusive to any particular view. In my opinion, one can hold both panentheism and trinitarianism as valid and true at the same time, as could one hold both panentheism and atheism valid and true at the same time. Panentheism, generally, means that whatever you believe is of greatest import, whether you call that 'god' or 'reality' is both bigger than the sum of us all and present within each of us. I suppose this could mean both an anthropomorphic God and no god at all - or, as for me, a god that is amorphic, mysterious...present within and embosoming all things

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3 years ago  ::  Sep 15, 2011 - 12:49PM #4
JCarlin
Posts: 7,058

Hi ExPluribusUnum good to chat again. 


Thanks for your thoughtful and useful contribution to the board.  Don't be discouraged about lack of participation here.  Just look at the views.  I bet you see a spike on this thread due to your comments. 


As you know panentheism is a do, not talk about, religion. 


 

J'Carlin
If the shoe doesn't fit, don't cram your foot in it and complain.
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11 months ago  ::  Feb 26, 2014 - 1:05AM #5
ONE1
Posts: 63

Man - a being in search of meaning. - Plato


 


The mind supplies one source of meaning. It weighs and measures. The heart supplies another. It allows for the experience of value. We can experience both an acquied sense of value and an objective sense of value Plato spoke of as soul knowledge


 Many are content with just knowledge of the mind and conditioned beliefs in value. However there is a minority who are capable of both an apprecition of the laws which concern science and the objective need of human "being" to "feel" the inner vertical direction of the source of their arising. They know that the objective knowldge of the mind and heart are both true so there is no contradiction. The fact tht there is so much contradiction testitfies to our ignorance.


 I believe that Panentheism will eventually be the means for reconciling the knowledge of the mind and heart. From this perspective, rather than science disproving the Source, it will demonstrate its necessity.


 The Panentheisic God IS. As such, it is not limited by time and space The Universe EXISTS as a process within IS. As a process it exists within time and space. This process is the body of God.


From this perspective  person is drawn to feel the value of the process in relation to the source rather than for self justification. Instead of the universe being here to serve us, we serve the process. Man then serves the animalistic purpose normal for organic life on earth and also has the potential to serve a conscious purpose in accordance with the purpose of the body of God.


“Every one who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe-a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble.” Einstein


The appearance of universal laws requires a conscious origin that includes them and their expressions. They cannot arise by accident. Einstein sensed it and his knowledge of universal laws made it easier to adopt the humility that reconciles the "Good" with the "Law."

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