Pantheism is a philosophical approach according to which the universe and everything in it is equivalent to God. In other words, everything is God. In fact, if we look at the etymology of the word, it comes from the Greek “pan” which means everything and “theos” which means God. A similar version of pantheism is panentheism, a philosophical doctrine proposed by the German philosopher Christian Friedrich Kraus in the 19th century.
pantheism versus panentheism
According to pantheism, the concept of God and the world are equivalent, since God is not outside the world. The identification between God and the world as a single reality implies a criticism of Christianity, since according to the Bible, God is the creator of the world and that is why these are two different concepts. In this sense, pantheism has sometimes been accused as a form of atheism.
On the other hand, the doctrine of pantheism supports the idea of God and the world as closely related, although they are not concepts that can be identified. Consequently, panentheism defends the reciprocity between God and the world, but denies the equivalence between the two.
The philosophical approach to panentheism is an attempt to reconcile two types of positions: theism and pantheism
According to theism there is a God who creates the world and from the point of view of pantheism one cannot speak of a God who creates the world.
These two views are clearly opposed and in principle irreconcilable. However, panentheism presents an argument that allows the two views to be harmonized: the nature of God has two dimensions in the same being, because it is the same as the world, in parallel, is something transcendent to the world.
Christianity opposes both pantheism and panentheism
In the Bible, the origin of the world is explained from the action of a creator God. Consequently, God is necessarily different from and independent of the world . According to Christian theologians, both pantheism and panentheism fall into the error of identifying the idea of God and the world, two concepts that are related but neither equivalent nor complementary, since God cannot be the same as that. who created.
According to Christian doctrine, especially Catholic doctrine, there are currently new forms of pantheism and panentheism. Thus, these ideas that defend the salvation of man following the dictates of nature reveal the contempt of God’s role as creator.