Pantheism

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Nefastos
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Pantheism

Postby Nefastos » Sat Apr 22, 2017 11:05 am

In a recent conversation about arguments on God's existence in our Finnish forum, brother Obnoxion and I both adopted a view that instead of thinking God outside nature, everything is manifestation of God. This view, known as pantheism (or panentheism), is also present in the first three principal arguments of Polyharmonia:
Fosforos wrote:2) Sameness of spirit and matter, leading towards universal pantheism.


From Greek Pan = All, and Theos = God. Interestingly enough, Pan was also the divinity later practically identified with the Devil. Panic as a form of "divine frenzy" (as those states were called by Giordano Bruno) I mentioned here some time ago, when we were discussing the sacred "trembling" in the Kashmir Shaivist world view.

The question is: Do you consider yourself as a pantheist, or having some pantheistic tendencies? And if so, how do those tendencies show themselves in your everyday life?

Personally, my own list would be a long one. As one of the most apparent presentations, I consider and treat also non-living items as semi-conscious beings and address them by personal pronoun. (Luckily this can be done on a pretense of humour at least in our Finnish culture, so no one barely notices.)

I consider such a world view as anti-mechanistical, extremely subject-oriented (seeing nothing as purely object-like or "objective"). It is also one of the biggest reasons why I have such extremely difficulties to live in our contemporary world, which stresses the diametrical opposite: objective, mechanistical, tool-like neutrality considering everything. That forms drastically different attitude towards otherness & empathy.
Faust: "Lo contempla. / Ei muove in tortuosa spire / e s'avvicina lento alla nostra volta. / Oh! se non erro, / orme di foco imprime al suol!"
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Re: Pantheism

Postby obnoxion » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:15 pm

My approach is that there is nothing but God, and God is one. Thus I haved solved the problem of the existence of God at least to my own satisfaction, without making intellectual compromises. This has made me free to contemplate the quality of God - to seriously ponder what God is like.

I think this my pantheism is a very practical approach. I might compare it with modern architecture of religious buildings. As an architect, you must be aware of how physics affect the building of a large and unique building. It must be practical and it must be in meaningful interaction with its surrounding landscape and the immaterial cultural atmosphere.

But, seeing as it is a temple or a church, the whole process has to be a contemplation on the sacred and the divine. Every choice of material, every angle, every open space - they all become a manifestation of some sacred meaning.

So, in my pantheism, everything is holy. To sense is to build, and to build is to realize God in each fragment of God's unity. The architect materializes a vision. My vision is to simply watch the temple build itself. Because, if it is as I believe it is, the church is already there. We are just unable to realize it in its final glory, because we do not know what God is like.

And this is why I think it is more important to contemplate what God is like, than to wonder if God exists.
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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RaktaZoci
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Re: Pantheism

Postby RaktaZoci » Sun Apr 23, 2017 10:44 am

My wiew is somewhat on the same lines with that fra obnoxion's. I see that God is All and is thus represented in everything that Is. This is also the proof, if such is needed, for the existence of Satan, because if God is All, he (if we must use such a personal pronoun) is also his adversary. As in the Ying and the Yang, they both include a seed of the other and thus the eternal dance continues.

I've had some conversations about this subject many a time, and I'm not exactly sure how pantheism should be defined. I see it as I described above, that God is in everything. How I see God, however, is a different matter. I most certainly do NOT see him as some personal being ruling everything. To me God is an absolute, which has no form or being, but is still present in all things.

Tao Te Ching has described this view well, I think:
Tao Te Ching wrote:25.
Something perfect
has existed forever,
even longer than the universe.
It's a vast, unchanging void.
There's nothing else like it.
It goes on forever and never stops,
and everything else came from it.

I don't know what else to call it
so I'll call it Tao.
What's it like?
I can tell you this much: it's great.

So great that it endures.
Something that endures
goes a long way.
And something that goes a long way
always comes back to the beginning.

Tao's great.
Heaven's great.
Earth's great.
And someone in touch with Tao
is great, too.
Those are the four greatest things
in the universe.

Someone who's in touch with Tao
is in touch with the earth.
The earth is in touch with heaven.
Heaven's in touch with Tao.
Tao's in touch with the way things are.
How does this show in my everyday life? I tend to respect all things, most of all Nature, which is, indeed, our creator. I get saddened when I watch people exploiting it unscrupulously. I intend to show empathy towards all living things (inanimate object can also be considered living, in a sense.)

"Freedom is the right of all sentient beings." -Optimus Prime
die Eule der Minerva beginnt erst mit der einbrechenden Dämmerung ihren Flug.
-Hegel
Vanadís

Re: Pantheism

Postby Vanadís » Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:27 pm

I'm joining with lines you all write above. For me Panteism is also philosophical side of Shamanism, where is important to learn from every Being, by becoming a different form of life and death during many cycles of lifes. In one lifetime practicing Shaman can also shift their shape from animals to flowers for case of learning by experiencing this Being from inside. For me this the meaning of All in the Universe - forming varieties, understanding how every sparkle of lifeforce can live in different shapes, then collapse within the cycles of entropy and form something new. Everything dies. Nothing ever dies.

In my personal view Non-Being is something I see as important as Being. I'm pointing at Non-existence in Ain Soph (Ein Sof):

"Ein Sof, or Ayn Sof (/eɪn sɒf/, Hebrew: אין סוף‎), in Kabbalah, is understood as God prior to his self-manifestation in the production of any spiritual realm, probably derived from Ibn Gabirol's term, "the Endless One" (she-en lo tiklah). Ein Sof may be translated as "no end", "unending", "there is no end", or infinity."
- Wikipedia

I see that this Kabbalistic shit is explained more archetypically in Shaivic system, where Shiva dances himself from non-existence to manifestation and finally down to Malkuth by the first guru of Yoga. So via cosmic manifestation God is in all, but also in no-thing, because god is already in potential, where nothing IS, but everything is able to be. Total blackness, call this side Satan if you like. Maybe this is something I can share with anti-cosmics :D
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Re: Pantheism

Postby obnoxion » Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:28 pm

Having used architecture as a metaphor, I cannot help but write a response, although this is perhaps nothing more than a curiosity item.

As fra RaktaZoci mentioned above, the Tao te Ching says: "Something perfect has existed forever". The famous swiss architect Le Corbusier said "I have not known the miracle of faith", but he claimed to know "the miracle of ineffable space, the consumation of plastic emotion" when "work reaches a maximum of intensity, when it has been made with the quality of execution, when it has reached perfection... When this happens the place starts to radiate. They radiate in a physical way and determine what I call 'ineffable space', that is to say, a space that does not depend on dimension but on the quality of its perfection. It belongs to the dominion of the ineffable, of that which cannot be said".

Reading words like this, it is no wonder an idea of an atheist temple has been formulated.

Anyway, two points come to mind. First, there is stunning examples that open for us a way to experience the actuality of sacredness, but not everyone is equiped to realize it. And this leads me to my second point: Like the architect perfects the building, it is - or so I believe - the striving for man's inner perfection that leads man to that radiating state where the inefable perfection of All can be realized.
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Nefastos
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Re: Pantheism

Postby Nefastos » Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:44 pm

Vanadís wrote:In my personal view Non-Being is something I see as important as Being. I'm pointing at Non-existence in Ain Soph (Ein Sof)


This is one reason why I included panentheism simply in parentheses after pantheism. For me personally the latter and more common word of pantheism literally includes everything, thus also every possible idea we might have about "non-being". So, for me, being is also its seeming opposite, and thus pantheism also equals panentheism. As we see, this also comes to the different meanings of word "nature" (as well as "being") people might and do have.

By the way, Nagarjuna has talked a lot about these seeming polarities in his Madhyamaka writings. The concept of Void is very important for the Buddhist metaphysics, and has many different schools which understand that key concept in a little different way. Personally I have found the Hindu idea of "emptiness is fullness" more appropriate in my own spiritual working than the Buddhists' "fullness is emptiness". Why? Because my personal mind seems already to work on the last mentioned ground, so even more stressing of that point makes me lose my spiritual balance & consider "everything as nothing", leading to the danger of spiritual nihilism, a synonyme for the ideals of the downward path.

RaktaZoci wrote:"Freedom is the right of all sentient beings." -Optimus Prime


Verily so... But since I personally see all beings sentient in a way but very few if anyone actually "free", there seems to be reason why I have always rather sided with Megatron's motto "Peace through tyranny."
Faust: "Lo contempla. / Ei muove in tortuosa spire / e s'avvicina lento alla nostra volta. / Oh! se non erro, / orme di foco imprime al suol!"
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Re: Pantheism

Postby RaktaZoci » Tue Apr 25, 2017 12:18 pm

From obnoxion's architecture metaphor this also came to my mind. Again from Tao Te Ching:
Tao Te Ching wrote:Thirty spokes connect to the wheel’s hub;
yet, it is the centre hole that makes it useful.
Clay is shaped into a vessel;
yet, it is the emptiness within that makes it useful.
Doors and windows are cut for a room;
yet it is the space where there is nothing tha
t makes it useful.
Therefore, though advantage comes from what is;
usefulness comes from what is not.
die Eule der Minerva beginnt erst mit der einbrechenden Dämmerung ihren Flug.
-Hegel
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Benemal
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Re: Pantheism

Postby Benemal » Tue Apr 25, 2017 4:42 pm

This is a bit more scientific and cosmic, because the word God is a curse word to me. You all know what a galaxy is, I'd assume, and a solar system. Also, that planets and stars are living things (though there are dead planets too, held together by gravity). It is more interesting to speculate about life elsewhere, because it's so clear, that this place is rich in it and there's no question. It is not clear to everyone and that's why words like pantheism, or animism have religious meaning mostly. The "sphere" of existence, or cosmos (meaning physical) keeps getting bigger. I've recently been thinking about life on other worlds, which I used to do a lot, but then just needed to put some things on hold and prioritize. So you all know there's about three hundred billion solar systems in the "Bird's Track". How many actually believe, this is the only inhabited world? There is no reason to believe that. Ok so then there's hundred's of billions of galaxies, in our "local cosmos", which is shaped like a tree in the "forest of galaxies ". This is actual science, not sci-fi or new age. And so there's triliions of trees (which is the scientific way of saying it's more than can be imagined). We'll probably eventually find out, that this forest is spherical and probably "one of trillions". So this "cosmos" of hundreds of billions of galaxies is one of trillions. Let's hypothesize there's only one inhabited world per galaxy. Then there might only be a few googolplexes of inhabited worlds. Numbers are just a way to try to understand an incomprehensible scale. Some people think space is empty and dark. Life would be easier, in such a small world. Also it might be easier, to believe it has value.
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Re: Pantheism

Postby Sebomai » Tue May 16, 2017 6:19 am

I'm not going to write a lengthy response as everyone else has said such beautiful things.

I do consider myself a pantheist. And I consider it my greatest failing that I frequently do not live like one who believes All is God. I fall short most of the time. But my greatest strength is that I refuse to give up on the idea, and I refuse to stop trying to see the Divine in the most mundane or even unpleasant things or beings.

I sorrow that I treat the God Who Is All so poorly so often.

I rejoice that I, too, am a manifestation of God and that this is just a part of Shiva's dance.

I think that is one of the things that draws me to this form of Satanism, is the doctrine of unity. I found it in no other form of Satanism that I explored.
Vanadís

Re: Pantheism

Postby Vanadís » Tue May 16, 2017 11:45 am

Sebomai wrote:
I think that is one of the things that draws me to this form of Satanism, is the doctrine of unity. I found it in no other form of Satanism that I explored.
Same here! And for me it is the most important thing in SoA that we are kind of "darker view to the unity". Other organizations in Satanist field are too much towards individuality, even though I have been enjoying working in them also during many years. Only other occult group that embrace unity and unite dark and light worlds are some Thelemites and systems that use kabbalah/qlippoth in the manner of Grant/Crowley/Karlsson.. I'm just studying Grant's Nightside of Eden and it really resonates with me. Earlier I was more pagan style pantheist focusing on earths energies. Now after more intense Thelemic studies my pantheism have been opening up towards the stars and black holes and Nuit <3

It is so amazing to have new awakenings inside your world(s)view!

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