Exploring Panendeism as a Distinct Sub-Category of Deism

Written by Benjamin Sullivan

Panendeism is a segment of focus within Deism. The word Panendeism literally means all in God, which is exactly the elegant model for reality that this worldview suggests. If you're a Deist who believes in a God that is fundamentally present in all of the universe, but who also transcends it in some way, you may call yourself a Panendeist.

Like all forms of Deism, Panendeism is a series of ideas each individual forms about the potential, humanly comprehensible attributes of God that are arrived at through the use of science and deductive reasoning. Given its Deistic nature, Panendeism is open to any reasonable ideas within the basic model it sets forth. For example, the idea of an animating spirit that gives form to reality is no less compatible with Panendeism than the idea of God as a programmer and reality as a simulation, God as a kind of cosmic or quantum mind that dreams reality into being, or a God that autonomously governs the processes of the universe much like a greater organism governs the processes of its own cells.

Given its base assumption regarding the interconnection of all things to Deity, Panendeism, by logical necessity, affirms that the universe and everything contained within it is both sacred and meaningful. Drawing from its integral posit that reality exists and unfolds within God, Panendeism clearly presents a model that is consistent with the idea of determinism shared by Albert Einstein and David Bohm. This mindful God concept strongly distinguishes Panendeism from other similar world views like Pantheism and Pandeism, which both suggest that God is currently (or always has been) material, non-volative, and without sentience - ideas that are markedly incompatible with determinism.

For those who prefer to promote or accept a series of rigid, pre-established beliefs that are presented as if they were inarguable 'truths,' Panendeism is almost certain to be as confusing as it is disappointing. It is not a silent war waged for your mind, but a facet of Deism under which freethinking individuals who share a unifying belief may identify. Panendeism is for those who are unafraid to admit that some things are and may always be unknown. It is a Deistic worldview that embraces new information and change. It is the celebration of the vast and incomprehensible complexity of reality and the quest to unravel some tiny fraction of its mysteries. It will not provide any sort of instant gratification in the form of fuel for self righteousness, a false sense of supremacy, or ego, but it is humble, honest, ever-evolving, and genuine.

Want to learn more? Check out the Panendeism Treatise.