Contrasted with atheism, pantheism is a theistic philosophy, utilizing divinity for its explanatory power. Assuming theism and following Spinoza, in my monistic ontology, everything that exists is in the class of substance. If God exists outside that class, then the union of substance and God is greater than either, a contradiction. Therefore, everything that exists is included in God (and vice versa), which is pantheism. Monotheism requires a dualistic ontology, which is more complicated than is strictly necessary, and therefore, undesirable from a human perspective (because of the principle of Occam's razor, that the simpler explanation is the better of two otherwise equal ones).

A monotheist might object that pantheism appears indistinguishable from atheism. Saying that God is everywhere might be equivalent to saying that God is nowhere. That is not correct. Atheism lacks the inherrent divinity of pantheism.

An atheist might object that there is no evidence of the existence of God in any aspect of things that can be demonstrated to exist. That is not correct. If atheism is correct, continued exsitence of human beings would be illogical (because there is no algorithmic basis for goal setting). Yet humans generally choose to live. The reason is the divine aspect of reality. John Lennon said it best: all you need is love. However, Tolstoy's Anna Karenina observed that if the love isn't there, how is one to obtain it? "One can't order it." In such a case, one is advised to pause and look deeper within one's self and hope that one doesn't come up empty. It is the irrational love obtained from within that is the evidence of the existence of God. Following, again, John Lennon, "in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make."

Thus pantheism relates love to divinity, the non-algorithmic attribute that distinguishes the pantheistic universe from the atheistic one. Pantheism (along with other theisms) explains the otherwise-irrational decision of the philosopher to continue to live. "Philosophy" means literally love of wisdom.

This hand-crafted HTML file was created January 10, 2002, by Rick Wagner, and last updated August 18, 2010 by Rick Wagner.
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