Panentheism seems to be the West’s attempt to reconcile God’s transcendence with His immanence (or even omnipresence) here in His creation. This thread of philosophy and theology could be viewed as an attempt to bridge the chasm between theism and impersonal pantheism.
We recently watched a short documentary episode about panentheism. While listening to these Western philosophers, theologians, and scientists, it occurred to me that none of these had read much of the Vedic wisdom from India. The postulates they were putting forth could rather easily be found in the writings of Srila Prabhupada (1896 – 1977) widely available in the West since the early 1970s. The Krishna Consciousness movement believes that God has a supremely transcendant personality but also permeates or penetrates all of creation. (Perhaps I am wrong and these speakers had read some of the Vedic teachings on these matters and had failed to give proper credit to Indian thinkers. But, knowing the chauvinism and skepticism of Western philosophers, I doubt this.)
Very early in our blogging, we posted a few relevant essays on the nature of God. Here is one that is worth reading and thinking about.
Christians need not fear the idea that God penetrates all of creation. God does not surrender nor lose his supremely transcendant personality when He creates and then sustains the visible universe. An omnipotent God can be immanent yet also be transcendant. The fact that we cannot easily wrap our minds around this concept does not mean that God cannot do this but indicates the limits of our present human consciousness.
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