I am not usually inclined to post essays written by others, much less to repost 'stuff from Wikipedia' -- much less, indeed, stuff which has been rejected and deleted from Wiki.
But sometimes Wiki screws the pooch. Sometimes Wiki tosses things of genuine use and interest and value under its dreaded mantras of original research and synthesis and such. And in this instance, a friend who inhabits that more restricted world recognized some things that would interest me, and hoped that I would find a better home for these efforts here. And, in reviewing what was salvaged prior to the hammer of deletion striking there, I find room for not simply inclusion here, but even some examination and critical evaluation, and perhaps even a just little bit of pontification all my own.
As a preface to this presentation, let us recap briefly that there exist in philosophy countless labels parsing spiritual ideas, and these include panentheism (the idea that all is within 'God' but at the same time that 'God' transcends all) and omnitheism (which is not so much concerned with deity per se as with religions, suggesting that some truth may be gleaned from all religions, each offering a path to whatever higher spiritual force actually is). And so omnientheism, lexicographically at least, summons the spectre of omnitheism augmented by the ultimate '-en' of panentheism, the syllable which distinguishes is from pantheism by in some sense restoring the notion of transcendence.
Mind you, I'll not pretend that my interest in the respective writings presented below does not grow in some part from the attempts of each author to discuss Pandeism as is applicable within their own conceptual scheme. I may disagree with their take, or at let with nuances of it, but that each made the effort preserved below meets with some degree of appreciation.
The Omnientheism of JahSun:
So firstly, we turn to the matter which Wiki found unworthy for its originality, that produced by one calling himself JahSun (who, I am told, is now forever banned, for his troubles, from the Wiki world). And JahSun writes (or, had written):
Omnientheism is a conception of the divine most closely related to panentheism. Whereas panentheism asserts that God is both immanent in the Universe and transcendent to it, and Pantheism simply equates that God is the Universe, omnientheism expands the concept further to include all possible Universes, all dimensions, and even all possible multiverses. Thus, omnientheism can be considered a type of panentheism that embraces multi-dimensionality, many-worlds interpretation, and the omniverse.
The Omnientheism of Cristorly:
As such, omnientheism embraces a modern conception of infinity which is orders of magnitude larger than many older conceptions of pan (all) and therefore deserves a separate term. Omnientheism differs from panentheism in the sense that the Universe differs from the omniverse. This is primarily a matter of scale, but to ascribe to omnientheism, one must believe that existence is bigger than our Universe. Even if one can not say for sure what that larger framework might be, it is implicit that the Universe as we know it is not everything.
It is possible to have a truly infinite conception of both God and the omniverse, believe in a finite creation that is merely much bigger than the physical Universe, embrace ideas of parallel or alternate realities, accept the notion of spiritual realms or dimensions, or any number of other divergent or sympathetic ideas, and still be basically omnientheistic. As such, the term refers not to a specific belief system as much as definition for expanded conceptions of a panentheistic nature.
There are some who feel the word pan encompasses everything--being defined as "all"--and, thus, would also include the omniverse, negating the need for this separate term. However, in common usage, panentheism (and certainly Pantheism & pandeism) are nearly always spoken of in terms of the Universe. Many people who ascribe to a purely materialist, physical Universe based worldview are considered pantheists or pandeists. The notion of omnientheism implies that the known physical Universe is not all there is.
It is possible to conceive of an Omnitheism that rejects the transcendent intelligence, creator-god aspects but still embraces the omniverse as God part. In fact, many of today's pandeists who are nearly atheistic in their rejection of any sort of personal, knowable, or actively intelligent divinity, do, in fact, embrace a conception of existence that is larger than the Universe. Physicists who accept M-Theory or the multiverse, but view the whole thing as mechanistic could fall into this category and might be called omnideists.
There are mystics who practice a form of omnientheism which could be described as omnientheogenic. This would be an autotheistic form of the philosophy. These people are not only omnientheistic, but believe that they can manifest the presence of such a divinity within themselves using various practices, having direct communion or experience of divine, as well as other aspects of the omniversal creation. This term was coined by JahSun sometime in the early 1990s, but did not appear in print until relatively recently.
The submission of Wiki editor Cristorly is actually a great deal lengthier and more involved, though it seems never to have been posted to Wiki as an article. If it was, any history of it has long since been obliterated. Instead, Cristorly wrote a lengthy essay elsewhere on the Internet (a website which exists no more), and then released it to the public domain
, 'donating' it to Wiki, which -- it again being 'original research' -- never did a thing with it. But there it was; and so, now, here it is:
GOD According to Biblical Universalist Unitarianism
I.- Biblical Universalist Unitarianism.
For the Unitarian, God is one, not three in one. Thus the Father is God and has His own Name, which is the Tetragrammaton or YHWH. Although the pronunciation of the Name has been lost, we can agree in pronouncing the sacred name as Yahweh. In Unitarianism, Jesus Christ is not God, but rather the Son of God as the same Jesus Christ time and time again declared in the New Testament. But Jesus Christ is not a simple angel. No. Jesus Christ is the Logos, the Verb, the Logos of God. This means that in his heavenly preexistence Jesus Christ was a spirit. Jesus Christ is the created being with more similarity to God. The Holy Spirit is as well the Holy Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit is to the Father the same thing as the spirit of Man is to Man. For that reason He is the Holy Spirit of God. God is Spirit (John 4:24) and this Spirit is the Holy Spirit of God. Unitarianism is clear in its simple, pure vision and without complications on the Being of God. Here there are neither mysteries nor theological subterfuges that are apt for the few; not even there are fireworks here. God is one. As simple as the number 1. For the Universalist, salvation is universal, that is to say, it includes all the created beings, in addition to all the human beings. Discipline or remedial punishment exists, and it brings as a consequence the different degrees or levels of glory when God will restore Paradise in all the Universe. The key Biblical verses to understand Universalism are: Titus 2:11; Romans 5:18; II Corinthians 5:19; Ephesians 1:9-11; Romans 11:32-36; I Timothy 2:4-6; 4:10; Colossians 1:20; John 12:32; 17:2; Galatians 3:8; and I Corinthians 15:20-28. The last verses of the Bible are not in Apocalypse, but, more exactly, they are in I Corinthians 15:20-28, which are the verses of the Great Consummation in which God will be "ALL IN ALL".
The Universalist Unitarianism is Biblical when it accepts the Bible as the Word of God, and it is governed by its divine principles. Thus we see that in Biblical Universalist Unitarianism worship is corporative as it is the worship in the New Testament. The term "church" is not one hundred percent exact, but the corporative worship is the objective of the "house churches or home churches". There are three Evangels (Galatians 2:7, and Apocalypse 14:6-7): The Evangel of the Jews, the Evangel of the Gentiles, and the Eonic Evangel. The word "eon" is equivalent to "olam" for Hebrew and "aion" for Greek, and it means age, period of time with beginning and ending. Mainly the word "aion" is badly translated in an remarkable way, and due to this bad translation a good part of the New Testament is not understood. According to our correct vision of the Evangel of the Jews and the Evangel of the Gentiles we can see that instead of using the term "churches" we can very well speak of "the Bride of the Lamb" (Jewish), and "the Body of Christ" (Gentiles).
In order to understand Biblical Universalist Unitarianism, the theological works of A. E. Knoch, and his Concordant Bible, as well as the writings of A. P. Adams and Adlai Loudy, among many others, are helpful. In order to understand corporative worship, the writings of Frank Viola in Present Testimony Ministry are very valuable thanks to their rigorous, systematic and exhaustive sense around the "house churches or home churches". Frank Viola is a disciple of the recognized Christian leader Gene Edwards, author of the Divine Romance, one of the most influential books of Christianity in the twentieth century. In Spanish there is little information on Biblical Universalist Unitarianism. I have done my best in summarizing what I have learned in these websites in English, and I present my particular vision in the book "Sovereignty of Grace."
The correct Unitarian concept is extensively presented by the Jehovah's Witnesses and the Students of the Bible, and it can be studied thoroughly in their writings. It is good to clarify that the original Students of the Bible, based solely on the teachings of Charles Taze Russell, still subsist like a group different from the Jehovah's Witnesses and the Watchtower Society. There are several groups in Internet of the Students of the Bible and websites that contribute information on this Unitarian group, that is not Universalist, because they believe in the destruction of the wicked like the Jehovah's Witnesses and the Adventists believe.
II. - Point, Sign, and Monad.
The point is the geometric unit of the Universe in the same way that the sign is the linguistic unit, and the monad is the biological unit. The monad concept is extensively used by German philosopher Leibniz. For Leibniz the monad has an entrance, but it does not have an exit. That is to say, it has a door, but it does not have a window. The correct monad, however, has an entrance and an exit, has a door and a window. The point as well as the sign and the monad are interrelated with each other. Communication is universal. All the points communicate with each other. All the signs communicate with each other like all the monads do. There is unit in the entire Universe as it is logical to suppose. The Aleph of the Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges is a point that contains all the points of the Universe. That Aleph is any point, any sign, or any monad observed by an all-seeing eye. The vision of Leibniz on the gradation that exists between the inert matter and the superior beings is valid. At the last instance, everything is soul, but with different levels or degrees of glory.
III. - Monism, Dualism and Trinitarianism.
Monism is the correct position. This cosmovision postulates that everything is one. Dualism only sees the action and the reaction, the cause and the effect, but it does not see the third term that is the continuity, the permanence. The continuity is a concept used by the Father of Semiotics C. S. Peirce. Trinitarianism conceives the reality in three terms that are one. Thus Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three persons, and the three persons are one person, who is God. Each person is independent in trinitarianism, and the three are interdependent. However, Monism speaks of a single person, who is God the Father. Monism sees the cause and the effect as well as the continuity as three elements of one only fact. It does not see them like three isolated elements, but like a unit, like a unique all. Everything has as an origin the First Cause, which is God. In Monism ignorance is the true cause of evil that in the end produces sin. Adam and Eve ate of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, not of the Tree of Good and Evil. Lack of knowledge is ignorance. God created the Devil with a clear mission in mind (Isaiah 45:7; Amos 3:6; Proverbs 16:33). In the end, the entire Universe will be reconciled with Its Creator (Colossians 1:20). Everything will return to be One (I Corinthians 15:28). Ignorance will end, and Good will reign. Trinitarianism implies a subtle form of Dualism that Monism does not conceive as valid. God and the Universe are different realities, but -when God would carry out the Reconciliation at the end of times, God and the Universe will be One. The entire Universe will be recovered. The entire Universe will be integrated in the intimate Being of God. At the present time there is a Dualism between God and the Universe, but it will not be forever. This Dualism causes evil in the created beings out of ignorance. Monism is the absolute Unity that God will carry out at the end of times in Christ Jesus through His Holy Spirit. As far as the substance or essence of God, it is not the same as that of the Universe, and in that sense there is a Dualism in the present state of reality. When God would carry out the Reconciliation of the Universe, then this Dualism or separation will be broken, and there will be a perfect unity or integration between the substance or essence of God and that of the Universe. It will be a dynamic, non-static unity. We have to see this subject from a dynamic point of view. Spinoza (Pantheism), as well as Krause (Panentheism), has a static vision of God and the Universe. We can say the same of the Theism of Thomas Aquinas. When we see everything in movement in a dynamic way, then we are speaking of Omnientheism, which is the correct term as we will see ahead. We discarded the term Omnitheism because they use it with another distorted sense in Internet, with a very confused vision of the divine reality. They try to be ecumenical, but they do not accomplish it, because their theognostic system is not valid.
IV. - Greek and Latin: Person and Energy.
The terms Theism, Pantheism, and Panentheism have their root in Greek, which is a Biblical language, and therefore it is correct. In a discretionary way we assume that these terms present the idea of a personal, individual God. However, the terms Deism, Pandeism, and Panendeism have their root in Latin, which is not a Biblical language, and therefore it is not correct. These terms present the idea of God like synonymous of Energy or Cosmic Force, because God is not personal here, He is not individual. Many Orientalist, Buddhist, Hindu, Gnostic visions and of the New Era maintain this incorrect vision of God, and for that reason they speak a lot about Energy or Cosmic Force instead of God. In some cases, they use the term of Cosmic Christ to hide their impersonal vision of God, but it continues being a form of Deism, Pandeism or Panendeism, although more sophisticated and refined by means of the use of Biblical reference badly assimilated, badly interpreted, that comes up to be a subtle mystification or distorted idealization of the figure of Jesus Christ.
V. - Idea and Matter + Space and Time + Light and Movement: Energy.
God created the Universe out of Nothing, and we must take this into account so we do not confuse God with the Universe. In order to overcome all Dualism it is pertinent to assume a Monist position on the Universe formed by three dualities that we can call idea-matter, space-time, and light-movement. This epistemic conception does not see essential difference between idea and matter, between space and time, and between light and movement. The three dualities are a single reality or manifestation or epiphany in a Universe which at the end of all accounts rests in the number 1 according to Pythagoras. Everything is fullness in the number 1. Thus we see that the Universe is extension, representation, manifestation, and revelation of the only and living God. The number 1 is plentiful in the Whole. This way the Newton's Classic or Mechanical Physics conjugates with Einstein's Theory of Relativity and the modern Quantum Physics which would come up to be the postmodern British astrophysicist Stephen Hawking's Theory of All. The unit of the Universe is validated out of Monism. The idea coexists with the matter in the same way as space coexists with time in perfect harmony, and light does its own with movement. Thus we arrive at the concept of Energy that would be the sum total of these three monadological dualities. The formula of Energy would be the following in this Monist Universe:
Energy = idea-matter + space-time + light-movement.
VI. - Archetype, Prototype, Logotype, and Type.
The archetype is the oldest model of the Universe that pre-exists in the mind of God before creating the Universe. The prototype is the first model or first creation of God, which is Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, the firstborn of Creation (John 1:14; Apocalypse 3:14; and Colossians 1:15). Logotype, which discretionarily we define as a unique and differentiated variant of the prototype, is Adam and Eve in the plane of Humankind. The types are the models that arise from the logotypes. In this case the type is all the originating Humankind from Adam and Eve. This way, predestination is in last instance to make each human being a similar being to Jesus Christ. An unprejudiced, simple reading, and without additions of Romans 8:29 clarifies greatly the predestination concept. So a careful reading of Ephesians 1:9-11 also throws a lot of light on the concept of predestination in the context of Universal Reconciliation. All this indicates to us that before the "table" existed, the archetype "table" existed in the mind of God. The following step for God was to create the first "table", which is the prototype, and soon all the other variants or differentiated entities from all of the classes of "possible tables", are logotypes or varieties of the prototype "table". All the "tables" that arise from each logotype are types of "tables", that is, copies, or repetitive models of the "logotypical tables".
Actually and from the human point of view, we can say that the first man who conceived the idea of a "table" had in his mind the archetype of the "table". Then he created the prototype, which would come up to be the first "table" on the face of Earth. But there are very many classes of "tables", which are the variant logotypes or all the possible models. For example, there are tables of one leg, two legs, three legs, four legs, etc. For example, there are tables of wood, iron, different metals, and different general characteristics. The copies of each one of these "logotypical tables" would be the types or copies of "tables".
VII. - Body, Spirit, and Soul.
Many erroneous ideas on the concepts of body, spirit, and soul exist. In Genesis 2:7 everything is clear. The body is the matter that the human being is composed of, the spirit is the blowing of life, and the union of the body and the spirit is the soul. The soul is the totality of the being. The soul is mortal, stops to exist, as Ezekiel 18:4 postulates very well. In the Concordant Bible the verse of I Thessalonians 5:23 gives the correct idea on the relation between the body, the spirit, and the soul, different to other more popular versions that give the erroneous idea that the human being is the sum total of the body, the spirit, and the soul. A lot of ignorance exists on this subject, but everything is clarified when we assume an Universalist position based on the Universal Restoration or Universal Reconciliation, and all the souls are immortal thanks to the mercy of God in Jesus Christ. The correct vision on body, spirit, and soul can be studied more thoroughly in writings of the Jehovah's Witnesses although the Witnesses are annihilationists, that is to say, they do not believe in Universal Salvation, but, in another sense, they believe in the final destruction of all the wicked. In addition, the vision of the Witnesses on the body, the spirit, and the soul does not include all its phenomena like dreams, astral journeys, and paranormal phenomena. This is necessary to have into account when reading writings of the Witnesses or the Adventists. The body is a type of highly subtle matter, and in its interaction with the spirit -which comes from God- it has the faculties of the dream, and the astral journeys that are not studied thoroughly by some Christians with sectarian religious tendencies.
VIII. - Deism, Pandeism, and Panendeism.
Three key concepts guide us with all certainty when defining the terms of Deism, Pandeism, Panendeism, Theism, Pantheism, and Panentheism (Omnientheism). These concepts are transcendence, immanence, and holism of God. When we say that God is transcendent, we mean that God is not the Universe, that His Being extends beyond the borders of Creation. Thus we see that God creates Evil, but God does not sin (Isaiah 45:7; Amos 3:6; and Proverbs 16:33). God is three times holy. Thus we see that God has His own Being, intimate, different, and separated in an absolute way of the Creation, the Universe, or His creatures. This is the substance or essence of God.
When we say that God is immanent, we mean that God is present in all the Creation as First Cause and Ultimate Cause in the same way that a poet lives in each verse of one of his poems. That is to say, immanence implies a principle of permanence, continuity, and inseparability of God in Creation. A principle of indissoluble interaction, eternal communication between God and His creatures, from the inert matter to the angels and the human beings.
When we say that God is holistic, we mean that God is Everything, that is, the sum total of His transcendence and His immanence. That way we are speaking of an absolute Monism, very different from the Dualism that many imagine with respect to God and the Universe. This absolute Monism is not a present Monism. It is a potential Monism, because in the present state of the empire of Evil in this Universe, Monism is relative. When there would not exist Evil in Creation, that is to say, when Universal Restoration of the lost Paradise would take place, when that Paradise would be recovered, then there will be an absolute Monism in which God will be "all in all" (I Corinthians 15:20-28). This is a dynamic vision that helps us to surpass Dualism in a convincing way. Assuming these definitions of transcendence, immanence, and holism, we can say that Energy or Cosmic Force in Deism is transcendent, but is neither immanent nor holistic. Thus we see that Energy or Cosmic Force in Pandeism is immanent and holistic, but it is not transcendent. However, Energy or Cosmic Force in Panendeism is immanent, transcendent, and holistic. But as in any class of Deism all this it is spoken of God as if He would be an Energy, not a Person, we see that all Deisms are incorrect.
IX. - Theism, Pantheism, and Panentheism (Omnientheism).
God, a personal and only God, in Theism is transcendent, but He is neither immanent nor holistic. Thus we see that God in Pantheism is immanent and holistic, but He is not transcendent. However, God in Panentheism is immanent, transcendent, and holistic. In other writings I have used the term Pantheism inexactly, confusing it with the term Panentheism. Now I make the explanation, because at the time of those writings I did not have the knowledge of the term Panentheism. When differentiating between Pantheism and Panentheism, we see that the correct vision is Panentheism, which we can define discretionarily as Omnientheism to differentiate it from Krause's Panentheism, which can surpass neither Dualism nor Pantheism at a full extent. Using the term Omnientheism as discretional synonymous to the correct term of Panentheism, we can grasp the correct cosmovision, the exact theognosis that clarifies to us many other truths about God and the Universe. In Omnientheism, God is transcendent, immanent and holistic, and thus we surpass Pantheism and Dualism in last instance, because Omnientheism is a dynamic vision, in movement, of God in His interaction with the Universe. In the end God will be all in all (I Corinthians 15:28). And the term Omni comes from Latin, which is appropriate to speak of the Creatures of God or the Universe, because it is better to use the Greek for God exclusively. There it is Omnientheism here and now, which is Unitarian and Universalist at the same time.
X. - GOD: YAHWEH of the Hosts.
Evil is not eternal. Evil has the purpose of knowing Good, of making us similar to God knowing the difference between Good and Evil. That is to say, Evil is not an end in itself. However, Good is really an end in itself. All this implies that free will does not exist, that would be complete freedom independent from the operation of God. What does exist is free arbitrary agency, that is, freedom of action for the aim that we were created. A stone has freedom to behave like a stone in the same way that a human being has freedom to behave as a human being, knowing Good and Evil, separating himself from Evil and seeking Good as an end in itself. Here it is pertinent to speak of the eudemonics of God, that is, the quest for the well-being and the happiness of all the beings created by Him. The true God is therefore an eudemonic God, a God of true unconditional love.
The only, true and living God has the sacred name of Yahweh (YHWH), and we can very well call Him as Yahweh of the Hosts. He is the God to which we must adore in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). At the end of times, God will restore His Kingdom in the entire Universe and there will be neither Death nor Evil (Apocalypse 21:1-4). Universal Salvation is a faithful sample of the eudemonics of God. His unconditional love (I John 4:8) is a real, practical love, truly pragmatic when we see that before restoring Good in all the Creation He makes us know Evil, to eliminate it in last instance, and thus God will be "all in all" thanks to the expiatory sacrifice of Jesus Christ in the Golgothic Cross of Calvary (II Corinthians 5:16-21; I Corinthians 15:28; and Romans 11:36).
Unlike JahSun, Cristorly seems not to have been banned from Wiki. Instead, he has died, sadly slipping the bonds of Earth on Sunday September 18, 2011, at the age of 49
. Undoubtedly Cristorly, unlike JahSun, has thusly had some chance to definitively discover which of those theological models which he wrote upon hit closest to the mark.
Both pieces are interesting and, I thing, commendable efforts. And, I find them to be complementary, not contradictory, so they may be taken as a whole approach from two angles to one problem. Cristorly's Omnientheism is, I grant, intentionally more panentheistic than JahSun's, not specifying applicabilitity to a multiplicity of Universes or Multiverses
-- but presumably it would adhere thusly, for Cristorly's transcendant theistic deity would surely still be 'the All' which would, in its relentless unitariness, include such things. Cristorly makes the odd distinction, as well, that the ideas expressed in Greek are in some sense inherently more 'correct' than those expressed in Latin
for the benefit of Greek being a 'Biblical' language
; but such things are nuance and diversion from the ultimate issues. As a Pandeist, my objection to this theory would be that it assumes capacities of the theistic entity which exceed that which is required to account for our Universe as observed
. But, unlike Wiki, I appreciate the effort. There is, and ought to be, I conclude, room in the many worlds of philosophy for a concept of Omnientheism.