alt. 1 (context philosophy religion English) A doctrine that the universe subsists within God, but that God nevertheless transcends or has some existence separate from the universe. 2 (context rare English) A belief in all gods. n. 1 (context philosophy religion English) A doctrine that the universe subsists within God, but that God nevertheless transcends or has some existence separate from the universe. 2 (context rare English) A belief in all gods.
Panentheism (meaning "all-in-God", from the Ancient Greekpân, "all", en, "in" and Theós, "God") is the belief that the divine interpenetrates every part of the universe and extends, timelessly (and, presumably, spacelessly) beyond it. Unlike pantheism, which holds that the divine and the universe are identical, panentheism maintains a distinction between the divine and non-divine and the significance of both.
In pantheism, the universe and everything included in it is equal to the Divine, but in panentheism, the universe and the divine are not ontologically equivalent. God is viewed as the soul of the universe, the universal spirit present everywhere, in everything and everyone, at all times. Some versions suggest that the universe is nothing more than the manifestation of God. In some forms of panentheism, the cosmos exists within God, who in turn " transcends", "pervades" or is "in" the cosmos. While pantheism asserts that 'All is God', panentheism goes further to claim that God is greater than the universe. In addition, some forms indicate that the universe is contained within God, like in the concept of Tzimtzum. Much Hindu thought is highly characterized by panentheism and pantheism. Hasidic Judaism merges the elite ideal of nullification to paradoxical transcendent Divine Panentheism, through intellectual articulation of inner dimensions of Kabbalah, with the populist emphasis on the panentheistic Divine immanence in everything.
With the exception of the Mustaali and Nizari Ismaili, most of other Ismaili Shi'a Muslims believe in panentheism, meaning God is both reality and transcendent of it. While the figure of the Godhead is beyond this universe, the Godhead has created reality, which is the Imam himself. All living beings exist in this reality, and to understand the Imam is to understand reality and truth and thereby gain salvation.