Charles Hodge on Pantheism

Relevance for today:  basically the same as Hinduism or New Age (connection to Alice Bailey, Lucis Trust).

My pagination is from the 2011 Hendrickson Reprint, vol. 1. These theses can double as both explanation and expose.

  1. Preclude the idea of creation, as the Infinite, which is eternal, could be either matter or spirit or both (301).
  2. Denies the personality of God (302).  “Personality as well as consciousness implies a distinction between self and the Not Self.”
  3. Man is not an individual subsistence or person, but only a moment in the life of Geist.
  4. As man is “only a mode of God’s existence, his acts are the acts of God, and as the acts of God are necessary, so are man’s.  This means no freedom of choice (303).
  5. It deifies evil (307ff).  Here Hodge quotes (but does not translate) some German pantheist.  He then remarks, “Such a sentence as the foregoing has never been written in English, and, we trust, never will be.”  If God be everything, and if there be a Satan, God must be Satan.
  6. As it denies the distinction between virtue and vice, only power in religion is left (314; here Hodge is speaking of Hindu pantheism).
  7. It renders rational religion impossible as it denies that the Supreme Being can be a person, and denies the distinction between subject and objecct (338).

 

 

About J. B. Aitken

Interests include patristics, the role of the soul in the human person, analytic theology, Reformed Scholasticism, Medievalism, Substance Metaphysics
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