List of pantheists

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Pantheism is the belief that the universe (or nature as the totality of everything) is identical with divinity, or that everything composes an all-encompassing, immanent God. Pantheists do not believe in a distinct personal or anthropomorphic god.


  • Nammalvar, one of the twelve Alvars.[1]
  • Vyasa, writer of Mahabharata.[2]
  • Laozi, name traditionally given to the writer of the Tao Te Ching, and considered the founder of philosophical Taoism.[3]
  • Heraclitus (c. 535 BCE–c. 475 BCE), pre-Socratic Greek philosopher, a native of the Greek city Ephesus, Ionia, on the coast of Asia Minor. He was of distinguished parentage. Little is known about his early life and education, but he regarded himself as self-taught and a pioneer of wisdom. From the lonely life he led, and still more from the riddling nature of his philosophy and his contempt for humankind in general, he was called "The Obscure" and the "Weeping Philosopher".[4]
  • Adi Shankara (788–820 CE), known for consolidating the doctrine of Advaita Vedānta.[5]
  • The Stoics are often considered pantheists for their belief that it is virtuous to maintain a will (called prohairesis) that is in accord with nature and for arguing that physical conceptions are adequate to explain the entire cosmos.[6]
  • Johannes Scotus Eriugena (c. 815–c. 877), Irish theologian, Neoplatonist philosopher, and poet.[7]
  • Amalric of Bena (died c. 1204–1207), French theologian, father of medieval pantheism, after whom the Amalricians are named.
  • Giordano Bruno (1548–1600), Italian Dominican friar, philosopher, mathematician and astronomer. He was burned at the stake for his pantheist views.[8]
  • Baruch Spinoza (1632–1677), Jewish-Dutch philosopher, has been called the "prophet"[9] and "prince"[10] of pantheism.
  • John Toland (1670–1722), an Irish rationalist philosopher and freethinker, and occasional satirist, who wrote numerous books including the Pantheisticon.
  • George Berkeley (1685–1753), an Irish philosopher whose primary achievement was the advancement of a theory he called "immaterialism" (later referred to as "subjective idealism" by others).
  • Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (1729–1781), German writer, philosopher, dramatist, publicist and art critic. His alleged confession of Spinozism led to what is known as the pantheism controversy of the 1780s.
  • Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832), German writer, artist, and politician. His body of work includes epic and lyric poetry written in a variety of metres and styles; prose and verse dramas; memoirs; an autobiography; literary and aesthetic criticism; treatises on botany, anatomy, and colour; and four novels. In addition, numerous literary and scientific fragments, and over 10,000 letters written by him are extant, as are nearly 3,000 drawings.[11]
  • Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770–1831), German philosopher, one of the creators of German Idealism.[12]
  • Ludwig van Beethoven (1770–1827), German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers. His best-known compositions include 9 symphonies, 5 concertos for piano, 32 piano sonatas, and 16 string quartets. He also composed other chamber music, choral works (including the celebrated Missa Solemnis), and songs.[13][14][15] He has been labeled a deist as well.[16]
  • Caspar David Friedrich (1774–1840), German Romantic landscape painter.[17]
  • Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling (1775–1854), German philosopher.[18]
  • Hans Christian Ørsted (1777–1851), Danish physicist and chemist who discovered that electric currents create magnetic fields.[19]
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882), American essayist, lecturer, and poet, who led the Transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century.[20]
  • Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809–1892), English poet. Tennyson praised Bruno and Spinoza on his deathbed, saying of Bruno, "His view of God is in some ways mine".[21]
  • Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862), American author, poet, philosopher, freemason, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, and leading transcendentalist.[22][23]
  • Walt Whitman (1819–1892), American poet, essayist and journalist.[24]
  • John Shertzer Hittell (1825–1901), American historian.[25]
  • Leo Tolstoy (1828–1910), Russian writer, philosophical essayist and pacifist.[26]
  • Robert G. Ingersoll (1833–1899), lawyer, Civil War veteran, political leader, orator, and notable agnostic.[27]
  • Ernst Haeckel (1834–1919), German zoologist, natural historian, and philosopher.[28]
  • Felix Klein (1849–1925), German mathematician.[29]
  • Nikola Tesla (1856–1943), Serbian American inventor, known for his discovery of AC power and his invention of radio telecommunications among many other electronic inventions. Believed in aether (opposite essentially of gravity) being the source of all existence and energy, sometimes referred to as prana.[30]
  • Gustav Mahler (1860–1911), Late-Romantic Austrian composer and one of the leading conductors of his generation.[31]
  • Vazha-Pshavela (1861–1915) Georgian poet and writer Luka Razikashvili, noted Georgian patriot and author of the highest calibre in the field of Georgian literature.
  • Claude Debussy (1862–1918), French composer.[32]
  • Carl Jung (1875–1961), Swiss psychiatrist and psychotherapist who founded analytical psychology. Jung proposed and developed the concept of the collective unconscious from a pantheistic worldview.[33][34][35]
  • Janusz Korczak (1878–1942), Polish-Jewish educator, children's author, and pediatrician.[36]
  • Albert Einstein (1879–1955), German theoretical physicist, one of the most prolific intellects in human history, identified with Spinoza's God and called his own views on God "pantheistic".[37][38] Einstein held a wavering view on pantheism and at times did not endorse it completely, making the statement in 1930, "I do not know if I can define myself as a pantheist. The problem involved is too vast for our limited minds." Instead, Einstein also frequently spoke of a more Cosmic Spirituality, a view where religion and science are partnered. Einstein rejected atheism.[39]
  • D. H. Lawrence (1885–1930), English novelist, poet, playwright, essayist, literary critic and painter.[40]
  • Robinson Jeffers (1887–1962), American poet, known for his work about the central California coast.[41]
  • Isidor Isaac Rabi (1898–1988), Galician-born American physicist and Nobel laureate, recognized in 1944 for his discovery of nuclear magnetic resonance, which is used in magnetic resonance imaging. He was also involved in the development of the cavity magnetron, which is used in microwave radar and microwave ovens.[42]
  • Leon Kelly (1901–1982), American painter and draftsman, most well known for his contributions to American Surrealism.[43]
  • Ansel Adams (1902–1984), American photographer and environmentalist.[44]
  • Alan Watts (1915–1973), British philosopher, writer, and speaker.[45]
  • Pete Seeger (1919–2014), American folk singer.[46]
  • Audrey Hepburn (1929–1993), British actress and humanitarian.[47]
  • Carl Sagan (1934–1996), American astronomer, author, and science communicator.[48][49]
  • Jose Mujica (1935–), Uruguay president.[50]
  • Alan Vega (1938–2016), American vocalist, primarily known for his work with electronic protopunk duo Suicide.[51]
  • John A. Leslie (1940–), Canadian philosopher and writer.[52]
  • Reinhold Messner (1944–), Italian mountaineer, explorer, and author.[53]
  • Paul Harrison (1945–), English journalist, author of several books and reports on environment and development, and the founder and president of the World Pantheist Movement.
  • Michio Kaku (1947–), American theoretical physicist and science communicator.[54]
  • Chris Goodall (1955–), English businessman and author.[55]
  • Mark Rylance (1960–), English actor.[56]
  • Jadav Payeng (1963–), Indian environmentalist and forestry worker.[57]
  • James Hetfield (1963–), co-founder, lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and main songwriter for the American heavy metal band Metallica.[58]


  1. ^ "Journal: Humanities, Volumes 40–44", publisher = University of Madras, p. 76 – 90
  2. ^ Alexander Duff. India and India missions. p. 68.
  3. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  4. ^ Vijay Tankha (2006). "Heraclitus of Ephesus". Ancient Greek Philosophy: Thales to Gorgias. Pearson Education India. p. 71. ISBN 9788177589399. By equating god with nature, Heraclitus could be regarded as a pantheist — everything is god.
  5. ^ "Dialogues on the Hindu Philosophy Comprising the Nyaya, the Sankhya, the Vedant ... by K. M. Banerjea", p. 434
  6. ^ Mander, William (1 January 2013). Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). Pantheism (Summer 2013 ed.).
  7. ^ Alexander Campbell Fraser "Philosophy of Theism", a collection of lectures from 1896 pg 80–82
  8. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  9. ^ Picton, J. Allanson, "Pantheism: Its Story and Significance", 1905
  10. ^ Fraser, Alexander Campbell "Philosophy of Theism", William Blackwood and Sons, 1895, p 163
  11. ^ Robert C. Holub (1986). Jost Hermand (ed.). The Romantic School and Other Essays: Heinrich Heine. Continuum International Publishing Group. p. 223. ISBN 9780826402912. Goethe was as little a deist as Fichte; for he was a pantheist.
  12. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  13. ^ Jane Stuart Smith, Betty Carlson (1995). The Gift of Music: Great Composers and Their Influence (3 ed.). Crossway. p. 62. ISBN 9780891078692. Beethoven loved the natural world, but as a pantheist who worships nature rather than the Creator. "Beethoven was not the man to bow to anyone — even God!" said David Ewen.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  14. ^ Oscar Thompson (2005). How to Understand Music. Kessinger Publishing. p. 136. ISBN 9781417992027. To begin with, Beethoven was strongly individualistic and, in a sense, harshly antisocial. He realized the stature of his own genius. In Nature only did he recognize his equal and for that reason he was a pantheist of the most ardent order.
  15. ^ T. C. W. Blanning (2008). The Triumph of Music: The Rise of Composers, Musicians and Their Art. Harvard University Press. p. 99. ISBN 9780674031043.
  16. ^ Swafford, Jan (2014). Beethoven: Anguish and Triumph. Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 50. ISBN 978-0-618-05474-9. He believed his talent came from nature—God's nature, to be sure.
  17. ^ Spivey, Nigel (2001). Enduring Creation: Art, Pain, and Fortitude. University of California Press. p. 229.
  18. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  19. ^ Joseph McCabe (1945). A Biographical Dictionary of Ancient, Medieval, and Modern Freethinkers. Haldeman-Julius Publications. Retrieved 1 July 2012. His name is still a classic in the literature of his science and he was in his time a man of high international repute. In regard to religion he was, like Goeth, a pantheist, as he shows particularly in his Aanden i Naturen (2 vols. 1849).
  20. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  21. ^ Freethought of the Day, 6 August 2006, Alfred Tennyson Archived 3 December 2012 at
  22. ^ Howe, Daniel Walker, What Hath God Wrought: The Transformation of America, 1815–1848. ISBN 978-0-19-507894-7, p. 623.
  23. ^ Harding and Bode, eds., The Correspondence of Henry David Thoreau, 294. "I was born to be a pantheist."
  24. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  25. ^ Hittell, John (1857). A Plea For Pantheism. C. Blanchard.
  26. ^ Rancour-Laferriere, Daniel (2007). Tolstoy's Quest for God. New Brunswick and London: Transaction Publishers. p. 177.
  27. ^ "I am a pantheist" Interviews, Robert G. Ingersoll, p. 246.
  28. ^ Allison, Lincoln (1991). Ecology and Utility: The Philosophical Dilemmas of Planetary Management. Rutherford, Madison, and Teaneck: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press. p. 28. ISBN 0-8386-3490-7. Haeckel's revival of Pantheism is a neat and attractive trick which portrays man as ascending from the swamp, rather than descending from the heavens. But God was already in the swamp, as he is in us.
  29. ^ Silvan S. Schweber (2000). "3". In the Shadow of the Bomb: Bethe, Oppenheimer, and the Moral Responsibility of the Scientist. Princeton University Press. p. 86. ISBN 9780691049892. There is another thread that tied Felix Klein to Wilhelm von Humboldt: his belief in a preestablished harmony. With Klein and his fellow mathematicians, the Leibnizian preestablished harmony became more specific. It became a preestablished harmony between physics and mathematics and the foundation of their pantheistic faith.
  30. ^ "Nikola Tesla Physics: WSM Explains Nikola Tesla Inventions. Pictures Nikola Tesla Inventions". Retrieved 25 May 2016.
  31. ^ Henry-Louis de La Grange (1995). "May–August 1906". Gustav Mahler: Volume 3. Vienna: Triumph and Disillusion (1904–1907). Oxford University Press. p. 455. ISBN 9780193151604. His pantheistic beliefs made him see the manifestations of God's will everywhere, and sensed its 'miracles and secrets ... and contemplated them with the deep respect and touching astonishment of a child'.
  32. ^ Léon Vallas (1933). Claude Debussy: His Life and Works. Oxford University Press, H. Milford. p. 225. He made a pantheistic profession of faith: I do not practise religion in accordance with the sacred rites. I have made mysterious Nature my religion. I do not believe that a man is any nearer to God for being clad in priestly garments, nor that one place in a town is better adapted to meditation than another. When I gaze at a sunset sky and spend hours contemplating its marvelous ever-changing beauty, an extraordinary emotion overwhelms me. Nature in all its vastness is truthfully reflected in my sincere though feeble soul. Around me are the trees stretching up their branches to the skies, the perfumed flowers gladdening the meadow, the gentle grass-carpetted earth, ... and my hands unconsciously assume an attitude of adoration. ... To feel the supreme and moving beauty of the spectacle to which Nature invites her ephemeral guests! ... that is what I call prayer.
  33. ^ Andrew Reid Fuller, Psychology and Religion: Eight Points of View, p. 111, "Jungian pantheism"
  34. ^ Spencer, John, "New Heavens, New Earth, 2002, p 25 "It was from this pantheistic world-view that the famous psychologist Carl Jung developed his notion of a “collective unconscious,”"
  35. ^ Kay, William K. (1997). "Jung and World Religions". Journal of Beliefs & Values. 18: 109–112. doi:10.1080/1361767970180112.
  36. ^ Adir Cohen (1994). The Gate of Light: Janusz Korczak, the Educator and Writer Who Overcame the Holocaust. Fairleigh Dickinson Univ Press. p. 75. ISBN 978-0-8386-3523-0. Korczak's God is a pantheistic one, embracing the entire world.
  37. ^ Einstein, Albert "Gelegentliches", Soncino Gesellschaft, Berlin, 1929, p. 9, ""This firm belief, a belief bound up with a deep feeling, in a superior mind that reveals itself in the world of experience, represents my conception of God. In common parlance this may be described as "pantheistic" (Spinoza)."
  38. ^ Isaacson, Walter (2008). Einstein: His Life and Universe. New York: Simon and Schuster, pp. 388–389. Reported by The New York Times 25 April 1929 under the headline "Einstein believes in 'Spinoza's God'"
  39. ^ G. S. Viereck, Glimpses of the Great (Macauley, New York, 1930) p. 372-373.
  40. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  41. ^ Levine, Michael P.; 1994; Pantheism: A Non-theistic Concept of Deity; Routledge, 1994; ISBN 0-203-01477-4, ISBN 978-0-203-01477-6
  42. ^ John S. Rigden (2000). Rabi, Scientist and Citizen. Harvard University Press. p. 229. ISBN 9780674004351. Rabi is deeply religious. Eschewing religious practices, and an anthropomorphic concept of God, Rabi has what Einstein referred to as a "cosmic religious feeling" — a religious sense that transcends dogma and institutions.
  43. ^ Sawin, Martica (2009). Leon Kelly: An American Surrealist. New York City: Francis Naumann Fine Art. p. 20. ISBN 9780980055610. 'My father was a pantheist, if anything,' his daughter Paula said.
  44. ^ "We are now sufficiently advanced to consider resources other than materialistic, but they are tenuous, intangible, and vulnerable to misapplication. They are, in fact, the symbols of spiritual life – a vast impersonal pantheism – transcending the confused myths and prescriptions that are presumed to clarify ethical and moral conduct. The clear realities of nature seen with the inner eye of the spirit reveal the ultimate echo of God. ..." – Adams, Ansel (1950). My Camera in the National Parks. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. p. 97. Archived from the original on 11 July 2012. Retrieved 30 June 2009.
  45. ^ "As an unabashed pantheist I am naturally a full-blooded transubstantiationist, knowing full well that the ground wheat of bread and crushed grapes of wine are the body and blood of Christ, the Anointed One, or olive-oiled man who is so slippery that he has no hangups." – Watts, Alan (2007). In My Own Way: An Autobiography. New World Library. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-57731-584-1. Retrieved 30 June 2009.
  46. ^ Wendy Schuman. "Pete Seeger's Session". Beliefnet, Inc. Retrieved 16 August 2013. I feel most spiritual when I'm out in the woods. I feel part of nature. Or looking up at the stars. [I used to say] I was an atheist. Now I say, it's all according to your definition of God. According to my definition of God, I'm not an atheist. Because I think God is everything. Whenever I open my eyes I'm looking at God. Whenever I'm listening to something I'm listening to God.
  47. ^ Paris, Barry (2001). Audrey Hepburn. New York City: Berkley Books. ISBN 978-1-101-12778-0.
  48. ^ Sagan, Carl (1980) [Originally published 1979]. Broca's Brain: Reflections on the Romance of Science (Reprint ed.). New York: Ballantine Books. p. 330. ISBN 978-0-345-33689-7. LCCN 78021810. OCLC 428008204. Some people think God is an outsized, light-skinned male with a long white beard, sitting on a throne somewhere up there in the sky, busily tallying the fall of every sparrow. Others—for example Baruch Spinoza and Albert Einstein—considered God to be essentially the sum total of the physical laws which describe the universe. I do not know of any compelling evidence for anthropomorphic patriarchs controlling human destiny from some hidden celestial vantage point, but it would be madness to deny the existence of physical laws.
  49. ^ Margulis, Lynn; Sagan, Dorion (2007). Dazzle Gradually: Reflections on the Nature of Nature. White River Junction: Chelsea Green Publishing Company. p. 14. ISBN 978-1-933392-31-8. My father believed in the God of Spinoza and Einstein, God not behind nature but as nature, equivalent to it.
  50. ^ Montevideo Portal (7 October 2013). Montevideo Portal "Biografía novelada" Check |url= value (help). Commandant Facundo tells about the life of Jose 'Pepe' Mujica and his exceptional path: from playful and working child, to revolted and in love young, from fighter and political militant to pantheist, earth-lover farmer." (Original Spanish: "Comandante Facundo narra la vida de José Pepe Mujica y su trayectoria excepcional: de niño travieso y trabajador, a joven rebelde y enamorado; de combatiente y militante político, a panteísta cultivador amante de la tierra.)
  51. ^ Paul Lester (10 October 2008). "Suicide: How the godfathers of punk kept the faith". The Jewish Chronicle. Vega is similarly ambivalent. He alludes to the "miraculous" nature of his career with Suicide and fateful meeting with Rev, begging the question – does he believe in a higher power? "I distrust the name ‘God' but, yes, I do believe in a higher power," he says. He adds that he shares the rationalist stance of Spinoza, the 17th-century Jewish philosopher and "pantheist theologian". "God is in all of us," he says, before deciding: "There is an immense power. There has to be."
  52. ^ Sweetman, Brendan (2003). "Infinite Minds: A Philosophical Cosmology". International Philosophical Quarterly. 42 (2): 250–252.
  53. ^ Messner, Reinhold (2014). My Life at the Limit. Translated by Carruthers, Tim. Seattle: Mountaineers Books. ISBN 978-1-59485-853-6. I didn't become a Tibetan Buddhist; I remained a pantheist.
  54. ^ Robby Berman (15 February 2018). "Michio Kaku believes in God, if not that God". Retrieved 29 July 2020. One god is a personal god, the god that you pray to, the god that smites the Philistines, the god that walks on water. That's the first god. But there's another god, and that's the god of Spinoza. That's the god of beauty, harmony, simplicity.
  55. ^ Terence Handley MacMath (1 September 2010). "Interview: Chris Goodall, economist and author". Retrieved 29 July 2020. I don′t pray in the conventional sense any more, but try to replace my lack of prayer with a sense of awe in God and that Spirit all around us, trying to be receptive to God in everything.
  56. ^
  57. ^ Julie McCarthy (26 December 2017). "A Lifetime Of Planting Trees On A Remote River Island: Meet India's Forest Man". Retrieved 29 July 2020. I see God in nature. Nature is God. It gives me inspiration. It gives me power … As long as it survives, I survive.
  58. ^ Feyyaz Ustaer (17 January 2017). "Metallica's James Hetfield Reveals: Does He Believe In God?". Retrieved 5 August 2020. I believe in a higher power, yes. I don′t know … he, she, it … whatever … I see it everywhere. It is everything to me.

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