Physitheism  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Physitheism is the attribution of a physical form and attributes to deities, a practice associated with the ancient Greeks and to a lesser extent the Romans. In modern Jewish and Christian theology the Abrahamic God is held to be a transcendent spirit with no body parts. However, a vestige of physitheism is apparent in certain passages of the Hebrew Bible such as Exodus 33:23 where God tells Moses, "And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen."

God is also described in a manner similar to a physical person in Genesis 3:8, "And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden." Such apparently Physitheistic verses are a matter of controversy; the early followers of Gnosticism considered them evidence that the Judeo-Christian god was in fact an imperfect demiurge, wholly separate from the higher, transcendental God.





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Physitheism" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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