Could God Really be Outside of his Creation?

by Joshua Tilghman on December 1, 2013

quantum entanglementIs it possible for God to really be an independent, outside observer of our universe, as some Theologians have long maintained? In religion, this view is known as transcendence. An opposing view is the idea of emmanence, which states that God is manifested in the material world. Personally I believe the philosophical concept of immanence is more correct, but I still think this religious idea falls short of helping us to understand the totality of God. I propose looking at the totality of God with the addition of another view.

What if we also considered God to be emergent? Perhaps one recent science experiment probing the reality of time also supports that we can relate to God in this way!

A brief discussion on an article I recently read about the emergence of time through quantum entanglement will shed some light on the issue.

The prevailing view on the passage of time before the twentieth century was that it was an absolute reality independent of the conscious observer. Scientists like Sir Isaac Newton believed time passes uniformly no matter what happens to us or our world. If this were the reality of time, then it would lend more credibility to the view that a God-like being independent of our own universe created everything and remains apart from it (transcendence). But many scientists of the 21st century have entertained the idea that time is an emergent phenomena that comes into existence through quantum processes. Until now, no experiments provided the evidence that this may be true. But a recent experiment conducted by Italian scientists using photons and birefringent plates provides new evidence that time is in fact emergent.

What implications might this have about God in relation to us?

Without going into the details of the experiment (which you can read more about through the link above), let’s discuss the implications of it. As the article pointed out, if time really is an emergent phenomena, an outside God-like observer of our universe would not experience time at all. To this god-like observer, the universe would appear static. In other words, nothing would happen! It would be as if the universe was empty and devoid of movement and life. Time, as an emergent phenomena, can only be experienced by an individual as an active participant from inside the universe! This is profound. It means that an outside god-like being could not participate or experience anything happening inside the universe! For me, this eradicates any possibility for the philosophical idea of transcendence. God is definitely not the anthropomorphic being completely independent of our universe as many theologians have long claimed.

If time really is an emergent phenomena that happens through quantum entanglement as the experiment suggests, God would have to be an inherent aspect of the universe itself, at least if He were going to relate to us in way. This leads credence to the idea that what we think of as God is really the essential nature behind all energy and matter, including us.

The famous mystic Eckhart Tolle has stated, “Being [God] is…deep within every form as its innermost invisible and indestructible essence. This means that it is accessible to you now as your own deepest self, your true nature.”

While I believe this to be wholeheartedly true, I want us to get a deeper revelation of God as Spirit that is expressed from Non-BEING TO BEING by also viewing God as an emergent phenomena through the very essence of life and consciousness. While the philosophy of immanence holds that God is present within his creation, it falls short because it doesn’t exactly explain how. This is where all religious philosophies fall short in explaining God. But the concept of God’s emergence through quantum processes helps fill in the gaps by explaining how God is immanent in creation.

Consider Moses’ revelation of God when God told him, I AM THAT I AM. As previously stated on this website, a better English interpretation would be “I am becoming that which I become.” In other words, God is emerging and evolving through you, moment to moment! In the Cabbalistic teachings of Rabbi David Cooper, truly, “God is a verb!”

“For in him we move, live, and have our being.”

I believe that scripture above from Acts 17:28 says it all. It is through the immanence of God’s Spirit that we live and have our BEING. But I believe it is equally as valid to reverse this scripture to state that in us the Lord lives, moves, and has His Being. It is an interchangeable symbiotic relationship manifesting from within the universe, as God is emerging from Non-BEING to BEING.

The very next scripture in Acts continues, “Forasmuch then that we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art of man’s device (Acts 17:29).

But haven’t we made an “image” of God when we think of the Supreme Spirit as an entity that stands outside of time and independent of our universe? I believe we have, because if it were true, how could we ever attain true ONENESS with God?

Meister EckhartAs the great German mystic Meister Eckhart once stated:

“The eye through which I see God is the same eye through which God sees me; my eye and God’s eye are one eye, one seeing, one knowing, one love.”

The Bible’s View of Time

“But beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day” (2 Peter 3:8).

Traditionally the above scripture has been used to explain how the creation account could reflect six thousand years instead of the literal six-day creation account. However, I believe the scripture is really reflecting the reality that within God and consciousness, time is both illusive and relative. It is an emergent phenomena depending upon the state of consciousness one is experiencing. Time gives meaning to the manifestation of spirit by allowing the soul to be evolved through experience, and, time, as an emergent phenomena, is a wonderful thing, because it also allows for the emergence of God as an experiential act of the divine essence itself!

Call me an optimist, but I even believe that as we probe further into the quantum world, science will one day reveal the true reality of God. I am not saying that we will truly ever understand this reality; there will always be faith. But perhaps science and religion will one day share more common ground the further we peer into quantum processes. Like me, I hope you can appreciate the thought that time could be an emergent phenomena, and as such, so can God’s divine essence.


{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Lance Roberts December 1, 2013 at 2:50 pm

Chuck Missler mentions this in many of his articles. It shows that many of us search for the truth .
Bless you all


Joshua Tilghman December 7, 2013 at 11:03 am

Lance, I’ll have to look more into Chuck Missler. I have some family members that think he is a great teacher.


sparks December 1, 2013 at 5:24 pm

Thanks Josh, good thinking, must be all that turkey!!


Your total individuality is your soul. It abides in the indeterminate plurality of universes.
Because it is alive, it is evolving.
Because it is outside of time, its evolution is only the time that you need to permit it to find you.
Because it is multidimensional, it contributes to the composition of an Ecclesia.
It is one and innumerable.
–Carlo Suares (Eight Propositions)


Joshua Tilghman December 7, 2013 at 11:02 am


Lol…turkey usually makes me sleepy. And yes, the soul is much grander than our limited consciousness allows us to see at this time. Blessings.


Kent December 2, 2013 at 12:11 pm

Beautiful post, Joshua. Thank you. It reflects a lot of my personal understandings. And I’ve always loved Suares’ writings, Sparks!


Joshua Tilghman December 7, 2013 at 11:01 am

Thanks for commenting Kent.


Brian December 4, 2013 at 5:06 am

I can never understand why Fundamentalist Christians are so apalled by the idea of evolution.

I think the idea of a created Universe that continues to unfold and even itself becomes creative would enhance the appeal of God as the ultimate source.

I like Eric Butterworth’s description of an omnipresent God; an infinite sphere whose circumference is nowhere and whose centre is everywhere.

If God is the ocean, then we are each a wave within that ocean.

Separation from God, the ground of our being, is like trying to remove a wave from the ocean.

I see science and introspection as disciplined attempts to discover the nature of these relationships, especially in realtion to the laws of thermodynamics.

Divine energy is the essence of my being.


Sparks December 4, 2013 at 10:34 pm

What a lovely, heartfelt post 🙂 it is like a poem!
I love your analogy of “God is the ocean”, I have always felt very close to the Divine during visits to the ocean, and felt each wave as a heartbeat or breath of God and Earth in harmony
So peaceful…

also, one of my favorite’s is “Footprints”, as so many times I personally have experienced being carried by Divine energy (Jesus in particular), that depiction if you ever have noticed is always by an ocean…the ocean of Divine Love…

As for the fundamentalist Christians, they are stuck, unmoved, any different interpretations would drive them crazy, so let them stay there, they will understand…Someday!

Science and the Divine I feel have been courting each other in a very long romance, when the marriage finally takes place, the veil will be lifted for all of humanity…

and that essence you carry will be carried by all!
Hold the Light, my friend


Joshua Tilghman December 7, 2013 at 11:00 am

Very true, Brian. I do believe science and philosophy are closing a gap that has long been too wide.


Jakob July 12, 2014 at 8:15 am

@ Brian:

Hello, I just wanted to point this out, as I thought that you may find it interesting. The concept of “an infinite sphere whose circumference is nowhere and whose centre is everywhere” is a very integral aspect of Islamic Mysticism: the concept of the Ever-Present Center of the Circle is a core idea, and through this eternal presence Communion with God is made possible.

@ Josh: Great article! I’ve only recently found your site but I have deeply enjoyed everything I’ve read so far.


anny December 9, 2013 at 10:37 am

Hi Josh,

The way I see it is that transcendence does not necessarily mean outside of us versus immanence as inside us. I think transcendence can be both at the same time.

It is totally inside me but extends outside of me as well.

It exists at the same frequencies that my personality and body do but in all other frequencies as well.

As All That Is God is both inside and outside of me. As the divine spark It is inside me.

@ Brian and Sparks, I love your comments!



Lebohang March 11, 2014 at 6:59 am

Hi Josh,do you think there are some scriptures which have been excluded from the Bible and possibly the reason behind it could be what?


Joshua Tilghman March 22, 2014 at 11:55 pm


There are many scriptures excluded from the Bible. The reason is because after many years of debating in church councils the esoteric meanings of the scriptures were lost and discarded in favor of exoteric teaching. All the mystery schools, the places where esoteric knowledge was kept, were closed down in the early 4th century. Only in secret did some organizations keep this knowledge alive.


Yeganeh October 17, 2015 at 10:43 am

I’m totally new to your site and I can just say that your articles are wonderful!!
Thank you for sharing them with the world 🙂
Reading this article, I wanted to know what do you think about panentheism?
I found it compatible with both science and spirituality, Christianity and Islam.
Just curious about what esoteric meanings of Scripture says about it.
(Here is a link I used to understand the meaning of panentheism properly: )


Joshua Tilghman December 22, 2015 at 8:34 pm


Yes, I think there is more truth in Pantheism than in Traditional Christianity. The famous Spinoza was a fierce advocate for it.


Yeganeh October 26, 2015 at 4:42 pm

Hi Joshoua,
I came back to this page after a while to see if you’ve replied to my previous comment.
Then, it seemed to me, maybe I wasn’t speaking clearly back then.
I didn’t mean to say that I agree with that video link per se. Specially its trinity part or incarnation part. It was just an example of a modern explanation of weak panentheism.
But, maybe you might ask why I’ve even brought up the question.
Well, first, I should say that even though, in exoteric translation and commentaries of Quran, a big gnostic book, they say that God is not the Spirit, Quran use the word Spirit/Ruh as a singular word usually used in the same context as the Bible.
But, that theological explanation apart, I have seen lots of Persian mystic poets representing the same idea in other form.
Actually, according to some Islamic-mystic traditions, Soul/Nafs should get passed through 7 steps (called again Nafs) to get to the point where your soul/Nafs is so purified (last step or last Nafs) that it becomes a reflection of the Spirit. Your soul doesn’t become the Spirit in Essence but it has all the features of the Spirit (which are called Adjectives/Sefaat).
Persian mystic poets present it as if God/Spirit of God is reflected into your soul as in a mirror. As your image in the mirror looks like you and does what you do, your soul at this pstage is a reflection of God. You are not God but you are God’s image!
The weak panentheist explanation agrees with this more than pantheist view which says God and univers (including humans) are the same, even in essence, or the dualistic theism which keeps God away from its creation (again including us).
So, my question remains because I still don’t know if that agrees with esoteric readings of the Bible or not.
Could you help me with this and clarify a little bit your post and say how it supports/doesn’t support the weak panentheism?
Thank you 🙂


Joshua Tilghman December 22, 2015 at 8:35 pm

Sorry it took so long to reply, Yeganeh. I was just going over all the replies to this post.


Yeganeh December 26, 2015 at 4:51 pm

Welcome back Joshua!
I got your mail with your new posts and am so glad to hear from you.
Thanks for your reply. Actually, I’ve been reading your blog since I asked those questions, and I got my answers exactly by studying the works of Spinoza. Unfortunately, I just couldn’t erase my earlier comments 😀
Now, I think what you’ve written in this post makes more sense to me than any other world view I’ve been taught.
The brilliant point of it, is that either we don’t understand this as what it is, or we understand it, and whenever we understand it completely, any other model seems to be impossible! At least, that’s how I feel about it.
Again, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.


Joshua Tilghman December 26, 2015 at 5:40 pm

Thanks, Yeganeh!


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