Pessimism and Pandeism: Philipp Mainländer on the Death of God

Philipp Mainländer (1841–1876) was a German poet and philosopher, born in Offenbach, Germany. He was a disciple of Arthur Schopenhauer’s philosophy and one of the patron saints of 19th-century German pessimism (other notable figures belonging to this curious philosophical trend include Eduard von Hartmann and Julius Bahnsen). Unlike these other pessimists, though, he had quite a unique theory about why the universe came into existence. It is a theory that can be classed as a kind of pessimistic pandeism.

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Originally published at on December 14, 2020.