Saturday, February 19, 2011

PKD on The Hidden God quotes contributed by Frank Bertrand

8/22/1977 ltr to Eugene Warren -
"Simply put, even since the theophany which I experienced in March 1974 I have wondered, "If it is possible for God to manifest himself -- as he did to me -- why does he normally, which is to say virtually always, remain a "deus absconditus" a hidden God?" (Selected Letters, vol. 5, p. 92)

speech: "If You Find This World Bad, You Should See Some Of The Others" -- delivered in Sept 1977 at second Festival International de la Science-Fiction de Metz, France -
"Thus it is said that Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are revealed religions. Our God is the "deus absconditus": the hidden god. But why? Why is it necessary that we be deceived regarding the nature of our reality?" (The Shifting Realities of Philip K. Dick, 1995, p. 252)

Exegesis entry 1977 -
"He is indeed the "Deus Absconditus" -- Gnosticism explains why; He is not found in nature because he is not there, & our reasoning cannot discern him because we are occluded." (In Pursuit Of VALIS, 1991, p. 137)

Oct 1978 interview, by Joe Vitale, in The Acquarian, no. 11 -
"The whole question of religion is very melancholic. It makes me very sad really. I mean, I've read so much and still, I haven't found God. We have a "deus absconditus," a hidden God. As Plato says, "God exists but He is hard to find."


  1. Several aspects of these quotations are of interest. First, they all happen AFTER his so-called "pink beam" experience (a regrettable label, I believe). Second, that PKD is aware of the concept of "deus absconditus" and refers to it is worth further exploration and explication. Finally, the fourth quote I find quite telling, in particular its opening sentence: "The whole question of religion is very melancholic." Shades of Kierkegaard...

  2. One of the starkest and most compelling characterizations of "deus absconditus" is that given by Blaise Pascal: "...[T]hus, God being concealed, every religion that does not say that God is concealed is not true; and every religion which does not render a reason for this, is not instructive. Ours does all this: Vere tu es Deus absconditas."

    He also writes this which I find quite chilling:
    "Man is but a reed, the most frail thing in nature; but he is a thinking reed. The entire universe need not arm itself to crush him. A mist or drop of water is sufficient to kill him. But should the universe crush him, man would still be more noble than what kills him, because he knows that he dies; but the universe knows nothing of the advantage it has over him....The eternal silence of these infinite spaces frightens me." The eternal silence, indeed!

  3. Frank
    Regarding Valis,
    Too much nonsense has been published regarding PKDick drug use contributing to his "quote unquote" hallucination. Fact is other writers such as Robert Anton Wilson,JJ Hurtak even more recently Whitley Strieber reports similar experiences ...ancient Rome connection.Sirius connection.(even Toynbee )
    I think thru the powers of his imagination,and his suggestibility to outside cultural trends PKDick cracked the door open to another perception.Drugs had little to do with it.

    Dan Abella