Definition of monism in US English:



Theology Philosophy
  • 1A theory or doctrine that denies the existence of a distinction or duality in some sphere, such as that between matter and mind, or God and the world.

    • ‘Paganism on the other hand has adopted a worldview based on monism, where duality is more often perceived as aspects of an encompassing whole.’
    • ‘His philosophy of monism claimed that the many things which appear to exist are merely a single eternal reality which he called Being.’
    • ‘The coherence theory builds in a metaphysical bias towards monism: the idea that everything we know should somehow form one massive ‘complete theory of everything’.’
    • ‘Breton embraced a similar kind of monism, arguing famously against distinctions between the real and imaginary, past and future, life and death.’
    • ‘He combined ancient classical humanism with Oriental metaphysics to ratify his own down-to-earth brand of philosophical monism.’
    1. 1.1 The doctrine that only one supreme being exists.
      Compare with pluralism
      • ‘If this step from monotheism to monism goes too far, in what ways can Judaism respond to a postmodern desire for Oneness?’
      • ‘Theism might always be about meaning, but what religion would look like if monism were asserted against theism is an open question.’


Mid 19th century: from modern Latin monismus, from Greek monos ‘single’.