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Early in 2016, an interesting confluence occurred. As I was kicking around Kickstarter, I happened wholly by chance to come across a newly initiated effort for a collection of fictional pieces: Pangaea II. The "II" signifies the status of being a sequel to a previous similarly themed collection. And "Pangaea" because it is set in a fictional alternate reality -- one with a fascinating premise wherein Earth's landmasses are not dispersed, but where instead all human history occurs on a continuing single supercontinent. But the thing which to me was mindblowing about this is that this Pangaea Anthology was coincidentally proceeding on Kickstarter at precisely the same time as the (ultimately equally successful) Kickstarter was plugging away for Pandeism: An Anthology.

The conceptual connection between Pandeism and Pangaea goes beyond this moment of coincidence, and beyond the fact that their names raise similar visions -- "Pan" in both meaning all; "Deism" and "Gaia" both channeling religion-laden words from ancient languages. When mankind first discovered the contours of the multiple continents, the assumption instantly arose that these were indelible features, markers of the state of the Earth from the time of its creation onward. Mountains were fixed and unchangeable. Seas might ebb and flow, but only within unchanging boundaries with reliable shorelines. But then, as the work of geologists uncovered scientific proof that the continents had drifted from different positions over millions of years, had stretched and bent and changed in shape, have been governed by tectonic features and eons of weathering, the first instinct of the religionists was to reject this geomorphic evolution. It was inconceivable to them that these land masses could possibly have come from a single great landmass with an holistic shape different from any of the modern ones, but encompassing all of them. This was Pangaea.

In much the same way, the concept of Pandeism challenges previous orthodoxies by presenting as a possibility a single underlying theological ideation whose ancient contours are not immediately apparent to those who examine the theological map of the world through the lens of later social conditioning. But, like the geomorphic principles hinting at different earthly constructions, these may be found by rational examination to be fully explanatory as to how the later, more familiar peaks and valleys of theistic doctrine arose. Both are relatively recent discoveries, in the scheme of there fields -- after thousands of years of theology and geology, Pandeism was named in 1787, and Pangaea in 1920. One might quibble that the theories of the ancients about the nature of the grand features of the physical world wasn't really 'geology' -- but then, might one not suppose the same thing about ancient theology? The going belief a thousand or twelve hundred years ago was that the Earth had edges off which one might fall. Might one fall off the edges of equally old theological models? And might one, in discovering the spherical nature of the Earth and the mobility of its once-joined continents, envision a notion of the divine of mathematical elegance equal to a sphere, and historical power equal to continents gliding over the face of the world?