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[im-uh-nuh nt] /ˈɪm ə nənt/
remaining within; indwelling; inherent.
Philosophy. (of a mental act) taking place within the mind of the subject and having no effect outside of it.
Compare transeunt.
Theology. (of the Deity) indwelling the universe, time, etc.
Compare transcendent (def 3).
Origin of immanent
1525-35; < Late Latin immanent- (stem of immanēns), present participle of immanēre to stay in, equivalent to im- im-1 + man(ēre) to stay + -ent- -ent; see remain
Related forms
immanence, immanency, noun
immanently, adverb
nonimmanence, noun
nonimmanency, noun
nonimmanent, adjective
nonimmanently, adverb
unimmanent, adjective
unimmanently, adverb
Can be confused
eminent, immanent, imminent.
1. innate, inborn, intrinsic.
1. extrinsic, acquired, superimposed. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for immanence
Historical Examples
  • There is nothing profound about this conception of "immanence."

    The Complex Vision John Cowper Powys
  • The other truth which Greek thought had realized was the immanence of reason in nature and in man.

    Lux Mundi Various
  • Popular poetry is all against Pantheism and quite removed from immanence.

    A Chesterton Calendar G. K. Chesterton
  • The doctrine of God's "immanence" was almost a commonplace with Browning's generation.

    Robert Browning C. H. Herford
  • It is just here that Buddhism is on the side of modern pantheism and immanence.

    Orthodoxy G. K. Chesterton
  • I am neither for immanence nor for transcendence taken alone.

    Amiel's Journal Henri-Frdric Amiel
  • immanence or transcendence—that, step by step, decides the meaning of everything else.

    Amiel's Journal Henri-Frdric Amiel
  • The Moslem, on the other hand, believes in God's unity and transcendence, but denies his immanence.

    A Tour of the Missions

    Augustus Hopkins Strong
  • Nor was his conviction of the immanence and spiritual guidance of the Deity ever divorced from his professional and public life.

  • The immanence doctrine has arisen from two main causes, the one metaphysical, the other religious.

British Dictionary definitions for immanence


existing, operating, or remaining within; inherent
of or relating to the pantheistic conception of God, as being present throughout the universe Compare transcendent (sense 3)
Derived Forms
immanence, immanency, noun
immanently, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Latin immanēre to remain in, from im- (in) + manēre to stay
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for immanence

1816; see immanent + -ence. Immanency is from 1650s.



"indwelling, inherent," 1530s, via French, from Late Latin immanens, present participle of Latin immanere "to dwell in, remain in," from assimilated form of in- "into, in, on, upon" (see in- (2)) + manere "to dwell" (see manor). Contrasted with transcendent. Related: Immanently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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