Pierre Teilhard de Chardin: Mystic and Visionary.

by Ian G Graham

tellihard Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955) was a Jesuit priest, philosopher and palaeontologist who insisted upon the positive value of the material world and the human body and senses. He claimed the physical cosmos and the human body are no barrier or blockage to the mystical union. For him these are vehicles of transcendence that transport us to an experience of God. In Writings in Time of War, Teilhard reports the following experience…

I felt my body, my soul, and even my spirit pass into the ethereal tint, unreal in its freshness, that caressed my eyes. Serene and iridescent, its colour bathed more than my senses; it in some way impregnated my affections and thoughts. I melted away in it, lost in strange yearning to attain some individuality vaster and simpler than mine – as though I had become pure light.

And, under the glance that fell upon me, the shell in which my heart slumbered, burst open. With pure generous love, a new energy penetrated into me – or emerged from me, which, I cannot say – that made me feel that I was as vast and as loaded with richness as the universe.

Through study and practice as a priest, philosopher and scientist Teilhard developed ideas which are just now starting to be advocated by Transhumanists.  Although in modern times lines have been drawn between religion, philosophy and science, in truth there is a relationship that exists, a binding force that he was conscious of.

The theory of evolution when united with the Christian notion of spiritual rapture would enhance technology as a lever to bring about the ultimate spiritual evolution of mankind.  For Teilhard, this is the mission of Christ.

Teilhard’s Christian beliefs also maintain a link to panpsychism, which originated as a pagan belief.  It fields the idea that matter is alive with consciousness and accommodates varying degrees of intelligence.  All material in our world is therefore “alive”, as it possesses consciousness. This is also referred to as pantheism, which denotes the Earth as a living organism.  This led Teilhard to posit his Omega Point Theory, which posits the Earth alive with living organisms attains a higher evolutionary point – merging together into one unified consciousness, a “planetized spirit.”

In order for the planet to evolve into one unified being, the merging of collective intelligence into one super-mind is what’s required of human beings – hence the advancement of modern computational technology.  Teilhard asserted technology was seen as a living thing too, containing a nervous system embraces the entire planet – maybe the internet – the way many interpret this prediction.  The “technosphere”, is the term he employed, an intelligence that grows via the contributions of knowledge to its global database.  This would be…

“…the manifestation of a kind of super-brain, capable of attaining mastery over some supersphere in the universe.”

Teilhard’s conception of a hive mind… 

With technology being the primary step in the collective evolution of the universe he claimed scientific use of man’s intelligence as imperative.  Teilhard was well aware that this was a eugenic notion, and had no problem talking about it:

“So far we have certainly allowed our race to develop at random, and we have given too little thought to the question of what medical and moral factors must replace the crude forces of natural selection should we suppress them.  In the course of the coming centuries it is indispensable that a nobly human form of eugenics, on a standard worthy of our personalities, should be discovered and developed.  Eugenics applied to individuals leads to eugenics applied to society.”

Materialistic science is way Teilhard insists to spiritual redemption.  Welding human consciousness with that of the machinery of the “technosphere” enables us to reach new spiritual heights, an unseen guiding force behind the actual operation of the machine. This translates into his concept of the spiritual superman, a “trans-human.”  We will, he writes: “…break through the material framework of time and space” and enter the “pleroma.”  {The} “pleroma” is that spiritual realm within the overarching technosphere that will allow us to recreate our past physical existence through digital simulation.” 

This is Teilhard’s conception of the rapture, the way in which we will all be “born again.”

While his “Omega Point Theory” seems like science fiction, even by today’s standards, Teilhard believed in the emergence of an egalitarian world government and everything being interconnected. Maybe not so weird. The idea of “One World” as the sought after value and attainment of “global citizenship” is advocated by neo-liberals as if it’s the holy grail of global peace and equality (such a move could be dangerous, prehaps the subject of another post).

The wonders of converging technology haven’t been fully disclosed to the public as of yet, they will be in due time.  The old social paradigms are being steadily eroded as each generation’s world-view evolves into something that would have been unthinkable to their forebears.  This is the way in which humanity “evolves.”  This process is much larger than you or me.  It is something worth thinking about for anybody who truly wants to make a difference in this world.

The mental trap of labelling Teilhard a religious nut, or on the other side of the coin, a materialistic nonbeliever doesn’t work.  There are closed minded people on both sides of this fence that need to open their minds to the bigger picture.  Our collective future depends upon our ability to grow up intellectually, to start seeing things as they truly are, and not how we want them to be.  There is important an truth to be found by reading between the lines. (Source: See further online at truthstreammedia.com The Coming Hive Mind: The Jesuit Priest Who Influenced Transhumanism By Aaron Franz The Age of Transitions First posted Friday May 1, 2009)

Some of the theories put forward by commentators who study extra-ordinary experiences, suggest that reality is a dream and we are a dream within a dream? Or maybe we are all parts of a ‘mind at large’ – a cosmic consciousness. Are we small specks woven into the fabric of meaning in a dreamed up universe. Isn’t astonishing that through all the chaos we stand out in a unique way and say… here we are. We are minds connected to many minds.


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