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Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre - Phenomenon of Man - Spirit

Identifier

000171

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

A description of the experience

Pere Teilhard de Chardin – The Phenomenon of Man

 When we probe beyond a certain degree of depth and dilution, the familiar properties of our bodies – light colour, warmth, impenetrability etc – lose their meaning.

Indeed our sensory experience turns out to be a floating condensation on a swarm of the undefinable.  Bewildering in its multiplicity and its minuteness, the substratum of the tangible universe is an unending state of disintegration as it goes downward

…It is almost as if all that surface play which charms our lives tends to disappear at deeper levels.  It is almost as if the stuff of which all stuff is made were reducible in the end to some simple and unique land of substance.

The innumerable foci which share a given volume of matter are not independent of each other.  Something holds them together.  Far from behaving as a mere inert receptacle, the space filled by their multitude operates upon it like an active centre of direction and transmission in which their plurality is organised.  We do not get what we call matter as a result of the simple aggregation and juxtaposition of atoms.  For that a mysterious identity must absorb and cement them, an influence at which our mind rebels in bewilderment at first but which in the end it must perforce accept.

The source of the experience

Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre

Concepts, symbols and science items

Symbols

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Commonsteps

References