Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre - Phenomenon of Man - The creation process
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin – Phenomenon of Man
In virtue of analogies which correspond, as we shall discover later, to a deep bond of nature, the development of a phylum is strangely parallel to the successive stages undergone by an invention made by man.
We know those stages well from having seen them for about a century constantly around us. Roughly the idea first takes the shape of a theory or a provisional mechanism. Then follows a period of rapid modifications. The rough model is continually touched up and adjusted until it is practically completed. On the attainment of this stage; the new creation enters its phase of expansion and equilibrium. As regards quality, it now only undergoes minor changes; it has reached its ceiling, but quantitatively it spreads out and reaches full consistence.
It is the same story with all modern inventions, from the bicycle to the aeroplane, from photography to the cinema and radio. In just this way, the naturalist sees the curve of growth followed by the branches of life. At the outset, the phylum corresponds to the 'discovery', by groping, of a new type of organism that is both viable and advantageous. But this new type will not attain its most economical or efficient form all at once. For a certain period of time it devotes all its strength, so to speak, to groping about within itself. Try out follows try out, without being finally adopted. Then at last perfection comes within sight and from that moment the rhythm of changes slows down. The new invention, having reached the limit of its potentialities, enters its final phase of conquest.
Stranger now than its less perfected neighbours, the newly born group spreads and at the same time consolidates. It multiplies, but without further diversification. It has now entered its fully grown period and at the same time its period of stability