Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre - Phenomenon of Man - The Great Work - patterns
Type of Spiritual Experience
Species development within an increment follows a pattern
Analogously, it is like the first invention of the air-plane. Initially, the very first air-planes could hardly fly, they crashed often, there were quite a few disasters and overall it was a period of one off designs - trial and error design. Once the basic form had been discovered that did fly consistently well, however, a central robust design was established. Two wings of a specific aerodynamic shape, wheels which hung down on struts with which to land, a tail to stabilise flight, a cockpit with instrument panel, and a fuselage with a bird like shape. The whole thing powered by one or more engines, initially propeller driven and then jet driven. From this basic stable design have come a vast number of sub-species – the jumbo jet, the fighter aircraft, the bomber, the spitfire, the jump jet, the luxury passenger jet, the shuttle aircraft, and so on. As oil runs out, we may see the decline of the air-plane and the introduction of, for example, large gliders or balloons. The air-plane as we know it now will become 'extinct'.
One of the examples De Chardin provides related to the tree of life is the reptiles of the Secondary era. At a certain point in the secondary era – the one with which we may be familiar because it has been described in some detail by paleontologists – the design had actually reached its third stage and was heading towards the final fourth stage – thus lots and lots of variants of the basic working design.
A description of the experience
Pere Teilhard de Chardin – Phenomenon of Man
…..The ramifications are already far advanced or even nearing the end of their fluorescence.... by and large the whole group represents nothing less than an immense and perhaps complex biota. The herbivorous forms are often gigantic. Their satellites and enemies, the carnivores are heavy or leaping types. Besides there are flying types, with their bat like membranes or their birds feathers. Lastly swimming types, as stream lined as dolphins.
Dinosaurions, Pterosaurians, Ichthyosaurians, Crocodilia and many other monsters less familiar to the layman in paleontology. Amongst these the zoological distances between the various forms are considerably greater than between the various orders of mammals