Observations placeholder

Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre - Phenomenon of Man - Theramorphs

Identifier

018654

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

  One of the interesting aspects which comes out of De Chardin's observations is that there seems to be at each stage some basic design principle or function which was being made into a form.  In essence, a configuration was based on a basic function which was being made form.   In the  case of  Reptilia, it was size which was key, gigantic size, in a sense form was being created to see how it would stand against the rules of 'gravity', aerodynamics, and so on.  Just how big can you go before the rules work against you.

And in this example he provides that of the Theramorphs, one of whose surviving species is the tortoise...

Thus this was an increment that was possibly designed to introduce air breathing land based walking vertebrates.  The key here is the function of walking, as before this, the function of air breathing was introduced in the Permian era

A description of the experience

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin – Phenomenon of Man

Clumsy and deformed and rare in our museums, the Theramorphs are much less popular than the Diplodocus or the Iguanodons.  This does not prevent their taking a position of growing importance on the evological horizon.  At first regarded merely as freaks belonging exclusively to South Africa, they have now been definitively identified as the sole representatives of a complete and special stage in continental vertebrate life.

At one moment, before the Dinosaurs, before the mammals, they were the creatures that occupied and possessed all land that was not covered by the sea.  Standing squarely on their strong articulated limbs, and often provided with teeth of molar form; they might well be called the first quadrupeds to be firmly established on terra firma.  In the age in which we become aware of their presence, we find them abounding in a strange variety of forms – horned, crested, armoured – indicating (as always) a group at the end of its evolutionary career.....................

When at the Permian era … we find it now occupied only by amphibians crawling over the slime.  The amphibians – a throng of squat or serpentine creatures among which it is often difficult to distinguish adult from larval forms, skin glabrous or armoured; vertebrae tubular or in a mosaic of tiny bones.  Here again, following the general rule, we can only find an already highly differentiated world, almost coming to an end – At this level we are witnessing the emergence of an animal group from the waters in which it was nourished and formed.

The source of the experience

Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre

Concepts, symbols and science items

Symbols

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Activities

Commonsteps

References