20th Century Philosophy

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
1881 - 1955

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Pierre Teilhard De Chardin : Writings
Spirit of FireSpirit of Fire : The Life and Vision of Teilhard De Chardin by Ursula King

A variety of educational and broader cultural and political questions are addressed in this book, such as: What are educational practices about? Where do "schooling" and "learning" take place? What is critical pedagogy? In posing these questions, the author argues that pedagogy is central to any struggle for democracy and that cultural workers must address with specificity the context in which people translate private concerns into public issues. Hernandez connects forms of learning, knowledge production, and subjectivity formation to processes of both personal and social transformation. She offers her own experience with the Argentine Mother's Movement as a case study in feminist intellectual alignment with cultural workers...  

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Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and the Phenomenon of Man

From the Mathematics Department at Fairfield University, CT.

Excerpt:

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S. J. was a Jesuit paleontologist who attempted to interpret the findings of modern science in the light of the Christian message. The world has been baffled and amazed by the developments of nuclear energy, space travel, and many other inventions of modern science. People read in Teilhard a message of hope and optimism and his work was perhaps even more influential outside the Catholic Church than within it.

Teilhard's influence and the exceptional response his work has called forth from all quarters, as well as the controversy that it has engendered, are explained principally by his inquiry into the human phenomenon. In Teilhard's eyes the human species constitutes the thrust of cosmic evolution and is the key for understanding the universe. This fact leads him to understand the Christian phenomenon in an evolutionary context, as the ultimate source in God's plan of that human energy needed for evolution's success...

Toward a Science Charged with Faith

Chapter 5 of God and Science by Charles P. Henderson.

Excerpt:

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955) stands among the very few leaders of thought in this century to integrate pure scientific research with a religious vocation. At an early point in his career this paleontologist and Jesuit priest made it his personal mission to reconstruct the most basic Christian doctrines from the perspectives of science and, at the same time, to reconstruct science from the perspectives of faith. He would do this by overthrowing all the barriers that had been erected between science and religion in the past one hundred years. He would take the lessons learned from the study of nature as the foundation on which to reconstruct the Christian faith. He would single-handedly remake all the dogmas of his own Catholic Church, and he would at the same time remake the world of modern science on the model suggested by his personal experience of God...

 

Aristotle, Teilhard de Chardin, and the Explanation of the World

An essay by Dr. A. B. Kelly in philosophical theology concerning the work of Teilhard de Chardin and Nicolai Hartmann. (First published in Quodlibet Journal: Volume 2 Number 1, January 2000)

Excerpt:

Nicolai Hartmann, (1882-1950) is a Latvian Philosopher. He was a contemporary of Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955).  Both men were phenomenologists, that is, they sought to understand and describe the phenomena which they encountered. Their perspectives on the world, however, were quite different. Both studied mankind, but while Teilhard sought to situate mankind within the broad sweep of cosmogenesis - the evolution of the cosmos from its initiation - and from a religious perspective, Hartmann studied mankind at much closer quarters and from an atheistic perspective. Despite this bias, Hartmann focused particularly on understanding man's spiritual nature. Sydney Hook, the philosopher who reviewed Hartmann's 'Ethics', recognized Hartmann as the greatest analyst, since Aristotle, of the ideals by which men live, and for which they live...

 

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Short essay by Anodea Judith.

Excerpt:

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin was a visionary French Jesuit, paleontologist, biologist, and philosopher, who spent the bulk of his life trying to integrate religious experience with natural science, most specifically Christian theology with theories of evolution. In this endeavor he became absolutely enthralled with the possibilities for humankind, which he saw as heading for an exciting convergence of systems, an "Omega point" where the coalescence of consciousness will lead us to a new state of peace and planetary unity. Long before ecology was fashionable, he saw this unity he saw as being based intrinsically upon the spirit of the Earth:

"The Age of Nations is past. The task before us now, if we would not perish, is to build the Earth"...

 

Cyberspace and the Dream of Teilhard de Chardin 

Essay by John R. Mabry.

Excerpt:

Progressive Catholics have long cherished Teilhard de Chardin and his unique and mystical vision, and for those of us who have only recently discovered the New Cosmology, his discovery is as great an epiphany as the encountering of Hildegard, Julian of Norwich, or any of the other mystics who testify to Divine immanence. Teilhard was a man possessed of rare vision who was capable of remythologizing his faith to fit the "facts" that his scientific studies convinced him of. His was not a God "out there" who disapproved of humans hypothesizing about or even tampering with the Creation. His God was an organic entity who lived and breathed the life and breath of the Creation, a Creator who was simultaneously giving birth to and being born from the magnificent organism of the universe. His views are profoundly Creation-centered, and are worthy of our present consideration not only because his thought was ahead of its time, but because his predictions; which seemed so unlikely in his own time; are coming to pass unnoticed beneath our very noses... 

A Globe, Clothing Itself with a Brain

Essay by Jennifer Cobb Kreisberg.

Excerpt:

He has inspired Al Gore and Mario Cuomo. Cyberbard John Perry Barlow finds him richly prescient. Nobel laureate Christian de Duve claims his vision helps us find meaning in the cosmos. Even Marshall McLuhan cited his "lyrical testimony" when formulating his emerging global-village vision. Whom is this eclectic group celebrating? An obscure Jesuit priest and paleontologist named Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, whose quirky philosophy points, oddly, right into cyberspace.

Teilhard de Chardin finds allies among those searching for grains of spiritual truth in a secular universe. As Mario Cuomo put it, "Teilhard made negativism a sin. He taught us how the whole universe - even pain and imperfection - is sacred." Marshall McLuhan turned to Teilhard as a source of divine insight in The Gutenberg Galaxy, his classic analysis of Western culture's descent into a profane world. Al Gore, in his book Earth in the Balance, argues that Teilhard helps us understand the importance of faith in the future. "Armed with such faith," Gore writes, "we might find it possible to resanctify the earth, identify it as God's creation, and accept our responsibility to protect and defend it"...

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin: "All That Rises, Coverges" 

This site is an approach to the thought and ideas of Teilhard de Chardin, under the format of an article by Maria Luiza Glycerio.

Site Includes:

 

Noogenesis

Site by Duen Hsi Yen, inspired by the word coined by Teilhard de Chardin. It contains an English article by Maria Luiza Glycerio on Teilhard with other texts and photos.

 

Teilhard de Chardin Study Group

This group was created among the Academy of Caen (Normandy, France) and was thereafter open to all person interested in Teilhard de Chardin's work. Members have various professional activities and cultural background (science, philosophy or faith).

The objectives are the following :

  • to study the work of Teilhard de Chardin under the lights of recent development of scientific knowledge,
  • to assess how Teilhard de Chardin's work can help us to reach a consistent global view of the Universe and of our presence in it,
  • to evaluate how far his work can get us a clearer view to the expected future and the way to follow,
  • to make people meet, actually or on the net, and join the interdisciplinary reflection on the subject.

 

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