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Archive for the ‘Pierre Teilhard De Chardin’ Category

‘Holy Chaos?’ Is Theme For Oct. 13 Event Searching For Meaning In Turbulent Times – The Transylvania Times

Posted: October 15, 2019 at 1:45 am

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Rob Field, director of Center for Spiritual Wisdom, will be the presenter for the next Sunday gathering at Elk Haven Wellness Center on Oct. 13 at 5 p.m. His topic will be Holy Chaos? Looking for Meaning In Turbulent Times.

The event is open to the public.

Today, many people are asking, Why is our society become so contentious? Why does it feel like things are falling apart? Can anything good come from all the chaos?

Drawing on wise souls, past and present, including Integral Theory founder Ken Wilber, as well as Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Field will offer his personal response to these questions.

More than anything, I want to spark the kind of conversation Id enjoy being part of, said Field. My favorite part of these gatherings is the give and take.

Elk Haven Wellness Center is located at 100 Elks Club Road, just off Park Avenue, in Brevard. Doors will open at 5 p.m. for informal conversation and light refreshments.

The presentation will begin at 5:30 p.m., with questions and conversation following at 6 p.m. The gathering will end at 6:30 p.m.

Donations will be accepted at the door, and gifts of $10 or more will be acknowledged with a glass of Green Heart organic juice or a Reason to Bake gluten-free cookie. All donations are welcome, and will help defray the costs associated with the centers Sunday series.

Further information is available at

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'Holy Chaos?' Is Theme For Oct. 13 Event Searching For Meaning In Turbulent Times - The Transylvania Times

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October 15th, 2019 at 1:45 am

Animal Doctor: Fur staining in dogs is caused by porphyrin or infection – Tulsa World

Posted: October 5, 2019 at 9:49 am

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Dear Dr. Fox: I have a small white Maltese. He is 8 years old, and in the past year, has started getting brownish red fur wherever he licks face, feet etc. I feel it is allergies, but dont know to what. Otherwise he is healthy. I do give him filtered water.

Have you any suggestions for what I can try? B.M., West Palm Beach, Florida

Dear B.M.: This is a very prevalent problem in dogs, and is especially evident in those with white coats. Red fur staining is caused by a compound called porphyrin. Porphyrins are iron-containing molecules produced when the body breaks down red blood cells. They are removed from the body primarily through feces, but are also in urine, tears and saliva.

Brown fur staining is primarily caused by an infection with the yeast Malassezia. This is the yeast that is responsible for skin and ear infections in dogs.

It is possible that your dog has both conditions. Excessive eye discharge can mean chronic eye infection or blocked tear ducts, while dental problems common in small breeds can lead to excessive salivation. Both secretions carry porphyrins that stain the fur.

Dogs with seasonal allergies may lick their paws and legs, the saliva staining the fur red. Then when brownish discoloration develops in the moist fur, the yeast infection sets in. The yeast thrives where the fur is moist, especially in the external ear canals, under the eyes and around the lower jaws, where the fur is moist from saliva and drinking.

I would advise a good grooming/clipping, and cleaning the affected areas with one part hydrogen peroxide in two parts water. Dry him well, then apply apple cider vinegar, rub it well into his fur, then wipe him semi-dry after 10 to 15 minutes. You may need someone to hold your dog and avoid getting any of these applications near the eyes.

If your dog has not had a recent wellness examination, you should take him in my fear is that he dog has chronic dental issues, and the remedy I offer will not fix the problem.

Dear Readers: Not One More Vet is an online veterinary support group. The group was founded in 2014 by Dr. Nicole McArthur. It has grown into an international group of veterinarians who come together on Facebook to laugh, cry and lend a supportive ear with their colleagues. from the groups website,

This is so very important, because the incidence of suicide in this profession is about twice that of the general population. Non-veterinarians working in animal protection, cruelty investigations and rescue work also need support; they, too, experience the burdens of empathy, frustration and despair that can come from dealing with a culture that has so little regard for nonhuman life. Compassion stress and compassion fatigue are among the personal indices of well-being.

As the late Jesuit priest Pierre Teilhard de Chardin famously wrote, We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience. By extension, dogs, cats and other sentient life forms are spiritual beings having a dog, cat or other experience, respectively. Accepting this view inspires a sense of reverential respect for all life, and a responsibility to care for all creatures great and small. This means we suffer with, and for, them when they are in need of care. Veterinarians and others in caring professions can indeed experience burnout and depression. Many even consider ending, and actually do end, their own lives an incalculable loss that support groups such as Not One More Vet can help prevent.

Fewer animals being taken into shelters, euthanized: Good news! Factors such as cultural change, an increase in spaying and neutering, pets being returned to owners and a trend toward rescue adoption have reduced the number of animals in big-city shelters that are euthanized by more than 75% since 2009. Though some no-kill shelters report being pushed beyond their capacity, shelters have become more sophisticated and collaborative. (The New York Times, 9/3)

Send all mail to or to Dr. Michael Fox in care of Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106. The volume of mail received prohibits personal replies, but questions and comments of general interest will be discussed in future columns.

Visit Dr. Foxs website at

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Animal Doctor: Fur staining in dogs is caused by porphyrin or infection - Tulsa World

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October 5th, 2019 at 9:49 am

The scent of humility – Angelus News

Posted: September 26, 2019 at 11:45 am

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According to Isaac the Syrian, a famous 7th-century bishop and theologian, a person whos genuinely humble gives off a certain scent that other people will sense and that even animals will pick up, so that wild animals, including snakes, will fall under its spell and never harm that person.

Heres his logic: A humble person, he believes, has recovered the smell of paradise and in the presence of such a person one does not feel judged and has nothing to fear, and this holds true even for animals. They feel safe around a humble person and are drawn to him or her. No wonder people like St. Francis of Assisi could talk to birds and befriend wolves.

But, beautiful as this all sounds, is this a pious fairytale or is it a rich, archetypal metaphor? I like to think its the latter, that this is a rich metaphor, and perhaps even something more. Humility, indeed, does have a smell, the smell of the earth, of the soil, and of paradise.

But how? How can a spiritual quality give off a physical scent?

Well, were psychosomatic, creatures of both body and soul. Thus, in us, the physical and the spiritual are so much part of one and the same substance that its impossible to separate them out from each other.

To say that were body and soul is like saying sugar is white and sweet and that whiteness and sweetness can never be put into separate piles. Theyre both inside the sugar. Were one substance, inseparable, body and soul, and so were always both physical and spiritual.

So, in fact, we dofeelphysical things spiritually, just as wesmellspiritual things through our physical senses. If this is true, and it is, then, yes, humility does give off a scent that can be sensed physically, and Isaac the Syrians concept is more than just a metaphor.

But its also a metaphor: The wordhumilitytakes its root in the Latin word,humus,meaning soil, ground, and earth. If one goes with this definition then the most humble person you know is the most earthy and most grounded person you know.

To be humble is to have ones feet firmly planted on the ground, to be in touch with the earth, and to carry the smell of the earth. Further still, to be humble is to take ones rightful place as a piece of the earth and not as someone or something separate from it.

The renowned mystic and scientist, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, expressed this sometimes in his prayers. During the years when, as a paleontologist he worked for long stretches in the isolated deserts of China, he would sometimes compose prayers to God in a form he called,A Mass for the World.

Speaking to God as a priest, he would identify his voice with that of the earth itself, as that place within physical creation where the earth itself, the soil of the earth, could open itself and speak to God. As a priest, he didnt speakforthe earth; he spokeasthe earth, giving it voice, in words to this effect:

Lord, God, I stand before you as a microcosm of the earth itself, to give it voice: See in my openness, the worlds openness, in my infidelity, the worlds infidelity; in my sincerity, the worlds sincerity, in my hypocrisy, the worlds hypocrisy; in my generosity, the worlds generosity; in my attentiveness, the worlds attentiveness; in my distraction, the worlds distraction; in my desire to praise you, the worlds desire to praise you; and in my self-preoccupation, the worlds forgetfulness of you. For I am of the earth, a piece of earth, and the earth opens or closes to you through my body, my soul, and my voice.

This is humility, an expression of genuine humility. Humility should never be confused, as it often is, with a wounded self-image, with an excessive reticence, with timidity and fear, or with an overly sensitive self-awareness.

Too common is the notion that a humble person is one who is self-effacing to a fault, who deflects praise (even when its deserved), who is too shy to trust opening himself or herself in intimacy, or who is so fearful or self-conscious and worried about being shamed so as to never step forward and offer his or her gifts to the community.

These can make for a gentle and self-effacing person, but because we are denigrating ourselves when to deny our own giftedness, our humility is false, and deep down we know it, and so this often makes for someone who nurses some not-so-hidden angers and is prone to being passive-aggressive.

The most humble person you know is the person whos the most grounded, that is, the person who knows shes not the center of the earth but also knows that she isnt a second-rate piece of dirt either. And that person will give off a scent that carries both the fragrance of paradise (of divine gift) as well as the smell of the earth.

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The scent of humility - Angelus News

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September 26th, 2019 at 11:45 am

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin Quotes (Author of … – Goodreads

Posted: September 9, 2019 at 2:45 pm

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Above all, trust in the slow work of God.We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay.We should like to skip the intermediate stages.We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new.And yet it is the law of all progress that it is made by passing through some stages of instability and that it may take a very long time.

And so I think it is with you;your ideas mature graduallylet them grow,let them shape themselves, without undue haste.Dont try to force them on,as though you could be today what time(that is to say, grace and circumstancesacting on your own good will)will make of you tomorrow.

Only God could say what this new spiritgradually forming within you will be.Give Our Lord the benefit of believingthat his hand is leading you,and accept the anxiety of feeling yourselfin suspense and incomplete. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

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Pierre Teilhard de Chardin Quotes (Author of ... - Goodreads

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September 9th, 2019 at 2:45 pm

34 Famous Pierre Teilhard De Chardin Quotes That Will …

Posted: June 29, 2019 at 10:53 pm

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A collection of quotes by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin on spirituality, joy, faith, love, peace, philosophy, patience, life, trust, wisdom, God and religion.

Quick Facts

Famous As:Philosopher & Jesuit Priest

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin was a renowned French philosopher, palaeontologist and geologist famous for his unique theory of evolution of man. His theory of evolution threw light on a social perspective which stated that man was evolving mentally and socially towards a spiritual unity. He was known to possess a high intellect in various fields including spirituality and science. He taught physics and chemistry in Cairo and studed theology in Hastings. His first notable work was his essay titled La Vie Cosmique (Cosmic Life) which reflected his scientific and philosophical thoughts and further went on to become a Jesuit. He wrote several essays and even gave lectures at the Catholic Institute. During his stay in China, he travelled extensively to conduct geological expeditions which helped him draw a geological map of China. He also wrote many books on spirituality before writing the most notable book of his life titled Le Phenomena Humaine. He was honoured with the Mendel Medal for his significant contributions in the field of Human Palaeontology. Here is a compilation of quotations and sayings which have been extracted from the vast sea of his work. Go through the most notable and motivational quotes and thoughts by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.

Joy is the infallible sign of the presence of God.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Our duty, as men and women, is to proceed as if limits to our ability did not exist. We are collaborators in creation.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Do not forget that the value and interest of life is not so much to do conspicuous to do ordinary things with the perception of their enormous value.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Matter is spirit moving slowly enough to be seen.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

We are one, after all, you and I, together we suffer, together exist, and forever will recreate each other.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

It doesn't matter if the water is cold or warm if you're going to have to wade through it anyway.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The future belongs to those who give the next generation reason for hope.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

We are not physical beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a physical experience.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

You have told me, O God, to believe in hell. But you have forbidden me to think...of any man as damned

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Some day, after we have mastered the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love. Then for the second time in the history of the world, we will have discovered fire.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The most telling and profound way of describing the evolution of the universe would undoubtedly be to trace the evolution of love.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

By means of all created things, without excaption, the divine assails us, penetrates us, and molds us. We imagined it as distant and inaccessible, when in fact we live steeped in its burning layers

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

By virtue of Creation, and still more the Incarnation, nothing here below is profane for those who know how to see.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

God is not remote from us. He is at the point of my pen, my (pick) shovel, my paint brush, my (sewing) needle - and my heart and thoughts.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The whole life lies in the verb seeing.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The universe as we know it is a joint product of the observer and the observed.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

We are one, after all, you and I, together we suffer, together exist and forever will recreate one another.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

He recognized with absolute certainty the empty fragility of even the noblest theorizings as compared with the definitive plenitude of the smallest fact grasped in its total, concrete reality.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Research is the highest form of adoration

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

In the end, only the truth will survive.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

You are not a human being in search of a spiritual experience. You are a spiritual being immersed in a human experience.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The most empowering relationships are those in which each partner lifts the other to a higher possession of their own being.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The farther and more deeply we penetrate into matter, by means of increasingly powerful methods, the more we are confounded by the interdependence of its parts.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

In the shadow of death may we not look back to the past, but seek in utter darkness the dawn of God.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The quintessential good and beauty in life is what each has to offer to others valuing the gesture ourselves into confluence with the Word of God.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

The world is round so that friendship may encircle it.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

It is the destiny of things real to destroy those that are artice.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Above all, trust in the slow work of God.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

There is almost a sensual longing for communion with others who have a large vision.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

I am not a human being enjoying a spiritual life, I am a spiritual being enjoying a human life.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

For in the nature of things everything that is faith must rise, and everything that rises must converge.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

As a result, man is the only successful type which has remained as a single interbreeding group or species, and has not radiated out into a number of biologically separated assemblages

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin


34 Famous Pierre Teilhard De Chardin Quotes That Will ...

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June 29th, 2019 at 10:53 pm

Trashing Teilhard | Commonweal Magazine

Posted: May 11, 2019 at 2:50 pm

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Was the Jesuit priest and scientist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin really a racist, fascist, and even genocidal opponent of human dignity? I had thought that, at least among educated Catholics, this question was almost dead, and that holdout pockets of hostility might be vanishing for good, especially after several recent popes admiringly cited Teilhards cosmic vision for its theological beauty and Eucharistic power.

But my optimism was premature. In a December 2016 article in Philosophy and Theology titled Dangerous Tendencies of Cosmic Theology: The Untold Legacy of Teilhard de Chardin, John Slattery writes that from the 1920s until his death in 1955, Teilhard de Chardin unequivocally supported racist eugenic practices, praised the possibilities of the Nazi experiments, and looked down upon those who [sic] he deemed imperfect humans. Slattery, a recent graduate of Notre Dames Department of Theology, claims that a persistent attraction to racism, fascism, and genocidal ideas explicitly lay the groundwork for Teilhards famous cosmological theology. This, he informs us, is a link which has been largely ignored in Teilhardian research.

A more recent article by the same critic in Religion Dispatches (May 2018) is entitled Pierre Teilhard de Chardins Legacy of Eugenics and Racism Cant Be Ignored. In it, Slattery hangs his case on eight stray citations from Teilhards letters and other scattered writings. Most of the quotes present what were speculative inquiries on the part of Teilhardquestions that countless other thoughtful people have asked, including many Catholicsrather than systematically developed theses for public consumption. Their style is provocative and interrogatory, not declarative. Exactly what Teilhard really meant by them is, in every single case, highly debatable.

And yet Slattery holds these excerpts out to us as undeniable evidence that Teilhards true legacy is one of hostility to Catholic affirmation of human dignity, racial justice, and concern for the disadvantaged. Still more important, however, is Slatterys claim that it was Teilhards commitment to these evils that grounds and undergirds his cosmological theology. Nothing could be more preposterous.

Slattery doesnt deny that the bulk of Teilhards religious writings are uncontroversially Christian and in tune with Catholic teaching. Yet he ignores this fact in defining what he calls Teilhards legacy. Though he surely knows that most readers will be unfamiliar with the man and his thought, he has decided to expose them first to what he considers Teilhards most sinister side. In the process he takes a thimbleful of quotes out of context, posts them on a blank background, and says nothing substantive about the remaining 99.9 percent of Teilhards work. Failing to take into account the general architecture of Teilhards thought always leads to the kinds of exaggeration and distortion that Slattery commits.

He begins by reciting the best-known of Teilhards treasurable remarks: If humanity ever captures the energy of love, it will be the second time in history that we have discovered fire. Noting that millions who tuned into the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle heard these lines recited in a moving sermon by Episcopal Bishop Michael Bruce Curry, Slattery remarks that listeners who swooned over them were unaware of the poisonous roots of Teilhards religious worldview. He proceeds to reveal the rot he finds in a package of eight passages cherry-picked from Teilhards voluminous letters and writings. I shall condense the most offensive of these below, but I want to begin my response to Slattery by summarizing what other students of Teilhards work consider to be his real legacy. Only after becoming acquainted with his core ideas can we interpret rightly what Slattery finds so offensive in Teilhards work.

Seasoned Teilhard scholars are aware of the questionable remarks he points to; but the seeming offensiveness of such comments fades into the shadows when we read them in terms of the fundamental principles guiding Teilhards scientifically informed vision of the world and God. Here are four of these fundamental principles:

The universe (as science has demonstrated) is still coming into being. Hence the world is not yet perfected. Theologically, this means that creation remains unfinished, and that humans, who are part of this universe, may contribute significantly to its making. The opportunity to participate in building the earth is a cornerstone of human dignity. (It is also a teaching of Vatican II.) The fact that our creativity can sometimes lead to monstrous outcomes does not absolve us of the obligation to improve the world and ourselves. Taking advantage of this opportunity is sometimes dangerous, but it is also essential to sustaining hope and a zest for living, Teilhard maintains. Moreover, nothing clips the wings of hope more severely than the now obsolete theological idea that the universe was completed once and for all in the beginning, and that there is little or nothing we can do to make it new.

To create is to unite. The world comes into beingand becomes newby a process of unification. Scientifically understood, the emerging cosmos becomes intelligible only by gradually bringing increasingly more complex forms of coherence out of its primordial state of diffusion and atomic dispersal. As the universe in the course of time becomes more complex, it also becomes more conscious. Theologically, this principle is implied in Christian hope as summed up in Jesus prayer that all may be one and in the Pauline expectation that everything will be brought to a head in Christ, in whom all things consist. Teilhard stated explicitly that his whole theology of nature is consistent with the expectations of the Apostle Paul and the Fourth Evangelist: Lord make us one. His true legacy lies in his rich Christian sense of a universe converging on Christ and being brought into final union in what he called God-Omega.

True union differentiates. As the creative love of God brings increasing unity to the unfinished universe, it is Gods will that the diversity of creation increases as well, including the emergence of free and unique human persons. In Christ, God seeks to become continually more incarnate in the world not via an order imposed on it, but by a differentiating, liberating, and personalizing communion with it. Many distortions of Teilhards intentions, including Slatterys, stem from a failure to understand what Teilhard means by true union. As we shall see, to miss the deeply Christian motif of differentiating union in his writings is to do him grave injustice.

The world rests on the future as its sole support. As we follow the course of cosmic history from its remote past into the future, Teilhard observes, we discover a law of recurrence in which something new, more complex, and (eventually) more conscious has always been taking shape up ahead. Scientifically speaking, we now know that subatomic elements were organized around atomic nuclei; atoms were gathered into molecules; molecules into cells; and cells into complex organisms, some of which made the leap into thought. The most important kinds of emergence can occur, however, only if the elements allow themselves to be organized around a new and higher center, one that lifts them up to a more elaborately differentiated unity. To experience true union, true being, true goodness, and true beauty, therefore, we must allow ourselveslike Abraham, the prophets, and Jesusto be grasped by the Future.

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Trashing Teilhard | Commonweal Magazine

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May 11th, 2019 at 2:50 pm

Teilhard De Chardin –

Posted: March 5, 2019 at 10:46 pm

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Editors note: As Creation magazine has been continuously published since 1978, weare publishing some of the articles from the archives for historical interest, such as this. For teaching andsharing purposes, readers are advised to supplement these historic articles with more up-to-date ones suggested in the Related Articles and Further Reading below.

By G.J. Keane

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Pierre Teilhard de Chardins most obvious claim to fame was his overwhelming acceptance of evolution, and an unquestionable passion to try to fit Christianity into it.

He was born in Auvergne, France, in 1881 and entered the Catholic Society of Jesus at 18. He spent the next three years teaching physics and chemistry at Cairo, followed by four years theological training at Hastings, England. He developed a seemingly unquenchable thirst for palaeontology and spent much of his adult life in China searching for mans evolutionary ancestors. He was involved in the excavation of the so-called Peking Man in 1929. Throughout his life he found he was unable to totally harmonize traditional Catholicism with the scientific framework of evolution, and incapable of openly flouting the orders of his superiors.

In the end he became Chardin the mystic, and his thoughts were published only after his death.

But Teilhard was also involved in the Piltdown hoax. This skull, which was later discovered by workers at the British Museum to have been made of parts of a human skull and the jaw of an orang-utan, had been chemically stained to indicate great age, and the teeth filed to resemble human teeth. A probing yet charitable analysis of Teilhards probable role in the hoax has been published by prominent evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould.1

Teilhards unquestioning acceptance of evolution, together with his passion for mysticism, led him to propose ideas which were clearly incompatible with the traditional teachings of the Catholic Church. He had entered the priesthood in 1899, only 30 years after the First Vatican Council (1870), which stated:

After having studied 10 years for the priesthood, Teilhard would have been familiar with the 1870 Catholic position against evolution. Despite this he was convinced evolution was true.

Further, he believed strongly that a church which accepted the Genesis account of Creation was wedded to an outmoded and unscientific outlook. In his framework, such a Church was out of touch with reality and would lag behind the rest of the world as it plunged into the 20th century. He felt it was vital for the church to adapt its theology to harmonise with modern evolutionary theory.3

Such a harmony became his lifes mission and the end product was his formulation of a mystical evolutionary theology.

The church, until the time of Charles Darwin, had promoted an objective creation-based view of reality. In other words, the universe is comprised of real, distinct things. Chardin sought to change this! He proposed that the universe did not consist of real things, since everything was evolving and converging towards a future goal called Omega. The only thing that must give it unity, therefore, is the spiritual or mystical realm. God must be the only unifying force. According to Teilhard, God somehow inserted himself into the evolutionary process, and Christ the force drawing everything towards the goal of Omega.

He did not accept the God of Genesis who was clearly portrayed as the Creator of all things.

De Chardin wrote:

His ideas have been the centre of much controversy within and without the Catholic Church. His most definitive work,The Phenomenon of Man (published by others after his death), contains Chardins so-called scientific treatise. It outlines all of his standard evolutionary facts and simply glosses over difficult questions.

The origin of the Earth he stated was purely accidental:

The origin of the first cell provided no problem to de Chardin. He wrote:

On the reproduction of cells, he claims that:

For the evolution of mans consciousness he proposed the concept of noogenesis. He stated:

For Teilhard, evolution is so central to truth that the word creation does not even rate inclusion in his books index. He wrote:

And where does original sin fit into Teilhards views? There is no mention of Adam, Eve, Satan or the term original sin in his book. And without original sin, there is no need of the Saviour Christ, and without a need of a Saviour, there can be no Christian Church.

De Chardin has become a cult figure to many after his death, particularly to academic evolutionists among Catholics and Anglicans. Many still believe his ideas were ahead of his time, and that his thinking will inevitably be accepted by the official teaching bodies of the Catholic Church. The reality is however that his confused speculation has only contributed to further obscuring the notion that God has revealed objective truth to man through the Holy Scriptures. Mysticism has always resulted in common sense being replaced by nonsense.

Teilhards speculative theories were not scientific, but metaphysical! They depended for plausibility upon evolution being historically true. As the credibility of evolution theory diminishes, his writings reduce to highly imaginative anti-Christian fantasy. During his lifetime Chardin was refused permission to publish his theories, and in fairness to him it must be stated that he remained obedient to his superiors.

As one Catholic theologian has pointed out: Teilhards fundamental error was to seek for something more elementary than being as the basis of his metaphysics. He thought he had found it in the concept of unification, but he was mistaken Created being is composite and oriented towards an end distinct from itself, not in so far as it is being, but in so far as it is created.12

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March 5th, 2019 at 10:46 pm

Project of a lifetime: Couple take on documentary about …

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Producer Mary Frost; co-producer Jesuit Fr. Eddie Siebert, president of Loyola Productions in Los Angeles; and cinematographer Erik Lohr, filming for the Teilhard project in China (Courtesy of Frank Frost Productions)

It wasn't until the early 1960s, when he was in studies to become a Jesuit, that Frank Frost saw his first movie. It was 1948's "Johnny Belinda." He's never forgotten it.

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"I was totally bowled over," he said. For Frost, the 10th of 13 children growing up in 1950s South Dakota and Indiana without even a television, the experience was a revelation. "I was planning on majoring in English literature, and this was to me the new literature."

It would be the start of his career as a filmmaker. Now 78, Frost and his wife, Mary, 72 (he left the Jesuits after a decade, before ordination), are working on the project of a lifetime: a documentary about the French Jesuit and paleontologist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.

"There was a warning from the Vatican in 1962 that seminaries shouldn't let students read Teilhard," recalled Frank with a chuckle. "So of course, we did." But it would be several decades before Frank really got to know the legendary priest, who died in 1955, by traveling the world in his footsteps.

"The Teilhard de Chardin Project" has taken the Frosts from France to England to China where Teilhard was essentially exiled in the 1920s for his "dangerous thinking" on science and evolution beginning with research in 2012-13 and filming in 2016. They interviewed the surviving members of Teilhard's family and visited the chateau in which he grew up. The family foundation has given the film its blessing.

In partnership with Oregon Public Broadcasting, it's set to air in 2020 on PBS.

"We often say it's several stories," said Frank, a stack of Teilhard's books, with Frank's notes from his novitiate days, nearby in their home in McLean, Virginia, where their studio is located. "Clerical Indiana Jones. 20th-century Galileo. And it's a love story."

A chance comment a decade ago about a bust of Teilhard planted the seed for the project in Frank's and Mary's heads.

"Someone said a film on religion and science would be interesting, so we very tentatively started researching," Frank said. "We tried a lot of projects that never got finished because we couldn't raise the funds. But this is close enough to our hearts that we decided to stick with it."

Director Frank Frost; Fr. Olivier Teilhard de Chardin, great nephew of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin; and co-producer Jesuit Fr. Eddie Siebert, on location in 2016 in the Auvergne region of France where Teilhard was born and raised (Courtesy of Frank Frost Productions)

A fermentable time

Movies have been in Frank's heart since the novitiate. While still in formation, he met Jesuit Fr. Patrick J. Sullivan, director of the National Catholic Office for Motion Pictures (before 1965 called the National Legion of Decency). Sullivan's influence was significant, and Frank began reviewing movies for him.

Despite Frank's desire to study film, the Jesuits sent him to get a doctorate in English but ultimately gave him the go-ahead to enroll at the University of Southern California, where he earned a doctorate in film communications.

In 1970, after he'd left the society, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops hired Frank to make films documenting poverty in the United States for their newly formed Campaign for Human Development. He worked there for eight years before starting his own company; his earliest projects included films on the jazz musician Dave Brubeck, Pope Paul VI, and Pope John Paul II's 1979 visit to the United States.

In 1935, Teilhard joined Helmut de Terra on an expedition in the Punjab region of India from October through December to map stratigraphy. This picture is identified by the Teilhard Foundation in Paris as being from that expedition.

Business was good, good enough that Frank needed help staying organized. Enter Mary Link (now Frost), six years younger and from a small Catholic family in Ohio. While Frank was studying to be a priest, she was studying English and journalism at the University of Toledo with no clear idea of what to do next.

"I got out of college in a very fermentable time," Mary said with a sly smile. She wandered about Europe, came back to the U.S. and entered a doctoral program that she quickly realized was not for her she didn't want to teach. She ended up in a reporting job with legendary Washington, D.C., newspaper woman Esther Van Wagoner Tufty, known as "The Duchess."

Mary spent a few years working for Tufty, reporting on Congress, then took a position at Congressional Quarterly, where she covered health care and justice. "I was working as a researcher the day Nixon resigned," she said, recalling that she fielded several frantic phone calls from Walter Cronkite's research assistants while he was on the air, breaking the news. "They asked me what year Nixon's mother died!"

She married and moved to Florida to live on a sailboat for a few years but returned to D.C. after the marriage ended.

"I was really kind of flailing," she said, when a friend mentioned that a local filmmaker was in need of an assistant. Was she interested? "She told Frank I'd work for free," Mary said. Frank only intended to hire her for a month, at minimum wage, so she'd have a credit to put on her rsum.

"I was rather rude to Mary, I'm sorry to say," he recalled ruefully. But then, suddenly, business was booming. His eye for filmmaking and her talent for logistics whether finding accommodations for the crew in Africa or tide tables in England were a match. "In a very short time, she made herself indispensable."

And that's been the case ever since.

Co-producer Jesuit Fr. Eddie Siebert, cinematographer Erik Lohr, Producer Mary Frost and associate producer for China, Cindy Zeng pose near a monument to the discovery of "Peking Man" at Zhoukoudian in China, where Teilhard de Chardin was part of the discovery team in 1929. (Courtesy of Frank Frost Productions)

A life together

The couple have a daughter, Claire, who lives with her husband, Zack*, and two young sons in Richmond, Virginia. They met during college, at Duke.

"The boys are a delight, and we have really enjoyed being grandparents," said Mary. "And they have turned Frank into a major Duke basketball fan, though he is always loyal to Georgetown, too!"

They also have more than 200 nieces and nephews over three generations on Frank's side of the family.

Even their spare time, which they don't have much of while working on the Teilhard Project, is taken up with movies. Frank has long been a member of SIGNIS, the international Catholic media organization affiliated with the Vatican, and has served on SIGNIS juries at major festivals in Berlin, Venice and Monte Carlo and for the Prix Italia. He's now a president of SIGNIS North America, for the United States.

Since 2000, Frank and Mary have led a National Film Retreat every summer, either on the East or West coast, with NCR film reviewer and Daughters of St. Paul Sr. Rose Pacatte. The Frosts also created, in 2009, and chair a SIGNIS jury at Filmfest DC, Washington's international film festival.

"We have had a long-standing interest in recognizing quality films," said Mary.

Eight years ago, they started the "Movie Moments of Grace" film club at their parish, Holy Trinity, near Georgetown University's campus. They show five films each season, and attendance hovers between 80 and 100 people. The films are chosen for what the couple call their "human or spiritual value."

"This is not a teaching moment," said Frank of the post-movie small group discussions, which take place over wine and cheese. "It is a discovery moment."

Jesuit Fr. Eddie Siebert films the giant rhinoceros specimen on display at the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, France. The fossils were collected by Teilhard de Chardin during his first paleontology expedition in China in 1923. (Courtesy of Frank Frost Productions)

The project of a lifetime

Frank Frost Productions has made more than 30 films, including a 10-part series called "Scandinavia," narrated by Walter Cronkite; "Bernardin," about the life and death of Cardinal Joseph Bernardin of Chicago; and "Thrse: Living on Love," about Thrse of Lisieux. Now, after nearly 40 years of working together, the couple is close to completing their most ambitious, personal project.

"If we had the money tomorrow, we'd finish in a year," Frank said, but he didn't sound discouraged. "We've never reached an obstacle we couldn't overcome. It's almost miraculous."

Jesuit Fr. Eddie Siebert, president of Loyola Productions in Los Angeles, collaborated with the Frosts on this film and watched the way they work together. He's learned a great deal about his fellow Jesuit Teilhard in the process and admires the couple's energy and "guerrilla" documentary style. He's now a co-producer on the film.

"Filmmaking is hard no matter what. You have to get the right crew, and when you add world travel and you're on a shoestring budget, you really have to use all your wits," he said. "It's remarkable to watch them. I take away this real inspiration about what it is to make films that one is passionate about, and that's pretty exciting, especially as a filmmaker, and as a Jesuit."

The appreciation goes both ways.

"Eddie has brought a Jesuit understanding of Teilhard," said Mary, "along with a much younger outlook."

Siebert, who had never traveled to China before, is anxious for viewers to come to know Teilhard the priest, the scientist, the environmentalist when the movie is complete.

"What Frank and Mary really want to do is make Teilhard accessible to people who have an interest," he said. "You don't have to have a Ph.D. in science to understand that Teilhard the man was fascinating."

[Julie Bourbon is a freelance writer based in Washington, D.C.]

* A caption in this story has been updated to clarify the identity of a person in the photo, and the name of Frank and Mary's son-in-law has been corrected.

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Launching The Year Of Teilhard by Cynthia Bourgeault The …

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A letter from Cynthia Bourgeault, January 3, 2015

Dear Wisdom Friends,

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin: Renowned scientist, theologian, writer, mystic. 1881-1955

Heres an unusual New Years resolution! Id like to propose that all of us in the Wisdom network declare 2015 The Year Of Teilhard de Chardin and take on the collective task of getting to know his work better.

Theres no specific milestone to celebrate here. This year will mark the 60th anniversary of his death, but thats probably looking in the wrong direction. The important thing is that Teilhards star is now rising powerfully on the horizon, heralding the dawn of an entirely new kind of Christian theology. Misunderstood in his own times, silenced and exiled by his Jesuit superiors, he is finally coming into his own as the most extraordinary mystical genius of our century and the linchpin connecting scientific cosmology and Christian mystical experience on a dynamic new evolutionary ground.

Teilhard is not easy, but there are very good guides out there who will ease the entry shock. My recommendation is that you begin with Ursula Kings Spirit of Fire: The Life and Vision of Teilhard de Chardin. King is probably the foremost Teilhard scholar of our times, and her very well-written biography gives a good overview of Teilhards developing vision and a useful way of keeping track of the chronology of his works. Kathleen Duffys Teilhards Mysticism is also an insightful introductory guide, introducing the major phases and themes of Teilhards work in five expanding circles. And of course, for a succinct and clear overview, you can hardly do better than Ilia Delios chapter on Teilhard in her Christ in Evolution.

From there, Id dive directly into Teilhard by way of Ursula Kings stellar anthology, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (in the Modern Spiritual Masters series, Orbis Books, 1999). Kings well-chosen selections and helpful introductory commentary will help get you up to speed as painlessly as possible. From there, go to The Heart of Matter, Teilhards magnificent spiritual autobiography, written near the end of his life, which offers a moving recapitulation of his lifelong themes as well as a reflection on his earlier work.

From there, wander as you will. Those of more devotional temperament will find his The Divine Milieu, Hymn of the Universe, and The Mass on the World moving and accessible. Those of more scientific temperament may gravitate toward Christianity and Evolution and The Future of Man. His magnum opus, The Phenomenon of Man, is notoriously challenging, but if youve worked your way up to it gradually, youll be more able to take it in stride.

Most of these volumes are easily available at and other internet websites, and Hymn of the Universe, officially out of print, is available for download.

During my upcoming Wisdom Schools this year, I will be intending to ease in some Teilhard where appropriate: particularly in our Glastonbury Ascensiontide retreat and our Advanced Wisdom School in North Carolina this Aprilso if youre signed up for either of those schools, be sure to get an early jump of the reading trajectory Ive just laid out. Ill also be introducing these materials in the some of the Communities of Practice sessions in New England later this year, and probably in an official Teilhard Wisdom School in 2016. So be sure to stay tuned.

Our duty, as men and women, is to proceed as if limits to our ability did not exist. We are collaborators in creation.

~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Im a relative newcomer to Teilhard myself, still working my way through this remarkable corpus like a neophyte spelunker in a vast crystal cave. Not surprisingly, its the kids in the Wisdom NetworkMatthew Wright, Brie Stoner, and Josh Tysingerwho seem to have the best handle on the material and are already grasping its implications for the future (their future!) and unlocking its potential in sermon, song, and drama. I mention this simply to encourage you not to be intimidated by the material, or the apparent lack of an authority figure to interpret it for you. Form a reading group, use your well-patterned lectio divina method to break open a short section of text, and dive in with your energy, your insights, and your questions. How you get there is where youll arrive.

Okay, who wants to take me up on this New Years Challenge?

Love and blessing,


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