Teilhard de Chardin Quote of the Week (November 11, 2013): Cosmic Consciousness


“When we read the evidence of certain Christian mystics, or even simply what many perfectly ordinary people may tell us in confidence, we cannot but quite seriously question whether there may not be a sort of cosmic consciousness in our soul, more diffuse than our personal consciousness, more intermittent, but perfectly well-defined-a sort of feeling of the presence of all beings at the same time, so that they are not perceived as multiple and separate but as forming part of one and the same unit, at least in the future … Whether this consciousness of the universal is a reality, or whether it is the materialization of a wish, of an expectation—that is a question for the psychologists to answer, if they can. The least one may say is that many people have believed that they have experienced ‘cosmic consciousness’, so that, even if it is not an independent source through which we are introduced to a consideration of the Whole, at least it shows —since we tend to objectivize our dream-how immensely strong is our feeling of the importance of the Whole.”

Teilhard de Chardin, Pierre (2002-11-18). Christianity and Evolution (Harvest Book, Hb 276) (Kindle Locations 703-710). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Kindle Edition.

About William Ockham

I am a father of two with eclectic interests in theology, philosophy and sports. I chose the pseudonym William Ockham in honor of his contributions to philosophy, specifically Occam's Razor, and its contributions to modern scientific theory. My blog (www.teilhard.com) explores Ignatian Spirituality and the intersection of faith, science and reason through the life and writings of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (pictured above).
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7 Responses to Teilhard de Chardin Quote of the Week (November 11, 2013): Cosmic Consciousness

  1. Lynda says:

    Thinking about a cosmic consciousness and being aware of my own experiences of feeling part of something much greater is a source of freedom of spirit. The more I learn, the greater the freedom I experience and the more I realize “the importance of the Whole”. This is a magnificent quote.

    • Well put Lynda. In Western culture, I believe we are deceived to conceive of freedom as something “I can do what I want to do” or freedom from rules as opposed to the Christian/Catholic context of freedom as being authentic to yourself and they way God made you without disordered attachments such as status, wealth, power, etc. that draw us away from Unity with God and others and away from authentic freedom.

  2. Tilmer L Wright Jr says:

    Can you please tell me if the blue image of the earth and stars on this page is copyrighted or is it in the public domain? I would like to use it, but do not want to infringe upon anyone’s rights. Thank you.

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