Our Brother

Our brother whose heart be heaven

Hallowed be thy pain

Our kingdom come

Our will be one

On earth as it is in heaven

Live us today, within our head

So to give up our trespasses

Seeing you in those who are without us

And lead us not to the isolation

Which delivers each to evil

For ours be thy kingdom, thy power and thy glory

Now and for ever

Thinking Faith and Teilhard de Chardin

Teilhard de Chardin

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To commemorate the 200th anniversary of the restoration of the Society of Jesus by Pope Pius VII, the Jesuits in Britain have produced a special calendar for 2014. The calendar features illustrations of 12 Jesuits from across the world who have been active in various ministries over the past 200 years.

The first of these Jesuit to be featured is Teilhard de Chardin.  Fr. Chris Corbally, SJ of the Vatican Observatory wrote an outstanding piece on the legacy of Teilhard de Chardin as part of the calendar.  You can read the entire article here but set forth below is an extended excerpt:

The account of the universe that modern astronomy unfolds, from the initial, unimaginably intense radiation in the Big Bang to the emergence of primordial hydrogen and helium, and thence via nuclear synthesis in stars to all the elements we find around us on Earth, makes a fascinating…

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Lonely as a cloud?

Clouds we be, a boundless sea

Aswirl – a world unchained and free

Seek not the edge, that harbour bar

For dissolvēd we resolvēd are

 

Wordsworth wrote of wandering “lonely as a cloud”. I wonder if the ego is an artificial construct, which keeps us separate and boundaried. Clouds have inchoate edges and are constantly changing, intermingling with surrounding cooler and warmer air. Since constantly in touch and part of the rest of nature I suspect they wouldn’t “feel” alone – in the way that we as a species can and do with our locked in syndrome.

 

 

Encore Presentation of On Being’s Show on Teilhard de Chardin

Interesting that some research is showing that consciousness may be a “state” of matter (like liquid, solid etc). How far in advance was de Chardin with his theories of evolution of consciousness.

Teilhard de Chardin

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NPR is broadcasting an encore presentation of a 2012 radio show on Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.  This show is an excellent overview of some of the ideas of Teilhard de Chardin and his relevance today.  It contains interviews with Ursula King, David Sloan Wilson and Andrew Revkin.  Please check on the links below for copies of transcripts, podcasts and radio stations airing the show.

On Being Teilhard de Chardin Main Page
Podcast of Show
Transcript of Show
Interview with Ursula King
Interview with David Sloan Wilson
Interview with Andrew Revkin
NPR Stations and Broadcast Times

 

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Loss: Loss, Cry, Redemption

Loss 

Loss, Cry, Redemption

The sensation of loss is the consequence of boundary and separation – the disintegration from the beginning which we all struggle in our own way to heal.

The Passionate Salmon and The River’s Reply

Christopher Marlowe wrote “The Passionate Shepherd” and Sir Walter Raleigh the riposte – “The Nymph’s Reply”. They lived just before the Union of the Crowns under the Scottish King James VI. The “independence” debate is of course a fishy affair with salmon, sturgeon and even “silver darlings” (Scots word for herrings).

The Passionate Salmon
Come live with me and by my love
And we will all our pleasure prove
Forsake these meads, their gentle lure
For mountain air and waters pure
Live there with me and me alone
And we will wish all care begone
That London sews and Brussels sprouts
For Irish, Welsh and English clouts
And we will swim around the rocks
Of wars and economic shocks
To shallow rivers by whose falls
Melodious fish sing madrigals
The River’s Reply
If all the world and love were young
And truth in every politician’s tongue
Thy pretty pleasures might me move
Alone to be with thee my love
But summer’s babble easy flows
Which wayward winter icy shows
Thy siren’s tongue, but heart of gall
A salmon’s spring, but sorrow’s fall
And once your upward urge is spent
Thy fishy soul be seaward bent
For lonely pleasures lonely prove
And ocean treasures all, my love

Paths and Lines

 

Manuel de Landa “A Thousand Years of Non-Linear History” Individual paths intersecting, creating a particular history which itself is a braid, track or path. He demonstrates this in geology, chemistry, biology and sociology. He shows how new “things” are brought about by emergent reality. Completely new dimensions suddenly arising from complexity. An example in the coming together of individuals to make societies – which have their own life.  (Of course humans themselves are emergent properties of the cells that constitute them, and the cells of the proteins, the proteins of the atoms etc).

Robert MacFarlane “The Old Ways” A book about paths, their singularities and particular effect on the individuals who stamp them out and tramp them. He brings to life the rich diversity and potential within each of us and in relation to the universes we choose to inhabit.

There is both coincidence and divergence in their writing. Both are academics, of different persuasions certainly, but with an intersecting message. The track shapes the reality, which is at least two-dimensional (the path not the place). The “Old Ways” is dizzyingly beautiful. Prose poetry as amphetamine. MacFarlane affects where de Landa effects.  The “History” is of the head – where “Old Ways” is a potion which jolts your heart and spins the compass by which you travel.

New, higher order spheres of existence are constantly emerging from the web and intersection of our paths. Existence is a braid woven together.

It matters how we travel. Everything is relevant – our thoughts, faiths and relationships – in shaping the emerging collective realities. It is the world of our celtic and anglosaxon forebears (beautifully brought to life in “The Way of Wyrd” Brian Bates, again academically inspired). We are at the same time the Three Sisters, spinning at the foot of the tree Ygdrassil, and sailors charting a course over the warp and weft of the seas of realities that they create, and in the face of the winds that result.

One obvious conclusion is that we should at least travel.

The aborigines have their creation story as songlines made by ancestors running through the dreamtime. Travelling, purposeful motion, is an imaginative act. All of MacFarlane’s achingly vibrant stories – journeys at sea, across and through mountains – arise because he, himself, set out. Contrarily, even if we are stationery, we move. The world turns around us and turns us around. It’s just that we are jostled at hazard by and in the oceans that we occupy. At least when we align ourselves and step forth we create a wave, an impetus which allows the rudder of our boat to have purchase and by which we can steer.

It’s the journey that matters. The destination is our object – our guiding star – which patterns the travel that is our actual existence. We never arrive, because we’re already here. Together. Treading out the path. In a ship. Sailing.