Teilhard de Chardin

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Teilhard de Chardin (1881-1955) was a French natural scientist, Jesuit priest and philosopher. Many of his ideas were opposed by the Catholic Church, especially his view of creation, which the Roman Curia believed distorted the idea of original sin forwarded by St. Augustine. And some of his works were banned from publication during his lifetime.

However, de Chardin did earn academic honors for work in geology and palaeontology, and by the time of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) some of his ideas were influential as the Church tried to reform many of its teachings for the 20th century.

In Le Phénomène humaine (The Phenomenon of Man) de Chardin combines a scientific outlook with his religious beliefs by suggesting that humanity is evolving towards a state of spiritual perfection. Explicit to his theory is the notion of the Omega Point, a transcendent being (a.k.a. God) who draws creation toward itself.

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