Sunday, January 06, 2008
Epiphany and the Noosphere
"After 12 days of Christmas, the season of Epiphany has started...and the light of Christ has fully dawned.
Two thousand years ago, an unusual astral phenomenon (‘star in the East’) around the time of Jesus’ birth was interpreted by the Magi (astrologers from Persia, modern Iran) as the herald of a new born king of peace. The current age of darkness and strife was ending, and a new age of light and justice was dawning.
Though the cosmic tale has been somewhat “watered down” into a Christmas story of 'three kings of the Orient bearing gifts’ for the baby in the manger, we still celebrate the dawning of the light on Epiphany Sunday each year, which is today.
The star that rose and the light that dawned about 6 B.C., signaling to the Magi that the new age of Pisces had begun, may have a correlative today in 'new light' shed on an old conception--'worldsoul'--and the dawning of something new on the horizon.
Roger Nelson, Director of the Global Consciousness Project at Princeton University, has collected an impressive amount of scientific data over the years point to what he suspects to be the emergence of a “Noosphere” of human consciousness in mathamatical syncrinicity with the 'spirit of the earth' or 'soul of the world.'
How can such syncrinicity, resonance, coherence, connectivity, intentionality, global thinking and feeling, or collective consciousness (whatever one wants to call it) be registered or measured?
Roger Nelson, as a physical engineer, thinks it can. How? Where?
"Noosphere" is Chardin’s name for the conception of a global membrane that resonates with collective human consciousness as it evolves.
"The Age of Nations is past," he says. "The task before us now, if we would not perish, is to build the [spirit of the] Earth."-- Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1881 -1955) was a visionary French Jesuit, paleontologist, biologist, and philosopher, who sought to integrate religious experience with natural science, and Christian theology with theories of evolution. In this endeavor he became enthralled with the evolutionary potential for humankind for realizing a coalescence of consciousness and convergence of systems which he named the "Omega point." In the evolution of human consciousness, guided by the hand of God, a new state of planetary peace and unity was possible, based intrinsically upon the evolving spirit of the Earth.
Planet earth, he reasons, like all heavenly bodies, has a spirit. The "Gaia Hypothesis" as it has been termed, suggests that the Earth is actually a living being, a collosal biological super-system of inner-connectivity and global consciousness. The spirit of the Earth. What the ancients called worldsoul. What Pierre Teilhard de Chardin called Noosphere:
"We have reached a crossroads in human evolution where the only road which leads forward is towards a common passion. . . To continue to place our hopes in a social order achieved by external violence would simply amount to our giving up all hope of carrying the Spirit of the Earth to its limits."
Chardin's radical notion is that the Earth, in its evolutionary unfolding, was growing a new organ of consciousness, and that it was essentially and intricately connected to the depth of human consciousness.
According to Roger Nelson, Project Manager of the Global Consciousness Project at Princeton:
“The noosphere is analogous on a planetary level to the evolution of the cerebral cortex in humans.
“The noosphere is a "planetary thinking network" -- an interlinked system of consciousness and information, a global net of self-awareness, instantaneous feedback, and planetary communication. The planet is developing her cerebral cortex, and emerging into self-conscious awakening.
“This convergence however, though it was predicted to occur through a global information network, was not a convergence of merely minds or bodies -- but of heart, a point that he [Chardin] made most fervently. It is not our heads or our bodies which we must bring together, but our hearts.
“Humanity. . . is building its composite brain beneath our eyes. May it not be that tomorrow, through the logical and biological deepening of the movement drawing it together, it will find its heart, without which the ultimate wholeness of its power of unification can never be achieved?"
In order to explain his vision theologically and scientifically, Teilhard de Chardin wrote many books, which include the following:
LET ME EXPLAIN
THE APPEARANCE OF MAN
THE DIVINE MILIEU
THE FUTURE OF MAN
HOW I BELIEVE
HYMN OF THE UNIVERSE
LETTERS FROM A TRAVELLER
LETTERS TO LEONTINE ZANTA
THE MAKING OF A MIND
MAN'S PLACE IN NATURE
THE PHENOMENON OF MAN
SCIENCE AND CHRIST
THE VISION OF THE PAST
WRITINGS IN TIME OF WAR
BUILDING THE EARTH