After listening to this broadcast, I was surprised I had not heard of Teilhard at some time in my life. Although I don't agree with a lot of what I heard about Teilhard’s writings and ideas, especially in the matters of evolution, it was interesting to hear about how he thought "...humanity would develop capacities for collective, global intelligence; that a meaningful vision of the earth and the universe would have to include, as he put it, "the interior as well as the exterior of things; mind as well as matter." (Tippett and Teilhard). Some of what he said could be almost foreshadowing how connected the world is today.
In Teilhard's time, there was the capacity in the world to communicate with almost anyone in the world, but it did take a lot more time. The things that have changed today are the medium used, and the speed at which communication can happen. With advances in internet technologies, and satellite transmissions, everyone in the world, given the right technology, is capable of communicating with another person(s) on the opposite side of the world instantly. This could almost seem like two halves of a brain working together. I didn't really take what Teilhard said as a single organic global intelligence, but one compromised of all peoples from all places through the use of our technology.
From what I understood, Teilhard believed in God and in the theory of evolution. He believed that we, as a species, were still evolving, but maybe in a new way. It seemed like he thought humans were going to evolve more in the mind than in form. I could see how humans may appear to be "evolving" in a way due to the technology we have developed, and how it has allowed us to communicate in 'real time' across the globe, but I don't see us all being telepathically linked, or becoming some hybrid like the Borg (yes mentioned the Borg).
Dr. Wilson said, “…cultural evolution can produce this field of behaviors that enables humans to adapt to certainly all environments. That's why we spread over the planet and hundreds of ecological niches put us humans in a new environment. And we'll adapt, but only because we have this flexible system of symbolic thought that enables us to adapt. That's why it qualifies as a new evolutionary process and why we became the dominant species on earth for better or for worse." The kind of evolving he is talking about really doesn't sound like the theory of evolution, but rather a human’s normal ability to adapt and overcome obstacles that get in our way, like different environments. I don't see how this really qualifies as a new evolutionary process.
Despite some of my disagreements with Teilhard, some of his idea almost seemed to foreshadow our global communications of today. Knowing what I do today, if I was sent to Teilhard’s time, my knowledge may also seem pretty farfetched to the people of days past. I may have to look more into Teilhard to have a better understanding of his thoughts and theories. A very interesting man.
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