We Are Already One — Center for Action and Contemplation

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We Are Already One

Science: Week 1

We Are Already One
Wednesday, November 4, 2015

There was no place in the universe that was separate from the originating power of the universe. Each thing of the universe had its very roots in this realm. —Brian Swimme and Thomas Berry [1]

There is only Christ.  He is everything and he is in everything. —Colossians 3:11

Believe it or not, it was actually a Roman Catholic priest who first proposed the Big Bang theory of the origin of the universe. Georges Lemaître, a Belgian priest, astronomer, and physics professor, not only proposed the theory of the expansion of the universe, he was the first to note in 1927 that the expanding universe might be traced back to a single point of origin called a singularity. As Ilia Delio describes, “Science would say it appeared like a little quantum size blip on the screen [Creatio ex nihilo] and inflated rapidly like a balloon and since that time, it has been expanding.” [2]

Delio explains the implications for this cosmology—our story of the universe:

Every human person desires to love and to be loved, to belong to another, because we come from another. We are born social and relational. We yearn to belong, to be part of a larger whole that includes not only friends and family but neighbors, community, trees, flowers, sun, earth, stars. We are born of nature and are part of nature; that is, we are born into a web of life and are part of a web of life. We cannot know what this means, however, without seeing ourselves within the story of the Big Bang universe. Human life must be traced back to the time when life was deeply one, a Singularity, whereby the intensity of mass-energy exploded into consciousness. Deep in our DNA we belong to the stars, the trees, and the galaxies.

Deep within we long for unity because, at the most fundamental level, we are already one. We belong to one another because we have the same source of love; the love that flows through the trees is the same love that flows through my being. . . . We are deeply connected in this flow of love, beginning on the level of nature where we are the closest of kin because the earth is our mother. [3, emphasis mine]

We began as one and our goal is oneness. Studying evolution, Teilhard de Chardin found that increased complexity and increased consciousness ironically lead to greater unity at a much higher level—which we would call love. We must always be reminded, it seems, that unity is not the same as uniformity. Not at all! With increased complexity, there is actually greater diversity and a greater enjoyment of that very diversity, which is the fruit of love. As Teilhard says, “Everything that rises must converge.” We are in the midst of that convergence today—and seemingly at an accelerated pace—both in terms of good and resistance to the good.

Gateway to Silence:
Evolving toward love

[1] Brian Swimme and Thomas Berry, The Universe Story: From the Primordial Flaring Forth to the Ecozoic EraA Celebration of the Unfolding of the Cosmos (Harper One: 1994), 17.

[2] Ilia Delio, Creation as the Body of God (Center for Action and Contemplation: 2010, no longer available).

[3] Ilia Delio, The Unbearable Wholeness of Being: God, Evolution, and the Power of Love (Orbis Books: 2013), 179-180.

Image Credit: Veil Nebula Supernova Remnant (detail), NASA/ESA/Hubble Heritage Team.
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