The Not-Yet God: Carl Jung, Teilhard de Chardin, and the Relational Whole
By: Ilia Delio
“Over ten years ago, Ilia Delio boldly asserted that evolution is the metanarrative for our age, changing even our understanding of God. Engaging the God question in this evolutionary context requires the myth of the relational whole, the story of a living God in relationship with a living earth. God is incomplete, not‐yet, and we are incomplete, not‐yet! With her unique creative literary flair, Ilia Delio draws on the relational holism of the psychoanalyst Carl Jung (whom she names as the saint) and the Jesuit scientist‐theologian Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (whom she describes a prophet) to create a new framework for thinking about God. The outcome is a highly original synthesis—spiritually inspiring and theologically ground-breaking.” —Diarmuid O’Murchu, author, Doing Theology in an Evolutionary Way
“Ilia Delio offers a brilliant and breathtaking look at the relational wholeness of God and world through the lenses of Teilhard, Jung, and contemporary science. If you’re seeking faith in the future or a unitive vision that will revitalize our understanding of the participatory inter-becoming of God, humans, and world, this book is a must-read.” —Sheri D. Kling, director, Process & Faith
“From the psycho-sentient depths of matter to the heights of divine becoming, Delio’s cosmotheandric entanglement of Jung and Teilhard, modern science and ancient mysticism, achieve a new relational holism for a new axial age. The theology of the future will be “theohology”—experiential talk of the God-whole that is still coming into being.” —Andrew M. Davis, The Center for Process Studies
“Ilia Delio is right: we need a new framework for thinking about God and salvation in an age of quantum physics and evolution that overcomes obstacles in the Church and beyond. Delio offers such an obstacle-overcoming framework: theohology. Building on insights from Jung, Teilhard, and many others, she provides a vision of the God who is the Whole of the whole, the distinct source of love but inseparable from everything that exists. This is an amazing book!” —Thomas Jay Oord, author, Open and Relational Theology
“The Not-Yet God is an important work and a major contribution to the fields of theology and depth psychology. In comparing Teilhard and Jung, Delio reveals new aspects of both thinkers and allows us to appreciate them from new angles. This work demonstrates wide reading and research in these fields and is written in a clear and concise language, so that not only specialists but general readers can glean many insights from Delio's excellent scholarship.” —David Tacey, emeritus professor, La Trobe University, Australia; author, The Postsecular Sacred: Jung, Soul and Meaning in an Age of Change
We are a species between axial periods. Thus, our religious myths are struggling to find new connections in a global, ecological order. Delio proposes the new myth of relational holism; that is, the search for a new connection to divinity in an age of quantum physics, evolution, and pluralism. The idea of relational holism is one that is rooted in the God-world relationship, beginning with the Book of Genesis, but finds its real meaning in quantum physics and the renewed relationship between mind and matter. Our story, therefore, will traverse across the fields of science, scripture, theology, history, culture and psychology. Our guides for a new myth of relational holism are the psychoanalyst Carl Jung, and the Jesuit scientist-theologian Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. The complex human can no longer be simplified to one view or another: one must see the whole of our existence or one does not see at all.
Ilia Delio, OSF, a Franciscan Sister of Washington, DC, is Josephine C. Connelly Endowed Chair in Theology, Villanova University, and founder of the Center for Christogenesis. Her many books include The Hours of the Universe, Christ in Evolution, The Emergent Christ, The Unbearable Wholeness of Being, Birth of a Dancing Star: My Journey from Cradle Catholic to Cyborg Christian, and Re-Enchanting the Earth: Why AI Needs Religion (all with Orbis).