Saturday, July 09, 2011

Galileo was wrong...

book coverIn the print edition of my father's local newspaper is a reprint of a Chicago Tribune article called Some Catholics seek to counter Galileo: Splinter group says the Earth, not the sun, is, indeed, at the center of the universe. It begins:
Some people believe the world literally revolves around them. It's a belief born not of selfishness but faith.

A small group of conservative Roman Catholics is pointing to a dozen biblical verses and the Church's original teaching as proof that the Earth is the center of the universe, the view that prompted Galileo Galilei's clash with the Church four centuries ago. The relatively obscure movement has gained a following among a few Chicago-area Catholics who find comfort in knowing there are still staunch defenders of original Church doctrine.

"This subject is, as far as I can see, an embarrassment to the modern church because the world more or less looks upon geocentrism or someone who believes it in the same boat as the flat Earth," said James Phillips, of Cicero. Phillips attends Our Lady Immaculate Catholic Church in Oak Park, a parish run by the Society of St. Pius X, a group that rejects most of the modernizing reforms the Vatican II council made from 1962 to 1965.
This is a great bit:
Indeed, those promoting geocentrism argue that heliocentrism, or the centuries-old consensus among scientists that the Earth revolves around the sun, is nothing more than a conspiracy theory to squelch the church's influence. "Heliocentrism becomes 'dangerous' if it is being propped up as the true system when, in fact, it is a false system," said Robert Sungenis, leader of a budding movement to get scientists to reconsider. "False information leads to false ideas, and false ideas lead to illicit and immoral actions — thus the state of the world today. … Prior to Galileo, the church was in full command of the world; and governments and academia were subservient to her."
The world? The whole world? O RLY? But I digress...
Sungenis is no lone Don Quixote, as illustrated by the hundreds of curiosity seekers, skeptics and supporters at a conference last fall titled "Galileo Was Wrong. The Church Was Right" just off the University of Notre Dame campus in South Bend, Ind.
I love how the writer went to Ken Ham, for whom this is just too loony: "The Bible is neither geocentric or heliocentric. It does not give any specific information about the structure of the solar system." When Ken Ham finds you too wacky, you are definitely in need of help.

My favorite part of the article, however is this:
But supporters of the theory contend that there is scientific evidence to support geocentrism, just as there is evidence to support the six-day story of creation in Genesis.

There is proof in Scripture that the Earth is the center of the universe, Sungenis said. Among many verses, he cites Joshua 10:12-14 as definitive proof: "And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, while the nation took vengeance on its foe. … The sun halted in the middle of the sky; not for a whole day did it resume its swift course."
teach geocentrismGuys. It can't be any simpler, it really can't: "the Bible says" is not "scientific evidence".

Your faith may be strong, but you aren't scientists. And that's really all there is to that.

(Plus, of course: this is one more demonstration of why Stephen J Gould's dream of "non-overlapping magisteria" has always been a non-starter. Religion makes claims about the real world. It won't stay in the unreal. It just won't...)

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At 3:12 PM, July 09, 2011 Anonymous Kathie had this to say...

Thank you for drawing this Trib article to my attention, as it will provide gales of mirth for my friends and me. Another of my favorite lines is:

"[Movement leader Robert] Sungenis said the renewed interest in geocentrism is due, in part, to the efforts of Christians entering the scientific domain previously dominated by secularists. These Christian scientists, he said, showed modern science is without scientific foundation or even good evidence."

(Leading me to wonder if these "scientists" studied numbers with Jared Loughner).

At 6:34 PM, July 10, 2011 Blogger James had this to say...

What a delightful little blog where the one running it candidly admits their free thinking liberalism -- free thinking I guess until it comes to the world's iron clad dogmas of heliocentrism and evolution, the dogmas of which are enforced in academia and various other venues with an absolute vigor which would befit any tin pot dictator.

Then you better not dare think outside the box. As a matter of fact, I myself am a free thinker of sorts, that is to say I keep an open mind on things, but not so open that my brains fall out.

That said, I admire a blog which will actually give publicity to an adversarial position by in this case putting up a picture of the cover of Dr. Sungenis' abridged version of his huge 2 volume work, even if only for purposes of ridiculing it. As for that work, I submit (unless you can prove otherwise) that it is the most comprehensive and detailed scientific treatise on the issue of heliocentric versus geocentric cosmology ever offered to the public bar none.

It's also hard not to like the honesty (and humor?) of a blogger who admits in her profile that "I know evolution is a fact." Wow! Talk about true believers. Perhaps, there's real hope for all you fairy tale frogs yet. Give it another billion years or so and some of your descendants may just be able to become princes.

Anyway, as for geocentrism, I know its usually much more fun and definitely much, much more easier to simply laugh at the notion than to actually exercise your intellectual faculties (even if they are of the free thinking type) to seriously examine the science involved. Nevertheless, if your thinking has "evolved" far enough you may just wish to consider the following.

The reasons why more and more modern astrophysicists, astronomers, cosmologists and cosmogonists (reluctant as they may be due to their commonly held pre-philosophical dispositions to atheism) are becoming "closet" geocentrists are : (1) cosmological studies of the Red Shift showing isotropy; isotropic
Gamma Ray Burst distribution; isotropic Quasar distribution; Cosmic Microwave Background isotropy;
isotropic Galaxy formation and distribution – all showing the Earth in the center of the universe; (2) the
Michelson‐Morley experiment (1881‐1887); the Michelson‐Miller experiment (1904); the Sagnac
experiment (1913); the Michelson‐Gale experiment (1925); the Airy experiment (1871), and many more
similar experiments showing the Earth is motionless in space.

James Phillips

At 5:32 PM, July 11, 2011 Blogger The Ridger, FCD had this to say...

I really don't know how to respond to your delightful blend of ignorance, dogma, and sarcasm.

It's true that from one point of view, the earth is stationary. You can in fact find a frame in which every single point in the universe is stationary and the rest moving - "around it" if you like. That's called "relativity".

But that doesn't mean that in any meaningful sense the earth is the center of the universe - and if you try, for instance, to go to the moon thinking that it is, you won't get there.

But you're less open-minded than I am, so pointing you at actual astronomers would be useless, wouldn't it? Just in case, here's one:

At 9:09 PM, July 11, 2011 Anonymous Josh Colwell had this to say...

Oh my gosh, this is priceless.

At 12:22 AM, July 13, 2011 Anonymous Kathie had this to say...

How can one create a geocentric model of our system that accounts for known scientific data -- like temperatures actually measured on various planets and the lengths of their respective years? I've tried, just for my own amusement, and always wind up with a contradiction!

Or perhaps geocentrists explain away all space travels (human and otherwise) from Earth as having been mere simulations conducted in a facility out in the desert...

At 9:52 PM, July 13, 2011 Blogger The Ridger, FCD had this to say...

I liked Zeno's commentary, too. (Sample: Oops. The speed of light is only about 186,000 miles per second. Unless Neptune has warp drive, it can't possibly travel eleven times the speed of light.) Read his post.

At 9:09 PM, July 14, 2011 Blogger James had this to say...

The Ridger, FCD (whatever all that means)recommended as a source of correct information. For those who are willing to take a look at a rather solid refutation of that please go to

Incidentally, that refutation was put up months ago!
You can also find solid refutations of various other critiques of geocentrism at www.galileowaswrong.blogspot that is if you have an open mind.

James Phillips

P.S. If you really have an open mind you may even wish to visit

At 11:15 AM, July 21, 2011 Anonymous Sonny had this to say...

Yes. Absolutely. And if you really, really have an open mind, you can join James Phillips and become a 9-11 Truther and Holocaust revisionist. Do be open.

See Michael Hoffman -

At 1:46 PM, July 21, 2011 Blogger Kurt had this to say...

Kathy says, "Or perhaps geocentrists explain away all space travels (human and otherwise) from Earth as having been mere simulations conducted in a facility out in the desert..."

Well, now that you mention just so happens that Robert Sungenis does think that the lunar landings were faked by NASA.

"Any intelligent person who has studied the issue is going to have doubts as to whether the United States had the capability to put a man on the moon in 1969....My suspicions are only heightened when I see Neil Armstrong holding an
American flag on the moon and suddenly a gust of wind forces the lower part of the flag to move up to the upper part of the flag. Any fool knows there is no wind on the moon. You can see this video on the Internet and in the documentaries made of the moon landings. Yes, and I might as well tell you so I can beat Mr. Olar to the punch: I also believe 9-11 was an inside job and that the Muslims had nothing to do with it"

This was in his "response" to Pekin Daily Times editor Jared Olar, who Sungenis suspected of being a closet Jew (just to prove he's not an anti-Semite dontcha know? wink wink)

Scroll all the way down in the comment box.


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