Friday, February 08, 2013

Why Galileo was wrong ...

Galileo believes in the power of reason and the evidence of the senses. Look through his telescope and you will see the phases of Venus and the moons of Jupiter. Proof that not everything in the celestial heavens revolves on crystalline spheres around the Earth.

Today, from a safe historical distance, we mock those Pontifical authorities who refused to look through Galileo's telescope. But they were smart people who knew that matters of faith and public order were far too important to be left to the meddling of naive scientists.

Brecht gives the politically-correct authorities a number of arguments.

1. God created man in his image, He would not have placed him on some small cinder spinning around something else. Plus your views directly contradict scripture, the word of God.

2. You have no good arguments to explain why your version of reality could be correct. (Galileo: "Just look!").

3. If we were to accept your radical reshaping of the cosmos, where heaven has vanished from the skies, the common people would be thrown into insurrectionary chaos.

It's suggested that Galileo's new evidence would be the thin end of a wedge, which would destroy the existing social order: 'Apres moi le deluge'.

Galileo is told quietly: 'You may use your heliocentric theory privately if the maths makes the calculations easier, but don't propose it as a model of reality.'

I hear arguments like that every single day in the media.