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Osborne Russell
12-24-2008, 12:19 PM
Good heavens: Vatican rehabilitating Galileo
By NICOLE WINFIELD – 21 hours ago

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Galileo Galilei is going from heretic to hero.

The Vatican is recasting the most famous victim of its Inquisition as a man of faith, just in time for the 400th anniversary of Galileo's telescope and the U.N.-designated International Year of Astronomy next year.

. . . The church denounced Galileo's theory as dangerous to the faith, but Galileo defied its warnings. Tried as a heretic in 1633 and forced to recant, he was sentenced to life imprisonment, later changed to house arrest.

The Church has for years been striving to shed its reputation for being hostile to science, in part by producing top-notch research out of its own telescope.

In 1992, Pope John Paul II declared that the ruling against Galileo was an error resulting from "tragic mutual incomprehension."

But that apparently wasn't enough. In January, Benedict canceled a speech at Rome's La Sapienza University after a group of professors, citing the Galileo episode and depicting Benedict as a religious figure opposed to science, argued that he shouldn't speak at a public university.

I looked for but didn't find what exactly Galileo misunderstood, or what the church misunderstood, for that matter. Refusing to consider something objectively is not the same thing as misunderstanding it.

Further, it seems the professors at Sapiens U. didn't get the word about the harmony of religion and science.

TimH
12-24-2008, 12:24 PM
religion and science are inherently opposites.
Science attempts to explain things in a logical manner.
Religion says if we cant explain it we should make something up that explains it.

JimD
12-24-2008, 12:30 PM
Pope John Paul II declared that the ruling against Galileo was an error

My fault for not keeping up, but what ever happened to papal infalability? Does this mean they're also sorry they burned alive an untold number of witches at the stake? How about the thousands they tortured and murdered?

PatCassidy
12-24-2008, 12:36 PM
Astronomers were also burned at the stake.

Nanoose
12-24-2008, 01:01 PM
religion and science are inherently opposites.
Science attempts to explain things in a logical manner.
Religion says if we cant explain it we should make something up that explains it.

Any religion content to "make things up" (i.e. you imply not valid, untrue, or unfounded) so that it doesn't square with known reality would not be worth following, would it.

TimH
12-24-2008, 01:11 PM
Any religion content to "make things up" (i.e. you imply not valid, untrue, or unfounded) so that it doesn't square with known reality would not be worth following, would it.

Many people have been saying this for years.

Captain Blight
12-24-2008, 01:12 PM
And yet they claim to offer more certitude than "So-called science!"

It's a wonder the human race hasn't wiped itself off the planet yet

WX
12-26-2008, 08:08 PM
It's a wonder the human race hasn't wiped itself off the planet yet

hey, give us time, we're workin on it!

Glen Longino
12-26-2008, 08:44 PM
Any religion content to "make things up" (i.e. you imply not valid, untrue, or unfounded) so that it doesn't square with known reality would not be worth following, would it.

No, it would not be worth following.
The great mystery is why so many millions of people do follow them, isn't it?

Keith Wilson
12-26-2008, 09:00 PM
they're also sorry they burned alive an untold number of witches at the stake? To be fair, this was mostly Protestants. As a general rule, Catholics used to burn heretics, and Protestants burned witches. They don't anymore.

Vince Brennan
12-26-2008, 09:41 PM
I looked for but didn't find what exactly Galileo misunderstood, or what the church misunderstood, for that matter. <snip>

He was accused of heresy for stating that the Earth moved around the Sun, rather than having everything move around the Earth as was then Church Doctrine. Eventually, he recanted for public consumption and to get out of house arrest, but afterward was famously quoted as saying, "Nevertheless, it DOES move so..."

Even in his day it was a famous and generally accepted example (well, famous and generally accepted wherever the Church did NOT hold sway, that is) of the pig-headedness of entrenched orthodoxy when confronted by scientific fact.

(When I was a kid, that was also a code between my Mother and I when "The Paterfamilias" laid down some inane regulation which bore no relation to actuality. We'd look at one another and one of us would utter the fateful quotation, both of us would laugh like loons, "The Herd Bull" would look confused and we'd then proceed to do as we damn well pleased.)

Glen Longino
12-26-2008, 09:46 PM
"The Herd Bull"
:D:D:D

johnw
12-26-2008, 09:51 PM
Perhaps Galileo's incomprehension was thinking that facts mattered to the church. Or perhaps he did not understand how much the church had invested in its cosmology. From A World Lit Only by Fire:


"No attack on
Christianity," wrote Jerome Wolf to Tycho Brahe in 1575, "is more
dangerous than the infinite size and depth of the heavens"--


After all, if Cosmas was right, and the earth was flat with the sun going around it, there was an up and a down, and a place for heaven and hell.

Vince Brennan
12-26-2008, 09:54 PM
"The Herd Bull"
:D:D:D
Dat wuz him. He'd put his head down, bellow, paw the ground and then get led around by the ring in his nose.

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-26-2008, 10:07 PM
Bad headline, dude.
Galileo certainly knew the Church's intentions. In his trial he used his considerable rhetorical skills to show that he had no intention of committing heresy and was not guilty of the charges. He was able to amswer their charges time after time. After a while the court of inquisition knew they were up against a formidable intelligence so they adjourned and took Gallieo into the torturer's chamber and showed him the "instruments". Game, set and match for the Inquisitor General. Galileo was about 70 years old which meant his life was on the line.
I don't know who the Pope is trying to preach to . The records of Galileo's trial are in the Vatican archives and have been reported on in detail so there must be knowledge of what went on in those procedings.

pila
12-26-2008, 10:31 PM
Science and religion= oil and water

botebum
12-26-2008, 11:19 PM
I don't think it's quite fair of you all to demean the RC when our resident standard bearer for "The One True Church" isn't around to defend it. Do I have to take up the sword(or torch, as it may be) and try to explain to you guys how the RC doesn't make mistakes. At least until Sam gets here?:D

Doug

Glen Longino
12-26-2008, 11:32 PM
I think Sam must have gone over to the Vatican for the Holidays to give the Pope some lessons on how to be a Proper Pope.
The Pope was on TV for a big Christmas appearance and he looked a little tight-lipped and annoyed to me, as if he had been listening to Sam for a few hours or eating green perssimons:)

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-26-2008, 11:32 PM
I don't think it's quite fair of you all to demean the RC when our resident standard bearer for "The One True Church" isn't around to defend it. Do I have to take up the sword(or torch, as it may be) and try to explain to you guys how the RC doesn't make mistakes. At least until Sam gets here?:D

Doug

Up here in Yankeeland there's a Cat'lic around every corner. Being one I can assure you there is nothing the Pope says that is guaranteed to be a defined article of faith, i.e. he ain't infallible about things like which breakfast cereal is the best or how the Germans lost the Battle of the Bulge.
The current Pope is a phd theologian and he is trying to put a nice face on one of many sordid periods in the history of our church. In fact this current campaign may not stem from the Pope but from the Congregation of the Society of the Propagation of the Faith. It's hard to keep a leash on those people. Benedict will get it right eventually.
C'Chuck

Glen Longino
12-26-2008, 11:38 PM
I wish the Pope would come around here and talk to us and let Sam go run the Church. The Pope would be an easy treat by comparison.

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-27-2008, 12:04 AM
I wish the Pope would come around here and talk to us and let Sam go run the Church. The Pope would be an easy treat by comparison.

If you get sucked in by the endless parsing of a religious fanatic that's your own fault.
My sixth-grade nun was always harping that we must "avoid bad companions". She would have had him by the ear from the first "Hail Mary" to the last.

Osborne Russell
12-27-2008, 08:55 AM
Bad headline, dude.
Galileo certainly knew the Church's intentions.

Well,


In 1992, Pope John Paul II declared that the ruling against Galileo was an error resulting from "tragic mutual incomprehension."

So what did Galileo misundertand? What did The Church misunderstand?

Sam F
12-27-2008, 10:39 AM
Science and religion= oil and water

What is it about public education that produces thousands and thousands of people so uninformed of the facts of history?
I never get over what a lamentably bad job they've done.

Glen Longino
12-27-2008, 11:19 AM
What is it about public education that produces thousands and thousands of people so uninformed of the facts of history?
I never get over what a lamentably bad job they've done.

You mean Catholic Schools teach a different version of Galileo than public schools?
What a surprise!

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-27-2008, 11:39 AM
What is it about public education that produces thousands and thousands of people so uninformed of the facts of history?
I never get over what a lamentably bad job they've done.

What specific facts of history are you refering to?

Ian McColgin
12-27-2008, 11:39 AM
One short form of Galileo's problem is that he insisted on the facticity, the reality, of the Copernican solar system. The Church always knew that the Ptolomeic system of spheres was a model, a representation, an explanation that "saved the appearances."

In fact, it was quite a few years before the predictive accuracy of the Copernican system became better than the Ptolomeic, since the orbits are not, in point of "fact" circles.

Some RC Church revisionists have insisted that if Galileo had simply described his heliocentric account of the Copernican insight as a model, a representation and not as real fact, he'd have been fine. In reality, Galileo had a far more sophisticated epistemology, more like the current RC Church embraced new Thomistic synthesis called "Critical Realism", which is why the Inquisition could do nothing with him from an intellectual point of view and had to resort to threat of torture.

It's not quite as simple as Galileo was right and the right-wing of the RC Church was wrong, but in in complicated way, yeah, Galileo was right and the RC Church was wrong.

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-27-2008, 12:03 PM
Well,



So what did Galileo misundertand? What did The Church misunderstand?

For you I'll say it again.
Galileo was marched into the torture chamber used by the Inquisitors. Galileo KNEW what the implications were. He was one of the smartest men in Europe at that time.
The Inquisitor and his assistants were all Dominican monks. Well educated men for their time. But they were up against a man who was a brilliant practitioner of language. He could hold his own even against a phalanx of men out to trap him or break him down. When they couldn't get either they led him to the torture chamber for a visit. I don't recall how Galileo back out of his assertions but whatever he said saved him from the torturer and, probably, death.
Whatever the Vatican contrived recently sounds like a PR campaign done by second class practitioners. The records of the Galileo trial are in the Vatican Archives. I assume they have been studied carefully more than once because precise accounts of the trial have appeared in print and several were even broadcast on PBS.
If there is a"misunderstanding" it is by those who wish to save the reputation of their institution which perpetrated an ugly historical event.

johnw
12-27-2008, 01:08 PM
Any institution, if it's old enough, will have done some bad things. The more powerful it is, the worse those things will be. The last pope did his best to apologize for a historic mistake. It is strange how the church is constrained from making a proper apology by its own insistence that it is the source of eternal verities. It is that insitence that is keeping this ancient controversy alive.

Sam F
12-27-2008, 01:11 PM
Science and religion= oil and water = ignorance


What specific facts of history are you refering to?

Lots. For instance, do you have any objections to Ockham's razor?

Ian McColgin
12-27-2008, 01:17 PM
I'm curious as to in what sense Ockham's razor is a fact of history.

Certainly there was a philosophical Ockham who one day shaving . . .

But seriously, a rule of thought that aims one at the more likely, other things being equal, seems irrelevant to the question as to Galileo and the RC Church.

Is there a point I've missed or is this mere misdirection? How can we save the appearances?

Joe (SoCal)
12-27-2008, 01:23 PM
Science and religion= oil and water = ignorance



Lots. For instance, do you have any objections to Ockham's razor?


Well thats it :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes: 12 page thread coming up :rolleyes:

Mention the word Catholic in the title of the thread is like turning on a light in a NYC tenement and watch all the roaches scurry, thats what SamF is. One big Catholic cockroach he only posts on the WoodenBoat forum on these kinds of thread - OVER AND OVER AND OVER ...... and ........ OVER....... and ................. wait for it




........ OVER

Sam F
12-27-2008, 01:25 PM
Any institution, if it's old enough, will have done some bad things.
Given man's fallen nature that's bound to be true.

The more powerful it is, the worse those things will be. Power only provides scope. Individuals can do quite bad things all on their own.

The last pope did his best to apologize for a historic mistake.

True


It is strange how the church is constrained from making a proper apology...

Doesn't that contradict your point above? Or does the "proper apology" consist of excuse-me-for-living never-ending self excoriations?


...by its own insistence that it is the source of eternal verities.

Since father Angelo Secchi, S.J. (1818 - 1878) is considered by some to be the Father of Astrophysics, it would seen that the Church accepted the Copernican system a very long time ago.


It is that insitence that is keeping this ancient controversy alive.

The Galileo incident is kept alive by, in fact was resurrected for, ideological reasons.
If it were representative of the Church's view of science, then perhaps somebody can come up with scores of persecuted scientists as evidence. ;)

Joe (SoCal)
12-27-2008, 01:27 PM
Yawwwwwwwn and the incessant SamF quoting has begun :rolleyes:

johnw
12-27-2008, 01:43 PM
Of course the controversy is kept alive for ideological reasons. The ideology that says the church is the source of eternal verities.

If you run into my parked car, use the threat of force to avoid admitting you are in the wrong, then years later say well, there was fault on both sides, you may be doing your best to apologize, within the constraints set by your lawyer, but it isn't a proper apology.

Sam F
12-27-2008, 01:48 PM
I'm curious as to in what sense Ockham's razor is a fact of history. Is it not a fact of history that one William of Ockham existed and came up with his axiom that "entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity"?


But seriously, a rule of thought that aims one at the more likely, other things being equal, seems irrelevant to the question as to Galileo and the RC Church.

Nothing much to say about Galileo that hasn’t already been said:
http://woodenboat.com/forum/showthread.php?p=960966&highlight=galileo#post960966


...Is there a point I've missed or is this mere misdirection? How can we save the appearances?
Sure you missed it. Start with this assertion:
Science and religion= oil and water = ignorance.
To that point… Is it not a fact of history that one William of Ockham existed and that he came up with his principle that "entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity"?
The answer will be one of many demonstrations that the assertion above is accurate.

Joe (SoCal)
12-27-2008, 01:53 PM
http://www.landcareresearch.co.nz/research/biosystematics/invertebrates/invertid/images/AmericanCockroach1.jpg

Bob Cleek
12-27-2008, 02:14 PM
Apologizing for a mistake made 500 years ago seems a little too politically correct for my sensibilities. If I were Pope today, I think I'd just laugh and tell anybody who still cared to get a life. I guess that's why I'm not.

Considering that most everyone in the whole world in the mid-1500's thought Galileo's theory was totally off the wall, and got wrong just about everything else we now know about scientific fact on all subjects, including exactly where babies come from, I find it rather interesting that the bigots of the world keep dredging up poor old Galileo for no more reason than to criticize the Catholic Church. Why does it matter them at all?

Sam F
12-27-2008, 02:15 PM
Of course the controversy is kept alive for ideological reasons. The ideology that says the church is the source of eternal verities.

No sir. Ideology is a substitute for religion.


If you run into my parked car, use the threat of force to avoid admitting you are in the wrong, then years later say well, there was fault on both sides, you may be doing your best to apologize, within the constraints set by your lawyer, but it isn't a proper apology.

If that happened it would be an excellent example of what you're talking about.
But in the case of Galileo, it didn't happen that way. It wasn't pretty, but those who lived the events didn't have the benefit of your hindsight. Even as bad is it was, the case is an anomaly.

Ian McColgin
12-27-2008, 06:04 PM
I can't wait to see where this goes.

The point of the thread is about Galileo and the RC Church. Not about any historical happenstance one might recall, though the cultural impact of Lorenzo the Magnificant's spending might count.

The musings of a philosopher who lived about three centuries earlier have little obvious to do with that controversy.

Nicholas Scheuer
12-27-2008, 06:13 PM
JimD/Infallability:

The Pope is only "infallable" on matters of Faith and/or Morals.

Catholic Church politics are outside the realm of infallability.

Examples of "faith and/or morals" would be the Pope ruling on the validity of the Ressurrection of Jesus, or the Virgin Birth.

Moby Nick

Cuyahoga Chuck
12-27-2008, 08:43 PM
Science and religion= oil and water = ignorance



Lots. For instance, do you have any objections to Ockham's razor?

Ockham's Razor is a principle not a salient fact. If you've got any let's see them. All your parsing of other's replies seems to invariably lead to a lot of tail chasing.
You are not smart enough to compose endless two-line zingers that are salient. In fact none of your zingers are. You are a first class pedant and not very artistic about it.

Osborne Russell
12-28-2008, 12:56 PM
Some RC Church revisionists have insisted that if Galileo had simply described his heliocentric account of the Copernican insight as a model, a representation and not as real fact, he'd have been fine.

Well, here we have at least a suggestion of what might be meant as a mutual understanding.

The RCC wanted model, not fact --

1. Galileo insisted on fact, not model, or . . .
2. Galileo denied the legitimacy of the distinction?

By the way, what is the distinction?

And speaking of RCC, did the other Christians -- Eastern Orthodox, etc. -- get into a thing over this? How about the Jews & Moslems?

downthecreek
12-28-2008, 01:52 PM
Is it not a fact of history that one William of Ockham existed and came up with his axiom that "entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity"?


Golly gosh. Dear old William of Ockham......

Perhaps the first (because he was an honest man and willing to go where his own logic took him) to admit that the existence of God cannot be proven and is a matter of faith alone. And, of course, to pose the questions - if everything must originate with a creator - who created the creator and who designed the designer?

William was wiser than Sam.

Keith Wilson
12-28-2008, 02:00 PM
Galileo got into such big trouble because he personally pissed off the pope. Politics as usual.

You can read the book that got him into hot water here; the Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems (http://www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/galileo/dialogue.html).

Ian McColgin
12-28-2008, 05:03 PM
I don’t think I can give a good summary of the Galileo v RC dispute but there are several dimensions that one can look at.

At the metaphysical level, what is the “reality” of the material world? All three MEMs are non-dualistic, especially Christianity, but there’s always been at least some tension. The Gnostics tried to resolve it by replacing a dualism of the spiritual and the material with a sort of graduated ontology where certain levels of being are more real, as it were, than others. The RC through the Middle Ages managed a wonderful synthesis of Paulistic faith and Aristotelian logical natural and metaphysical systems. The weakness of this synthesis was that it came (in a profoundly non-Aristotelian way) to depend on scholarship of ancient texts rather than just plain looking at the natural universe - aka empiricism.

A second area of trouble is what is meant by knowing something. What is a scientific theory or law? Galileo was a brilliant mathematician who managed to break at least partly free of the mystic-metaphysical-magic notion of the mathematizability of observed natural phenomena that drifts through what we now see as at least clouded sciences like astrology, alchemy and numerological hermeneutics on ancient texts. No one who faces honestly how mathematical formulae manage to fit worldly experience without at least a twinge of wonder. Galileo rather brilliantly slashed through the defenders of the Ptolemaic model, incidentally establishing that not only are some models “better” than others but also that some are “truer.” To some minds of his time, as now, this understanding can seem an invitation to heresy.

The RC has managed various murmurings to acknowledge its wrong of four centuries ago but the tension remains. Philosopher/theologians like Fr Patrick Heelan have updated the Thomistic synthesis in a satisfyingly modern manner, but especially as issues enter the boundries between natural science and morality, we see trouble. Look at how theologians like Richard McBrien have been moved from center to fringe, for example.

It’s really a complex and fascinating set of issues, for the philosophically inclined.

Nicholas Carey
12-29-2008, 02:06 AM
I looked for but didn't find what exactly Galileo misunderstood, or what the church misunderstood, for that matter. Refusing to consider something objectively is not the same thing as misunderstanding it.

Further, it seems the professors at Sapiens U. didn't get the word about the harmony of religion and science.

Galileo Thesis: Earth (and other planets) orbit about the sun. Maths prove it. Neener, neener, neener.

Inquisition/Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congregation_for_the_Doctrine_of_the_Faith) (Pope Benedict's old outfit) response: Nonsense. That would mess up our theology (primacy of man in God's eye). We'll be nice though: life in prison instead of old-school burning at stake.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 09:56 AM
Ockham's Razor is a principle not a salient fact.

Not reading carefully?
I said:
Is it not a fact of history that one William of Ockham existed and that he came up with his principle that "entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity"?

So we both know that the "razor" is a principle. Perhaps you might have missed the point?


If you've got any let's see them. All your parsing of other's replies seems to invariably lead to a lot of tail chasing.
You are not smart enough to compose endless two-line zingers that are salient. In fact none of your zingers are. You are a first class pedant and not very artistic about it.
Now Chuck, let's not descend into ad hominem fallacy yet again, shall we?
Since you seem to have missed it, let me explain the point
I took pila's "equation" and completed it:
Science and religion= oil and water = ignorance
It was then documented it by providing evidence - by way of William of Ockham.
He is one of a very many instances that show my completion of the “equation” is accurate.
If one presumes that you don’t reject the value of Ockham’s razor in science (and I do so presume), I now ask you: With that "equation" in mind, who was William of Ockham?

downthecreek
12-29-2008, 10:44 AM
Now Chuck, let's not descend into ad hominem fallacy yet again, shall we?


Logician though you may be (in your own mind at least) I strongly suspect that you have never actually studied logic. If you had done so, you might have learned what the the term "argumentum ad hominem" really means.

Ian McColgin
12-29-2008, 12:13 PM
Fantastic. Several writers here, myself of course included, attempt to deal with the issue raised - what is the "misunderstanding" between G & RC - and one corrospondant acts as if the historical actuality of a medieval logician has something essential to do with demonstrating or refuting RC repression of scientific inquiry.

Galileo was a master of most pointed arguement that not only refuted the other side's points, but heaped scorn on them. Such a tempting example except that here the other side heaps its own scorn upon itself. Ad hominem indeed.

Captain Blight
12-29-2008, 12:20 PM
The only way he's ever going to go away is if we stop responding to him. We have all got to put him on IGNORE.

Honestly, I'd rather argue politics with Kaa, if he were to come back around. Trouble with Sam (other than being a gigantic enema nozzle) is that when confronted with his own inconsistencies (see post 501 (http://www.woodenboat.com/forum/showthread.php?t=89869&page=11)) he doesn't attempt to address them, or even admit that an inconsistency exists, or that he has made an error with his reasoning.

Maybe Sam is actually the Pope, because he is infallible.

downthecreek
12-29-2008, 12:47 PM
Trouble with Sam (other than being a gigantic enema nozzle) is that when confronted with his own inconsistencies (see post 501 (http://www.woodenboat.com/forum/showthread.php?t=89869&page=11)) he doesn't attempt to address them, or even admit that an inconsistency exists, or that he has made an error with his reasoning.


Sam F is a frightened man. Frightened of revealing his own thoughts and beliefs, lest they be challenged. Frightened of admitting he may sometimes be wrong in case he finds out he is all wrong. Frightened that the smallest crack in the edifice he has built for himself portends its downfall. Frightened of the fact of his eventual non-existence. Frightened that the unbelievers might be right after all.

Attack in order to defend seems to be Sam's motto. And the more determined the defence, the more you may assume the defender feels they have to lose.

That's how it looks to me.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 12:47 PM
Some of you still can't grasp the point. When someone says:
"religion and science are inherently opposites" he is expressing profound ignorance.
I can't help but note that no one has ventured to answer my question: Who was William of Ockham?
What's the matter boys? Cat got your tongue? ;)

downthecreek
12-29-2008, 12:50 PM
Removed - double post

Sam F
12-29-2008, 12:54 PM
The notion that religion and science are inherently opposites is absurd.

It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences
It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning. But, I think, that will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry, astronomy, music, and medicine are much more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of science. Hence it seems likely that the preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness.

downthecreek
12-29-2008, 12:55 PM
I can't help but note that no one has ventured to answer my question: Who was William of Ockham?
What's the matter boys? Cat got your tongue? ;)

Here's a little lesson for you, Sam.

If anyone were to attempt to discredit the ideas of William of Ockham on the grounds that he was a Franciscan monk, that really would be "argumentum ad hominem" :D

Sam F
12-29-2008, 01:14 PM
What? All this fuss and bother about this and that (and the ever present personal attacks), but still no understanding of the point?
Science and religion = oil and water = ignorance
Anybody want to prove that wrong?
Hint: William of Ockham is no help at all. ;)

peb
12-29-2008, 01:27 PM
I take up sam's argument anew:



religion and science are inherently opposites




Science and religion= oil and water


WRT Catholocism, absolutely two of the most ill informed and bigoted statements ever uttered on this forum and possitively deserving of Sam's lament about the failure of education.

I will ask you guys to explan this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_thinkers_in_science

The statement "Modern science was founded by the Catholic church" is not too strong. The early Catholic universities and countless medieval & renaissance Catholic philosophers gave modern science its firm footing.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 01:50 PM
Don't be too hard on them peb... they do have personal attacks at least.
Sadly, the evidence is that they don't understand either Galileo or The Church.
They ought to enjoy a great advantage over their religious opponents, whose lot it is to defend the false position; for he who holds the truth will have many experiences and proofs on his side, whereas his opponents cannot use anything but illusion, quibbles, and fallacies. Now since these boys know they have such advantages over their enemy when they stay within proper bounds, why do they, in the thick of the battle (so to speak) always resort to the dreadful ad hominem weapon to vanquish their opponent? Frankly, I believe they have themselves been beaten, and, feeling unable to stand up against the assaults of the adversary, they seek ways of holding him off. To that end they would forbid him the use of reason, which is the divine gift of Providence. ;)

downthecreek
12-29-2008, 01:53 PM
I

The statement "Modern science was founded by the Catholic church" is not too strong. The early Catholic universities and countless medieval & renaissance Catholic philosophers gave modern science its firm footing.

I think the Muslims probably have a better claim to that distinction than the Roman Catholics. :)

Sam F
12-29-2008, 01:56 PM
Still... no one will accept the challenge:
Science and religion = oil and water = ignorance
Anybody want to prove that wrong?

After all... anyone who says that theology is the queen of the sciences can't be all that opposed to mixing "oil and water". ;)

downthecreek
12-29-2008, 01:57 PM
Frankly, I believe they have themselves been beaten, and, feeling unable to stand up against the assaults of the adversary, they seek ways of holding him off. To that end they would forbid him the use of reason, which is the divine gift of Providence. ;)

I love it, Sam! How you refuse to engage directly but twist and turn to engage without engaging.

I congratulate you! You really are something! (Just not what you pretend or aspire to be) :D

ishmael
12-29-2008, 02:07 PM
Yet another thread I won't wade through completely.

Face it, Galileo was right. The weird part is that the church knew he was right yet repressed it because it didn't fit the power structure.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:13 PM
Funny! I make a very simple point: Science and religion = oil and water = ignorance... and the best you boys can manage are ad hominem attacks.
I stick to that point and when I note that such attacks indicate a beaten opponent - no other conclusion being reasonable - and I get yet more personal attacks.
Sad
Sad
Sad.

peb
12-29-2008, 02:16 PM
I think the Muslims probably have a better claim to that distinction than the Roman Catholics. :)

I'll grant you it is an arguable point. The problem with your point of view ,IMO, is that the Islam stopped. Christianity, despite the desitres of some early Protestants, did not.


From wikipedia page on "Science in medieval Islam"



The most prominent view in recent scholarship, however, as examplified by Toby E. Huff,[10] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Huff-9)[11] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-10) Will Durant (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Will_Durant),[12] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Durant-11) Fielding H. Garrison (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fielding_H._Garrison),[13] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Garrison-12) Muhammad Iqbal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Iqbal)[14] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Iqbal-13) Hossein Nasr (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hossein_Nasr) and Bernard Lewis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernard_Lewis),[15] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-14) holds that Muslim scientists (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Muslim_scientists) did help in laying the foundations for an experimental (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Experiment) science with their contributions to the scientific method (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method) and their empirical (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empirical), experimental and quantitative (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantitative) approach to scientific inquiry (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inquiry), but that their work cannot be considered a Scientific Revolution (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_Revolution),[10] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Huff-9) like what occurred in early modern Europe (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_modern_Europe) and led to the emergence of modern science,[16] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-15)[17] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-16) with the exception of Ibn al-Haytham (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ibn_al-Haytham)'s Book of Optics (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Optics) which is widely considered a revolution in the fields of optics (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optics) and visual perception (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_perception).[18] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Hogendijk-17)[19] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-Hatfield-18)[20] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-19)[21] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-20)[22] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-21)[23] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science#cite_note-22)


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_science

However, and most importantly, your post does help refute pila's and TimH's point and also provides support for SamF's statement that pila and TimH highlight how bad our modern educational system can be.

Ian McColgin
12-29-2008, 02:25 PM
The oil and water bit is one arguably erroneous answer to the thread's opening question, but dumping all over that is a side issue. To those who have not even tried to answer please allow me to rephrase with five related questions:

Was the RC wrong to attempt to silence Galileo at the time?
(yes) (no)

If not, was the RC wrong to apologise some centuries later?
(yes) (no)

What were Galileo's epistemological, metaphysical or theological errors?
(essay)

Did the inquisitors make any epistemological, metaphysical or theological errors?
(essay)

In what ways has the RC position shifted to more gracefully accomodate not only Galileo but most of what we now call natural science?
(essay)

Since we all know that mixing oil and water happens at sea on a rough day and happens more gracefully when we shake the salad dressing, let us not multiply diversions unnecessarily.

OK. Not to vainly imitate a magisterial presence and noting that I've tried to get at some of these issues already:

Not all people are bothered much by the theological or philosophical implications of things. What does it matter if the earth revolves around the sun or not?

As Socratese learned, rubbing folks' faces in their own non-reflective lives has its disadvantages.

But both Galileo and the inquisitors did care. Both were human, with flaws and egos abundant. Thus, the arguments can be seen to have both legitimately theological issues and more than a little personal pique. One of the good things about studying disputes of this sort is to learn ways to keep one's own mind open in the face of challenges that appear to, may even actually, overthrow basic beliefs.

That's what the the dispute is really about for us today.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:27 PM
Yet another thread I won't wade through completely. Face it, Galileo was right. No he wasn't. Unless the Sun is the center of the Universe. Is it?
Galileo made other errors too - which didn't help his case.
The Copernican model is a better model than the Ptolomaic one... but it's not "right".
It's curious that Copernicus seems ignored by the opponents here... and I suspect I know why... They pretend not to know that the Heliocentric theory's author, was Nicholas Copernicus; and that he was not only a Catholic, but a priest and a canon. He was in fact so esteemed by the church that when the Lateran Council under Pope Leo X took up the correction of the church calendar, Copernicus was called to Rome to undertake its reform. This is not exactly a good example of persecution of scientists, eh?


The weird part is that the church knew he was right yet repressed it because it didn't fit the power structure. As far as the Church is concerned, it matters not in the least if Ptolemy or Copernicus were correct. The Church merely asked for proof before changing its view. That is a not unreasonable request. No such proof was forthcoming. Once such proof was available all objections were overcome. I suggest you consult father Angelo Secchi, S.J. on the subject.
Meanwhile... the anti-Christians here are demonstrated to be remarkably resistant to evidence - ironically, just like Galileo's Aristotelian opponents.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:32 PM
The oil and water bit is one arguably erroneous answer to the thread's opening question,..

It isn't "arguably erroneous" it's just plain erroneous.



...but dumping all over that is a side issue.

It's a side issue to you. It isn't to me.
In fact that's what I've commented on... Why? Because it undermines the entire erroneous view behind threads of this sort.


As Socratese learned, rubbing folks' faces in their own non-reflective lives has its disadvantages. :D

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:35 PM
It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences

Are there any Christians here, besides SamF, who would agree with that sentiment? Any who would disagree? Do you disagree Norman? Even if you do, I have it on good authority that it's true.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:36 PM
'Profounder'?


It did 'read' a little strangely

Don't blame me... lot's of my views are obsolete. ;)

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:39 PM
This is a statement of fact:
It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences.


It appears that you're referring to something which is an opinion, not a 'true or false'.

So is it true or false?


I was asking OTHERS, not you.

I asked YOU Norman.
Is there something wrong with saying that "It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences"?
Do you contend that I don't know what I'm taking about?

PatCox
12-29-2008, 02:56 PM
Whats funny, by which I mean ironic, is that what happened to muslim science is that it was reigned in and eventually destroyed by muslim fundamentalism, which valued religious dogma over the quest for truth. Same process resulted in the most embarrassing lapses of Soviet Science, which happened when communist dogma came to be valued over truth. The Nazi's had it happen, too.

And here, in the ultimate irony, SamF is arguing that religion and science are not contrary, yet he is also the one who would redefine what is science solely for his purpose of re-establishing the authority of his own particular religious dogma over science.

SamF is able to say so many things that seem ridiculous, because he has his own secret definitions for the terms he uses. When he says "science" in this thread, he is referring to something completely different from the empirical methodology most people are referring to when they say "science."

Sam F
12-29-2008, 02:58 PM
...SamF is able to say so many things that seem ridiculous, because he has his own secret definitions for the terms he uses...

Pat has found me out! Alas! All these years and nobody guessed.
OK. I surrender!
I'll now reveal my secret source for definitions:
http://www.bartleby.com/61/
:D :D

PatCox
12-29-2008, 02:59 PM
SamF, this statement: "It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences," is pretty much meaningless, a null statement incapable of refutation. Theology is not "science" so it cannot be "queen of the sciences." What does "held among christians" mean? Held by a significant number? Held by the majority? Has it been a tenet of the RC church? Is it sufficient to make the statement true, in your view, if there has, at any given moment, been one christian who believed it? The majority of us here are christians, how many of us, do you think, have ever "held" it?

Pompous moron.

Keith Wilson
12-29-2008, 03:01 PM
The Church merely asked for proof before changing its view. It would be more accurate to say that "the church merely asked for proof" before allowing anyone to hold, argue for, or publish the contrary view on pain of the most severe punishment.

The central problem with the case of Galileo was the Roman Catholic church getting involved in something that is absolutely no business of theirs. I think the church recognizes that now.

PatCox
12-29-2008, 03:09 PM
SamF is a scholastic: "Scholasticism was the dominant form of theology and philosophy in the Latin West in the Middle Ages, particularly in the 12th, 13th, and 14th centuries. It was both a method and a system which aimed to reconcile the Christian theology of the Church Fathers with the Greek philosophy of Aristotle and his commentators.

The main figures of scholasticism were Peter Abelard, Albertus Magnus, Duns Scotus, William of Ockham, Bonaventure and, above all, Thomas Aquinas, whose Summa Theologiae is an ambitious synthesis of Greek philosophy and Christian doctrine. During the Scientific Revolution, the deductive and a priori methods of scholasticism were superseded by the inductive reasoning of modern science.

The word Scholasticism is derived from the Latin word scholasticus, the Latinized form of the Greek σχολαστικός (scholastikos), an adjective derived from σχολή (scholē), "school".[1]

When he says "Queen of the sciences" he should try to rememeber that "science" was not a word in use in the present sense in 1400, the term then would have been "natural philosophy."

Keith Wilson
12-29-2008, 03:15 PM
When he says "Queen of the sciences" he should try to rememeber that "science" was not a word in use in the present sense in 1400, the term then would have been "natural philosophy."Quite right. "Science" used to mean something like "organized field of study". Theology is not a science at all in the most common current meaning of the word.

FWIW, the word "dunce" comes from the name Duns Scotus. :D
Dunce: 1577, from earlier Duns disciple "follower of John Duns Scotus" (c. 1265-1308), Scot. scholar of philosophy and theology supposed to have been born at Duns in Berwickshire. By 16c., humanist reaction against medieval theology singled him out as the type of the hairsplitting scholastic. It became a term of reproach to more conservative philosophical opponents c.1527, later extended to any dull-witted student.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 03:16 PM
I don't answer your questions, SamF...

So? What else is new?

Ian McColgin
12-29-2008, 03:17 PM
The topic, for those who have lost their way, is not the status of theology among the sciences, diminished though it may seem to some over the last six centuries.

The topic is: What was the beef between Galileo and his RC inquisitors?

I find it ironic that our staunchest defender of the faith has essayed a far less sympathetic attempt at explanation, has been at such pains to create irrelevant diversions that don't even mention the principals or principles, than this at times sacreligious philosoph.

But so long as we're off on a diversion: Whether it's mathematics (as Gauss and many others would have it) or philosophy or some form of theology, there are folk of a certain bent of mind that view something like that as the Queen of the Sciences. I count myself in their company.

We are driven by several at times conflicting mental pathologies.

We have a strong compulsion towards unifying knowledge, faith and action into some sort of grand and articulated system. This may be explicit or it may take the via negativa of demolishing other systems.

We are emotionally intellectual yokels, puzzeled and amazed at what most folk manage to take for granted. Thus, we make mountains out of what are for most intellectual molehills.

And finally, we know these things about ourselves but feel that the exercises we are compelled to do anyway are somehow good, somehow clarify things.

There are some profound differences between theology and philosophy. Theology in the end speaks both from and to a community of faith, even when it uses the tools and forms of philosophy. Philosophy may or may not be constrained by an articulated or implicit faith.

So, back to the thread's point of what's the beef between G and the RC.

Four and six hundred years ago, theology was the queen of the sciences because theological understanding was the final organizing principle for all other understandings. The shock of the protracted scientific revolution, the shock of Galileo's theorizing, shook all but the most nimble minded theologians. Even at the time, there were plenty of theologians and theologically sophisticated people, Galileo among them, who did not see empirical responsibility as an epistemological rebuttal of faith.

To judge from the irrelevant responses on this thread and (witness the idiocy of ID and creationism abroad in the land) in much of the population, it's a shock to this day. In various fundamentalisms and institutional defensivenesses we see closed pseudo-scholastic minds at their most vociferous.

And that's the beef: Some defensive inquisitors already stung by Galileo's caustic argumentation got carried away in their direction and Galileo ignored the idea the being right was the final standard in public disputation. And just as the inquisitors could have been more metaphysically sophisticated, so Galileo could have been epistemologically a good deal more exact in his phrasing.

ishmael
12-29-2008, 03:18 PM
"No he wasn't. Unless the Sun is the center of the Universe. Is it?"

Com'on Sam, you're being fatuous. The leap to Copernican thinking was tremendous at the waning edge of the dark ages, circa mid 16th century. Galileo mistook things, as was the wont of all his predecessors, as this now being the center of the universe, but he got the heliocentrism right.

I've gotta think, could be wrong, that the Vatican had its own astronomers, and knew he was right.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 03:20 PM
It would be more accurate to say that "the church merely asked for proof"

When proof was provided what did the Church do? She accepted it.


...before allowing anyone to hold, argue for, or publish the contrary view on pain of the most severe punishment.

Golly! Speaking of secret definitions! Since when is house arrest, with provisions to leave from time to time as needed, "the most severe punishment"?


The central problem with the case of Galileo was the Roman Catholic church getting involved in something that is absolutely no business of theirs...

I think the central problem is that ya'll mistake hindsight for foresight.
They're quite different you know.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 03:31 PM
"No he wasn't. Unless the Sun is the center of the Universe. Is it?"

Com'on Sam, you're being fatuous. The leap to Copernican thinking was tremendous at the waning edge of the dark ages, circa mid 16th century.

In hindsight, yes.
I think you expect too much of contemporaries of any age Jack


Galileo mistook things, as was the wont of all his predecessors, as this now being the center of the universe, but he got the heliocentrism right.

Sorry, but it's not right. Heliocentrism in Galileo's day meant the Sun was the center of the Universe:

Some years ago word reached me concerning your proficiency, of which everybody constantly spoke. At that time I began to have a very high regard for you... For I had learned that you had not merely mastered the discoveries of the ancient astronomers uncommonly well but had also formulated a new cosmology. In it you maintain that the earth moves; that the sun occupies the lowest, and thus the central, place in the universe... Therefore with the utmost earnestness I entreat you, most learned sir, unless I inconvenience you, to communicate this discovery of yours to scholars, and at the earliest possible moment to send me your writings on the sphere of the universe together with the tables and whatever else you have that is relevant to this subject... (Letter from Archbishop of Capua Nicholas Schönberg to Copernicus)


I've gotta think, could be wrong, that the Vatican had its own astronomers, and knew he was right.

Nobody knew he was right - including Galileo.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 03:35 PM
SamF, this statement: "It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences," is pretty much meaningless, a null statement incapable of refutation. Theology is not "science" so it cannot be "queen of the sciences." What does "held among christians" mean? Held by a significant number? Held by the majority? Has it been a tenet of the RC church? Is it sufficient to make the statement true, in your view, if there has, at any given moment, been one christian who believed it?... Pompous moron.

I said I held that view on good authority Pat.
Do you contend that I don't know what I'm talking about?
That my source and myself are: "Pompous morons"?
Are you sure you mean to say that?

Keith Wilson
12-29-2008, 03:37 PM
Since when is house arrest, with provisions to leave from time to time as needed, "the most severe punishment"?I didn't say that Galileo was punished most severely, rather that he was under threat of the most severe punishment. They convicted of "vehement suspicion of heresy". He could have been convicted him of heresy, which did indeed often result in the most severe punishment. This was not a merely theoretical possibility, but a real threat. Giordano Bruno, another astronomer and natural philosopher, was burned at the stake in Rome 33 years before Galileo's trial. Anyone else following in Galileo's footsteps would have faced the same possibility. After Galileo's trial the center of gravity of Western astronomy shifted to Protestant countries, and for very good reason. Galileo's Dialogue of the Two Great World Systems was on the Catholic church's list of prohibited books until 1835.
I think the central problem is that ya'll mistake hindsight for foresight.By the standards of today, or even the standards of the late 1700s, the church's actions were wrong. Even the Roman Catholic church recognizes that now. Obviously most of us here have different standards than those of the Inquisition of 1633.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 03:52 PM
I didn't say that Galileo was punished most severely, rather that he was under threat of the most severe punishment.

So? If I were charged with a capitol crime here in Virginia I would be "under threat of the most severe punishment".
Are you saying that Renaissance Italy is just like the US?


...After Galileo's trial the center of gravity of Western astronomy shifted to Protestant countries, and for very good reason.

Really? Can you prove that? Both the shift and the cause and effect?
I rather doubt it. Besides...
Did anybody tell Pietro Angelo Secchi?


Father Angelo Secchi (June 18, 1818 – February 26, 1878) was an Italian astronomer.
Biography

Born in Reggio Emilia, Father Angelo Secchi spent his latter years in Rome, where he died in 1878.

He was a pioneer of astronomical spectroscopy along with Joseph von Fraunhofer. At the age of 16, he entered the Jesuit Order, and later, at the age of 32, he became the director of the Vatican Observatory. Through his solar observations, he discovered the existence of solar spicules. He also discovered comet Secchi (C/1853 E1).

He drew one of the early maps of Mars in 1858, in which he called Syrtis Major the "Atlantic Canal". He thus anticipated Schiaparelli's use of the term canali, although Secchi's canals were not the long straight-line Martian canals of Schiaparelli and Lowell.

Of decisive importance for Secchi’s later achievements in the domain of meteorology was his close friendship with the celebrated hydrographer, meteorologist, author oceanographer and astronomer , Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury , the first superintendent of the "U. S. National Observatory" -- later called the United States Naval Observatory, -- who lived and worked in Washington. Secchi meet and studied under Cmdr. M. F. Maury in Washington for two years (1848-49) while Secchi and other Jesuits were refuges from Rome.

To this friendship, through the medium of Angelo Secchi, Italy owed its first acquaintance with the epoch-making discoveries of the great American, whose valuable services in marine meteorology and navigation cannot be overrated.

In later years Secchi dedicated to this friend, “as a token of our mutual friendship”, his work, Sui recenti progressi della Meteorologia (Rome, 1861), and on Maury’s death in 1873 Secchi gave Commander M. F. Maury an enduring memorial in a warm and touching necrology (cf. Bollettino meteorologico del Collegio Romano, X/II, Rome, 1873).

The Secchi crater on the Moon and a crater on Mars are named after him. Secchi also developed an oceanographic instrument, known as a Secchi disk.


By the standards of today, or even the standards of the late 1700s, the church's actions were wrong.
Since no actions occurred at those times - they're irrelevant.

PatCox
12-29-2008, 03:54 PM
SamF, you are repeating a catchphrase, translated from another language, which describes a long-dead philosophy, and which uses the words it uses in senses different from the currently popular meaning. It is an anchronism, and unless you are willing to explain what you take it to mean in modern terms, its neither right nor wrong, its just meaningless.

I will translate it for you. This is not going to be a transliteration, it has to be lengthy to make sure all of the beliefs of the medeival scholastics who first said it are clearly expressed in modern terms. It means: "Reason, logic, observation, and philosophy all help to increase our knowledge of God, and therefore, all sciences serve to further the ultimate science, the study of God." Inherent in this statement is the belief that the knowledge of God can be increased by human intellectual activity. As opposed to seeking it through revelation alone, I suppose.

Now SamF, "It has been held," just what does that mean? What is the significance of it? Tell me those things, and I will be able to agree or disagree with the statement.

I will speak plainly my own beliefs on the same issue. I do not think there is any inherent conflict between "science" and religion. But I also fail to see how, in any way, science contributes anything to theology (could you give an example?) or how theology is a science.

peb
12-29-2008, 03:58 PM
It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences




Are there any Christians here, besides SamF, who would agree with that sentiment? Any who would disagree?




Ok Norman, I'll anserw. It is impossible to disagree with SamF's statement, since it is a fact of history.

From Aquinas' Summa:



Article 2, Whether Sacred Doctrine is a science?
...
I answer that, Sacred Doctrine is a science.

...

Article 5, Whether Sacred Doctrine is nobler than other sciences?
...
Hence it is clear that from every standpoint, it is nobler than other sciences.



Since the Summa was written around 800 years ago, assuming that qualifies as "long", Sam's statement is without a doubt factual, so I agree with him: It has been long by christians theld that theology is the queen of science.



Of course, as Keith suggested, it is using a broader definition of the word science than is used around this forum, but perhaps not much more broad a definition than is used in any theoretical physics departement or department of history at many universities today.

peb
12-29-2008, 04:17 PM
...
After Galileo's trial the center of gravity of Western astronomy shifted to Protestant countries, and for very good reason.
...


I call BS on this one. Show me some evidence to support this statement.

As a counter examples, I will again reference the following wikipedia page
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_thinkers_in_science

I have done a fairly thorough scan of this page of astronomers after galileo and I see an assortment of Catholics and Protestants mentioned. Probably more Catholics, but at the very least, no evidence of some type of protestant overtaking of astronomy.


On the surface, Keith's assertion sounds preposterous to anyone familiar with the history of the reformation. You must remember that Catholics held the view that faith and reason could never contradict eath other (although this was not yet defined dogma yet in the catholic faith), while early protestants typically held the view that reason was the arch-enemy of faith.

BTW, it is very possible that the Galileo affair was a feeble attempt to appease some protestant sympathizers in the curia.

PatCox
12-29-2008, 04:38 PM
All christians are thomists?

Sam F
12-29-2008, 04:56 PM
All christians are thomists?

One presumes that most Protestants* aren't.
But Protestants aren't at issue here, are they?




*They just LOVED Giordano Bruno in Geneva ;)

Sam F
12-29-2008, 05:05 PM
Now SamF, "It has been held," just what does that mean? It means it's a fact of history.
What is the significance of it? Among other things it means that “Science and religion = oil and water = ignorance” is correct


Tell me those things, and I will be able to agree or disagree with the statement.

OK?



I will speak plainly my own beliefs on the same issue. I do not think there is any inherent conflict between "science" and religion.

Then you find yourself in agreement with a “pompous moron”. :D


But I also fail to see how, in any way, science contributes anything to theology (could you give an example?)

Truth can not contradict truth. The findings of science illuminate the workings of the mind of God.


…or how theology is a science.

It is a theologically rooted belief that creation is rational and understandable. Without that belief, there would be no science.

PatCox
12-29-2008, 05:06 PM
Protestants aren't christians?

Anyway, nice little phrase, "Theology is the queen of the sciences," Though what Aquinas said was "handmaiden."

But then, you start to read in more detail what Aquinas thought about the relationship between science and religion, and you see that what he said had almost exactly the opposite sense. He says quite clearly that science cannot refute religion, because religion is based on revelation, not reason, and that science cannot prove religion, because, again, religion is based on revelation, although science can improve one's understanding of revelation.

Really, I fail to see how Aquinas disagrees with idea of "seperate domains."

PatCox
12-29-2008, 05:07 PM
Here is some of Aquinas on the topic, Article 8, Summa:

I answer that, As other sciences do not argue in proof of their principles, but argue from their principles to demonstrate other truths in these sciences: so this doctrine does not argue in proof of its principles, which are the articles of faith, but from them it goes on to prove something else; as the Apostle from the resurrection of Christ argues in proof of the general resurrection (1 Corinthians 15). However, it is to be borne in mind, in regard to the philosophical sciences, that the inferior sciences neither prove their principles nor dispute with those who deny them, but leave this to a higher science; whereas the highest of them, viz. metaphysics, can dispute with one who denies its principles, if only the opponent will make some concession; but if he concede nothing, it can have no dispute with him, though it can answer his objections. Hence Sacred Scripture, since it has no science above itself, can dispute with one who denies its principles only if the opponent admits some at least of the truths obtained through divine revelation; thus we can argue with heretics from texts in Holy Writ, and against those who deny one article of faith, we can argue from another. If our opponent believes nothing of divine revelation, there is no longer any means of proving the articles of faith by reasoning, but only of answering his objections — if he has any — against faith. Since faith rests upon infallible truth, and since the contrary of a truth can never be demonstrated, it is clear that the arguments brought against faith cannot be demonstrations, but are difficulties that can be answered.

Reply to Objection 1. Although arguments from human reason cannot avail to prove what must be received on faith, nevertheless, this doctrine argues from articles of faith to other truths.

Reply to Objection 2. This doctrine is especially based upon arguments from authority, inasmuch as its principles are obtained by revelation: thus we ought to believe on the authority of those to whom the revelation has been made. Nor does this take away from the dignity of this doctrine, for although the argument from authority based on human reason is the weakest, yet the argument from authority based on divine revelation is the strongest. But sacred doctrine makes use even of human reason, not, indeed, to prove faith (for thereby the merit of faith would come to an end), but to make clear other things that are put forward in this doctrine. Since therefore grace does not destroy nature but perfects it, natural reason should minister to faith as the natural bent of the will ministers to charity. Hence the Apostle says: "Bringing into captivity every understanding unto the obedience of Christ" (2 Corinthians 10:5). Hence sacred doctrine makes use also of the authority of philosophers in those questions in which they were able to know the truth by natural reason, as Paul quotes a saying of Aratus: "As some also of your own poets said: For we are also His offspring" (Acts 17:28). Nevertheless, sacred doctrine makes use of these authorities as extrinsic and probable arguments; but properly uses the authority of the canonical Scriptures as an incontrovertible proof, and the authority of the doctors of the Church as one that may properly be used, yet merely as probable. For our faith rests upon the revelation made to the apostles and prophets who wrote the canonical books, and not on the revelations (if any such there are) made to other doctors. Hence Augustine says (Epis. ad Hieron. xix, 1): "Only those books of Scripture which are called canonical have I learned to hold in such honor as to believe their authors have not erred in any way in writing them. But other authors I so read as not to deem everything in their works to be true, merely on account of their having so thought and written, whatever may have been their holiness and learning."

Note that by "science" he is not really talking about what we would consider science, either, though you might.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 05:11 PM
After Galileo's trial the center of gravity of Western astronomy shifted to Protestant countries, and for very good reason.


I call BS on this one. Show me some evidence to support this statement.

Good call.
I very much doubt he can support that statement.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 05:16 PM
Ok Norman, I'll anserw. It is impossible to disagree with SamF's statement, since it is a fact of history.


I wasn't asking about history...

That's funny... I made a factual historical statement.


I was asking if other Christians on this thread agree with the statement or not...
peb is "another Christian".
If you only wanted people who agreed with you to answer, you should have said so.

peb
12-29-2008, 05:18 PM
Note that by "science" he is not really talking about what we would consider science, either, though you might


Actually, Aquinas's definition of science was not that far off of what would be accepted today:

"We must bear in mind that there are two kinds of sciences (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13598b.htm). There are some which proceed from a principle known by the natural (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10715a.htm) light of intelligence (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08066a.htm), such as arithmetic and geometry and the like. There are some which proceed from principles known by the light of a higher science: thus the science of perspective proceeds from principles established by geometry, and music from principles established by arithmetic".

In general, science was considered to be a "field of intellectual study". Its kind of like saying "is mathematics science"?

peb
12-29-2008, 05:21 PM
I wasn't asking about history... I was asking if other Christians on this thread agree with the statement or not.

As for the 'broad definition' of science, I suppose that if we're all permitted to extend definitions as broadly as we want to, then we can make just about any statement true. I think Orwell expounded quite definitively on that idea.

You specifically asked if other Christians agreed with SamF's sentiment. His sentiment was a historical statement, so in fact you were asking about history. Maybe you would like to clarify your question. Because his original statement is true. I don't see how it is even debatable.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 05:29 PM
Protestants aren't christians?
All christians are thomists? One presumes that most Protestants* aren't.
Anyway, nice little phrase, "Theology is the queen of the sciences," Though what Aquinas said was "handmaiden." But then, you start to read in more detail... I think you ought to read in more detail what I wrote in post # 54 – the one you thought was moronic.
Honestly, I can’t see how you found one word of that objectionable.
Besides, I didn’t invent the term “queen of the sciences” for theology. :D

Peerie Maa
12-29-2008, 05:35 PM
Ok Norman, I'll anserw. It is impossible to disagree with SamF's statement, since it is a fact of history.

From Aquinas' Summa:



Since the Summa was written around 800 years ago, assuming that qualifies as "long", Sam's statement is without a doubt factual, so I agree with him: It has been long by Christians held that theology is the queen of science.

No, all that demonstrates is that the opinion was held a "long" time ago. "Long held" means held then, held now and consistently held in between then and now.
Is it still a current belief was the question? I'm not a practicing Christian so my vote is irrelevant, any one else want to cast their vote?

Peb, you ignore time in your answer to Keith Wilson. With astronomers being burned and threatened with the fire by the Catholic church, I'd too would have moved to protestant countries until burning astronomers fell out of fashion. In the time-scale of the history we are discussing of course the centre of advancements moved around. Your argument is therefore incomplete and flawed.

peb
12-29-2008, 05:47 PM
Peb, you ignore time in your answer to Keith Wilson. With astronomers being burned and threatened with the fire by the Catholic church, I'd too would have moved to protestant countries until burning astronomers fell out of fashion. In the time-scale of the history we are discussing of course the centre of advancements moved around. Your argument is therefore incomplete and flawed.I most certainly did not ignore time. I went through a through list of christian scientists and specifically checked for three things: timeframe, astronamy, and catholic/protestat. There was NO eveidence to support Keith's assertion.

And which astronomers were burned by the catholic church. Here you are showing your ignorance about the entire subject matter at hand. For every Bruno, there is a Servetus.

Peerie Maa
12-29-2008, 05:59 PM
I most certainly did not ignore time. I went through a through list of christian scientists and specifically checked for three things: timeframe, astronamy, and catholic/protestat. There was NO eveidence to support Keith's assertion.

And which astronomers were burned by the catholic church. Here you are showing your ignorance about the entire subject matter at hand. For every Bruno, there is a Servetus.

Peb, what are you saying?
"And which astronomers were burned by the catholic church?"
Bruno was.

peb
12-29-2008, 06:06 PM
Peb, what are you saying?
"And which astronomers were burned by the catholic church?"
Bruno was.

First of all, I am saying that my argument was NOT flawed and incomplete.

Secondly,
"And which astronmers were berened by the protestant church?"
Servetus was. Which makes your position "that the catholics were burning philosophers, so obviously they would have moved to protestant areas" rather flawed, don't you think?

Tom Montgomery
12-29-2008, 06:09 PM
I do not doubt that Theology has been characterized by some as "the Queen of the Sciences." But I do question the accuracy of that characterization.

I would like someone to address the topic of the thread. How did Galileo misunderstand Roman Catholicism? What was Galileo's part of the alleged "mutual misunderstanding?"

peb?

Raka025
12-29-2008, 06:54 PM
Wasn't Galileo responsible for making the calendar work for the Catholics? I've read that he was at least smart enough to hold unto the information that the earth revolved around the sun and not that it revolved around the earth as the chuch "believed"! I heard he stated this on his death bed.

If this has been said, and correct, good going to who said it. I didn't feel like reading the other 2 pages. Sorry to those who had something enlightening to say. I mean no disrespect. :)

peb
12-29-2008, 07:01 PM
I do not doubt that Theology has been characterized by some as "the Queen of the Sciences." But I do question the accuracy of that characterization.

I would like someone to address the topic of the thread. How did Galileo misunderstand Roman Catholicism? What was Galileo's part of the alleged "mutual misunderstanding?"

peb?

Not interested Tom. What's the point. On this, I cannot help but refer you to Bob Cleek's post, whic kind of sums up my feelings:


Apologizing for a mistake made 500 years ago seems a little too politically correct for my sensibilities. If I were Pope today, I think I'd just laugh and tell anybody who still cared to get a life. I guess that's why I'm not.

Considering that most everyone in the whole world in the mid-1500's thought Galileo's theory was totally off the wall, and got wrong just about everything else we now know about scientific fact on all subjects, including exactly where babies come from, I find it rather interesting that the bigots of the world keep dredging up poor old Galileo for no more reason than to criticize the Catholic Church. Why does it matter them at all?


I will debate the issue of if religion (specifically christianity and specifically Catholicism) is anti-science. It is such an absurd idea (just consider all the present day Catholic universities if you insist on ignoring the medieval ones) that it should be easy to debunk. Any discussion about Galileo is only being put forth by you guys as an attempt to bash the Church. Why participate in your bigoted games?

edited to add:

besides, as you can see by looking up one post from this one, there is little limit to the ignorance about this subject.

Tom Montgomery
12-29-2008, 07:23 PM
peb: I will NOT apoloqize for dragging you and SamF back to the topic of the thread. John Paul II stated that the Galileo incident was due to "a tragic mutual incomprehension." It is fair to ask what John Paul II meant by that. It is certainly not clear to me. And this remark by the Pope was not made 500 years ago. I RESENT your characterization of a perfectly fair and straightforward question directly related to the topic of the thread as "bigoted."

As for the alleged ignorance of others: I only accept responsibility for MY OWN statements. I do not confuse you with SamF. Do not confuse me with others.

If you think this thread is simply about "bigoted games" in which you do not wish to participate, then WHY are you posting to it?

Yes, I am angry.

Peter Malcolm Jardine
12-29-2008, 07:24 PM
What is it about public education that produces thousands and thousands of people so uninformed of the facts of history?
I never get over what a lamentably bad job they've done.


Absolutely. I'm so happy that SamF straightened the world out on how the Catholics and Galileo got along so well together.;)

Peter Malcolm Jardine
12-29-2008, 07:27 PM
Some of you still can't grasp the point. When someone says:
"religion and science are inherently opposites" he is expressing profound ignorance.
I can't help but note that no one has ventured to answer my question: Who was William of Ockham?
What's the matter boys? Cat got your tongue? ;)



I will ask SamF to repeat his beliefs on the Book of Genesis. Do you believe the world was created in a week Sam?

Ian McColgin
12-29-2008, 07:49 PM
I'm with Tom that a lot of band width has been wasted not answering his question. It's certainly likely that where I thought I was getting at the issue, I was actually spreading murk. So Tom, shall I try some more?

Keith Wilson
12-29-2008, 07:51 PM
And which astronomers were burned by the catholic church. Here you are showing your ignorance about the entire subject matter at hand. For every Bruno, there is a Servetus.Oh, I know quite a lot about Servetus; he's one of our very own Unitarian martyrs. He wasn't much of an astronomer, though; more of a polymath. He made more contributions in anatomy, really. I expect being caught by the Inquisition would indeed be preferable to falling into the hands of John Calvin and his friends in Geneva.

However, peb, I think you're making a fundamental error here. The Catholic church was essentially monolithic and centralized, although there were local variations in rigor. The Protestant churches were characterized by diversity. There was everything from Calvin's dreadful theocracy in Geneva, to relative tolerance in Holland and England (except for Catholics), to almost complete religious liberty for periods in Transylvania and Poland. Comparing the Catholic church to the average of all the Protestant churches seems not very helpful.

I would also be interested in how Galileo misunderstood Roman Catholicism. What was Galileo's part of the alleged "mutual misunderstanding?" Why was the "tragic mutual incomprehension" mutual, rather than all on the side of the church? The poor fellow certainly misunderstood what he could get away with, but we already knew that.

Peter Malcolm Jardine
12-29-2008, 07:55 PM
Why don't Calvinists have sex standing up?

Could lead to dancing.

Tom Montgomery
12-29-2008, 07:57 PM
I'm with Tom that a lot of band width has been wasted not answering his question. It's certainly likely that where I thought I was getting at the issue, I was actually spreading murk. So Tom, shall I try some more?

Sure, Ian.

Here's what I think: I suspect John Paul's waffling language had nothing to do with an anti-science attitude and everything to do with institutional pride.

But I am interested in hearing alternate explanations.

peb
12-29-2008, 08:13 PM
However, peb, I think you're making a fundamental error here. The Catholic church was essentially monolithic and centralized, although there were local variations in rigor. The Protestant churches were characterized by diversity. There was everything from Calvin's dreadful theocracy in Geneva, to relative tolerance in Holland and England (except for Catholics), to almost complete religious liberty for periods in Transylvania and Poland. Comparing the Catholic church to the average of all the Protestant churches seems not very helpful.


This does nothing to justify you position that astronomy moved to protestant countries after the Galilea affair.

peb
12-29-2008, 08:19 PM
If you think this thread is simply about "bigoted games" in which you do not wish to participate, then WHY are you posting to it?

Yes, I am angry.

I fail to see why you are angry. Did you get angry at Bob Cleek for referring to this all as bigotry?



I find it rather interesting that the bigots of the world keep dredging up poor old Galileo for no more reason than to criticize the Catholic Church


At any rate, I'm not angry and I will respond to the issues that interet me. Good night, Tom. Hope you get over your anger, IMO it is rarely healthy.

Tom Montgomery
12-29-2008, 08:30 PM
First of all, peb, like you I do not always read every post of every thread. I had not read Bob Cleek's post. Now that you have quoted it, however, it seems that Bob is referring to those who accuse the present Roman Catholic Church of being anti-science. I have not made such an accusation. Read my previous post.

Secondly, Mr. Cleek consistently treats others with respect and good humor. Unlike you and Sam. If all Roman Catholics possessed Bob's tolerance, open-mindedness and good sense I may have never left the church. Needless to say, he and SamF rarely agree. Whereas you and SamF rarely disagree.

Ian McColgin
12-29-2008, 08:45 PM
Ahoy Tom. We may well agree. I wish some of the RC apologists had risen more to the occasion in a serious way as I'm over thirty five years past the last time I really immersed myself in these issues and I've no doubt there's been a bit of good scholarship since then.

The best I can put the RC position is that it viewed scientific explanations as we might view very theoretical not at all buildable models today - a set of notions that "save the appearances", in Owen Barfield's wonderful phrase. Some RC apologists have insisted that had Galileo merely indicated that Earth didn't "really" go around the sun but that the heliocentric model saves the appearances, accounts for the data, as well as the Ptolomeic model. And the heliocentric version is pleasantly simpler and mathematically more elegant.

The RC inquisitors declinded to carry their point by persuasion, and resorted to coersion.

As best I recall reading the arguments, Galileo's ultimate philosophy of science fits rather nicely with "critical realism" as put forward by many contemporary RC and other theologians and philosophers who examine issues of natural science. If that's the case, then indeed Galileo got it and his inquisitors did not.

So far as that goes. Critical realism is perfectly compatible with RC and most serious Protestant and Islamic theology and consistant with the ultimate value systems of Jewish, Hindu and Buddhist systems, etc. Critical realism is not compatable with literalistic Islamic or Christian fundamentalism. However, critical realism is also perfectly compatable with agnisticism and atheism. If Galileo was not careful he could easily have been drifting towards herasy.

Sam F
12-29-2008, 08:53 PM
...However, peb, I think you're making a fundamental error here.
Kinda ironic here when it comes to your stated fundamentals dontcha think? The Church has apologized, they won't don't do that any more. She's been completely honest, and the argument didn't evaporate! Here you are, posting again...
How do you explain that?

peb
12-29-2008, 08:56 PM
First of all, peb, like you I do not always read every post of every thread. I had not read Bob Cleek's post. Now that you have quoted it, however, it seems that Bob is referring to those who accuse the present Roman Catholic Church of being anti-science. I have not made such an accusation. Read my previous post.

Secondly, Mr. Cleek consistently treats others with respect and good humor. Unlike you and Sam. If all Roman Catholics possessed Bob's tolerance, open-mindedness and good sense I may have never left the church. Needless to say, he and SamF rarely agree. Whereas you and SamF rarely disagree.


Tom, I had quoted Bob in post #110, which was written directly to you and whuch it seems made you so angry. Seems if it made you that angry, you would have at least read that post.

You are correct, SamF and I rarely disagree. However, I take exception to your statement that I don't treat others with respect and good humor. Nevertheless, I will leave you alone in order not to cause you such anger in the future.

Glen Longino
12-29-2008, 09:06 PM
Kinda ironic here when it comes to your stated fundamentals dontcha think? The Church has apologized, they won't don't do that any more. She's been completely honest, and the argument didn't evaporate! Here you are, posting again...
How do you explain that?

The argument no longer seems to be with the Church. The Church apologized.
The argument now seems to be with you. You seem to resent that the Church apologized. Maybe I'm wrong. It's happened before!:)

Sam F
12-29-2008, 09:13 PM
Poor Bruno. The boy had issues.Briefly... he fled Calvinist Geneva in fear of his life he ended up in England (after a stay in France) and so alienated the English academics there he had to leave, wandered over to Germany, had to leave there, went on to Praque where the Lutherans excommunicated him, went to Venice where he ticked off people so much somebody denounced him to the Inquisition...


Peb, what are you saying?
"And which astronomers were burned by the catholic church?"
Bruno was.

We've still not found an example.

...in 1600 there was no official Catholic position on the Copernican system, and it was certainly not a heresy. When Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) was burned at the stake as a heretic, it had nothing to do with his writings in support of Copernican cosmology.(Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Got anybody else?

Sam F
12-29-2008, 09:15 PM
The argument no longer seems to be with the Church. The Church apologized.

Coulda fooled me.


The argument now seems to be with you. You seem to resent that the Church apologized.
Heck no.


Maybe I'm wrong. It's happened before!
Yep. :)

peb
12-29-2008, 09:19 PM
Poor Bruno. The boy had issues.Briefly... he fled Calvinist Geneva in fear of his life he ended up in England (after a stay in France) and so alienated the English academics there he had to leave, wandered over to Germany, had to leave there, went on to Praque where the Lutherans excommunicated him, went to Venice where he ticked off people so much somebody denounced him to the Inquisition...



We've still not found an example.


Got anybody else?

SamF, to be fair, Calvin didn't burn Servetus because of his astronomy either. It had more to do with him denying a trinitarian God. At anyrate, the legacy of burning astronmers lives on!!! Anyone around here have a telescope? Sam, bring some straw and a match.

Pugwash
12-29-2008, 09:34 PM
And yea the lord spoke unto the philosopher "I am thy Lord and God, there is nothing that is beyond my power"

The philosopher, quivering, sayeth " Ok, turn everything Blue Red, and everything Red Blue."

And the Lord sayeth "Let there be colour inversion"

And Lo, there was colour inversion.

And the countries of Poland and San Marino were vexed.

And the philosopher said "How about making a square circle?"

And the Lord sayeth " Let there be a square circle!"

But the philosopher protesteth much saying "Dude, that's not a square circle, that's a square"

The Lord grew very angry and said " If I say it's a circle, it's a f$cking circle"

And the philosopher responded by saying "I didn't ask you to redefine the meaning of the word "circle" or of "red", what I wanted was a square circle and a blue red, admit it, you can't do it"

At which point the philosopher was smited somewhat roughly.




Credit: Thomas Aquinas

:)

Osborne Russell
12-29-2008, 10:32 PM
Ian, you're doing a heckuva job trying to keep this from dissolving into a puddle.

I didn't say it, you didn't say it, the Cardinal said it: Galileo vs. RCC was a "mutual miscomprehension." For openers, all I want to know is: What did Galileo misunderstand about the RCC?

I like to take things one at a time. I had supposed someone by now would have found something helpful from the Cardinal himself.

Tom Montgomery
12-29-2008, 11:28 PM
peb,
The fact is that I did not object to Bob Cleek's words but to yours:
I will debate the issue of if religion (specifically christianity and specifically Catholicism) is anti-science. It is such an absurd idea (just consider all the present day Catholic universities if you insist on ignoring the medieval ones) that it should be easy to debunk. Any discussion about Galileo is only being put forth by you guys as an attempt to bash the Church. Why participate in your bigoted games?

To be absolutely clear: I am not questioning something that occurred 500
years ago. Nor am I accusing the modern RC Church of being anti-science. I am simply asking for some Roman Catholic to explain Pope John Paul's recent statement that Galileo's house arrest was the result of "a tragic mutual incomprehension."

I do not appreciate my honest straightforward on-topic question being characterized as "playing bigoted games" (your words).

There is nothing good or bad about appropriate "anger" any more than any other appropriate emotion. Everything hinges on what one does with it. I called you out and the emotion passed. Now, it is entirely up to you whether to engage me in conversation here or not. Frankly, if you are either unable or unwilling to distinguish one person's statements from another's, and cannot refrain from intemperate remarks when discussing issues close to your heart, then I would prefer that you not respond to me.

You and SamF both continue to studiously ignore the question posed by the originator of this thread: What did John Paul II mean?

SamSam
12-29-2008, 11:53 PM
First off, if the church can be referred to as "she", I guess I can refer to it as "that woman".



I didn't say it, you didn't say it, the Cardinal said it: Galileo vs. RCC was a "mutual miscomprehension." For openers, all I want to know is: What did Galileo misunderstand about the RCC?

I like to take things one at a time. I had supposed someone by now would have found something helpful from the Cardinal himself.

I think it's this...

6. From this we can now draw our first conclusion. The birth of a new way of approaching the study of natural phenomena demands a clarification on the part of all disciplines of knowledge. It obliges them to define more clearly their own field, their approach, their methods, as well as the precise import of their conclusions. In other words, this new way requires each discipline to become more rigorously aware of its own nature.
The upset caused by the Copernican system thus demanded epistemological reflection on the biblical sciences, an effort which later would produce abundant fruit in modern exegetical works and which has found sanction and a new stimulus in the Dogmatic Constitution Dei Verbum of the Second Vatican Council.

10. From the beginning of the Age of Enlightenment down to our own day, the Galileo case has been a sort of "myth", in which the image fabricated out of the events was quite far removed from reality. In this perspective, the Galileo case was the symbol of the Church's supposed rejection of scientific progress, or of "dogmatic" obscurantism opposed to the free search for truth. This myth has played a considerable cultural role. It has helped to anchor a number of scientists of good faith in the idea that there was an incompatibility between the spirit of science and its rules of research on the one hand and the Christian faith on the other. A tragic mutual incomprehension has been interpreted as the reflection of a fundamental opposition between science and faith. The clarifications furnished by recent historical studies enable us to state that this sad misunderstanding now belongs to the past. http://www.its.caltech.edu/~nmcenter/sci-cp/sci-9211.html (http://www.its.caltech.edu/%7Enmcenter/sci-cp/sci-9211.html)

Captain Blight
12-30-2008, 01:27 AM
This is what it's like to discuss things with you, Sam. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJJA1vvMc4I)

jbelow
12-30-2008, 01:49 AM
Golly gosh. Dear old William of Ockham......

Perhaps the first (because he was an honest man and willing to go where his own logic took him) to admit that the existence of God cannot be proven and is a matter of faith alone. And, of course, to pose the questions - if everything must originate with a creator - who created the creator and who designed the designer?

William was wiser than Sam.

William was not wise if he did not use the scientific method . His statements and conclusions may have been made on faith or he was just wrong.
I believe dear old William of Ockham spouts personal opinion like people in the bilge. Very unimpresive !

jbelow
12-30-2008, 02:01 AM
Apologizing for a mistake made 500 years ago seems a little too politically correct for my sensibilities. If I were Pope today, I think I'd just laugh and tell anybody who still cared to get a life. I guess that's why I'm not.

Considering that most everyone in the whole world in the mid-1500's thought Galileo's theory was totally off the wall, and got wrong just about everything else we now know about scientific fact on all subjects, including exactly where babies come from, I find it rather interesting that the bigots of the world keep dredging up poor old Galileo for no more reason than to criticize the Catholic Church. Why does it matter them at all?

I think we should work harder at being politically correct. I think we need to spend the 2nd half of our life apologizing for the 1st half of our life or we can make up for our inadequacy by beating up the Catholic Church and SamF.

Captain Blight
12-30-2008, 02:21 AM
Oh, sure, beating up a mental midget with delusions of grandeur and a bloated monstrosity long past its prime. That's a good time.

downthecreek
12-30-2008, 03:56 AM
William was not wise if he did not use the scientific method .

LMAO! William of Ockham was the father of the Principle of Parsimony that still underpins our scientific methods today. :D

(Make no more assumptions than are necessary to explain the phenomenon before you)

Indeed, it is arguable that the principle of parsimony does indeed tend to make science and religion uneasy bedfellows. The writers of the Bible and its subsequent interpreters (such as Aquinas) had no notion of what is known today through scientific enquiry. Insofar as religion purports to "explain" creation (rather than codify moral precepts) the assumption of a creator or designer is redundant and can be discarded. The principle of parsimony at work.

downthecreek
12-30-2008, 04:25 AM
I will ask SamF to repeat his beliefs on the Book of Genesis. Do you believe the world was created in a week Sam?

I think it would be necessary to specify which account of the creation - I believe there are two and that they do not necessarily agree. I would need to do a little rooting around if asked to quote the verses. However, I do seem to recall that Sam did describe the Genesis account mentioned in another thread as "mythical".

I would be interested to know what Christians make of some of the other brutal and bloody material in the books of the Pentateuch, though. The order from Moses to his troops for the massacre of women and boys and retention of virgins "for your own use" as recorded in the Book of Numbers is but one example. This is a genuine question, as I have no idea how the horrors of the Old Testament have been viewed and interpreted by the practitioners of the "Queen of Sciences".

ingo
12-30-2008, 08:19 AM
Excuse me, but of course the sun rotates around the earth (look out of the windows) and you are free to define the earth as the center of the universe.

Galileo just showed that the formulas for the motion of the planets get MUCH easier if you assume the sun as the center. Nothing more.

Since we have no absolute space, you can define every point as the center of the universe. And you can define every frame of reference as universal. But if this frame is not inertial, you are in big trouble with you math ;-)

The catholic church is not anti-science. But if science contradicts belief, the church is on the side of belief. Think of "virgin" mary...

Osborne Russell
12-30-2008, 08:22 AM
10. From the beginning of the Age of Enlightenment down to our own day, the Galileo case has been a sort of "myth", in which the image fabricated out of the events was quite far removed from reality.

In what way? If one may ask.



This myth has played a considerable cultural role.

Which means if it's true, you're in trouble, Padre. Why do you call it a myth?


A tragic mutual incomprehension has been interpreted as the reflection of a fundamental opposition between science and faith.

Here he states that the now-infamous but still-mysterious "mutual incomprehension" exists, but has been interpreted as a "reflection" of something else.

"Has been interpreted" by whom? How does the interpretation vary from the truth?


The clarifications furnished by recent historical studies enable us to state that this sad misunderstanding now belongs to the past.

This is silly. If we couldn't "understand" without recent historical studies, in what sense can it be said that Galileo "misunderstood"? What was discovered recently about Galileo vs. RCC?

This is just another assertion of "mutual incomprehension", not an explanation of it.

And this is history, not theology. Make any assertion you like, but defend it like a man, if you're able.

Osborne Russell
12-30-2008, 08:26 AM
I think we should work harder at being politically correct. I think we need to spend the 2nd half of our life apologizing for the 1st half of our life or we can make up for our inadequacy by beating up the Catholic Church and SamF.

I think we should answer the question: how did Galileo misunderstand the Catholic Church?

Osborne Russell
12-30-2008, 08:36 AM
I was with you right up to the end.




And that's the beef: Some defensive inquisitors already stung by Galileo's caustic argumentation got carried away in their direction and Galileo ignored the idea the being right was the final standard in public disputation. And just as the inquisitors could have been more metaphysically sophisticated, so Galileo could have been epistemologically a good deal more exact in his phrasing.

He ignored the idea that being right . . . what does that mean? What was the inexactitude in his phrasing, of what, and what misunderstanding did this error in phrasing lead to?

Osborne Russell
12-30-2008, 08:43 AM
Galileo got into such big trouble because he personally pissed off the pope. Politics as usual.

Yes, I gathered as much, but what I'm talking about is the recent development of the RCC describing the whole thing as a "mutual miscomprehension". Actually, maybe they've been calling it that for centuries now . . . no. The Pope himself says this (current) understanding could only have come about after "recent historical studies". Like what?

Tom Montgomery
12-30-2008, 09:51 AM
It is a mystery.

ishmael
12-30-2008, 10:10 AM
What, precisely, is this argument about? I'm with Ozzy, spell out the misunderstanding.

I for one am glad the church has lost most of its secular power, and the Vatican seems to have made peace with scientific inquiry. It has some fine astronomers these days. Though as recently as mid-last-century the likes of Chardin ran into trouble over his thoughts on evolution. Flirted with excommunication if memory serves.

"I would never be a member of club that would have me." Groucho(close paraphrase);)

P.S. Sam. The word heliocentric doesn't contain the notion that the sun is the center of the universe, simply the center around which the planets revolve. I'll grant you that at the time people didn't know about the vastness of the universe and tended toward thinking the sun was the center. But the revelation that the earth revolves around the sun, an ancient revelation -- some Greek astronomers had it figured out two thousand years ago -- doesn't include the sun as the center of the universe except in the very provincial terms of the time, which everyone was subject to.

Keith Wilson
12-30-2008, 11:13 AM
Does anyone have a link to the original text of the quote in the first post, the one where the pope talks about "tragic mutual incomprehension"? It would be helpful to see it in context; perhaps he explained more clearly what he meant.

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 11:17 AM
I looked for it but found only a few media quotes.

SamSam
12-30-2008, 11:36 AM
Does anyone have a link to the original text of the quote in the first post, the one where the pope talks about "tragic mutual incomprehension"? It would be helpful to see it in context; perhaps he explained more clearly what he meant.

I put it in post #131.
Here it is again...

http://www.its.caltech.edu/~nmcenter/sci-cp/sci-9211.html (http://www.its.caltech.edu/%7Enmcenter/sci-cp/sci-9211.html)

Nanoose
12-30-2008, 12:01 PM
I think it would be necessary to specify which account of the creation - I believe there are two and that they do not necessarily agree.

Some feel the Genesis 1 and 2 accounts conflict. Is that what you're referring to? Or are you thinking of the young earth interpretation and old earth interpretations of Genesis? Or, are you thinking of the larger, I believe more contextually accurate understanding, of Moses teaching a now thoroughly Egyptianized people that have just witnessed miracle upon miracle that there is 1 God, not many, and that He is the good creator?


I would be interested to know what Christians make of some of the other brutal and bloody material in the books of the Pentateuch, though.... This is a genuine question, as I have no idea how the horrors of the Old Testament have been viewed and interpreted by the practitioners of the "Queen of Sciences".

I think this would be fruitful, as it comes up here repeatedly, and mistakenly. But probably not on this thread....should we take it elsewhere?


The order from Moses ...for the ...retention of virgins "for your own use" as recorded in the Book of Numbers is but one example.

Can you source that for me, creeky? Thanks.

PatCox
12-30-2008, 12:09 PM
SamF's post 54 is interesting; does he ever admit that it is a quote from Galileo himself?

This is from a translation of a Letter from Galileo to Madama Christina, the Grand Duchess Dowager, from 1615:

"That the title and authority of queen belongs to theology in the first sense, I think will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry; astronomy, music, and medicine are more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of Archimedes, Ptolemy, Boethius, and Galen. Hence it seems likely that regal pre-eminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication, by divine revelation, of con*clusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness."

PatCox
12-30-2008, 12:12 PM
Now here is SamF's post 54, which changes only a few words:

"It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences
It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning. But, I think, that will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry, astronomy, music, and medicine are much more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of science. Hence it seems likely that the preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness."

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 12:27 PM
"Can you source that for me creeky? Thanks!"

Numbers 31:17-18

Nanoose
12-30-2008, 12:28 PM
Thanks, glen.

Keith Wilson
12-30-2008, 12:29 PM
Excellent! Thanks very much; I missed it before.

It's a very interesting document. Whatever one's opinion of the Roman Catholic church, they certainly have some very bright and well-educated people, and it's hard to imagine that level of sophisticated reasoning from the leader of just about any other institution. The remarks on complexity in section 2 are quite impressive.

Here's a long quote, with emphasis on some passages I thought were particularly interesting.
5. A twofold question is at the heart of the debate of which Galileo was the centre.

The first is of the epistemological order and concerns biblical hermeneutics. In this regard, two points must again be raised. In the first place, like most of his adversaries, Galileo made no distinction between the scientific approach to natural phenomena and a reflection on nature, of the philosophical order, which that approach generally calls for. That is why he rejected the suggestion made to him to present the Copernican system as a hypothesis, inasmuch as it had not been confirmed by irrefutable proof. Such therefore, was an exigency of the experimental method of which he was the inspired founder.

Secondly, the geocentric representation of the world was commonly admitted in the culture of the time as fully agreeing with the teaching of the Bible of which certain expressions, taken literally seemed to affirm geocentrism. The problem posed by theologians of that age was, therefore, that of the compatibility between heliocentrism and Scripture.

Thus the new science, with its methods and the freedom of research which they implied, obliged theologians to examine their own criteria of scriptural interpretation. Most of them did not know how to do so.

Paradoxically, Galileo, a sincere believer, showed himself to be more perceptive in this regard than the theologians who opposed him. "If Scripture cannot err", he wrote to Benedetto Castelli, "certain of its interpreters and commentators can and do so in many ways". We also know of his letter to Christine de Lorraine (1615) which is like a short treatise on biblical hermeneutics.

6. From this we can now draw our first conclusion. The birth of a new way of approaching the study of natural phenomena demands a clarification on the part of all disciplines of knowledge. It obliges them to define more clearly their own field, their approach, their methods, as well as the precise import of their conclusions. In other words, this new way requires each discipline to become more rigorously aware of its own nature.

The upset caused by the Copernican system thus demanded epistemological reflection on the biblical sciences, an effort which later would produce abundant fruit in modern exegetical works and which has found sanction and a new stimulus in the Dogmatic Constitution Dei Verbum of the Second Vatican Council.
. . .

8. Another crisis, similar to the one we are speaking of, can be mentioned here. In the last century and at the beginning of our own, advances in the historical sciences made it possible to acquire a new understanding of the Bible and of the biblical world. The rationalist context in which these data were most often presented seemed to make them dangerous to the Christian faith. Certain people, in their concern to defend the faith, thought it necessary to reject firmly-based historical conclusions. That was a hasty and unhappy decision. The work of a pioneer like Fr Lagrange was able to make the necessary discernment on the basis of dependable criteria.

It is necessary to repeat here what I said above. It is a duty for theologians to keep themselves regularly informed of scientific advances in order to examine if such be necessary, whether or not there are reasons for taking them into account in their reflection or for introducing changes in their teaching.

9. If contemporary culture is marked by a tendency to scientism, the cultural horizon of Galileo's age was uniform and carried the imprint of a particular philosophical formation. This unitary character of culture, which in itself is positive and desirable even in our own day, was one of the reasons for Galileo's condemnation. The majority of theologians did not recognize the formal distinction between Sacred Scripture and its interpretation, and this led them unduly to transpose into the realm of the doctrine of the faith a question which in fact pertained to scientific investigation.

In fact, as Cardinal Poupard has recalled, Robert Bellarmine, who had seen what was truly at stake in the debate personally felt that, in the face of possible scientific proofs that the earth orbited round the sun, one should "interpret with great circumspection" every biblical passage which seems to affirm that the earth is immobile and "say that we do not understand, rather than affirm that what has been demonstrated is false".

(4) Before Bellarmine, this same wisdom and same respect for the divine Word guided St Augustine when he wrote: "If it happens that the authority of Sacred Scripture is set in opposition to clear and certain reasoning, this must mean that the person who interprets Scripture does not understand it correctly. It is not the meaning of Scripture which is opposed to the truth but the meaning which he has wanted to give to it. That which is opposed to Scripture is not what is in Scripture but what he has placed there himself, believing that this is what Scripture meant". A century ago, Pope Leo XIII echoed this advice in his Encyclical Providentissimus Deus: "Truth cannot contradict truth and we may be sure that some mistake has been made either in the interpretation of the sacred words, or in the polemical discussion itself".

. . .

10. From the beginning of the Age of Enlightenment down to our own day, the Galileo case has been a sort of "myth", in which the image fabricated out of the events was quite far removed from reality. In this perspective, the Galileo case was the symbol of the Church's supposed rejection of scientific progress, or of "dogmatic" obscurantism opposed to the free search for truth. This myth has played a considerable cultural role. It has helped to anchor a number of scientists of good faith in the idea that there was an incompatibility between the spirit of science and its rules of research on the one hand and the Christian faith on the other. A tragic mutual incomprehension has been interpreted as the reflection of a fundamental opposition between science and faith. The clarifications furnished by recent historical studies enable us to state that this sad misunderstanding now belongs to the past.

11. From the Galileo affair we can learn a lesson which remains valid in relation to similar situations which occur today and which may occur in the future.

In Galileo's time, to depict the world as lacking an absolute physical reference point was, so to speak, inconceivable. And since the cosmos, as it was then known, was contained within the solar system alone, this reference point could only be situated in the earth or in the sun. Today, after Einstein and within the perspective of contemporary cosmology neither of these two reference points has the importance they once had. This observation, it goes without saying, is not directed against the validity of Galileo's position in the debate; it is only meant to show that often, beyond two partial and contrasting perceptions, there exists a wider perception which includes them and goes beyond both of them.

12. Another lesson which we can draw is that the different branches of knowledge call for different methods. Thanks to his intuition as a brilliant physicist and by relying on different arguments, Galileo, who practically invented the experimental method, understood why only the sun could function as the centre of the world, as it was then known, that is to say, as a planetary system. The error of the theologians of the time, when they maintained the centrality of the earth, was to think that our understanding of the physical world's structure was, in some way, imposed by the literal sense of Sacred Scripture. Let us recall the celebrated saying attributed to Baronius "Spiritui Sancto mentem fuisse nos docere quomodo ad coelum eatur, non quomodo coelum gradiatur". In fact, the Bible does not concern itself with the details of the physical world, the understanding of which is the competence of human experience and reasoning. There exist two realms of knowledge, one which has its source in Revelation and one which reason can discover by its own power. To the latter belong especially the experimental sciences and philosophy. The distinction between the two realms of knowledge ought not to be understood as opposition. The two realms are not altogether foreign to each other, they have points of contact. The methodologies proper to each make it possible to bring out different aspects of reality. OTOH, it does seem as if he's trying to put as good a face on it as he can by talking about a "tragic mutual incomprehension", when the incomprehension seems to have been almost entirely on one side. The pope says that Galileo understood theology better than the theologians that condemned him.

Once again, it is convincingly demonstrated (if it needed demonstrating) that the Catholic church of today is not much like the church of the 1600s, and even less like present-day fundamentalism.

Tom Montgomery
12-30-2008, 12:30 PM
Well blow me down! The atheist reprobate citing Chapter and Verse! LOL!

downthecreek
12-30-2008, 12:31 PM
"Can you source that for me creeky? Thanks!"

Numbers 31:17-18

Thanks, Glen - was just about to post it myself.

My King James bible (I would have no other!) is VERY dusty. :)

Keith Wilson
12-30-2008, 12:36 PM
Hey, does anyobdy have a translation of "Spiritui Sancto mentem fuisse nos docere quomodo ad coelum eatur, non quomodo coelum gradiatur"? My rudimentary Latin-through-Spanish isn't up to the task.

downthecreek
12-30-2008, 12:40 PM
Some feel the Genesis 1 and 2 accounts conflict. Is that what you're referring to? Or are you thinking of the young earth interpretation and old earth interpretations of Genesis? Or, are you thinking of the larger, I believe more contextually accurate understanding, of Moses teaching a now thoroughly Egyptianized people that have just witnessed miracle upon miracle that there is 1 God, not many, and that He is the good creator?

The first. Never heard of the other two possibilities :)


I think this would be fruitful, as it comes up here repeatedly, and mistakenly. But probably not on this thread....should we take it elsewhere? Gladly, as this is something that always puzzles me. Another example that comes back into my mind is the command to stone children to death for disobedience. Now I think that's in Deuteronomy. Ask me for chapter and verse on that too? I'll soon be a fully accredited OT scholar if we go on like this ;)


Can you source that for me, creeky? Thanks.Glen got there first. I knew it had to do with the poor Midians :) I rather enjoyed getting out my old King James bible for the hunt. Incidentally, do you know the Anglican Book of Common Prayer? Now that is a wonderful piece of work......

Peerie Maa
12-30-2008, 12:48 PM
Having also read the full text linked by SamSam I came much to the same conclusion as Keith. The report cited no specific case of Galileo's misunderstanding, rather it implied that Galileo's understanding of the Catholic Church of his day was as good as you could get.
"Paradoxically, Galileo, a sincere believer, showed himself to be more perceptive in this regard than the theologians who opposed him. "If Scripture cannot err", he wrote to Benedetto Castelli, "certain of its interpreters and commentators can and do so in many ways".(2) We also know of his letter to Christine de Lorraine (1615) which is like a short treatise on biblical hermeneutics.(3)"

As there was no reference to any source establishing Galileo's misunderstanding I am inclined to agree that the use of the contentious phrase was a political ploy to make what might be a bitter pill easier to swallow by an establishment that is historically linked to "Infallibility". If the Pope of Galileo's day involved himself in the Inquisitions activities, or ratified their decisions, an admission of error may be a very big deal to the Catholic establishment as it questioned that Pope's infallibility.

Tom Montgomery
12-30-2008, 01:04 PM
I doubt that papal "infallibility" is at issue. Infallibility is a fairly recent concept and applies in only very limited circumstances.

It is an issue of institutional hubris.

Ian McColgin
12-30-2008, 01:07 PM
I'm not sure how much closer I can get without giving myself a serious refresher.

Firstly, the role of theology. For the RC the scriptures are taken as inerrant but also subject to some historical interpretation. Few of today's fundamentalists really follow Mosaic law, stone female (but not male) adulterers, or refuse a raw oyster with some good homebrew hot sauce. But there remains a desire for our physical understandings to fit cleanly with out deepest value understandings. Even in Galileo's time, many theologians did not take the scripture as meaning that Earth was the physical actual center of anything. However, the medieval notion of what's "real" was about opposite its current common understanding. Earth might not be the actual (to wit physical) center but it was the "real" (in today's terms spiritual) center.

My three and a half decades recollection of the actual words of this controversy is that Galileo really got this distinction and that his inquisitors did not. But it is a common place of RC apologists to claim that Galileo went a bit too far, elevating empirical insights beyond their status.

We have a modern re-enactment of this problem and just as perhaps a dozen people in Galileo's time got it then, the problems are obscure to most people, including a majority of physicists and philosophers, today. It has to do with the relationship of the mathematical models of modern physical theory to the physical universe. Especially in the case of string theory, we may be witnessing theoretical physicists marching off the edge of comprehensibility just as surely as the Ptolemaists’ did with their ever increasing numbers of spheres.

Additionally, we get confused as to whether natural science is answering "Why?", "How?", or "What next?". In various ways, it does all three. Why does the apple fall? Gravity. How? Mutual attraction of mass - like earth and moon which is why the center of mass for our orbit around the sun is not the same as the earth's center of mass, giving rise to a better explanation of tides and all that. What next? On earth the apple will fall accelerating at about 32 feet per second squared, absent air resistance. More general formulae can be developed to mathematically describe the gravitation between larger and thus mutually interactive bodies, like earth and moon or earth/moon and sun.

But does this answer "Why?" in any cosmic sense? Like, "Why is there anything, rather than nothing at all?"

In the purely natural order, it doesn't always matter. One can use mathematical physics to develop the suspension bridge (Swedenborg, later a mystic) or make a lighter arch, or one can just blunder into it as an evolution of our Boy Scout project rope bridge. However, sometimes it appears to matter. It remains hard to imagine a successful moon mission if the Ptolemaic spheres have any corporal reality.

So, scientists and engineers are like the rest of us. Many happy to plug along and some deeply interested in the meaning of it all. That latter urge is what drives the deepest theoretical exertions, whether theistically or atheistically propelled.

Meanwhile, institutional religions have their social and political dimensions, which means they will have forms of coercion. Whether it's a theocracy or a secular theocracy like communism or fascism, some societal impulses are bent on "making people good." Too far along this line is profoundly repressive. Too lax and you loose society all together. Even in purely religious terms, there is a profound distinction between authentic religious experience and the inauthentic things variously known as demon possession, madness or heresy. (Just as students of comparative religion are struck by the universality of the "Golden Rule," so the distinction between authentic and inauthentic religious experience is widely shared across all known religions.)

So, we have the RC with a very sophisticated world view with which Galileo was perfectly at home, though his mathematizations could seem to some an undermining of God's word, and we have Galileo already onto the major scientific revolution - the mathematization of experience - still viewing himself as also a perfectly good Christian.

Further, Galileo appears temperamentally unwilling to make an easy bridge just as on this Forum we find many uninterested in making a bridge to certain church apologists.

As with the dispute between Pelagius and Augustine, what could have been a resolvable synthesizable dialectic became the long horns of irreconcilable dilemma. I note the RC has not de-condemned Pelagius though (to my mind at least) Anglicanism is basically well-organized Pelagianism.

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 01:08 PM
Well blow me down! The atheist reprobate citing Chapter and Verse! LOL!

Hehehe! I've waded through that Book a few times over the years, despite Sam's doubts.
But in this instance, I simply Googled "bible virgins numbers".
:)

SamSam
12-30-2008, 02:05 PM
Further, Galileo appears temperamentally unwilling to make an easy bridge just as on this Forum we find many uninterested in making a bridge to certain church apologists.

The problem isn't mutual incomprehension.;)

Nanoose
12-30-2008, 02:34 PM
...Anglicanism is basically well-organized Pelagianism.

I'm not so sure, Ian...
Pelagianism is a theological theory named after Pelagius (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pelagius) (ad. 354 – ad. 420/440). It is the belief that original sin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Original_sin) did not taint human nature (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instinct) and that mortal will (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Will_%28philosophy%29) is still capable of choosing good (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goodness_and_value_theory) or evil (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evil) without Divine aid (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle). Thus, Adam (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adam_and_Eve)'s sin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin) was "to set a bad example" for his progeny, but his actions did not have the other consequences imputed to Original Sin. Pelagianism views the role of Jesus (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesus) as "setting a good example" for the rest of humanity (thus counteracting Adam's bad example). In short, humanity has full control, and thus full responsibility (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moral_responsibility), for its own salvation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvation) in addition to full responsibility for every sin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin) (the latter insisted upon by both proponents and opponents of Pelagianism). According to Pelagian doctrine, because humanity does not require God's grace for salvation (beyond the creation of will),[1] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pelagianism#cite_note-0) Jesus' execution is devoid of the redemptive quality ascribed to it by orthodox Christian theology.

downthecreek
12-30-2008, 04:01 PM
Anglicanism is basically well-organized Pelagianism.

Is there a definitive Anglican doctrine - Pelagian or otherwise?

Take a walk from All Saints, Margaret Street to All Souls, Langham Place (both in London) and it seems to me you have made the journey from Roman Catholicism in all but name and allegiance to Rome to full-on evangelical protestantism.

Not far apart geographically but worlds apart in practice and, I assume, mindset. Both are Anglican churches.

PatCox
12-30-2008, 04:17 PM
Anglicanism is catholicism with married priests. You know, sane.

Peerie Maa
12-30-2008, 04:30 PM
Anglicanism is catholicism with married priests. You know, sane.

And the person who is its head (but not the English Vicar of Christ) is currently female.;)

downthecreek
12-30-2008, 04:40 PM
And the person who is its head (but not the English Vicar of Christ) is currently female.;)

Heh heh heh......:)

Come to think of it, I suppose the definitive statement is the Thirty Nine Articles. And, I suppose, the Nicene Creed, which refers to "one holy, catholic and apostolic church" and is substantially the same, I believe, as that used in the Roman Catholic church as well as other protestant churches.

I don't know......

Ian McColgin
12-30-2008, 06:10 PM
Don't take my cracks too seriously. A careful reading of Pelagius's earlier stuff shows him as no more anti-grace heretical than Augustine was really manachean heretical. Both became more extreme as they argued and Augustine's lot won the conference.

But there is a sort of anglo-saxon faith in good works that seems a sort of genetic pelagianism.

My point in mentioning that I'd thought well known example was to exemplify how arguement can bring the sides further and further apart, rather than resolving their differences. And sometimes to their detriment.

Vince Brennan
12-30-2008, 06:39 PM
Hey, can I convert to "Frisbeetarianism"?

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 06:48 PM
Hey, can I convert to "Frisbeetarianism"?

'fraid Not !:)
Sorry, I Had to do it !

PatCassidy
12-30-2008, 06:55 PM
Galileo misunderstood the church it that he thought it would respond logically to logical ideas.

Vince Brennan
12-30-2008, 08:11 PM
"Frisbeetarianism: The belief that when you die, your soul goes up to the roof and gets stuck there."

Shucks.

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 08:22 PM
"Frisbeetarianism: The belief that when you die, your soul goes up to the roof and gets stuck there."

Shucks.
Well now that's not so bad getting stuck on the roof for Eternity.
Beats the hell outta going to Hell!:)

johnw
12-30-2008, 08:52 PM
Here's post 28:


Any institution, if it's old enough, will have done some bad things. The more powerful it is, the worse those things will be. The last pope did his best to apologize for a historic mistake. It is strange how the church is constrained from making a proper apology by its own insistence that it is the source of eternal verities. It is that insitence that is keeping this ancient controversy alive.
__________________


Have we progressed beyond that? I haven't been checking in.

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 09:02 PM
Here's post 28:



Have we progressed beyond that? I haven't been checking in.

Read Sam Sam post#131....the link at the bottom of his post. Judge for yourself if it's progress.

PatCox
12-30-2008, 09:50 PM
I'm still wondering, did SamF ever reveal that his post 54, with the "queen of the sciences" thing, was a quote from one of Galileo's letters? Does he often do that, just post an extended quote from someone else and refuse to explain it, let alone reveal that its not his words?

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 09:56 PM
I don't recall Sam doing that before, Pat.
He likely had some mysterious impulse known only to himself.
Maybe he'll come back and confound us with his reasoning and sense of purpose?:)

PatCox
12-30-2008, 10:06 PM
He does confound us, doesn't he? With that big, pulsating brain of his. Who are we to expect him to explain himself? Those who did not immediately recognize the Galileo quote really have no right to take part in the debate, I guess.

Glen Longino
12-30-2008, 10:15 PM
I would not have recognized it if I had not just read it.
I do recall that Sam made a big issue, repeatedly, of that statement, "It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences".
He challenged all Christians to disprove the statement, as I remember.
Have to go back and check!

johnw
12-30-2008, 10:17 PM
Read Sam Sam post#131....the link at the bottom of his post. Judge for yourself if it's progress.

So that would be no. In fact, I'm not sure we've moved past post #1.

Osborne Russell
12-31-2008, 12:22 AM
OTOH, it does seem as if he's trying to put as good a face on it as he can by talking about a "tragic mutual incomprehension", when the incomprehension seems to have been almost entirely on one side.

In other words, they're jiving us again ? Making claims they can't support, and they know it, indeed, they have no intention of supporting them, in the hope that people will take them on faith? Suspend critical thinking, just this once? Become accustomed to it, do it some more, ultimately, give it up altogether?

He could easily put a better face on it: "Galileo was entirely blameless."

Osborne Russell
12-31-2008, 12:26 AM
Further, Galileo appears temperamentally unwilling to make an easy bridge

So what? Why should he?

jbelow
12-31-2008, 12:39 AM
LMAO! William of Ockham was the father of the Principle of Parsimony that still underpins our scientific methods today. :D

(Make no more assumptions than are necessary to explain the phenomenon before you)

Indeed, it is arguable that the principle of parsimony does indeed tend to make science and religion uneasy bedfellows. The writers of the Bible and its subsequent interpreters (such as Aquinas) had no notion of what is known today through scientific enquiry. Insofar as religion purports to "explain" creation (rather than codify moral precepts) the assumption of a creator or designer is redundant and can be discarded. The principle of parsimony at work.

Yes indeed ! (Make no more assumptions than are necessary to explain the phenomenon before you) . It would also be arguable that the principle of parsimony dose indeed tend to make science and the Therory of Evolution uneasy bedfellows.

We should dig old William up and ask him.

downthecreek
12-31-2008, 04:02 AM
Don't take my cracks too seriously.

Take them seriously? Please do not unquiet yourself! I have no vested interested in the Anglican church (or in any other) Indeed, it could shown to be a well organized Cargo Cult and my tranquillity would be undisturbed. :)

downthecreek
12-31-2008, 04:07 AM
It would also be arguable that the principle of parsimony dose indeed tend to make science and the Therory of Evolution uneasy bedfellows.


Arguable, no doubt. You believe in the biblical creation myth (there are so many to choose from - mankind has produced hundreds of them) or that ludicrous and deeply dishonest non-theory, "Intelligent Design"? No doubt you could argue the hind leg off a donkey, but it would be all sound and fury, signifying nothing! :D

P.I. Stazzer-Newt
12-31-2008, 04:57 AM
...
Pelagian?

Frankly, Ian, I can't see where you are coming from!;).....


Nah, "Pelagian" is probably a typo - Pelagic from the Greek πέλαγος or pélagos, which means open sea.

downthecreek
12-31-2008, 05:08 AM
XXXIV. Of the Traditions of the Church. It is not necessary that Traditions and Ceremonies be in all places one, or utterly like; for at all times they have been divers, and may be changed according to the diversity of countries, times, and men's manners, so that nothing be ordained against God's Word. Whosoever, through his private judgment, willingly and purposely, doth openly break the Traditions and Ceremonies of the Church, which be not repugnant to the Word of God, and be ordained and approved by common authority, ought to be rebuked openly, (that others may fear to do the like,) as he that offendeth against the common order of the Church, and hurteth the authority of the Magistrate, and woundeth the consciences of the weak brethren.
Every particular or national Church hath authority to ordain, change, and abolish, Ceremonies or Rites of the Church ordained only by man's authority, so that all things be done to edifying.

;)


Hey! That's very sensible. :) I have an excellent Quaker friend who puts it this way - if you come to dinner with me, the style of the food, the table setting, the way things are done...will all be quite different from the occasion when I come to dinner with you. But the essential part remains the same - we celebrate our friendship by sharing a meal.

Good old Anglicanism!

(And yes, I thought Pelagian was an odd adjective to use, except, possibly, for the Missions to Seamen. But who am I, an ignorant heathen, to argue? ;))

Ian McColgin
12-31-2008, 11:28 AM
I'm also a fan of the missions and once even performed a wedding in the Holmes Hole Seaman's Bethel.

I was raised Episcopalian and manged to stagger through theology school, so I actually learned a bit of doctrine. I'm just speaking to the Episcopal or Anlo-Saxon temperment that establishes that as incarnate beings, our faith is established as actual in the actual world, that it's impossible to live in faith without performing good works. One might also humbly follow the injunction to hide that particular light under a bushel.

Anyway, apologies for distracting from the centeral argument. I only meant the point that Pelagius and Augustine did not start that far apart, that in many ways Augustine was closer to herasy (his Manacheianism) than Pelagius, and that the course of the argument drove the two further and further apart.

However, unlike Galileo who's science in the end obliged the RC to come around a bit, Pelagius remains (in my opinion) falsely represented and falsely considered a heratic. The issues of free will and grace, the epistemology of good and evil, are not generally understood to be the subjects of natural science. I probably should not have introduced the limited analogy as it threatens to be every bit as much a distraction as the question of just why Theology was ever the Queen of the Sciences.

Nanoose
12-31-2008, 11:38 AM
... Pelagius and Augustine did not start that far apart, ... and that the course of the argument drove the two further and further apart.

Yes, the challenge of meaningful dialogue, and coming to understand each other without feeling forced to "dig in our heels" re our position. In many cases, I am coming to see, 'both/and' does work. Everything is not 'either/or'. At least, there are often areas of agreement. We just get so entrenched and defensive though....holding with an 'open hand' is challenging.....knowing the very few core elements you cannot relinquish, yet the rest, a majority, that can usually be held lightly. Perhaps this growing understanding/appreciation just reflects the fact that I am getting older! :o

downthecreek
12-31-2008, 12:14 PM
In many cases, I am coming to see, 'both/and' does work. Everything is not 'either/or'.

I have a file on my computer where I keep snippets of this and that - things that strike me. In my mind I call it my "What oft was thought, but ne'er so well expressed" file (that comes from Pope - not Ratzinger, but Alexander)

This little passage seems apt.....

The ability to tolerate paradox, seemingly opposing forces without rejecting one or the other just for the sheer relief of it, and to understand that life is the game played between two paradoxical goalposts: winning is good and so is losing; freedom is good and so is authority; having and giving; action and passivity; sex and celibacy; income and outgo; courage and fear. One doesn't cancel out the other. Both are true. They may sit on opposite sides of the table, but beneath it their legs are entwined. (Callings, p. 53)

Sam F
01-02-2009, 09:45 AM
SamF's post 54 is interesting; does he ever admit that it is a quote from Galileo himself?...

No need to "admit" it. Just one of my little amusements. ;) That's why I several times drew your attention to it in the hope that you'd figure it out for yourself.
However you don't seem to have arrived at the next obvious conclusion... didn't you say that was written by a "Pompous moron"? :D
Too funny!

Sam F
01-02-2009, 09:51 AM
...OTOH, it does seem as if he's trying to put as good a face on it as he can by talking about a "tragic mutual incomprehension", when the incomprehension seems to have been almost entirely on one side.

Hardly. Galileo didn't have proof. It's a fine an example of incomprehension as one could ask for to demand anyone to change a long-held scientific view absent proof.



...Once again, it is convincingly demonstrated (if it needed demonstrating) that the Catholic church of today is not much like the church of the 1600s, and even less like present-day fundamentalism.

Once again it's convincingly demonstrated that hindsight is often mistaken for foresight.
Try to put yourself in the position of those who couldn't see the future and you might have a better understanding of what happened.

jbelow
01-02-2009, 11:12 AM
I find it ironic. There has been a role reversal . The secular progressives of modern western society are now the ones that are dogmatic , ignorant , intolerant and arrogant. It sad that they have not learned from the mistakes of the past.

There is nothing new under the sun. Man will be Man.

downthecreek
01-02-2009, 11:15 AM
. dogmatic , ignorant , intolerant and arrogant


Care to justify?

Tom Montgomery
01-02-2009, 11:24 AM
No need to "admit" it. Just one of my little amusements. ;) That's why I several times drew your attention to it in the hope that you'd figure it out for yourself.
However you don't seem to have arrived at the next obvious conclusion... didn't you say that was written by a "Pompous moron"? :D
Too funny!The SECOND SENTENCE of your post in question - written by you, not Galileo - sounds like a pompous moron:

It [Theology] might deserve that name [the Queen of Science] by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods with profounder learning.That sentence is not Galileo's words but is pure SammyF. No one would have had any problem with Galileo's unedited remarks. You over-reached, as usual. Still... jbelow cotinues to cheer you on. Soon Rick-Mi will chime in to proclaim you have once again vanquished all comers. Too funny!

Tom Montgomery
01-02-2009, 11:57 AM
Hardly. Galileo didn't have proof. It's a fine an example of incomprehension as one could ask for to demand anyone to change a long-held scientific view absent proof.

Uh... excuse me... but wasn't Galileo tried for HERESY? it seems to me I read that somewhere.... which neatly brings us back to the subject of the thread, doesn't it?

Sam F
01-02-2009, 12:04 PM
The SECOND SENTENCE of your post in question - written by you, not Galileo - sounds like a pompous moron:

"It [Theology] might deserve that name [the Queen of Science] by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods with profounder learning."

That sentence is not Galileo's words but is pure SammyF. No one would have had any problem with Galileo's unedited remarks. You over-reached, as usual. Still... jbelow cotinues to cheer you on. Soon Rick-Mi will chime in to proclaim you have once again vanquished all comers. Too funny!

I happened to see this while not logged in and it's hysterical! Here's the original in Galileo's own words from the Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany:

It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning.*

Yes indeedy, according to our resident experts, Galileo is a "pompous moron". :D :D :D


*http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/galileo-tuscany.html

Sam F
01-02-2009, 12:06 PM
Tootles!

PatCox
01-02-2009, 12:15 PM
No, SamF, you are still the pompous moron for thinking you made an intelligible point by posting your unattributed quote.

Peerie Maa
01-02-2009, 12:16 PM
The original text is here.
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/galileo-tuscany.html SamF is quoting out of context again.
These are Galileo's actual words:
"First I question whether there is not some equivocation in failing to specify the virtues which entitle sacred theology to the title of "queen." It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning. It is thus, for example, that the rules for measuring fields and keeping accounts are much more excellently contained in arithmetic and in the geometry of Euclid than in the practices of surveyors and accountants. Or theology might be queen because of being occupied with a subject which excels in dignity all the subjects which compose the other sciences, and because her teachings are divulged in more sublime ways. That the title and authority of queen belongs to theology in the first sense, I think, will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry, astronomy, music, and medicine are much more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of Archimedes, Ptolemy, Boethius, and Galen. Hence it seems likely that regal preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness."




Tootles !

jbelow
01-02-2009, 12:27 PM
Care to justify?

Take a look at the attacks on the Catholic Church and SamF.
See the love and tolerance the liberal mindset supposed to be famous for?

Do a search here in the bilge . If you can't see it I can't help you.

downthecreek
01-02-2009, 12:30 PM
Do a search here in the bilge . If you can't see it I can't help you.

Than you can't help me. Perhaps my scrutiny is less selective than yours :D

Sam F
01-02-2009, 12:41 PM
The original text is here.
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/galileo-tuscany.html SamF is quoting out of context again.
Let's see:


These are Galileo's actual words:
"First I question whether there is not some equivocation in failing to specify the virtues which entitle sacred theology to the title of "queen." It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning. It is thus, for example, that the rules for measuring fields and keeping accounts are much more excellently contained in arithmetic and in the geometry of Euclid than in the practices of surveyors and accountants. Or theology might be queen because of being occupied with a subject which excels in dignity all the subjects which compose the other sciences, and because her teachings are divulged in more sublime ways. That the title and authority of queen belongs to theology in the first sense, I think, will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry, astronomy, music, and medicine are much more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of Archimedes, Ptolemy, Boethius, and Galen. Hence it seems likely that regal preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness."

Now my version - in context:

The notion that religion and science are inherently opposites is absurd.

It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences.
It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning. But, I think, that will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry, astronomy, music, and medicine are much more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of science. Hence it seems likely that the preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness.

The bits I wrote are in bold
The bits left out are in original above with bold added.
And in context, Galileo supports my beginning statement that "The notion that religion and science are inherently opposites is absurd."
The second statement is mere historical fact and simply unarguable:
"It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences."

My quotation of Galileo is lightly edited, as was necessary for my purposes (to demonstrate yet again what bigots our resident Secularists really are), but none of his meaning was deleted in any way.

Truly truly, I say to you, the Lord has blessed me in my opponents. :)

Ian McColgin
01-02-2009, 12:56 PM
It might be noted by the RC apologists who insist on debating points not in contention that those seriously essaying the topic of this thread have already established that the RC at its best and Galileo both shared theologicaly and philosophically sophisticated positions.

The thread question could be rephrased to something like:

What did Galileo "misunderstand" about the RC inquisitors' position and what did the RC "misunderstand" about Galileo's?

A number of answers have been attempted but none from the RC point of view.

Peerie Maa
01-02-2009, 12:56 PM
By missing out "First I question whether there is not some equivocation in failing to specify the virtues which entitle sacred theology to the title of "queen." you reverse Galileo's intent. That is what "Context" refers to.

Tootles !

Sam F
01-02-2009, 02:46 PM
By missing out "First I question whether there is not some equivocation in failing to specify the virtues which entitle sacred theology to the title of "queen." you reverse Galileo's intent. That is what "Context" refers to.

Context is not your friend dear Peerie:


Hence it seems likely that the preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that is, by reason of its subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be conceived by men in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness.

It so happens that in this matter I agree with Galileo. I advise ya'll to get over it. ;)


Tootles!

Peerie Maa
01-02-2009, 03:10 PM
If you limit yourself to theology, that is entirely correct. if you are discussing science, you are still quoting out of context.

Peerie Maa
01-02-2009, 03:12 PM
"Tootles !"

Tom Montgomery
01-02-2009, 08:17 PM
By missing out "First I question whether there is not some equivocation in failing to specify the virtues which entitle sacred theology to the title of "queen." you reverse Galileo's intent. That is what "Context" refers to.

Correct. Sammy caught me in an error, but that was because Sammy quoted Galileo out of context. The statement appeared absurd, so I assumed they were Sammy's words rather than Galileo's. What was actually absurd was Sammy's edit which had the effect of turning Galileo's meaning on it's head.

Here is the statement in context. Galileo was actually putting the Vatican's theologians in their place:

... I cannot deny that I feel some discomfort which I would like to have removed, when I hear them [the theologians of the Roman Catholic Church] pretend to the power of constraining others by scriptural authority to follow in a physical dispute that opinion which they think best agrees with the Bible, and then believe themselves not bound to answer the opposing reasons and experiences. In explanation and support of this opinion they say that since theology is the queen of all the sciences, she need not bend in any way to accomodate herself to the teachings of less worthy sciences which are subordinate to her; these others must be deferred to her as their supreme empress, changing and altering their conclusions according to her statutes and decrees. They add further that if in the inferior sciences any conclusion should be taken as certain in virtue of demonstrations or experiences, while in the Bible another conclusion is found repugnant to this, then the professors of science should themselves undertake to undo their proofs and discover fallacies in their own experiences, without bothering the theologians and exegetes. For, they say, it does not become the dignity of theology to stoop to the investigation of fallacies in the subordinate sciences; it is sufficient for her merely to determine the truth of a given conclusion with absolute authority, secure in her inability to err.

... I question whether or not some equivocation in failing to specify the virtues which entitle sacred theology to the title of "queen." It might deserve that name by reason of including everything that is included from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and with profounder learning. It is this, for example, that the rules for measuring fields and keeping accounts are much more excellently contained in arithmatic and in the geometry of Euclid than in the practice of surveyors and accountants. Or theology might be queen because of being occupied with a subject which excels in dignity all the subjects which compose the other sciences, and because her teachings are dveloped in more sublime ways.

That the title and authority of queen belongs to theology in the first sense, I think, will not be affirmed by theologians who have any skill in the other sciences. None of these, I think, will say that geometry, astronomy, music and medicine are much more excellently contained in the Bible than they are in the books of Archimedes, Ptolemy, Boethius and Galen. Hence, it seems likely that regal preeminence is given to theology in the second sense; that by reason of it's subject and the miraculous communication of divine revelation of conclusions which could not be concieved in any other way, concerning chiefly the attainment of eternal blessedness.

Let us grant then that theology is conversant with the loftiest divine contemplation, and occupies the regal throne among sciences by dignity. But acquiring the highest authority in this way, if she does not descend to the lower and humbler speculations of the subordinate sciences and has no regard for them because they are not concerned with blessedness, then her professors should not arrogate to them-selves the authority to decide on controversies in professions which they have neither studied nor practiced. Why, this would be as if an absolute despot, being neither a physician nor an architect but knowing himself free to command, should undertake to administer medicine and erect buildings according to his whim - at grave peril of his good patient's lives, and the speedy collapse of his edifices.

Again, to command that the very professors of astronomy themselves see to the refutation of their own observations and proofs as mere fallacies and sophisms is to enjoin something that lies beyond any possibility of accomplishment. For this would amount to commanding that they must not see what they see and must not understand what they know, and that in searching they must find the opposite of what they encounter....
It so happens that in this matter I agree with Galileo
Thank goodness. Who do you suppose Galileo had in mind with his analogy of the absolute despot?

SamSam
01-02-2009, 08:49 PM
He takes an edited quotation out of context, doesn't disclose it as a quotation, and then when one person makes a mistake, he passes it off as everyone making a mistake, thereby proving his point once again, that he is not only never wrong, everyone is allways picking on him just because he's a RC. That SamF would take something that means the complete opposite of what he proposes and say it proves his point is not surprising. That he misleads is how he functions, since he can't usually win his arguments by being honest. He maybe gets his M.O. from his church, who in this case of "mutual incomprehension", seem to be blaming the victim.

Keith Wilson
01-02-2009, 08:50 PM
Let us grant then that theology is conversant with the loftiest divine contemplation, and occupies the regal throne among sciences (i.e. areas of human knowledge) by dignity. But acquiring the highest authority in this way, if she does not descend to the lower and humbler speculations of the subordinate sciences and has no regard for them because they are not concerned with blessedness, then her professors should not arrogate to themselves the authority to decide on controversies in professions which they have neither studied nor practiced. Why, this would be as if an absolute despot, being neither a physician nor an architect but knowing himself free to command, should undertake to administer medicine and erect buildings according to his whim - at grave peril of his good patient's lives, and the speedy collapse of his edifices.It so happens that in this matter I agree with Galileo. :D:D

Tom Montgomery
01-02-2009, 08:53 PM
... in context, Galileo supports my beginning statement that "The notion that religion and science are inherently opposites is absurd."Not exactly. What Galileo (who was under house arrest) is saying is that the conflict of science and religion that resulted in his trial for heresy was due to the Vatican theologian's failure to recognize the limits of their own "science." His characterization of theology as "queen" and "regal" and "empress" was double-edged. It also subtly alluded to the hubris of the church of his era.

The second statement is mere historical fact and simply unarguable:
"It has long been held among Christians that theology is the queen of the sciences."That this sentiment has been historically held by many cannot be denied. But the statement itself is most certainly arguable.


My quotation of Galileo is lightly edited, as was necessary for my purposes (to demonstrate yet again what bigots our resident Secularists really are), but none of his meaning was deleted in any way.

Truly truly, I say to you, the Lord has blessed me in my opponents. :)
If you are happy, I am happy.

Keith Wilson
01-02-2009, 09:07 PM
I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: "O Lord, make my enemies ridiculous." And God granted it.

VoltaireIndeed.

George Jung
01-02-2009, 09:13 PM
Ah, come on guys! Sure, you fell victim to 'Gotcha!'

But ya gotta admit - that was funny! (Well, maybe you're too close to it, but trust me..... funny!)

Captain Blight
01-02-2009, 09:19 PM
Ah, come on guys! Sure, you fell victim to 'Gotcha!'

But ya gotta admit - that was funny! (Well, maybe you're too close to it, but trust me..... funny!)
Not as funny as your playing Ganymede to Sam's Jove. This little man-crush you seem to have is embarassing to everyone.

George Jung
01-02-2009, 09:22 PM
Hehehe..... Love it!

(btw, your lack of a brain is embarrassing, as well. Ask the Wiz for one, eh?)

Captain Blight
01-02-2009, 09:26 PM
You've got a little pervert beard, don't you?

Ian McColgin
01-02-2009, 09:26 PM
The thread started with the Pope's assertion that there was a mutual misunderstanding. Perhaps one of the RC apologists having at such length discoursed on Queen Theology could answer just one half of the thread's question: What did the RC Church misunderstand?

Tom Montgomery
01-02-2009, 09:42 PM
You've gotta admit, George, the statement that theology deserves the title Queen of the Sciences "by reason of including everything from all the other sciences and establishing everything by better methods and a profounder learning" is simply absurd. It turns out that was one of Galileo's points. That, and the fact that the Vatican's belief that "queen theology" trumped science led to perversion of the truth for a while.

What did Sammy prove beyond the fact that most of us were unfamiliar with Galileo's letter?

Keith Wilson
01-02-2009, 09:44 PM
Now, now, gentlemen . . . This reminded me of one of the funniest passages from Patrick O'Brian:
'Jack,' [Stephen] said, as they walked along the rim of the crater to a point where they could hail the ship, 'did you reflect upon Ganymede at all?'
'Yes,' said Jack. 'I was up with him all last night, and should be this night were it not for the Sultan's visit tomorrow. Such an endearing little pale golden body as he peeps out - he is easily my favourite. But I shall still have him almost all night, once the Sultan is done with.'
'Shall you, though?' said Stephen, looking at his friend's pleased, well-fed face, rather more florid than usual from the Sultan's wine; and after a pause, 'Brother, can we be talking of the same thing?'
'I should hope so,' said Jack, smiling. 'Jupiter is in opposition, you know. Nobody could have missed his splendour.'
'No, indeed: a very glorious sight. And Ganymede is connected with him, I collect?'
'Of course he is - the prettiest of the satellites. What a fellow you are, Stephen.' 'How well named. But I meant another Ganymede, the Sultan's cup-bearer. Did you notice him?'
'Well, yes, I did. I said to myself, Why, damn my eyes, there is a girl. But then I remembered that there would be no girls at a feast like that, so I returned to my excellent haunch of venison, no bigger than a hare's, but uncommon well-tasting. Why do you call him Ganymede?'
'Ganymede was Jupiter's cup-bearer; and I believe their connexion, their relations, their friendship, would now be frowned upon. But I use the name loosely, as it is so often used: I mean no reflexion upon the Sultan.'

PatCox
01-02-2009, 10:25 PM
When Galileo refers to theology as a "science," he is using the word in a sense utterly and completely different from the modern sense. The fact that he says the "science" of theology is based on miraculous revelation could not make that clearer.

To quote Galileo saying that "theology is the queen of the sciences" is a meaningless statement, to think it is meaningful in a modern discussion of the relation between science and theology is the thought of a pompous moron, who thinks unidentified quotes, removed from their context, and without recognition or analysis of the changes in the definitions of almost every word used in the quote over the centuries since it was written, is somehow a meangful thing. Sammy, what Galileo said, the words, meant a different thing when he said them, they are so tied to their time, a time long ago.

George Jung
01-02-2009, 11:35 PM
What did Sammy prove beyond the fact that most of us were unfamiliar with Galileo's letter?


I believe there were those who branded SamF a 'moron' based solely on that quote. As it turns out.... it wasn't his.

What does that prove? By all appearances, there is such a dislike for Sammy, by most here, that they don't respond to what's written - only to who is writing it (or not, in this case). That should cause pause - but it hasn't, as ably demonstrated by Mr. Blight, who seems intent on proving his own intellectual capacity. Superficially, humorous; seriously, not.

Ian McColgin
01-02-2009, 11:41 PM
Anyone care to explain what the Pope meant about the Church misunderstanding Galileo? We seem to keep passing that point talking about the usual distraction.

Paul Denison
01-02-2009, 11:50 PM
An interesting book from http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/article.asp?id=127


The Queen of the Sciences

"[T]heology . . . may find itself the one discipline capable of integrating the otherwise unconnected disciplines that constitute the modern university. . . . 'the purpose of the university is to find love at the heart of all things, for love is the cause of the world. This does not mean that the study of atoms is going to show that love rather than neutrons and protons is to be found. Rather, once the atomic structure has been explicated the question of how such ordering analogically facilitates the possibilities of love, harmony, beauty, and truth is vital, and is another way of recognizing the ethical and methodological dimensions of the disciplines.'" Stanley Hauerwas, "Theology as Knowledge: A Symposium" First Things (May 2006)

http://marshillaudio.org/images/space.gifIn the April 2006 issue of First Things, R. R. Reno (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/guest_detail.asp?ID=380) (a guest on Volume 67 (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/volume_contents.asp?volumeID=67) of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal) wrote about theology's role in knowing and affirming truth. In part of his essay he noted theology's position in the academy in pre-modern times and traced its journey as it relinquished its lofty position as queen of the sciences. In the May 2006 issue of First Things, several professors contributed to a related discussion in "Theology as Knowledge: A Symposium." In the article James R. Stoner, Jr., Stanley Hauerwas, Paul J. Griffiths, and David B. Hart (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/guest_detail.asp?ID=381) (also a guest on Volume 67 (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/volume_contents.asp?volumeID=67) of the Journal) distinguished the position theology used to hold in society and the academy, mentioned its current virtual absence in both arenas, and argued about the possibility and wisdom of it reclaiming its throne.
http://marshillaudio.org/images/space.gif"Theology as Knowledge" is available on-line. [Posted July 2006, ALG]

Captain Blight
01-02-2009, 11:59 PM
Oooohh that's a lot of big red and blue letters!! It must be right.

Tom Montgomery
01-03-2009, 12:05 AM
I believe there were those who branded SamF a 'moron' based solely on that quote. As it turns out.... it wasn't his.

What does that prove? By all appearances, there is such a dislike for Sammy, by most here, that they don't respond to what's written - only to who is writing it (or not, in this case).

I have to admit, I get as least as much pleasure out of Sammy's admission that he peeks at my posts as he got out of my erroneous attribution of Galileo's words to him. ;)

He claims it was only because he looked at the WBF without logging in. Once is an accident. Twice is a coincidence. Three times is a habit. :eek: :D

George Jung
01-03-2009, 12:12 AM
Tom - :D

Paul - ;)

Blighty - :p

Tom Montgomery
01-03-2009, 12:13 AM
An interesting book from http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/article.asp?id=127


The Queen of the Sciences

"[T]heology . . . may find itself the one discipline capable of integrating the otherwise unconnected disciplines that constitute the modern university. . . . 'the purpose of the university is to find love at the heart of all things, for love is the cause of the world. This does not mean that the study of atoms is going to show that love rather than neutrons and protons is to be found. Rather, once the atomic structure has been explicated the question of how such ordering analogically facilitates the possibilities of love, harmony, beauty, and truth is vital, and is another way of recognizing the ethical and methodological dimensions of the disciplines.'" Stanley Hauerwas, "Theology as Knowledge: A Symposium" First Things (May 2006)

http://marshillaudio.org/images/space.gifIn the April 2006 issue of First Things, R. R. Reno (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/guest_detail.asp?ID=380) (a guest on Volume 67 (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/volume_contents.asp?volumeID=67) of the MARS HILL AUDIO Journal) wrote about theology's role in knowing and affirming truth. In part of his essay he noted theology's position in the academy in pre-modern times and traced its journey as it relinquished its lofty position as queen of the sciences. In the May 2006 issue of First Things, several professors contributed to a related discussion in "Theology as Knowledge: A Symposium." In the article James R. Stoner, Jr., Stanley Hauerwas, Paul J. Griffiths, and David B. Hart (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/guest_detail.asp?ID=381) (also a guest on Volume 67 (http://www.marshillaudio.org/resources/volume_contents.asp?volumeID=67) of the Journal) distinguished the position theology used to hold in society and the academy, mentioned its current virtual absence in both arenas, and argued about the possibility and wisdom of it reclaiming its throne.
http://marshillaudio.org/images/space.gif"Theology as Knowledge" is available on-line. [Posted July 2006, ALG]
I take it they are referring exclusively to Christian theology

Osborne Russell
01-03-2009, 11:08 AM
Anyone care to explain what the Pope meant about the Church misunderstanding Galileo? We seem to keep passing that point talking about the usual distraction.

Several possibilities come to mind, including the general judgment of history: The RCC did not misunderstand Galileo at all. In fact they understood him perfectly, and so persecuted him.

But Galileo misunderstanding the RCC? This is new to me, and new to the RCC as well. The assertion could only be made based on "recent historical studies." What are they talking about?

PatCox
01-03-2009, 11:03 PM
Osborne Russel, the answer is simple, the RC church is doing one of those non-apology apologies. Mistakes were made on both sides. That kinda thing, any 7 year old does it all the time. Its like Bush blaming Saddam for not having WMDs. "Oh, it was his fault for making us think he had them, and anyway, he was thinking about regaining the capacity to someday have them."

From what I can make of what SamF thinks of all this, he seems to think Galileo made no mistakes. But he also knows the Church has never ever made a mistake, so his position is hard to figure, especially since he won't state his position, instead, posting unattributed quotes which he explains as "an amusing game" he plays.

George Jung
01-03-2009, 11:11 PM
From what I can make of what SamF thinks of all this, he seems to think Galileo made no mistakes. But he also knows the Church has never ever made a mistake, so his position is hard to figure, especially since he won't state his position, instead, posting unattributed quotes which he explains as "an amusing game" he plays.


Hehehe....:D

PatCox, yours are among the 'livliest' critiques SamF receives on these threads; I would have never thought you could/would put together such a bland assessment, based on what you've posted previously. So you do actually read his posts, eh? Remarkable!

Osborne Russell
01-04-2009, 11:05 AM
Osborne Russel, the answer is simple, the RC church is doing one of those non-apology apologies.

Let it not be said that I'm not giving them a chance to prove you wrong.

Peerie Maa
01-04-2009, 11:08 AM
Let it not be said that I'm not giving them a chance to prove you wrong.

Ah but. Does the Vatican subscribe to the WBF? I think we will be waiting a long time before this thread receives a definitive answer.

Paul Denison
01-04-2009, 11:11 AM
Oooohh that's a lot of big red and blue letters!! It must be right.

Did you read it? I believe it supported your position in some ways.:confused:

Osborne Russell
01-04-2009, 11:20 AM
Ah but. Does the Vatican subscribe to the WBF?

If not, they're missing a bet.

But surely there's some rank and file people who know. Come on, we worship technology, we're Americans. The historical problem of Galileo's peresectution cannot be dodged without forfeiting our claim of objectivity and rationality, which drives technology and economic policy, which means, no more capitalist consumerism. No toys. You would think it would be a burning issue for every American Catholic with half a brain. Surely there's a few of them lurking around here.

Peerie Maa
01-04-2009, 11:47 AM
Links to the original text have been posted in this tread. From the nature of the document and it context in time, I doubt that any supporting discussion or explanation will have been published by its authors as it was their finished report, the final statement if you will. So I for one think that this tread will not succeed in answering the implicit question.
The debate calls on some interesting arguments though.

PatCox
01-04-2009, 10:08 PM
I am not really concerned with trying to parse in detail the "Vatican statement." Did Galileo have a misunderstanding about how his discoveries and his theories did or did not conflict with the RC church's official doctrine on science which contradicted literal biblical statements? It seems to me that its likely he did have some misunderstanding about it, or the way he presented his case, or something, because his views, as has been pointed out here, did not originate with him, and other proponents of the heliocentric model were not persecuted. To me, it is sufficient to say "there were faults on both sides, but looking back now, he was not wrong in any big way." What more do you want? In Galileo's time, my perception is that the Church had not determined its response to modern science, then in its infancy. So yes, it could be said there were misunderstandings on both sides, throughout that time, between the first "scientists" and the clerics, and the fact is these mutual misunderstandings continue to this day.

SamF perpetuates the medeival theological misunderstanding of science when he makes his arguments about the evils and flaws of objective "materialism" in science and tries to discredit darwinism as unfounded on the basis of really out there criticisms, such as the idea that only falsifiable experimental results have any validity because "the future is under no obligation to repeat the past." Thats a misunderstanding.

And scientists such as Dawkins are just as wrong in their setting up science as the only truth and in viewing religion as completely worthless superstition. Thats just as big a minsunderstanding.

So, to this day, what, 500 years later, almost, there still exist vast misunderstandings between scientists and theologians.

So really, is it not accurate to describe the conflict between Galileo and the RC church back then, at the dawn of the scientific revolution, as a mutual misunderstanding, one which has presisted and continues, in many threads here on WB, even?

Osborne Russell
01-05-2009, 09:54 AM
It seems to me that its likely he did have some misunderstanding about it, or the way he presented his case, or something, because his views, as has been pointed out here, did not originate with him, and other proponents of the heliocentric model were not persecuted.

Very likely that had more to do with the fact that Galileo was closer.


What more do you want?

I want to know how they rationalize his persecution . . . continually. To this day.


In Galileo's time, my perception is that the Church had not determined its response to modern science, then in its infancy.

Their treatment of Galileo was their unambiguous and determined response.

TomF
01-05-2009, 10:50 AM
Theology was widely called the Queen of Sciences, true. In the same general time period, the pipe organ was similarly called the Queen of Instruments.

Metaphor.