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April 3, 2016 | Author: | Posted in history

Understanding of Religion and Religious Leaders by Galileo and Copernicus

Copernicus and Galileo are the most well-known astronomers and intellectual revolutionists in human history . Once their teachings have turned over the medieval canonical ideas about Universe , and they were both recognized to be heretics and abjurors . Ironically , they were both deep religious believers . It is little known , that Copernicus refused to publish his ideas not because of fear before the Inquisition , which in fact never existed in Poland , but because he considered , that such ideas could be harmful for his unenlightened [banner_entry_middle]

coevals . Also Galileo never doubted , that God exists and that He is the Creator of the Universe . In this I will demonstrate , that despite of their revolutionary discoveries , Copernicus and Galileo still supported the theory of divine existence . I will use one brilliant work of each of those scientists From The Revolutions of the Heavenly Bodies ‘ by Nicolas Copernicus and the Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina of Tuscany by Galileo

To prove their point of view Copernicus and Galileo had to attack existing authorities of knowledge . Copernicus did it in more careful way . He did not speak , that the Church was wrong . He spoke about the Refutation of the arguments of the ancients that the earth remains still in the middle of the universe , as if it were its center However , precisely those arguments of the ancients were used by the canonical thinkers to prove , that the Earth stands in the centre of the Universe . Thusly , Copernicus did challenge the ideas , supported by the Church , but he did it implicitly . Galileo seems to be more foreright blaming ecclesial thinker ‘s ignorance and even fake : they made the grave mistake of sprinkling these with passages taken from places in the Bible which they had failed to understand properly , and which were ill-suited to their purposes ‘ Nevertheless , Galileo still tried to justify his findings by referencing to earlier and revered giants of faith like Saint Augustine : These men would perhaps not have fallen into such error had they but paid attention to a most useful doctrine of St . Augustine ‘s , relative to our making positive statements about things which are obscure and hard to understand by means of reason alone

Moreover , Bible remains a supreme source for Galileo : And as to the propositions which are stated but not rigorously demonstrated , anything contrary to the Bible involved by them must be held undoubtedly false and should be proved so by every possible means . Now if truly demonstrated physical conclusions need not be subordinated to biblical passages . In contrast , Copernicus , in his cautiousness , prefers not to concern the Bible , limiting his arguments only to geography and physiology

It ‘s strangely , but both Galileo and Copernicus remain to a great extent religious thinkers . For them their ideas are not denial of God ‘s existence , but yet another proof of his wisdom . They do not strive against God , they strive against human ignorance and hypocrisy for knowledge which , as they think , is their service to God

Oliver J . Thatcher , ed , The Library of Original Sources (Milwaukee University Research Extension Co , 1907 , Vol . V : 9th to 16th Centuries pp . 95-101

Internet Modern History Sourcebook , available at : HYPERLINK “http /www .fordham .edu /halsall /mod /galileo-tuscany .html http /www .fordham .edu /halsall /mod /galileo-tuscany .html last viewed February 1 , 2007


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