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Old Blog Posts Feb 13, 2006

Subject Heliocentricity, AKA “I am the center of the Universe!”
Posted Date: February 13, 2006 – Monday – 1:05 PM

Here is an email I sent as reponse to this. I don’t even know if these guys are serious, but jeez! I was raised in the church, so I know how faith can really warp ones point of view. These guys, though; wow! They take the cake.I don’t know why this got my goat, most of the time I let this stuff slide by. I wish more people would view the Bible in such a literal way, and would actually turn around and test this stuff! I think that one excludes the other, though. I mean, can you imagine that proving the earth revolves around the sun disproved the validity of the Bible? At one point I know that people believed this (if Galileo is right, then the Bible is wrong), but of course in the long run they “realized” the bible was being “figurative”, and quitely went about business as usual (IE, making money and controlling people). In a sick way, this mirrors the scientific method (including the money and control), only without the attempt at honesty. Can they say, “I was wrong.”? No? Sad.—————————————————————————————————————

I’m going to ignore all the “direct, observable, physical, natural, repeatable, unambiguous and comprehensive” scientific proof, since you could find this information and re-produce the experiments by yourself (one of the main points of science, really…), but haven’t.

Rather, I would say that you have asked for scientific proof, but have not framed your question in a scientific way.To illustrate this, I’ll look into the definition of two words you use:
First, the word “center” (geometry): “a point that is well-distant from the boundaries of a figure” (Wikipedia).
So, in order to prove that the earth is not at the center, one would need to
1) find all the edges of the universe
2) calculate the location of the center
3) measure the distance from that location to our own.
4) if the distance is zero (or almost zero maybe?), then we are at the center (or almost center)!
So I would say that your challenge is currently impossible. The edge of the universe has never been observed, so the center can not be found. In fact, all the evidence seems to point to the fact that there is no edge! If a child asked you, “If I go to the edge of the earth, will I fall off?”, how would you respond? There’s something wrong with the question, right? You can’t really measure the “center” and “edge” when dealing with space-time, since position and velocity affect the measurement. By that I mean, you COULD measure something like the “center” and “edge”, but someone moving at a different velocity or vector would measure these as being in different places. And you’d both be right! Relativity is weird, but logically consistent and scientifcally provable.
Now, by “center”, you could mean that everything revolves around the earth….sun, planets, stars, etc. This is easily disproved, as you can observe planets that have moons revolving around them. If you mean that only some things in the universe revolve around the earth (say, sun and planets and stars, but not comets and moons, or something like that), and moons revolve around other planets, then how could you call us the center? (maybe, statistically, MORE things revolve around the earth?). Indeed, most of your scriptures seem to point out that the sun moves in relationship to the earth, so maybe by center you mean “the sun revolves around the earth”. These things need to be clarified.
Now, the second word is “proof”. You don’t ask for mathematical, legal, or logical proof, but specifically for scientific proof. But here’s the rub…scientific proof cannot be absolute. By this I mean, I cannot 100 percent prove something in a scientific way. In order for a proof to be scientific, it must be ..><!– D([“mb”,”possible for it to be refuted. This is a very difficult ..nthing to grasp for many religious people (especially those who believe in the ..n”inspired word”). I think this is because “the Word” is a form of absolute ..nproof, and could only be replaced by another form of absolute truth.

..n

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Unfortunately, like the “edge of the earth” questions based on”absolute truth” cannot be answered. ..nIf you are looking for truth ..n(like what you find in your Bible), you..’re not going to find it in science. ..nEven scientific “laws” (the highest possible “truth” in science) must be ..nrefutable as well as provable. The only reason they..’re laws is because people have tried really ..nhard to refute them, and have continued to fail. The instant someone succeeds, ..nthen it is no longer a law. Hypothesis and theory are merely laws that are even less proven.I realize this may seem bizarre to you, but to me any other choice is too shaky. ..nIn fact, I ..nwould say the scriptures you..’ve referenced are good examples of this shakiness. If even one portion of the bible can be ..nproven false than the rest might be false as well! That is a ..nsystem that lacks robustness, to say the least. If even one part cracks, the ..nwhole thing comes down. Yipes! This is why science, ..ninstead of the ..nbible, is used to build boats, cars, particle accelerators, etc. For that matter, most Christians refuse to hinge their entire world view on whether the earth revolves around the sun or not! Although that system isn..’t ..n”,1] ); //–>possible for it to be refuted. This is a very difficult thing to grasp for many religious people (especially those who believe in the “inspired word”). I think this is because “the Word” is a form of absolute proof, and could only be replaced by another form of absolute truth.

Unfortunately, like the “edge of the earth” questions based on”absolute truth” cannot be answered. If you are looking for truth (like what you find in your Bible), you’re not going to find it in science. Even scientific “laws” (the highest possible “truth” in science) must be refutable as well as provable. The only reason they’re laws is because people have tried really hard to refute them, and have continued to fail. The instant someone succeeds, then it is no longer a law. Hypothesis and theory are merely laws that are even less proven.

I realize this may seem bizarre to you, but to me any other choice is too shaky. In fact, I would say the scriptures you’ve referenced are good examples of this shakiness. If even one portion of the bible can be proven false than the rest might be false as well! That is a system that lacks robustness, to say the least. If even one part cracks, the whole thing comes down. Yipes! This is why science, instead of the bible, is used to build boats, cars, particle accelerators, etc. For that matter, most Christians refuse to hinge their entire world view on whether the earth revolves around the sun or not! Although that system isn’t ..><!– D([“mb”,”robust as one that constantly checks itself for errors, it is more robust than the literal view. And this means it will most likely outlast fundamentalism, thank God!
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I really hope you ..npublish this, but I have my doubts as to how serious you were.

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Sincerely,

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Calvin ..nLawson

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“,1] ); //–>robust as one that constantly checks itself for errors, it is more robust than the literal view. And this means it will most likely outlast fundamentalism, thank God!

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Subject Shoot to Kill
Posted Date: January 24, 2006 – Tuesday – 5:50 AM
Words escape me. These men must have trouble sleeping at night.

[Edit] [Delete] [View Comments]
Subject Word of God Copyrighted?
Posted Date: January 24, 2006 – Tuesday – 5:24 AM
Recently the Catholic Church has decided to impose copyright on all papal pronouncements.

Scary, huh? Especially when you consider the dogma of Infallible Magisterium,which essentially says that the pope can speak for God.. Think about this for a moment; in a sense the Catholic Church has copyrighted the word of God. Now try to tell me religion isn’t all about money and control.

Copyright is an extremely important issue right now, threatening many of our freedoms, free speech being the most important. Here are some links that provide more information:
EFF
Boing Boing
Corante

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