So, we're supposed to believe geocentrism?

Read this:law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/galileo/condemnation.html
and tell me:

  1. Is the idea that the earth moves around the sun a “false doctrine”?
    -or-
  2. Did the Church change positions?
    -or-
  3. Neither (please explain)

I have to say, I’m not sure if I can stay in the Church if either 1 or 2 above is true.

You should read these and let us know what problems you still have:
**The Galileo Controversy
Why did the Catholic Church Condemn Galileo?
**
After reading those two, you should have your questions answered.

God Bless,
RyanL

Please consider that “science” can neither prove nor disprove either theory. Posters here can expound on theories and conjecture… but we need to wait until they can get far enough away to see which is which.

Suggesting that a non-doctrinal issue might cause you to leave the church is perhaps shooting from the hip early in day. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot… save the zeal - and the bullet - for Satan when the time comes by practicing your aim, and learning to defend and share doctrines. The earth will spin, or not spin, regardless.

[quote=BlindSheep]Read this:law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/galileo/condemnation.html
and tell me:

  1. Is the idea that the earth moves around the sun a “false doctrine”?
    -or-
  2. Did the Church change positions?
    -or-
  3. Neither (please explain)

I have to say, I’m not sure if I can stay in the Church if either 1 or 2 above is true.
[/quote]

You clearly don’t understand what is and is not a doctrine. If your faith is dependent upon non-doctrinal issues, then I feel for you.
Faith and reason are not contradictory–you seem to suggest, or fear, that they are or could be. (There are many, many Catholic scientists, past and present, and in fact the originator of the “Big Bang” theory was a Catholic priest.) How do truths contradict each other? Anyway, read the links provided by another poster.

I’m not the one who called this a doctrine. The Church did. It’s in the link I posted.

Yes, I am well aware of Catholic scientists etc. please address the specific issue at hand. If I don’t know what a doctrine is, please enlighten me.
As far as whether this is worth leaving the Church over - I’m in the Church because I was convinced that it had the “fullness of truth”. If it is shown to have taught something false (to the point of calling truth a “false doctrine”) then I most certainly should leave it.
And yes, I have heard the bit about infallibility only applying in “matters of faith and morals”; but how do we know what is such a matter and what isn’t? In Galileo’s time, teaching heliocentrism was clearly considered a moral issue by the Church and the faithful in general; what criteria could they have used, at that time, to discern that the Church’s position on this particular matter was not binding (aside from the risk of house arrest and having one’s book banned, that is).

Ryan L: this is what I’m talking about (from your second link)

the first event is the condemnation of March 5, 1616, by the Congregation of the Index. Galileo precipitated this condemnation, but none of his works were mentioned in the text itself. The document condemned the belief in the motion of the earth as contrary to good reason and to Scripture. It prohibited Copernicus’s book On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres “until corrected” and completely condemned several other books by theologians who advocated that the earth’s motion was not contrary to Holy Scripture.

I never claimed that the Church was opposed to reason in general. My question was, are we supposed to believe that the earth does not move? If not, were the people in Galileo’s time required to believe it? If the Church was wrong, how to discern when the Church might be wrong and when it cannot be?

The three popes who issued decrees on the subject, (Paul V, Urban VIII, and Alexander VII) all ratified the statement: “the Earth is not the centre of the world and immovable but that it moves, and also with a diurnal motion, is equally absurd and false philosophically and theologically considered at least erroneous in faith”.
So tell me, is it
a) they were right
b) they were wrong, but it doesn’t matter because it wasn’t infallible (in which case, what IS infallible?)
Everyone has been very nice for the past year, but it looks like as soon as you have doubts around here, no one bothers to give a straight answer or even be polite.

[quote=BlindSheep]I’m not the one who called this a doctrine. The Church did. It’s in the link I posted.

Yes, I am well aware of Catholic scientists etc. please address the specific issue at hand. If I don’t know what a doctrine is, please enlighten me.
As far as whether this is worth leaving the Church over - I’m in the Church because I was convinced that it had the “fullness of truth”. If it is shown to have taught something false (to the point of calling truth a “false doctrine”) then I most certainly should leave it.
And yes, I have heard the bit about infallibility only applying in “matters of faith and morals”; but how do we know what is such a matter and what isn’t? In Galileo’s time, teaching heliocentrism was clearly considered a moral issue by the Church and the faithful in general; what criteria could they have used, at that time, to discern that the Church’s position on this particular matter was not binding (aside from the risk of house arrest and having one’s book banned, that is).
[/quote]

several points -
-the church handled it very badly
-Galileo was a jerk who made enemies everywhere he went. His greatest detractors were not in the church - they were other academics. Indeed, his greatest patrons where in the church.
-Galileo taught things he could not prove. Things that appeared, to many, as being opposed to Scripture. The church (in its historical position of the time) felt it was best not to allow the controversy to continue endangering the peace in the academy and on the street potentailly.
-when proof was available the church adressed it properly
-its not all that hard to determine what is a matter of faith and morals
-the literal-ness of scripture is a challenge (even today) and we all have to be careful not to endanger the faith of those who are not able to get their minds around the apparent contradictions between scripture and science. It is a matter of not causing scandal. Galileo was going about claiming things that he could not prove and upsetting a lot of people who were at the same time religious and yet very interested in the latest ideas out of the Academy.

You can follow the argument here:

The Geocentrism Challenge

CAI will write a check for $1,000 to the first person who can prove that the earth revolves around the sun. (If you lose, then we ask that you make a donation to the apostolate of CAI). Obviously, we at CAI don’t think anyone CAN prove it, and thus we can offer such a generous reward. In fact, we may up the ante in the near future.

[quote=buffalo]You can follow the argument here:

The Geocentrism Challenge

CAI will write a check for $1,000 to the first person who can prove that the earth revolves around the sun. (If you lose, then we ask that you make a donation to the apostolate of CAI). Obviously, we at CAI don’t think anyone CAN prove it, and thus we can offer such a generous reward. In fact, we may up the ante in the near future.
[/quote]

Yes, and you can shake your head in disbelief. Honestly, that it really quite ignorant.

It is perhaps easier to understand the Church’s actions regarding Galileo if we apply those actions to Darwin. I’m not here to argue against evolution. I’m not entirely convinced of macroevolution as it has not been adequately defended, but microevolution through natural selection cannot be denied. Even though Darwin’s ideas were the most accurate at the time (as his views as have Galileo’s have been adjusted over time), they were harmful to the faithful. This is not because they were incompatible with the faith, but simply because they challenged our current understanding of the faith. Answers could have and have been found to reconciling [God-controlled] evolution with the faith, but this takes time. A time in which many people left the faith. The same took place in Galileo’s time. This did not happen because a helio-centric solar system is a threat to Christianity, but because it took time for people to reason through the implications of it. The Church saw the dangers of what would happen, and so prevented it. Before Galileo’s time, seminary’s even taught Copernicus’ system as a theory, so we know that the Church didn’t necessarily find anything inherently wrong with the theory. The Church merely felt the need to buy more time for its theologians.

I am not talking about the Church’s treatment of Galileo here - what troubles me is the fact that the Church seems to have taught, more or less officially, that the earth is motionless and the sun orbits it. From the Papal condemnation of Galileo:

The proposition that the Sun is the center of the world and does not move from its place is absurd and false philosophically and formally heretical, because it is expressly contrary to Holy Scripture. The proposition that the Earth is not the center of the world and immovable but that it moves, and also with a diurnal motion, is equally absurd and false philosophically and theologically considered at least erroneous in faith.

Now think about it. If tomorrow the Church proclaimed that some scientific theory was “absurd and false philosophically and formally heretical”, would you feel that it was unneccessary to submit to this teaching, since it did not concern faith and morals? Or would you feel that any faithful Catholic would be obliged to reject the scientific theory in question? I know that Copernicus argued for heliocentrism about 70 years earlier and the Church did not condemn it at the time - however, doesn’t the statement above make it clear that it eventually did condemn heliocentrism? Was this ever changed later - and if so, how can the Church be trusted, when it can say the same idea is at one time “false and heretical” yet centuries later, accept it as true or at least possible?

Most of us protestants do NOT see the Bible as a science book. The Bible was using language of appearance. In fact, the spot where PI is described, it is not percise. And the famous Christian Sciencist proof text does not say the earth is round even.

One of the most famous mathematical statements in the Bible is in I Kings 7:23-26, describing a large cauldron, or “molten sea” in the Temple of Solomon:

He made the Sea of cast metal, circular in shape, measuring ten cubits from rim to rim and five cubits high. It took a line of thirty cubits to measure around it. Below the rim, gourds encircled it - ten to a cubit. The gourds were cast in two rows in one piece with the Sea. The Sea stood on twelve bulls, three facing north, three facing west, three facing south and three facing east. The Sea rested on top of them, and their hindquarters were toward the center. It was a handbreadth in thickness, and its rim was like the rim of a cup, like a lily blossom. It held two thousand baths.

The passage saying the earth is round is Isaiah 40:22:

He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in.

This passage may reasonably be interpreted as referring to a flat circular earth with the heavens forming a dome above it. Such an interpretation is consistent with other passages of the Bible which refer to a solid firmament (Gen. 1:6-20, 7:11; Ezekiel 1:22-26; Job 9:8, 22:14, etc.). It is also consistent with the cosmology common in neighboring cultures.

Isaiah 11:12 refers to the “four quarters of the earth”, but we do not take that as indicative of the earth’s shape.

The shape of the earth may already have been known in Isaiah’s time. Ancient astronomers could determine that the earth was round by observing its circular shadow move across the moon during lunar eclipses. There is some suggestion that the Egyptians knew of the earth’s spherical size and shape around 2550 B.C.E. (more than a thousand years before Moses). The Greek philosopher Pythagoras, who was born in 532 B.C.E., defended the spherical theory on the basis of observations he had made of the shape of the sun and moon (Uotila 1984). If this information was known by educated Greeks and Egyptians during biblical times, its use by Isaiah is nothing special.

talkorigins.org/indexcc/CH/CH131.html

a circle is not a sphere.

(Image is way too big and link will suffice)

aarweb.org/syllabus/syllabi/g/gier/306/OTcosmos.jpg

[quote=BlindSheep] In Galileo’s time, teaching heliocentrism was clearly considered a moral issue by the Church and the faithful in general
[/quote]

That doesn’t square with what I’ve read about the Galileo controversy. From what I understand, Galileo’s real problem was in ticking off his fellow academics, who simply manipulated some Church officials. It happens, alas…How does that translate into a dogmatic statement about morals? Also, Copernicus (a monk) had written about heliocentrism long before Galileo, and was encouraged to do so by some Church officials. So clearly it was not regarded as you claim it was.

“you had been notified of the declaration made by His Holiness and published by the Holy Congregation of the Index, whose content is that the doctrine of the earth’s motion and sun’s stability is conterary to Holy Scripture and so can be neither defended nor held.”

Does this mean His Holiness incorrectly interpreted Holy Scripture?

The Magisterium at the time of Galileo did indeed condemn heliocentrism; however, this was never declared *de fide *and therefore was/is not infallible dogma.

[quote=BlindSheep]If the Church was wrong, how to discern when the Church might be wrong and when it cannot be?
[/quote]

When the Church explicitly defines a dogma–such as Pius XII did in 1950 with the Assumption of Mary–then it becomes *de fide *and is therefore absolute and infallible truth. If such a dogma were ever to be disproven, then the Church would simply cease to hold any authority and the end of Christendom would be nigh (note: this has never happened and never will!)

Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma

Yes, I also looked at Catholic Encyclopedia and they also say that it was not ex cathedra.
But if we can only trust those doctrines specifically declared to be infallable, doesn’t that leave us with just a couple of Marian dogmas as “trustworthy”, and the rest of the body of Catholic belief becomes questionable? What good is it to know with certainty that Mary is the Mother of God, and that she was born without sin, if we do not even know for certain such basic doctrines as the Trinity, Christ as fully man and fully divine, the resurrection, the whole creed for that matter? Also by this criteria we cannot trust the Church’s teachings on the sanctity of life, sexual morality, the Real Presence…nothing but those two Marian doctrines. Doesn’t really leave much of Catholicism, does it?

[quote=BlindSheep]Yes, I also looked at Catholic Encyclopedia and they also say that it was not ex cathedra.
But if we can only trust those doctrines specifically declared to be infallable, doesn’t that leave us with just a couple of Marian dogmas as “trustworthy”, and the rest of the body of Catholic belief becomes questionable? What good is it to know with certainty that Mary is the Mother of God, and that she was born without sin, if we do not even know for certain such basic doctrines as the Trinity, Christ as fully man and fully divine, the resurrection, the whole creed for that matter? Also by this criteria we cannot trust the Church’s teachings on the sanctity of life, sexual morality, the Real Presence…nothing but those two Marian doctrines. Doesn’t really leave much of Catholicism, does it?
[/quote]

On what basis do you claim that those items in your list are not dogmatic?

[quote=Sherlock]On what basis do you claim that those items in your list are not dogmatic?
[/quote]

They were not explicitly defined like the Assumption - not, apparently, infallible.

[quote=BlindSheep]They were not explicitly defined like the Assumption - not, apparently, infallible.
[/quote]

Are only explicitly defined dogmas, dogmas? That’s a new one. What’s your authority for this?

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