The Split Betwwen science and religion


#1

Dear friends,

I have just joined and I have a question that I am trying to get answered.

I am doing a personal research project on the split between religion and science. I am looking for information in the following areas:

  1. I am familiar with the Claudius Ptolemy, a scientist back around 400 BCE who developed the theory that the sun revolves around the earth. I am looking for information that portrays how it came about that the Roman Catholic Church adopted this theory and made it part of it’s dogma(if that is the right word). Who were the leaders that made it happen? Why was it important to the church? Why did the church care whether the sun revolved around the earth or vice versa? What were the events that occurred to make it happen?

  2. I am familiar with the confrontation between the Church and Galileo. But I am looking for what happened within the Church prior to the confrontation that put it into the unbending position of not accepting new science? What were the events over the some 19 centuries that made it unwilling to accept new science.

I am a Baha’i and we believe that science and religion must be in agreement.

Thank you and take care.

                                          Harvey Garver
                                          Sarasota, Florida

#2

Welcome to the forum, Harvey! :wave:

  1. I am familiar with the Claudius Ptolemy, a scientist back around 400 BCE who developed the theory that the sun revolves around the earth. I am looking for information that portrays how it came about that the Roman Catholic Church adopted this theory and made it part of it’s dogma(if that is the right word). Who were the leaders that made it happen? Why was it important to the church? Why did the church care whether the sun revolved around the earth or vice versa? What were the events that occurred to make it happen?

Others who have a better understanding of history will no doubt help you with the details of your questions, but I thought it would be good to clear up your misconceptions before going any farther.

It was never part of Catholic dogma that the sun revolved around the earth. And there were many scientists in religious orders who knew better. You are merely repeating a common bit of misinformation here. :slight_smile:

  1. I am familiar with the confrontation between the Church and Galileo. But I am looking for what happened within the Church prior to the confrontation that put it into the unbending position of not accepting new science? What were the events over the some 19 centuries that made it unwilling to accept new science.

The Church has never adopted an “unbending position of not accepting new science.” Yet another common bit of misinformation. If you go on this premise you will not get very far in your researches, I’m afraid.

I am a Baha’i and we believe that science and religion must be in agreement.

So does the Catholic Church. We believe that nothing in the natural order can or will contradict the truths of our faith.

Thank you and take care.

                                          Harvey Garver
                                          Sarasota, Florida

Back at ya, Harvey! :thumbsup:


#3

Greetings Harvey. I am a retired Ph.D. Career Chemist. Never saw any problem between Science and Religion. The problems I saw were between colleagues who did not want to accept that there was a God and put up false barriers between the two.

The Catholic Church, which was the only Church for about 1500 years, spawned people who were the founders of modern science. Francis Bacon, a member of the clergy being one and Albertus Magnus another. At a more modern point the Curies who discovered and studied radioactivity were French Catholics. True science and true religion cannot be in conflict as God is the author or source of both. Of course after the reformation there were many early scientists who were not members of the Catholic Church. Not all of them would agree with my viewpoint of the matter, but than many of them were so tuned into science that they really felt no need for God. Imagine their surprise when they died.
Religion and Science are two different disciplines. They complement rather than oppose one another. Religion answers questions that science cannot and science answers questions that religion cannot. You would be further ahead to research some other conflict than this false one.


#4

Galileo’s mistake was not in teaching science falsely but in teaching theology falsely. That’s what got him in trouble with the Church.

The following are some Church positions on science and education:

***[FONT=Times New Roman]cathecism: [/FONT]*faith & science

***code of canon law: ***faith & science

Pontifical Academy of Sciences

JP S:
[FONT=Arial]***[/FONT] The ‘Galileo case’ teaches us that different branches of knowledge call for different methods, each of which brings out various aspects of realityFaith can never conflict with reason:

[FONT=Arial][size=2][FONT=Arial]***[/FONT]Faith & reason[/FONT][/size]
[FONT=Arial]
Ex corde ecclesiae[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]*[FONT=Arial]Ecclesia in Europa[/FONT][/FONT]*
[FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial]Sapientia Christiana
[/FONT][/FONT][/FONT]*
**[FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial]Message for day of world peace**[/FONT][/FONT][/FONT][/FONT]

continued…


#5

Paul 6:
Gaudium et spes
[FONT=Arial]Declaration on Christian education Gravissimum educationis[/FONT]

[FONT=Arial][FONT=Times New Roman]Benedict 16:[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]
[FONT=Arial]2006 ecclesial convention address
[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]
[FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial]Sapienta Christiana
[/FONT][/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]
[FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial]2005 homily before conclave
[/FONT][/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial]2006 European higher education address[/FONT][/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Arial][FONT=Arial]Deus caritas est[/FONT][/FONT]


#6

[quote=rwoehmke]Greetings Harvey. I am a retired Ph.D. Career Chemist. Never saw any problem between Science and Religion. The problems I saw were between colleagues who did not want to accept that there was a God and put up false barriers between the two.
[/quote]

Me neither. Harvey, there have been quite a few science threads on these forums. Our man Aquinas laid the foundation for science in the Western world. cpayne knows a lot about Aquinas. Here is a notable thread:

The Big Bang Theory

For more, just enter science in your search window.


#7

It didn’t. The church doesn’t hold teaching magisterium on the sun’s behavior.

Who were the leaders that made it happen?

because the church never taught this as authoritative, there weren’t leaders who “made it happen.” Rather, it was just the common (and not so incorrect) view of the people at the time.

{note: i say not so incorrect because as relativity has shown, niether geo nor heliocentric viewpoints are correct or incorrect}

Why was it important to the church?

it wasn’t.

Why did the church care whether the sun revolved around the earth or vice versa?

it didn’t.

  1. I am familiar with the confrontation between the Church and Galileo. But I am looking for what happened within the Church prior to the confrontation that put it into the unbending position of not accepting new science? What were the events over the some 19 centuries that made it unwilling to accept new science.

This is and incorrect statement. The church has never held that it should not accept NEW science. Galileo fell into error in two ways: 1) he tried to argue that theology of the church was incorrect and 2) he tried to use his discovery of the (only slightly correct) theory of heliocentrism as a means to discredit the church.

I am a Baha’i and we believe that science and religion must be in agreement.

St Thomas Aquinas already covered that subject LONG ago…


#8

You might want to research Giordano Bruno to help with this.

rossum


#9

#10

Dear Ani lbi,

Thank you for your reply. You mentioned that Galileo taught theology falsely. Would you please expand on that point.

I read your reference entitled “Faith can never conflict with reason”. It is a well written paper, but for me when you condense it down to its essence it confirms that the Church was so closely tied to the belief that the world stood still that when confronted with Galileo’s new theory the Church could not except it. And now centuries later the church is saying it was wrong at that time. What am I missing?

Take care.

                                            Harvey Garver

#11

Rossum,

Thanks for the reference


#12

#13

Dear Promethius 95945,

I like your moniker.

I like would to read more about Galileo’s effort to discredit the Church. Would you have any recommendations?

Take care.

                                   Harvey Garver

#14

[quote=Harvey Garver]Thank you for your reply. You mentioned that Galileo taught theology falsely. Would you please expand on that point…
[/quote]

You are missing that Galileo taught his hypothesis as theology, even though I have said as much. This is why he ran into trouble with the Church.

Listen: At the time, the plagues had eroded the number of educated clergy. There were also many people toying with the idea of literal exegesis. Galileo comes along with an idea – which btw was neither new nor was it his – and uses it to bolster a new kookie literal criticism of Scripture.

Was Galileo a member of the clergy? No. Was he teaching on Scripture? Yes. Was he wrong? Yes. Did using one’s status in society to steer the faithful away from the truth constitute scandal against the Church? Um… ya thenk?

As for the strength of his science: even that was cross-eyed. He attempted to demonstrate heliocentrism by means of wave theory. It was the wrong method. 200 years later, someone came up with a demonstration which involved parallax.

continued…


#15

[quote=Harvey Garver]… the Church was so closely tied to the belief that the world stood still that when confronted with Galileo’s new theory the Church could not except it. And now centuries later the church is saying it was wrong at that time. What am I missing?
[/quote]

[LIST]
*]Galileo was wrong to teach science as theology.
*]Therefore the Church clarified the distinction between science and theology.[/LIST]That’s it in a nutshell.

The birth of a new way of approaching the study of natural phenomena demands a clarification on the part of all disciplines of knowledge.

[LIST]
*]Galileo did not have irrefutable scientific proof.
*]Galileo confused science with philosophy.
*]Galileo promoted his ideas as truth instead of as a hypothesis.[/LIST]

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.

[LIST]
*]Some clergy who could read did not realize that they were also interpreting.
*]Moreover the boundaries between science and faith were blurred.[/LIST]

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.

[LIST]
*]Faith cannot be unreasonable.[/LIST]

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.

[LIST]
*]Truth cannot contradict truth. However…[/LIST]

…different branches of knowledge call for different methods…

In Galileo’s time, to depict the world as lacking an absolute physical reference point was, so to speak, inconceivable…

Today, after Einstein and within the perspective of contemporary cosmology neither of these two reference points has the importance they once had…

beyond two partial and contrasting perceptions, there exists a wider perception which includes them and goes beyond both of them.

Both the Church and Galileo had to come to grips with this. The main lessons of the Galileo affair are:

[LIST]
*]Faith cannot be unreasonable.
*]Truth cannot contradict truth.[/LIST]continued…


#16

Often non-Catholics misunderstand the role of heresy in understanding truth. Things get taken for granted for a time until a rebel comes along and challenges those things. The Church then calls a council and clarifies – not changes but clarifies – Her teaching.

If you will take a look at some of the other links I have given you, you will see how seriously the Church is taking this encounter between faith and science.

Gaudium et Spes was a thunderbolt from the blue in terms of its prescience. When I read it, I felt I was reading something written yesterday evening.

Faith and Reason is something which must be read sometime in one’s life; so genuine, loving, and searching is it. It was with this Apostolic Letter that JP2 won my heart.

Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth; and God has placed in the human heart a desire to know the truth—in a word, to know himself—so that, by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves… link


#17

Galileo never proved that the Earth goes around the Sun. He proved that the moons of Jupiter go around Jupiter and that’s it. The Church was correct to hold to the understanding that the Sun goes around the Earth. The Tyco-Brah model where the Sun goes around the Earth and the other planets go around the Sun for what we see in the sky is just as accurate as the Ceplar model of the Earth going around the Sun. In the Late 19th century the Church’s position that the Sun is going around the Earth was given more evidence by the Michealson Morley experiment. I personally believe the Earth being stationary is a better explanation for this experiment than the Theory of Relativity. Space and time compressing with motion makes no sense. The Earth not moving makes more sense. The Church was correct and science had a religious agenda.


#18

Bah, humbug! relativity means you can objectively pick ANY single point as a still reference frame. They were both right to say that the sun rotated around the earth OR that the earth rotated around the sun… on the other hand, they were both wrong to say that the other theory was incorrect…


#19

The Theory of Relativity completely deleted the idea that there is a medium which light travels through. The Michelson/Morley experiment late in the 19th century was looking for an interference fringe when a single light source is reflected at a 90 degree angel to itself. If the earth were moving at 60000 or so MPH around the sun, they would have seen interference in the wave, but they did not. Rather than say we might not be moving, Einstein messed with the equations said there is no medium (what they called the ether) and from the equations showed that obviously time and space compress when we move that fast. To that I say bah humbug.

The Church wanted Galileo to only teach the Ceplar model as a theory which it still is, but he would not. For him, because he saw the moons of Jupiter going around Jupiter it was fact that the earth is moving around the sun. The issue is, that we do not interpret Sacred Scripture based upon scientific theory. Per St. Augustine as quoted by Pope Leo XIII, we hold to the literal and obvious meaning of Sacred Scripture unless by necessity we must depart from it, wise advice. I don’t know of any authoritative statement that gos against the previous statements the Church has made against Ceplarism.


#20

Fair enough, i’m assuming you have the formal education in physics to back this up (and that you aren’t just basing these speculation off of flat earth / geocentrism websites). If you’d be so kind as to state this qualification it might give me some understanding as to what level to speak on to this issue…

Per St. Augustine as quoted by Pope Leo XIII, we hold to the literal and obvious meaning of Sacred Scripture unless by necessity we must depart from it, wise advice. I don’t know of any authoritative statement that gos against the previous statements the Church has made against Ceplarism.

True, and yet nothing in the scripture actually directly contradicts relativity…


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