Sunday, January 23, 2022

Tibees promotes Maria Popova's ill argued hagiography of Kepler : his Somnium is cited

A shocking story that shows how closed-minded people can be
1st of Dec. 2021 | Tibees

1:02 Key concept - can be explained, not need be explained.

Btw, his theory on celestial mechanics was not one of two, as you propose, but one of four, you can look them up in Riccioli's Almagestum Novum, book 9, section 2, chapter 1.

His enumeration of options is not chronological.

1) moved by proper form, namely like fire is moved up or earth is moved down ... Kepler is mentioned here
2) moved by proper form, namely like living beings by souls
3) moved directedly by God
4) moved by angels, assigned this task by God.

He considers the matter cannot in and of itself be proven (you can't observe it like you can observe how flames spread by setting other things afire) but that option four has the best theological arguments and also has most support in diverse theologians (St. Thomas Aquinas being one of them, but Coimbra Jesuits, Suarez, Nicolas of Cusa not lacking ....)

1:45 Kepler considered the evidence pointed to Heliocentrism ... but so far not saying what that evidence is ...

2:35 In 1616, however, Galileo was not tried, only his book was.

And saying that heliocentrism being punishable by death was decided then, I'd like to see a reference.

W a i t ... is the reference Maria Popova?

I look her up and she graduated in 2003 in Sofia, Bulgaria ... in other words, a post-Communist country where Galileo trial had figured heavily in anti-Christian propaganda up to at least 6 years after she was born ...

6:32 376,625 km a bit further off than perigee ....

7:06 "As for the inhabitants of the moon, they believe that the Earth rotates around the Moon"

A standard argument against the prima facie view and was still used by Euler writing to a Prussian princess. But the "inhabitants of the moon" who are not even as its angel an explanation for its motion around the zodiac in about a lunar month, or of mars, venus, jupiter or whatever, are very undocumented.

Saying "they believe we rotate around them, and how silly is that?" is an appeal to the unknown and presumably unreal.

9:23 Copernicus was not in fact presenting all that much scientific fact.

His argument was mainly "epicycles are ugly and difficult to describe, hence chaotic and unworthy of God's hand in creating things"

10:00 It can be added here, Kepler lived in a Protestant country where he could not get burned for heresy. He was in Prague when this was written, exiled from Graz after refusing a Catholic conversion.

Actually, the city his mother went to was more purely Protestant, and that's where she got in trouble for an accusation of witchcraft.

13:21 Riccioli took this as Kepler's mechanistic cause being magnetism...

13:35 Inertia had been understood since Buridan studied impetus.

14:28 "the first major challenge to our self-importance" ... more like, to our normal certitudes.

I begin to feel Maria Popova has a very religious view on all of this matter and that she's basically making heliocentrism (and "other challenges to our self-importance") a kind of "salvation issue" in a secularised, non-Christian, non-Biblical, but still very far from profane or simple urgency sense. She has a view with religious atheism or scientism.

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