Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Was St. Thomas Geocentric? Should we be Now?

What is a Thomist? - Fr. Gregory Pine, O.P. - Draft
Pints With Aquinas, 29 April 2023

2:06 Correction.

His biology, we know to be incomplete. I don't think any part can be shown to be false, unless the part where the father is providing the formal and the mother the material principle (the mother in fact does that by nutrition, even, but mother as well as father provide the genome).

His cosmology, as to cosmic spheres, that part was proven false by Tycho Brahe. BUT, Earth in the centre, not rotating, concentric spheres of whatever material (though no complete spheres of solid material) being moved from Primum Mobile by the Primus Motor inward toward Oceanic currents, angels moving individual celestial bodies within their "spheres" (like an angel moving the Sun eastward around the zodiac each year), all of that has by contrast not been proven false.

Ronan M.
Are you suggesting that geocentrism is at all taken seriously?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
@Ronan M. Over centuries, obviously yes.

Today? At least by Geocentrics.

But I was not speaking of getting taken seriously today, I was speaking about truth, which is not the same thing.

Tell Cicero a new born is not disposable - would he take you seriously? No.

He was a Pagan. He lived in a period and area with false ideologies.

Dito with today's Heliocentrics.

From my perspective the whole universe revolves around, and passes by the earth. It's the vantage point of conscious beings. Until beings capable of reason are discovered on another sphere what other perspective is there?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
@Jim God's.

That of God, angels and Blessed souls around Soul and Body of Our Lord and Our Lady.

It's a perspective above the spheres.

The perspective we have cannot prove earth is still beyond any shadow of doubt, but, as you say, barring beings with bodies and reason living on other spheres as their biological home, it puts it above reasonable doubt, at least barring the eventuality of a future reason to doubt it.

Now, it can be mentioned, both Bruno and Euler were selling Heliocentrism to the tune of "Aliens" ...

Ronan M.
@Hans-Georg Lundahl are you comparing attitude differences between cultures to something that is observably false? If you don’t have higher education in science, there’s better reason to take geocentrism seriously, but once you start doing the math yourself, it’s a joke. Patristic tradition or even what is presumed in the biblical text is not relevant, it’s not a question of faith.

Hans-Georg Lundahl
@Ronan M. " once you start doing the math yourself, it’s a joke."

Would you mind telling me exactly what math tells you geocentrism is a joke?

The math of a Newtonian two-body problem, applied to the presumption that Sun and Earth both flow freely in space and that inertia and gravity are the only factors influencing the movements?

Sure. But why accept that math?

If you want to calculate the area to paint on a door with dimensions 1 m by 2 m and a round window radius 1 dm, you might do well not to do the math for an elliptic door, with 1 m and 2 m as half axes, and a square window of the dimension 1 dm by 1 dm ..; right?

So, why exactly should I take the applied math YOU propose? Applied math is not just counting the math correctly, it is also applying the calculations to the correct factors in the real life example.

@Ronan M. "are you comparing attitude differences between cultures to something that is observably false?"

Heliocentrism is observably false, if you take observations at face value.

Doing one's math based on gravity and inertia only etc and taking that for the last word in astronomy, as if God and angels either didn't exist, or had no objective power over things that are not close to human brains on earth and cannot depend on their attitudes, doing that is an attitude difference in our culture.

Were you trying to say that Geocentrism is rationally false, apart from that attitude difference in our culture? If so, I missed that argument.

3:01 I think you have taken exactly that risk a bit too far when it comes to the extent to which you seem to think St. Thomas has been proven wrong in biology or cosmology.

Because, after a good overview of arguments and purported proofs, either for Earth's so called daily rotation or for her so called yearly orbit, 6 of each provided by Swiss astronomer and historian of sciences Chaberlo, Frédéric, I do not see any reason to take our senses as being subject to the parallactic illusion when it comes to testifying Earth stands still, Sun moves across the sky each day and from different angles over the year, i e the Sun is involved in a double movement.

The daily one being in fact involved in Prima Via as well as in Joshua 10, when it comes to avoiding the heresy of "accomodation theory" (God allowing Joshua's audience to think the Sun and Moon stopped moving and then resumed, because that's what they believed back then, and actively encouraging that insofar as He inspired the miracle working words of Joshua or God in the flesh allowing His audience to think there were literal demons involved in His exorcisms).

When you inverse this, for the Prima Via argument, you can land where Giordano Bruno did, with multiple gods, one for each what we call solar system.

The yearly movement of Sun, parallalelled by a yearly movement of alpha Centauri, is involved in avoiding the "Distant Starlight" problem for Young Earth Creationism. That's why I came in to Geocentrism in 2001. Someone had cited "distant starlight" as a proof positive the universe is older than 100 000 years or whatever.

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