Conflicts In Science Essay

1071 words - 5 pages

The Galileo Controversy
The debate between Science and Religion is probably the most ancient, most complex, and the most capable of changing the thought pattern as well as the moral guidelines (Biema D.V. ,2006). What were Galileo Galilei's conflicts with the Roman Catholic Church? It was not a simple conflict between science and religion, as usually portrayed. It was rather a conflict between Copernican science and Aristotelian science which had become Church tradition. In the spring of 1633, Galileo Galilei, an Italian scientist, was delivered before the dreaded Roman Inquisition to be tried on charges of heresy. He was denounced, according to a formal statement, "for holding as true the ...view middle of the document...

Majority of the Catholic Leaders of that time also argued that the Theory that Galileo was advertising to the public was declared “formally heretical” by a group of “Qualifiers” made up of a group of handpicked theologians by the Catholic Church (Linder, D. 2002.)
Galileo, at first a discrete supporter of Copernicus, gained evidence of making the heliocentric a physical reality by discovering and making observances in space, by using his telescope. He made many world changing discoveries, through the world’s first telescope. He was the first to study Saturn, Jupiter and their satellites as well as sunspots. It is observation of Venus that further made it plausible for the heliocentric theory to become truth (O’Conner & Robertson, n.d.). He noted that Venus went through phases just as the moon did. This plus other observations of the other planets allowed him to build up the evidence to make a Copernicus’ theory a reality.
Since this issue is related to a conflict between science and religion, the issue of teaching evolution over creationism in public schools relates to the Galileo conflict. Copernican theory, which Galileo agreed with contradicted several bible passages that the earth was at the center of the universe/creation. If Darwin is correct, it contradicts certain aspects as well. The teaching of creationism and evolution in schools in some states of the US is a modern parallel. Evolution is an evidence-based scientific theory and creationism is religious belief.
The issue then subsided for some time, until Galileo’s long time friend was appointed to the position of Pope. Galileo believed with Pope Urban in power that he could then continue to publish works and promote his Copernican views. He requested that Pope Urban allow him to write and publish, what is now is Galileo’s most prestigious work, Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief Systems – Ptolemaic and Copernican. Pope Urban granted him permission on the condition that he provided an unbiased look at both theories. This did not happen; instead Pope Urban took it as a disrespectful mockery. Urban believed that Galileo used the characters within to mock the Pope and the...

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