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Across the Universe: Mirror image — 7 Comments

  1. Given Galileo’s much acclaimed telescopular observations of Jupiter’s moons, I think his main contributions were made during house arrest 1603–9, where Galileo worked long at doing experiments on inclined planes and most importantly with pendula. Although under house arrest, he apparently talked to many people other than his daughter. Imagine what it takes to specify the actual building of inclined planes and various spheres of different density and then documenting the related time and motion studies. It took discipline, insight and the assistance of many other unknown people. His precise but simple efforts are continually referenced in the literature as Galilean motion.

    • You might have two different time periods mixed up. He did his work on inclined planes, etc. while he was both in Pisa and at Padua in the universities, from about 1590 through 1610; he was not under house arrest then.
      He wrote them up and published them much later, while under house arrest (when he was too aged to travel much in any event, but still…) and that was 1634-1638.

  2. I had to look that comment up.”worst censorship since…”.
    It’s about Cannabis, and “psychedelic” drugs being outlawed in Great Britain 2014.
    By an interestingly named Professor David Nutt.

    All I can say is this must virtually be what it feels like to be a spectator at a baseball game, and getting hit by a truly Foul Ball. Dr. Nutt is not helping his cause by perpetuating such ignorance.
    But I have heard recently, comments by fellow Christians, if not Catholics, that make me realize if these ideas are not confronted and exposed (gently), like gossip, take on a life of their own.
    At least we have a nice easy referral to the VOF to shine light on such ignorance.
    It’s not really a fight between Science and Religion as it is between Science and Politics.
    Keep up the Good Work

    • And religion versus politics. Which is unfair to politics; we need good politics, it is just that lately bad politics has pushed the good stuff out of the public sphere… of course the same can be said about bad science and bad religion! In every case, being sure you’re right and that those who disagree are evil incarnate is a large part of the problem. (Except, I am right! Really! And, and, and…)

      • This is a rather frustrating issue that I’ve encountered more than a few times, particularly since I’ve commenced theological studies and formation towards ministry – even well meaning friends have come out with the “but you’ve had a scientific education! You’re a total space science tragic! You used to endorse the Big Bang and Darwinian evolution – how can you abandon those positions?” It is a fruitful but occasionally wearying experience to explain to said friends for just how many long decades the Catholic church has actively endorsed these scientific frameworks, and to move on into recounting the important works of clerical scientists such as Mendel, Teilhard, Lemaître and others! Thankfully I can always point out the existence of the VOF and its scientific contributions, which has (I hope) convinced a few of my friends at least that we Catholics are in no way down on telescopes, astronomy and astrophysics! I like to think I’ve even persuaded a few doubters to subscribe to the Catholic Astronomer blog… 🙂

  3. Pingback:Across the Universe: Mirror image – The Catholic Astronomer – Astrónomos Jesuitas del Observatorio astronómico del Vaticano

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