Scietific Revolution Essay

1144 words - 5 pages

During the Scientific Revolution scientists such as Galileo, Copernicus, Descartes and Bacon wrestled with questions about God, human aptitude, and the possibilities of understanding the world. Eventually, the implications of the new scientific findings began to affect the way people thought and behaved throughout Europe. Society began to question the authority of traditional knowledge about the universe. This in turn, allowed them to question traditional views of the state and social order. No longer was the world constructed as the somewhat simple Ptolemaic Model suggested. The Earth for the first time became explicable and was no longer the center of the universe. Many beliefs that had ...view middle of the document...

Instead of stating his findings freely and allowing the Roman Catholic Church to ponder there validity, he is troubled with the opinion of the church. The statement acts to justify his finding with the church and connect them to God. Copernicus realized that the church would be quick to judge him, and possibly this is why he didn’t publish his theories until late in his life. His discoveries were not so much as important as were his methods of observation and application of mathematics to explain the world. His methods of discovery helped model the direction of science over the next hundred years.

Another important figure in the Scientific Revolution was Galileo Galilei. He was an Italian born professor of mathematics who had a great interest in the workings of the universe. Galileo served as a professor at the University of Padua, and it was during this time that he began to question the accuracy of the Churches representation of the world. Galileo’s approach towards knowledge was much different then the afore mentioned Copernicus. Where as Copernicus presented his finding to the mercy of the church, Galileo wrote his conclusions and left the Roman Catholic Church interpret them as they chose. The very nature of his findings pitted him as an opponent of the church.

The Earth was not the center of the universe. Galileo had seen far into the heavens with the telescope he had designed and created an even more accurate mold of the universe. He trumpeted his views everywhere, and condemned anyone who was not immediately persuaded as a fool. Galileo’s finding where irrefutable in his own eyes. Unfortunately powerful figures within the church did not agree with him. Biblical passages seemed to paint a much different picture of the world. Galileo merely suggested, “The bible shows the way to go to heaven, not the way the heavens go“ (Aspects of Western Civilization 44). He also argued the fact that God had endowed us with senses, reason and intellect and to ignore these would be doing the creator an injustice. The Roman Catholic Church was infuriated by Galileo’s teachings and at the age of 70 indicted him for heresy. They forced him, by threat of physical torture, to recant his teachings. Galileo did eventually retract them...

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