The Church Growth Kit

Ministry Letters

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The Roman Catholic Church and the development of astronomy

In the 16th and 17th centuries the Roman Catholic Church contrived to be simultaneously both innovative and conservative in its attitude to astronomy. It led Europe towards the adoption of an accurate calendar, and was not opposed to all attempts to provide accurate data as a basis for astronomy. Cathedrals and churches were substantial and stable structures, making them potentially useful frameworks for astronomical measurements. In 1576 a simple instrument was installed in the cathedral in Bologna under the direction of a Dominican mathematician named Ignazio Danti. It was effectively a large pinhole camera, with a small hole in the roof producing an image of the Sun on the floor, in which a long metal strip was inserted. The strip, known as a meridian, began directly below the hole and extended northwards like a long ruler, with distances marked on it. As the image of the Sun moved eastwards across the strip around noon each day, the crossing point and the size of the image were...

Galileo and the Church

Although Galileo's acceptance of the Copernican view of the solar system was not revolutionary, it nonetheless attracted the attention of the Catholic Church. Church authorities had cited passages from the Bible that they believed indicated that God had made Earth the center of the universe, with all other bodies revolving around it. As word spread about Galileo's contradiction of church doctrine, Pope Urban VIII summoned him to Rome to express his displeasure. In 1616, Pope Urban ordered Galileo to admit he had erred in supporting the Copernican theory that Earth revolves around the sun. Galileo's refusal to recant created friction between Europe's most famous scientist and the pope. Following years of charges and countercharges, in 1633 Galileo was tried by a church court and found guilty of continuing to promote his theory. He was placed under arrest, yet continued writing while living out the rest of his life under papal confinement. know to be dense gases). In a more general and...

Church Orientations

Christian churches generally point eastwards. Liturgical traditions dating from medieval times associate the direction east the rising place of the heavenly bodies and particularly of the sun with the resurrection of Christ and the dawning of the day of eternity for righteous souls. Worshipers therefore face, symbolically, their eventual home in paradise. East, however, evidently did not necessarily mean due east. The orientations of many churches actually deviate from true east by considerable amounts. In modern times church builders were often constrained by the space available within densely populated towns and cities, so this is scarcely surprising, but in earlier centuries and in rural settings such limitations seldom existed. Given the care and attention that were afforded to many other aspects of a church's construction, it seems inconceivable that their orientations were merely poor attempts at facing due east. The question, then, is how the direction in which a given church...

How to Use a Computerized Telescope

Michael Covington, an avid amateur astronomer since age 12, has degrees in linguistics from Cambridge and Yale Universities. He does research on computer processing of human languages at the University of Georgia, where his work won first prize in the IBM Supercomputing Competition in 1990. His current research and consulting areas include theoretical linguistics, natural language processing, logic programming, and microcontrollers. Although a computational linguist by profession, he is recognized as one of America's leading amateur astronomers and is highly regarded in the field. He is the author of several books, including the highly acclaimed Astrophotography for the Amateur (1985 second edition 1999) and Celestial Objects for Modern Telescopes (2002), which are both published by Cambridge University Press. The author's other pursuits include amateur radio, electronics, computers, ancient languages and literatures, philosophy, theology, and church work. He lives in Athens, Georgia,...

The History Of Solar Observations

Nor were the sunspot concepts particularly popular with the Catholic Church during the Middle Ages. In the early Middle Ages, sunspots were sometimes mistaken as the passing of Mercury in front of the solar disk. Sunspots did therefore not receive much attention until the invention of the telescope by Galileo in the early 17th century, when their existence was demonstrated beyond doubt. The first telescopes consisted of an arrangement of two lenses, but more recent telescopes also use various arrangements of mirrors.

Inspired to Study Astronomy

In the 15th century, science was not a university subject in and of itself, as it is today, but instead was part of the arts program. Astronomy was a subject taught mainly for the purpose of keeping a calendar, which enabled clergymen to keep track of spiritual holidays. One of the professors at the university was a Polish mathematician named Albert Brudzewski. There is no evidence that Copernicus actually attended his classes, but it is known that they were friends and that Brudzewski was key in introducing Nicholas to astronomy and inspiring in him a deep and lifelong interest in the subject. Brudzewski's astronomy was that of Ptolemy's, Aristotle's and, most important, the church's, which was the accepted, Earth-centered system.

Childhood associations

From the house I also learned early the way to the park at one end of the street and the church at the other, going round the block to the shops with the corner newsagent that sold sweets, the greengrocer with its fresh fish counter, and the bigger newsagent with plastic soldiers then further round past the church to the even bigger shopping street with Woolworths and Littlewoods. I knew early on about the link between the park at the end of the street and the parallel route along the lanes to the school and nursery. At nursery school, after orange squash and (an enforced but sleepless) nap, on sunny days we would walk snake fashion across the road to the flower park. Even at that age I knew how the vast green expanse of the Rec, the park closest to our house, led in a series of linked spaces to the flower garden and then further to the magical lake park beyond with its playground and lighthouse. It was after even more years, I think possibly not until after my dad died and we had to...

The Shape Of The Earth

We credit the idea that the Earth and other planets orbit the Sun to the medieval Polish astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus. It took some time thereafter for various churches to accept that our planet is not a stationary center to the universe. As early as 270 B.C., however, Aristarchus of Samos had suggested that the Earth and other planets circuit the Sun, and to him it was clear that we inhabit a spherical body moving through space. Despite his thinking, it was the cosmology of the second-century A.D. Greek astronomer Ptolemy, with the planets, Sun, and stars circuiting the Earth on convoluted paths, was to hold sway until Copernicus showed the way ahead 1,400 years later.

Observations and Calculations Begin

In 1496, after five years, Copernicus's uncle moved him from the University of Krakow to the University of Bologna, Italy, in order for him to study canon law, or church law. The next year he received an official notice that his uncle had secured for him a canonry position at Frauenburg Cathedral, Ermland, which would provide him ample income without his having to return and perform any duties in person. He could stay in Italy and continue his studies. This was fine with him, for in Bologna he could continue to study astronomy and work on Ptolemy's calculations.

Boundaries and t hresholds

Of course, it is the 2-D spatial extent ofthe land that gives crops, grazing, and wealth, but it is the line of the boundary that defines it Perhaps this is most clearly seen at Rogationtide in an English church parish, when the parishioners beat the bounds of the parish, walking round its borders, reminding themselves ofthe boundary stones and markers that say where the extent of their land ends and that of their neighbours begins. This dual nature of boundaries, as things drawn from the land or drawn on the land, accounts for some of the fluidity of boundaries over time. Near my current home, the border between Scotland and England has moved back and forth over the years, and within my own lifetime the Welsh maps of Wales had a different border to the English ones (until local government reorganization in the 1970s, when the Welsh border won ).

The Heliocentric System Marks a Scientific Revolution

Rather than take up his duties as canon to Frauenburg Cathedral, he instead became medical adviser and secretary to his uncle Lucas Watzenrode, who was beginning to age. Copernicus took up residence with him in his castle at Heilsberg, about 40 miles (64 km) southeast of Frauenburg. For the next six years, Copernicus helped manage his uncle's duties, yet during all this time he also worked on geometric celestial calculations, writing down his findings, calculating and recalculating until eventually he devised a beautifully simple mathematical system, one in which he placed the Sun at the center of the universe. Copernicus had worked out the correct model of the solar system. The problem was that it was not the church-accepted model. Copernicus knew his calculations were right, yet he did not seek to advertise his findings for fear of being labeled a heretic. By 1512, Copernicus had completed a brief outline of his new theory titled Commentariolus (Little commentary). Since it flew in...

The Unfolding Universe

Astronomy was still crippled by the blind faith in Ptolemy's system. So long as men refused to believe that the Earth could be in motion, no real progress could be made. The situation was not improved by the attitude of the Church, which in those times was all-powerful. Any criticism of Aristotle was regarded as heresy. Since the usual fate of a heretic was to be burned at the stake, it was clearly unwise to be too candid. Copernicus was wise enough to be cautious. He knew that he was certain to be accused of heresy, and though his book was probably complete by 1530 he refused to publish it until the year of his death. As he has foreseen, the Church was openly hostile. Bitter arguments raged throughout the next half-century, and one philosopher, Giordano Bruno, was burned in Rome because he insisted that Copernicus had been right.* *This was not Bruno's only crime in the eye's of the Church, but it was certainly a serious one. The five planets known in Kepler's day proved to have...

The Religious Scandal

Throughout the late 1520s and early 1530s, Copernicus's duties of state gradually passed to other men. His manuscript De revolution-ibus had seen many revisions but never a publisher. By now, Copernicus had earned a reputation as being quite a good physician, yet he became more reclusive and socially out of touch. Most of his friends and family had died. His beloved Catholic Church now knew about and was criticizing his stand on the heliocentric theory of the solar system. Even the Protestants, the Catholic Church's opponents, had learned of and criticized his views. Educated men, such as the German theologian Martin Luther, founder of the Protestant religion, and Philip Melanchthon, another German theologian, publicly denounced Copernicus, which caused his heretical teachings to be known by everyone, not just the broad inner circle of scholars. Commoners suddenly became involved in the scandal, even devising a stage play intended to mock his theory.

Differing Scientific Theories

In the Middle Ages, Ptolemy's philosophy was widely accepted, and was embraced by the Roman Catholic Church, which believed it to be consistent with biblical principles. Any Catholic whose beliefs opposed the geocentric system was considered guilty Copernicus knew his book would be condemned by the Catholic Church, so he chose not to publish it until shortly before his death in 1543. Yet even though his beliefs were a major step toward correcting the erroneous theories of the past, they were far from perfect. For instance, in discussing what he called the ballet of the planets, Copernicus proposed that each planet orbited in a perfectly circular motion. (Although this was incorrect, it was a common belief at the time.) Another flaw in Copernicus's theories was its inability to explain why the planets moved the way they did or why Mars sometimes did its peculiar backward march across the sky. Because his book

Letter from the Author

The Dragon's Head in Pisces (Christianity church) will bring about more damage where the church authorities will have to take drastic actions to survive an approaching the end of time (for Christianity I meant). More priests will be exposed with sex scandals while devious financial Christian deals will come to light, bringing more devastative legal suits against the church. The new Pope, unaware of the celestial astrological order, will try to adapt to the changes and already enrolled both gays and Gypsies to the Christian faith. The financial Christian Empire (Church Inc.) is collapsing and all must be done by the last Pope to save the church and the Christians faith. But all will be in vain as ANY humans regardless of their name or position cannot alter the Universal order. How far will the failing church go and when will the world wake up to reality CONCORD, New Hampshire, June 7 -- Episcopalians in the Diocese of New Hampshire today elected as their leader the first openly gay...

Nicolaus Copernicus 14731543

To avoid open conflict with church authorities who considered the Sun-centered model heresy, Copernicus cautiously circulated his handwritten notes to a few close friends. In 1540, one of his students, the Austrian mathematician Rheticus (Georg Joachim von Lauchen), published a summary of these notes but was very careful not to specifically mention Copernicus by name. This trial exposure of the heliocentric model actually occurred without angering church authorities. On the contrary, scientific excitement about the Copernican hypothesis spread rapidly. After his death on May 24, 1543, in Frombork, Poland, church authorities aggressively attacked the Copernican model and banned On the Revolutions of Celestial Spheres as heretical. This book remained on the church's official list of forbidden books until 1835.

Calendar Problem The Date of Easter

Traditional statement is that Easter is the first Sunday after the first full moon22 following the vernal equinox. Neugebauer (1979) notes that astronomically, the solution requires the determination of the length of the tropical year and the ability to predict accurately the moment of full moon. In his study of an Ethiopian table giving the dates of Easter, Neugebauer found that the dates were simply computed from the dates of Passover (Easter would be a following Sunday). These dates were computed using the 19-year Metonic cycle, but without the refinements that the Babylonians employed (according to Neugebauer). The point to be made is that the computation of the dates of Easter usually involved computational schemes that sometimes differed in application among the ecclesiastical authorities. Moreover, the date of Easter can be different if one begins counting days from sundown, as in ancient Babylon and in the later Jewish tradition (see Metzger and Coogan 1993, p. 744) , and...

Galileo Galilei 15641642

In 1613, Galileo published his Letters on Sunspots, using the existence and motion of sunspots to demonstrate that the Sun itself changes, again attacking Aristotle's doctrine of the immutability of the heavens. In so doing, he also openly endorsed the heliocentric model. Late in 1615, Galileo went to Rome and publicly argued in support of Copernicus. Galileo's public advocacy angered Pope Paul V, who formed a special commission to review the theory of Earth's motion. Dutifully, the (unscientific) commission concluded that the Copernican theory was contrary to biblical teachings and possibly a form of heresy. In late February 1616, the Church officially admonished Galileo never to teach or to write again about the Copernican model. Galileo remained silent for a few years. In 1623, he published The As-sayer, in which he discussed the principles for scientific research but carefully avoided support for Copernican theory. Nine years later, Galileo received papal permission to publish a...

The Navigational Utility Of Lunar Eclipses

As you sail east or west the time according to the position of the Sun alters. If you had an accurate clock that maintained the time at some reference point, say back in London, then by comparing the clock time with the time according to the Sun in the sky, the longitude might be determined. Unfortunately the pendulum clocks used in churches and observatories would not work on a tossing and rolling ship at sea.

New Captains at the Cape

Most Launch Operations Center personnel remained on the Cape, where LOD had been a tenant. Some NASA elements continued as tenants in Air Force space for several years. In this period many offices had to get by with inadequate facilities, which impaired morale and reduced productivity. George M. Hawkins, chief of Technical Reports and Publications, pointed out that four technical writers worked in an unheated machinery room below the umbilical tower at LC-34. At one time pneumonia had hospitalized one writer and the others had heavy colds. When it came time to install machinery there, they urgently requested assignment to a trailer. Russell Grammer, head of the Quality Assurance Office, established operations in half a trailer at Cape Canaveral with seven employees. When the staff grew to 13 times that size, his force had to expand into other quarters. The Quality Assurance people worked in such widely scattered places as an old restaurant on the North Cape Road, a former Baptist...

The Cosmology of the Middle Ages

Aristotle's firm views on the cosmos and natural laws, which seemed to call into question the unlimited power of God, did not at first delight the Church. It was repeatedly prohibited to teach his texts at the University of Paris. But then St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), who taught at the University of Paris, united the Scriptures and classical ideas. The result was the unique medieval cosmology that held in its paradigmatic grip both the scholar and the layman. This doctrine included God and Man, Heaven and Earth, and made the physics and cosmology of Aristotle the official truth taught in schools and universities. The universe of spheres no longer clashed with the dogma of the Catholic Church. God had made the fixed Earth, and all the rest revolved around Man, sinful, but still the center of Creation.

Galileo Adopts Copernicanism

1592, received an appointment as professor of mathematics at the University of Padua, Italy, adequately boosting his income. His duties at Padua were to teach Euclidian geometry and the Ptolemaic Earth-centered system of astronomy. Astronomy was important for students, especially medical students, to be able to keep a calendar and to be able to use astrology in daily medical practices. The Ptolemaic system annoyed Galileo, as it had Copernicus. By this time, Galileo had studied and accepted Copernicus's theories of a Sun-centered model of the solar system, yet aside from a personal letter he sent in 1598 to a friend, the German astronomer Johannes Kepler, declaring his support of Copernicanism, he kept his views to himself. To go against the accepted system of astronomy was to go against the doctrine of the Catholic Church. He did not want to be branded as a heretic. Then, too, there was the public in general. Although it was the Renaissance, during which freethinking and new ideas...

Lunar and other calendars

Whit Sunday and Trinity Sunday there are secular holidays that depend on the date of Easter Sunday, which is defined as the Sunday following the first full Moon occurring on or after the 21st March. The first full Moon can occur from 0 to 28 days after the 21st March and the following Sunday can be from 1 to 7 days later. Consequently Easter Sunday can be on any of 35 dates from 22nd March to 25th April. Not all dates within this range are equally probable. Only one combination of delays (0 and 1) can produce the earliest date, and Easter Sunday has occurred on this date only once in the last 200 years. Similarly, only one combination (28 and 7) can produce the last date, and this has happened only twice in the same period. In contrast, any date in the range from 28th March to 19th April can be produced from seven alternative combinations, thereby increasing the probability of Easter occurring on any of these dates. All 23 of them have happened between five and eight times in the last...

Christianization of Pagan Festivals

Wherever a ruling elite seeks to impose or stimulate a change in the dominant religious beliefs of the populace, as when controlling a new population following a victory in war, they may tear down old places of worship and build different ones on the same sites, replace existing sacred myths and stories with ones that reflect the new ideology, and introduce novel rites and ceremonies in the hope of eliminating the existing ones. This is as true of the spread of Christianity as of any other religion. Throughout history, new Christian churches have been placed on the sites of pagan temples. This process is particularly evident in the Republic of Georgia, where the conversion to Christianity occurred as early as the fourth century C.E., and archaeologists excavating under early churches are wont to discover pre-Christian temples built several centuries earlier. Where indigenous religious festivals were timed in relation to the calendar, or tied to particular astronomical observations, it...

Or Where There Is No Center

In 1591, Bruno made the fateful decision to return to his native Italy, invited by a young aristocrat who seemed to be eager to learn philosophy, but instead had a shallow hunger for exotics. The disillusioned pupil led Bruno into the hands of the Inquisition. He was arrested and accused of heresy he had not only claimed that the prevailing view on the universe was erroneous, but more importantly, he viewed God as a pantheistic spirit (roughly meaning that nature and God are the same) and he denied such central doctrines of the Church as transubstantiation and Immaculate Conception. After 7 years in prison, Bruno was burned at the stake in Rome, at the Square of Flowers (Campo dei Fiori) in February 1600.

Galileo Is Condemned as a Heretic

In 1632, Galileo published The Dialogue without full permission from the Catholic Church in Rome, which so far had approved only the preface and ending. It was not long afterward that Pope Urban VIII banned it from sale due to its support of Copernicanism. Galileo was called before the Inquisition in Rome, but did not appear at Rome until 1633, after attempting to recover from an illness. The church isolated him in an apartment and interrogated him for 18 days. On April 30, ill and tired of the fight, Galileo confessed that he might have made too strong a case for Copernicanism in The Dialogue and offered to counter it in his next book. Threatening him with torture, the Inquisition sentenced Galileo to life under house arrest for breaching the conditions of the 1616 Inquisition concerning the church's official position on the denouncement of the Copernican theory. In 1637, he lost all sight in his right eye from viewing the Sun through his telescope, and by 1638, the year Discourses...

Years Under the Italian

After 3 years in Krakow, Copernicus continued his studies in Italy where he spent a few years at the University of Bologna learning canon law (and also Greek and astronomy). In 1501, he returned to his job in Frauenburg (today's Frombork in Poland) as a church administrator, but soon he headed back to Italy, this time to study medicine at the University of Padua. Copernicus finally received his Doctor of Law degree from the University of Ferrara. When he returned to his home country in 1506, at the age of 33, he had been in Italy for 9 years and was a Renaissance man trained in many fields. This peaceful and rather timid servant of the Catholic Church was also decisive and hardworking, writing on various topics, even monetary reform. He also gave medical consultations till the end of his life. However, behind the public face there was ticking a scientific time bomb. It gradually became known outside of Frauenburg, even in nonastronomical circles, that the Canon of Frauenburg had the...

The screening process

''I was, and am, lucky in the extreme that I grew up as the older of two boys in a very caring and supportive family. Dave is my only sibling and we have always been the best of friends. My mother was the daughter of the Methodist minister in Green-castle. The Methodist church sits directly across from the office of the president of DePauw and it is an important church to the university, originally associated directly with the Methodist church. My mother and father encouraged us to pursue any discipline which intrigued us, including studies of any kind, hobbies, sports

The Copernican Principle

De Revolutionibus was not exactly a best seller, and it did not immediately attract much attention. Some enthusiasm was shown by those mathematicians able to go through the difficult text. The Catholic Church was first rather indifferent, perhaps partly due to Osiander's preface, and as we saw some of its officials had supported publishing the new theory. The Orthodox Church did not regard the movements of the physical Earth to be relevant at all. Initial protests came instead from the Lutherans. It took seven decades from the publication of De Revolutionibus for the Holy Office to take action in 1616. During that remarkable period, many things happened. Thomas Digges and Giordano Bruno lived and died. Tycho Brahe, Johann Kepler, and Galileo Galilei founded a new astronomy and experimental physics. The telescope was invented. Even the sky seemed to celebrate the Copernican Revolution. The influential comet of 1577 and two supernovae (the last ones observed in historical times in our...

Weighing Up The Theories

Originally, the Catholic Church had welcomed Copernicus's work (pp.18-19). However, by 1563 the Church was becoming increasingly strict and abandoned its previously lax attitude toward any deviation from established doctrine. Pope Urban VIII was one of the many caught in this swing. As a cardinal, he had been friendly with Galileo and often had Galileo's book, Il Saggiatore, read to him aloud at meals. In 1635, however, he authorized the Grand Inquisition to investigate Galileo. In 1611, Galileo traveled to Rome to discuss his findings about the Sun and its position in the universe with the leaders of the Church. They accepted his discoveries, but not the theory that underpinned them the Copernican, heliocentric universe (pp.18-19). Galileo was accused of heresy and, in 1635, condemned for disobedience and sentenced to house arrest until his death in 1642. He was pardoned in 1992. It is believed that the first real telescope was invented in 1608 in Holland by the spectacle-maker Hans...

Predictions for the Century

Approximately every two thousand years, our planet comes under the influence of a new zodiacal sign. January twelve, 1996 marks the entrance of Uranus (the future) into his own sign of Aquarius (New Age). We slowly begin to explore the possibility of a new consciousness and uncover both the strength and danger of this incredible upcoming age. This liberal sign follows nebulous Pisces. Over the last twenty years, Uranus (the awakened) has advocated more discoveries than have been made during the last 2000 years spent under the illusive power of Neptune (ruler of Pisces). Pisces is the last sign of the Zodiac, and traditionally, it rules the twelfth house. This area governs restriction, sorrow, imprisonment, psychological trouble and secret enemies as well as creativity, dance, high forms of music and works of art. Enclosed and confined places such as asylums, hospitals, churches, prisons, movie theaters, concert halls and theme parks are Neptune's legacy. It is also a mute energy it...

The Case for Finalism in Science

Brandmuller, Galilei e la Chiesa Ossia il diritto ad errare (Galileo and the church The right to make mistakes) (Vatican City Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 1992). A paradoxical but suggestive analysis of the reasons which led to Galileo's condemnation has been given by P. K. Feyerabend, Galileo and the Tyranny of Truth, in The Galileo Affair A Meeting of Truth and Science, ed. G. V. Coyne, M. Heller, and J. Zicinski (Vatican City Specola Vaticana, 1985).

The Capital Eclipse Of 1715

Nowadays any eclipse is gazetted well in advance, so that amateur and professional observers alike are well prepared, but that was not the case in Halley's era. He wrote to a wide variety of potential observers. From the rectors of village churches and the like he received a flood of useful information, allowing him to determine the path of totality with admirable accuracy. Not only that, but the comparative timings for the duration of the eclipse were very useful check readings, as these would be longest near the central line, dropping to zero at the edges of the path, and the duration would also vary along the track due to the Earth's curvature. Be that as it may, what Halley really needed was not lots of observations from just one place, but rather information from a wide geographical scatter. That way he would be able to determine the width of the ground track. If some curate standing in his churchyard saw a brief instant of totality, and yet the verger sent to the crossroads in...

Historical Background

Nevertheless, about 600 years ago, in the latter part of the fourteenth century, a few individuals suggested that there were some logical difficulties with the concept of the Earth-centered universe. For one thing, if the daily rotation of the stars was due to the rotation of the celestial sphere, then because of its huge size, the many stars on the surface of the celestial sphere would be moving at speeds that seemed impossibly high. It seemed just as reasonable to assume that only the small Earth was spinning, and the daily rotation was simply an optical illusion reflecting the relative motion. Some time later there was a suggestion that an Infinite Creator of the universe would have made it infinite in both time and space, and therefore any place could be chosen as its center. These were only speculations, however, and no one undertook the necessary detailed calculations to support such suggestions, until the sixteenth century, when a minor Church official at the Cathedral of...

Fighting on Two Fronts

In 1616, the doctrine of the Earth's motion was declared absurd and heretical by the Catholic Church. In fact, this was a result of a complex chain of events, with jealous lay professors, disputes between the fiery-natured Galileo and university officials, and a plan to draw Galileo into controversy about the world system and the statements in the Bible. As a result, the book of Copernicus and another book were suspended until they are corrected. 1

Urban Imitation of TNorth

On arriving in the city, you catch sight of a yellow church on the top of a bulky hill, in the distance. Except that this is not a hill but rather a pyramid, constructed from sun-dried mud bricks. It is the largest pyramid ever constructed by humans in all history, the biggest object that humans have ever created 62 meters high and 460 meters wide at its base, the pyramid has a volume estimated at over three million cubic meters, which makes it bigger than the Great Pyramid at Giza (which has a volume of about 2,200,000 cubic meters). The structure was built over many centuries, in various stages. We know about the stages because of a series of galleries that have been excavated by archaeologists on the sides of the hill, thus allowing its evolution to be studied. The first stage was the construction of a pyramid with a virtually square base (107 by 113 meters), about 43 meters high. The style of this structure was similar to that of the temple of Quetzalcoatl at Teotihuacan. The...

Lightning Protection for Apollo Launch Operations

* In the early 1960s experts disagreed about the generation and incidence of lightning and about its behavior and effects. The cone-of-protection theory held that all strokes would terminate on a tall structure in preference to a shorter structure located within the conical volume whose apex was the height of the tallest structure and whose base radius was equal to the apex height. Evidence from lightning strikes on skyscrapers and church steeples indicated the theory applied to the top half of the cone the disagreement concerned the protection provided to the lower half.

A historical interlude James Clerk Maxwell 18311879

He brought a relaxed attitude towards the strict Cambridge traditions. When told that there would be compulsory church service at 6 a.m., his reaction was typical 'Aye, I suppose I could stay up that late.' He spent one term at Peterhouse College and then moved to Trinity College, the largest and most liberal of the colleges.

Great Balls of Gas The Outer Planets

If you've ever been outside late at night looking to the south, chances are you've already seen the largest planet in the solar system, Jupiter. You may have thought that it was just a bright star, and that is exactly what the ancients thought, except that they realized it moved in a way unlike the other stars. Imagine Galileo's surprise, then, in 1610, when he pointed a telescope at the planet and saw its surface and four smaller bodies orbiting it. His discovery would cause a good deal of upheaval in the way humans viewed themselves in the universe, and Galileo himself would end up in trouble with the Church. All this because of that wandering star in the sky.

Introduction to Cosmology

In about 280 B.C., Aristarchus offered a model that the planets, including Earth, revolved in circular orbits around the sun, which is a vastly simpler model than that of Eudoxus and Aristotle. However his views were eclipsed by Aristotle's fame. The other Greek philosophers of his time were reluctant to explore the implications of the theory of planetary motions implicit in Aristarchus's heliocentric theory. Some five centuries later, the Greek philosopher Ptolemy, who lived in Alexandria during the second century A.D., introduced a geocentric cosmology, which was adopted later by the Roman Catholic Church as an article of faith. Thus the Ptolemaic theory was not seriously challenged for 1,400 years. The destruction brought about by the barbarian hordes in the sixth century devastated the Roman Empire, and the fruits of Greek learning were swept aside. The dark Middle Ages commenced, and scientific progress was set back a thousand years or more.

The Spaceports Impact on the Local Communities

In community involvement, the churches and PTAs led the way. Recreational and hobby clubs grew faster than economic and service-related institutions. Not surprisingly, women tended to involve themselves more in community participation than men. Melbourne, Cocoa, and Cocoa Beach developed active theatre and musical groups, including the Brevard Light Opera Association in Melbourne and the Brevard Civic Symphony in Cocoa. The Surfside Players at Cocoa Beach presented six plays a year.38 Recreationally, Titusville suffered in a way the more southerly areas did not. Its nearest beach, the rough but challenging Playalinda, was so close to the new launching pads that it would remain closed during many months each year.

Reverend John Michell and the Idea of Black Holes

John Michell (1724-1793) was born in Nottinghamshire three years before Sir Isaac Newton's death. He studied at Queens' College of Cambridge University where he received an MA degree in 1752, and a BD (Bachelor of Divinity) in 1761. In the same year he was elected Fellow of the Royal Society, and briefly held the Woodwardian Chair of Geology at Cambridge. Shortly thereafter he was appointed rector of St. Michael's Church of Thorn-hill, near Leeds, Yorkshire, England, a post he held for the rest of his life. Reverend John Michell died there in 1793 at age 68.

Dialogues Concerning the Two Chief World Systems

Somehow Galileo managed to get the manuscript of the book approved by the ecclesiastical censors, and it was printed in 1632. Unfortunately, he had many enemies in high places, and they were quick to point out the true intent and implications of the book. In addition, it was asserted that Galileo intended to ridicule the highest officials of the Church. A few months later, the book was banned and all remaining copies were ordered destroyed. Galileo was called to trial before the Inquisition and, under threat of torture, compelled to repudiate his advocacy of Copernican doctrine. Perhaps because of his advanced age, poor health, and submission to the will of the Inquisition, his punishment was relatively light house arrest and forced retirement. He died nine years later in 1642, shortly before his seventy-eighth birthday. He no longer advocated the Copernican system, but devoted his time to writing another book, Discourses on Two New Sciences, in which he detailed the results of his...

Massive molecular outflows an evolutionary scenario

In contrast to low-mass outflows, there is no general census for the understanding of massive molecular outflows. For recent reviews on different aspects of massive molecular outflows see Bachiller and Tafalla, 1999 Church-well, 1999 Richer et al., 2000 Shu et al., 2000 Konigl and Pudritz, 2000 Shepherd, 2003 Beuther, 2004.

Arrival at Mount Wilson

In April 1914, on his way from Princeton, New Jersey to Pasadena, California and the Mount Wilson Observatory, Shapley stopped in Kansas City, Missouri. His fiancee Martha Betz had arrived earlier from Bryn Mawr, and was waiting for him at her parents' home. They were married at her home by Dr. George Hamilton Combs, a well-known pastor in the Disciples of Christ church in Kansas.21 After the wedding they boarded a train for California. Shapley recollected, ''It was a long trip, but I had some nice observations with me, and we worked on the orbits of eclipsing binaries on the honeymoon. Mrs. Shapley was very quick at computing, so we enjoyed ourselves for a couple of days.''22

Galileo Science and Religion

Galileo's support of Copernican astronomy culminated in a clash with church authorities so dramatic that it is the foundation of the most widely held stereotype regarding the relationship between science and religion automatic antagonism and unavoidable war. The conflict between Galileo and the Catholic Church, however, was far from inevitable. They were eager to enlist the Church on their side. Galileo complained that they hurled various charges and published numerous writings filled with vain arguments, and they made the grave mistake of sprinkling these with passages taken from places in the Bible which they had failed to understand properly . . . (Drake, Discoveries, 176). They had resolved to fabricate a shield for their fallacies out of the mantle of pretended religion and the authority of the Bible (Drake, Discoveries, 177). A few individual priests were induced to charge that the motion of the Earth was contrary to the Bible. At around the same time, a church official remarked...

Newtonian Mechanics And Causality

Because Aristotelian physics has been largely discarded, there is a tendency to underestimate the importance of Aristotle's contributions to science. His work represents the first successful description of the physical universe in terms of logical arguments based on a few simple and plausible assumptions. That his system was reasonable, and nicely self-consistent, is testified to by the fact that for nearly 2000 years it was generally regarded as the correct description of the universe by the Western civilized world. His physics was accepted by the Catholic Church as dogma. (Aristotle's physics was still being taught in certain Catholic schools and even in some Islamic universities in the twentieth century.) With the fall of the Roman Empire and the beginning of the dark ages in Europe, and in particular with the destruction of the library and scholarly center in Alexandria, essentially all scientific progress ended. Some work, especially in astronomy and in optics, was carried on by...

The Copernican Revolution

In 1543 a Polish church official turned astronomer, Nicholas Copernicus, upset the cosmic applecart. His book De Revolutionibus Orbium Coeles-tium (On the revolution of celestial spheres), published as he lay on his deathbed, boldly suggested that Earth was not the center of the universe rather, the planet moved around the Sun just like the other planets. Coper-nican cosmology proposed a Sun-centered (heliocentric) universe and overturned two millennia of Greek astronomy. Church officials became very uncomfortable with Copernicus's book, but nothing really happened scientifically with its important message until the marriage of the telescope and astronomy in 1610. Even the brilliant naked-eye astronomer Tycho Brahe died a staunch advocate of geocentric cosmology, albeit his own refashioned version of the Ptolemaic system.

The Planets in History

Although late classical and early Christian sky observers could not prove either the geocentric or heliocentric models, the geocentric cosmogony was favored by the Catholic Church. and the satellites of Jupiter helped sway the astronomical jury (although not the Catholic Church) toward acceptance of Kepler's version of the heliocentric model. Born the year that Galileo died, the British mathematician Isaac Newton (1642-1727) developed the basis of modern physics. Newtonian mechanics and gravity theory successfully explained the elliptical motions of the planets.

Supernova remnants and a bright crab

The archetypal Crab nebula results from the second type of supernova, for it encloses a neutron star at its heart, the corpse of an exploded star that can now be admired as a pulsar. Of all supernova remnants, the Crab nebula is the best known, located in the constellation of Taurus. The brightening that followed the explosion was observed by Chinese star-spotters on 4 July 1054, whilst in Europe, the schism was tearing the Church apart. Today, almost a thousand years after the signs of the cataclysm reached Earth (the explosion itself took place 6500 years before that, since the Crab nebula is located 6500 light-years away), the nebula resulting from the explosion is moving out from its centre at a speed of 1500 km s-1 and shines as brightly as 80000 suns. Most of the radiation is emitted in synchrotron form. This particular kind of radiation is produced when high-energy electrons are trapped inside magnetic fields, as we said earlier.

The King of the Gods the Failure of a Star

When Galileo turned his first primitive telescope on Jupiter, it was not the planet itself though that rocked his world and in fact the entire civilized world. Galileo discovered that Jupiter had companions, four of them. At first Galileo thought that the objects were background stars but after several nights he realized that they were moving around Jupiter. The discovery was astounding because it was the first evidence that not everything in the universe circled Earth. This was an enormous boost to the Copernican theory that the Sun was the center of the solar system and not Earth. Galileo so stated in his 1610 paper Sidereus Nuncius and the motion of the moons of Jupiter were his proof. In 1615, Galileo was summoned by Pope Paul V to appear before the Inquisition. Here none other than Robert Cardinal Bellarmine, considered the most knowledgeable theologian ever produced by the Catholic Church, interrogated him. Though the match was of two of the finest minds of the seventeenth...

The society of the spect acle

Lefebvre traces the evolution of produced space from a naturally social body-space, through the development of settlements and cities as images (spaces of representation, e.g., the Lascaux caves, sites of artistic expression), and on to images as cities (representations of spaces, e.g., the Roman pantheon ofthe gods, Christian churches). His history of produced space arrives at the production of a fragmented postmodern abstract space, where the image of space has all but taken over in the form of the spectacular space that continues to further exclude the body. Essentially taking a Situationist perspective, like Guy Debord, Lefebvre calls for a realisation of the difficulty of living in this kind of space, by focusing on understanding how this space is produced, and how we live in it. The Situationists make us understand how to reclaim that space by reappropriation through acts of d tournement and d rive.

Scenario for massive star formation

Since the low mass population that constitutes the embedded clusters are already visible at 2 m, the low mass stars must have crossed the Class 0-I phases of evolution and are most likely in Class II-III or PMS stages. In comparision, the massive protostars are passing through a phase like the Class 0 or I as evidenced, for example, by their association with massive outflows (Beuther et al. 2002b Shepherd & Church-well 1996). The observations indicate that in these clusters the low mass stars have already formed or are at the end of their formation phases while the high mass stars are still in their initial stages. Since low mass star formation lasts for approximately 106 yrs while massive star formation, lasts perhaps for only 105yrs, the observational finding of embedded clusters visible at 2 m around candidate massive protostars shows that massive star formation in the clusters begins at least one-half to one Myrs after the first low mass stars...

Intelligent Design An Astronomical Perspective

Linking religious belief to any temporary stage of advancing scientific knowledge is likely to prove hazardous to religion. As early as the fourth century a.d., Saint Augustine counseled that no scientific doctrine should ever be made an article of faith, lest some better-informed heretic might exploit misguided adherence to the doctrine to impugn the credibility of proper articles of faith. In Galileo's time, a church official remarked that the Bible tells us how to go to heaven, not how the heavens go. Galileo, himself, cited Augustnine's advice in urging the Church not to condemn Copernican theory, especially while new evidence from the telescope was still coming in. Only an unfortunate concatenation of circumstances culminated in the clash between Galileo and Catholic authorities. It was far from inevitable. Aristotelian philosophers in Italian universities succeeded in bringing the Church into battle on their side against Galileo, whose science, he realized, was in contradiction...

The Mystery Of Whitby

The picturesque little fishing port of Whitby stands on the northeast coast of England, about 200 miles due north of London. Whitby owes its historical significance largely to the ruined abbey that stood there for centuries, having been founded in A.D. 658. Six years later, with the Abbess Hilda overseeing the hospitality for her guests, a great synod was hosted in Whitby, a meeting of ecclesiastical authorities that was in effect to decide the future of the Christian Church throughout the British Isles. The Synod of Whitby in A.D. 664 has, over the intervening 13 centuries, achieved not only considerable significance in Church history, but also a popular reputation as a mysterious affair. For example, in Absolution by Murder A Sister Fidelma Mystery, author Peter Tremayne sets his fictional thriller against the factual backdrop of the synod. As the jacket blurb for this 1994 novel explains, When the Abbess Etain, a leading speaker for the Celtic Church, is found murdered suspicion...

The Significance Of Easter

One of the great sources of schism in the early Christian churches was argument over the calculation of the date of Easter. This is called the computus. In principle its statement in the present epoch is easy in any year Easter is the first Sunday after the full moon occurring next after the spring equinox. The much-misunderstood problem is that the full moon and the equinox referred to in that statement are not defined by the Moon and the Sun in the sky, but rather by theoretical constructs invented for ecclesiastical usage. The equinox for Church purposes is stipulated to be the whole of March 21, whereas the astronomically defined instant of the equinox when the Sun crosses the celestial equator varies over a 53-hour range from March 19 The above is the contemporary position, stemming from the reform of the calendar promulgated by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582. That reform resulted in an Easter computus now used throughout the Western (Catholic and Protestant) churches, but not by most...

The Situation In Northern Britain

After the withdrawal of Roman governance and the incursions by numerous barbarian bands, various pagan religions were followed in England. Bordering on Scotland, Northumbria under King Oswald had become an adherent to the Celtic Church from about 633 onwards. In 642, though, King Penda of the more-southerly Mercians defeated Oswald in battle, and promptly dismembered him. The latter's followers collected various parts of his body and distributed them to several churches (his head went to Lindisfarne and is now in Durham), leading to a cult of Oswald and eventually A new king, named Oswy or Oswiu, then seized the throne, and the region reverted to Christianity, in particular the Celtic Church. To the south, Mercia also became Christian. Previously there had been a pagan buffer zone between the spread of Celtic influence in Scotland and that of the Roman Church much further south, but now that buffer was gone and internecine confrontation was inevitable as each church vied with the...

The Eclipse Of Ad 664

As a matter of fact Oswy was a bloodstained monarch who had carried out many unchristian acts, including the murder of his cousin Oswin. Oswy had then founded various abbeys in the north of England not so much out of goodwill, but more as an act of expiation. There were already monasteries at York, Ripon, Lastingham, and Lindisfarne. In association with the last of those Oswy had built new establishments at Hartlepool and Gilling, plus Whitby as has already been mentioned, and another dozen abbeys in the region, all long-since lost in the mists of time. Each was administered as part of the Celtic Church until the synod led to their transfer to the Roman tradition. This was a major transitory step and following the synod the delegates of the Celtic Church, abashed and defeated, hastily beat a retreat to Iona, after a 30-year ascendancy in Northumbria. As aforementioned there is an extensive account of the actual debate at Whitby that has been handed down to us, but again we need to...

Signs Of The Apocalypse

By his own monastic establishments following the Celtic Church. At the southern limit to the path of totality was the ancient monastery of York. Along with Christian centers to the south, York had long since converted to the Roman Church. To Oswy, the message was clear God was telling him that the Celtic Church was the wrong sect to follow. The apparent sequence of terrifying eclipse, auroras, pestilence, and then the synod seems too unlikely to have occurred by chance. That is, in the atmosphere of dread following the eclipse, it appears that Oswy hurriedly called the Synod of Whitby in an effort to assuage the vengeance of God. Oswy must have thought that his own establishment of several new monasteries under the false doctrine of the Celtic Church had provoked divine anger. Under such circumstances the outcome of the synod would have been preordained, and the accounts of the proceedings largely a charade to provide a covering story. The role of the eclipse in this connection, the...

The Earth Turns Round

Galileo knew that all his discoveries were evidence in favor of the observations and views put forward by Copernicus. Cardinal Robert Bellarmine was the Church's most important figure at this time concerning interpretations of the Holy Scripture. He saw little reason for the Church to be concerned regarding the Copernican theory. The point at issue was whether Copernicus had simply put forward a mathematical theory that enabled the calculation of the positions of the heavenly bodies to be made more simply or whether he was proposing a physical reality. Bellarmine viewed the theory as an elegant mathematical one, which did not threaten the established Christian belief regarding the structure of the universe. to the hierarchy of the Roman church. Pope Paul V ordered Cardinal Bellarmine to have the Sacred Congregation of the Index decide on the Copernican theory. The cardinals of the Inquisition met in 1616 and took evidence from theological experts. They condemned the teachings of...

The compatibility between theism and the multiverse hypothesis

Of the reason for this seems to be historical and not intrinsic to the Western theistic conception of God. The highly influential late medieval theology, for instance, was self-consciously based on Aristotelean metaphysics. For Aristotle, however, space was defined in terms of the extension enclosed by a physical object - such as the medieval crystalline spheres in the case of our universe - which were conceived of as necessarily finite. Indeed, many felt that restricting God to creating one universe was contrary to the omnipotence of God. Only with the eventual questioning of Aristotle by thinkers such as Nicholas of Cusa and, later, Giordano Bruno did the positive suggestion emerge that space was infinite, with perhaps an infinity of worlds. Although Bruno was considered a heretic by the Roman Catholic Church at the time for a variety of reasons, he spoke for many theistic thinkers when he declared 7

Meanwhile at home

Webster Presbyterian Church, where her husband served as an elder. The church was packed, with folding chairs in place to accommodate the extra worshippers. As in Mission Control, the mood was tense. The Reverend Dean Woodruff began his sermon ''Today we witness the epitome of the creative ability of Man. And we, here in this place, are not only witnesses but also unique participants.'' Everyone knew that by the day's end Armstrong and Aldrin might well be dead. Pat Collins, her children and sister Ellie Golden, went to morning Mass at St Paul's Roman Catholic Church. Jan Armstrong remained at home and impatiently watched the clock. At noon some of the churchwomen delivered a cold luncheon to the Aldrin home, together with a cake that had been frosted with the Stars and Stripes and the words 'We came in peace for all mankind'. Woodruff arrived later, and remained for the powered descent.

Potential nontheistic explanations of beauty and elegance

The popular impression of long warfare between Church and science in which an ignorant institution fought to keep a fledgling science from escaping the Dark Ages is nonsense, little more than Victorian propaganda. The truth, which emerged only from the last twentieth century of scholarship, is almost entirely unknown among scientists the medieval Church was

Real versus fake universes

Worse still, there is no end to the hierarchy of levels in which worlds and designers can be embedded. If the Church-Turing thesis is accepted, then simulated systems are every bit as good as the original real universe at simulating their own conscious sub-systems, sub-sub-systems, and so on

The Genius Of William Herschel

William Herschel died on August 25,1822, at Observatory House in Slough and was buried in the nearby church of Saint Lawrence at Upton. He had been very weak for a long time, yet his death was unexpected. Interestingly, his lifetime of just under 84 years spanned almost precisely the time it takes the planet he discovered to orbit the Sun.

Breaking Up Is Hard to Do

Galileo published this discovery in March 1610 in a book, Sidereus Nuncius (Starry Messenger). The Catholic Church had long subscribed to the geocentric model, which supported the belief that God created the Earth as a special, unique place. The geocentric model also fit with the need of the normal human ego to be at the center of everything, regardless of religion. Galileo's observations delivered a stunning blow. The discovery of Jupiter's moons was doubted or ridiculed by many people, especially those who did not have telescopes to see for themselves. The book's publication also led to the beginning of Galileo's troubles with the Inquisition, which would dog him for the rest of his life. Sidereus Nuncius was listed in the Roman Catholic Church's Index of Banned Books from 1616 to 1822, which limited its readership, at least in the early days. In the same year, 1616, Coperni The concept of an infinite universe raised perplexing questions for the Church. A crucial one was Where is...

Newton Astrotheology and Galaxies

Eighteenth-century belief in the orderliness of the universe made determination of that order an important theological, philosophical, and scientific endeavor for astrotheologians. William Whiston, Newton's successor in the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at Cambridge University, from 1702 to 1710, when he was charged with heresy and dismissed from the university, argued that the system of the stars, the work of the Creator, had a beautiful proportion, even if frail man were ignorant of the order. And William Derham, an ordained priest in the Church of England, a vicar and royal chaplain, expressed a similar belief in his 1715 Astrotheology or, a Demonstration of the Being and Attributes of God, from a Survey of the Heavens.

Pict o Rial pRog Ress and visual cul tu Re

The use of linear perspective to create 3D images was one of the achievements of the Renaissance. One can see just how revolutionary the use of perspective was by comparing pre- and post-perspective paintings of the same churches in Italy. It is like comparing pictures drawn by children and adult artists. In retrospect, one wonders how people could have accepted two-dimensional representations of people and objects (Parsaye and Chignell, 1993, p. 204).

Northern And Southern Lights

FIG. 8.7 Aurora borealis Swirling walls and rays of shimmering green and red light are found in this portrayal of the fluorescent Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, painted in 1865 by the American artist Frederic Church (1826-1900). (Courtesy of the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, gift of Eleanor Blodgett.) FIG. 8.7 Aurora borealis Swirling walls and rays of shimmering green and red light are found in this portrayal of the fluorescent Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, painted in 1865 by the American artist Frederic Church (1826-1900). (Courtesy of the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, gift of Eleanor Blodgett.)

Book Nobody Understands

A more recent blow was the departure from Cambridge of John Wickins, Newton's roommate of twenty years. Wickins became minister of the parish church at Stoke Edith, married, and fathered a son named Nicholas. Though they had been through much together, the two friends would never meet again and exchanged no more than a letter or two in the coming years.

Physics History Legend And Folklore

Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543) is often credited with the beginning of modern astronomy (Figure 1.3). He was born in Poland, and studied mathematics and optics at Krakow University. After returning to Poland from several years' study of church law in Bologna, Italy, Copernicus was appointed as a priest in the cathedral of Frauenburg (now known as Frombork, in northern Poland), where the rest of his life was sheltered and devoted to scholarship. Copernicus died peacefully in 1543 and was never to know the upheaval that his work had caused within the Catholic Church. Other founders of modern astronomy, on the other hand, did not fare as well. It is also clear from Bruno's writing that he had the correct conception that these planets could not be seen because they were fainter (or less luminous) than their stars. To illustrate his point, he used a naval analogy. Suppose that we see a large ship docked at a nearby harbor, and it is surrounded by small boats. It is then a very reasonable...

Kepler And Physical Astronomy

Kepler learned about heliocentric astronomy at the University of Tubingen, where he studied first as a student in the faculty of arts and later as a clergyman in training in the faculty of theology. Tubingen was a leading center of Lutheran theology, and Kepler planned to pursue a career in the church. One of his professors in Tubingen was Michael Maestlin, a supporter of the Copernican system and a prominent astronomer in the last decades of the sixteenth century. From his first encounter with the Copernican system Kepler became an advocate for the new cosmology, about whose correctness he seems never to have had any doubts.

To Play Philosophically

Death as civil war spread and Christmas drew near. Its only inhabitants were a young widow named Hannah Newton and her servant. Hannah's husband Isaac, a yeoman, or prosperous farmer, had died in October at the age of thirty-six and was buried in the churchyard of the village of Colsterworth just across the river Witham, which was visible from the upstairs bedrooms. Isaac and Hannah had been married for only five months before he had taken ill. When he failed to get better, a lawyer was summoned and a will drawn up. Most of his possessions, including one hundred acres of land, the manor house, livestock, grain, and household furnishings, were left to Hannah. Like his father before him, Isaac Newton was unlettered, so he signed the document with the traditional X. 2 No mention was made of the unborn child Hannah was carrying. One week later, mother and child were driven to the family church at Colsterworth, where relatives and friends gathered to see the infant baptized. The pastor...

Memo of the 2004 Dragons Head and Tail Predictions Date of prediction 6703

Scorpio rules life and death, drama, reincarnation, sex corporate endeavors, the police force, the FBI, CIA, Mafia, insurance companies etc. Expect a complete restructure of all the above organizations where secrets will be exposed. Under Pluto's jurisdiction all that is hidden must come to the light. Very often as seen with the church sex scandals, all that is detrimental to the church Inc has been kept secret, but some of it came out into the open in 2002, 2003 and in 2004.

Deep Sky Observatory

Dome Forms Building

I have been an amateur astronomer for almost forty years, yet today I find the universe as mysterious and intriguing as I did during my childhood. I took my first astrophotographs at age twelve, in an attempt to prove to my school chums that I really could resolve the rings around Saturn, even though my instrument was a tiny refractor and my vantage point the roof of a parish church Since that time, I have constructed a number of observatories in locations all across Canada. Whenever I found myself between properties or fleeing light pollution, I ventured forth with mobile

A historical interlude Galileo Galilei 15641642

It was believed that the Ptolemaic system of a fixed earth at the centre of the universe was endorsed by the Bible with certain passages. One example is Joshua 10 12-14 'God caused the sun to stand still in response to Joshua's prayer'. The church authorities in Rome went so far as to condemn the works of Copernicus, stating that 'the doctrine that the earth moves around the sun and that the sun is at the centre of the universe, and does not move from east to west, is contrary to the Holy Scriptures, and cannot be defended or held'.

Plutos impact on Generations Past Present Future

EDINBORO, Pennsylvania -- Thousands gathered Tuesday to mourn a popular teacher who was shot to death in front of his students at a school dance. John Gillette, a 48-year-old science teacher and former football hero involved in numerous volunteer, church and business projects, was killed Friday when a 14-year-old student Andrew Wurst allegedly opened fire with a .25-caliber semiautomatic pistol. Students described him as a man who lived by a motto of Anything that is worth doing is worth giving your best. Several former students paid tribute to him at the service, one of them drawing small ripples of laughter when he told a humorous story about Gillette scolding him at football practice. However, the Rev. John Jacquel, a priest at Gillette's church, Our Lady of the Lake, had a more somber message for the mourners. Why didn't God do something to protect this man from dying He asked. Why did God let that happen It seems that faithfulness doesn't guarantee you safety or a trouble-free...

Copernicanism Deserves Support

Then, in 1614, a well-known preacher named Tommaso Caccini labeled Galileo a heretic, along with any other mathematician who dared to support the Copernican system. His sermon started rumors of a scandal. By the next year, Caccini was confident enough to offer an official declaration to the Roman Inquisition, which was an organization within the Catholic Church that was in Giordano Bruno (1548 1600) was an Italian astronomer who also embraced the Copernican theory of a heliocentric solar system. He openly disagreed with the Catholic Church's accepted Ptolemaic theory of a geocentric solar system and sought to teach Copernicanism. The church denounced him, and Bruno fled Italy, fearing punishment for his beliefs. For a few years, he taught abroad, but in 1592 he was located, arrested, and tried by the Roman Inquisition. After years spent in the courts, in 1600, Bruno who never abandoned his beliefs was burned at the stake in Rome. Bruno was made an example of the consequences to be...

Astronomy of Medieval Europe

Astronomical work in the Middle Ages centered mainly on its utility in setting the feast days of the Church, that is, the construction of church calenders, but the continuing interest in astrology also caused a demand for improved astronomical accuracy for horoscopes and astrological forecasts of a wider nature such practices were officially condemned but frequently and sometimes widely practiced. In fact, Tertullian 150 220 a.d. , one of the early Fathers of the Church, made use of an astrological argument, among other tactics, to attempt to alleviate persecutions of Christians. His letter to Scapula, the Roman governor, refers to the portents of the solar eclipse of August 14, 212 The calendrical uses for astronomy, which were rooted for millennia in Europe (refer to 6.2 for the Neolithic evidence), were pursued throughout the Middle Ages. The Ecumenical Council of Nicaea in 325 a.d. adopted a formula for the date of Easter.48 It was noted that the Vernal equinox had shifted from...

The Revolutionary Professor

With a bachelor's degree in hand and his status as a gentleman legally recorded, Newton returned to Cambridge and Trinity College to complete his master of arts. He now faced the fellowship elections of September and October 1667. If successful, he could extend his stay at Trinity indefinitely if not, he would likely be forced to choose between the life of an obscure gentleman farmer or the pastorship of a village church in rural Lincolnshire.

Galileos First Ideas About Telescopes

In early 1610, while sitting at his outside worktable in the evening, Galileo did something far more intriguing and prophetic with his telescope than simply taking another look at a distant church spire or sailing ship. He tilted one of his many lookers skyward and pulled up a chair for a more comfortable view. Staring into space, Galileo moved the cylinder around until he began spotting distant objects in the solar system. Stunned by the unexpected density of stars and planets, Galileo recorded the first fundamental discoveries about the solar system that could not be noted with the naked eye. Pointing the looker at the moon, he was dumbfounded to discover its surface texture

A strong educational discipline

Some time before his graduation, he had become interested in medical science, but it was certainly not his primary focus at that time. ''My entry into medicine was due entirely to a close friend, who explored medicine as a means of pursuing an interest in psychology and psychiatry. Sadly, I got into medical school easily and he did not.'' While his studies at Houston's Baylor University now occupied the better part of every week, Holmquest would always set aside some leisure time to pursue his favourite outside activities. ''Most of my close friends in my teens were from church rather than school. While I was not all that serious about religion, our church group was very close. It was my main outlet for athletics in that we had great baseball and basketball teams and lots of social events.''

Practical Amateur Astronomy Digital SLR Astrophotography

Michael Covington, an avid amateur astronomer since age 12, has degrees in linguistics from Cambridge and Yale Universities. He does research on computer processing of human languages at the University of Georgia, where his work won first prize in the IBM Supercomputing Competition in 1990. His current research and consulting areas include computers in psycholinguistics, natural language processing, logic programming, and microcontrollers. Although a computational linguist by profession, he is recognized as one of America's leading amateur astronomers and is highly regarded in the field. He is author of several books, including the highly acclaimed Astrophotography for the Amateur (1985, Second Edition 1999), Celestial Objects for Modern Telescopes (2002) and How to Use a Computerized Telescope (2002), which are all published by Cambridge University Press. The author's other pursuits include amateur radio, electronics, computers, ancient languages and literatures, philosophy,...

Refractors vs Reflectors

Now that you have made the decision to step up to a medium to large aperture telescope from your department store model, you need to consider the various types of optical designs and decide what best suits your needs. The telescope you own now is most likely a refractor. This design, also called a dioptric telescope, is based directly upon the original opera glass telescope designed by Galileo in 1610. That original telescope used a simple convex lens to gather and focus light and a concave lens at the opposite end of the tube to bring that light to a crude focus. The lens at the front of the scope is called the objective. In any telescope the objective is the lens or mirror element that gathers starlight and directs it to a focus point. With this simple design, Galileo discovered that Venus exhibited phases like the Moon and that Jupiter had satellites circling it. These discoveries led Galileo to realize that the geocentric model of the solar system was incorrect. Earth was not at...

Early development of astronomy First astronomers

Galileo Galilei (1564-1642, Fig. 4), a contemporary of Kepler and an Italian, carried out mechanical experiments and articulated the law of inertia which holds that the state of constant motion is as natural as that of a body at rest. He adopted the Copernican theory of the planets, and ran afoul of the church authorities who declared the theory to be false and absurd . His book, Dialog on the Two Great World Systems published in 1632, played a significant role in the acceptance of the Copernican view of the solar system. Galileo was the first to make extensive use of the telescope, beginning in 1609.

Observing Project 10B The Ballet of the Galilean Satellites

The discovery of Jupiter's four bright satellites was one of the most important in the history of science because it proved to be the deathblow to the idea that Earth was the center of the universe and that everything else circled it. The finding of four bodies circling Jupiter proved the Copernican theory that the Sun was as the center of the solar system. For daring to oppose the Church in his beliefs, Galileo was humiliated, disgraced, imprisoned and broken.

Privileged Childhood

In 1489 his uncle became the bishop of Ermland, which was the same as being its ruler. His uncle's high station was Nicholas's guarantee of a good education and bright future. In 1491, when Nicholas was 18, he traveled under the supervision of his uncle to the flourishing Polish city of Krakow to attend the University of Krakow. He looked forward to studying medicine, Latin, mathematics, astronomy, geography, philosophy, and, of course, church law, all subjects that would lead him toward a life of service to the church and a comfortable living for all of his days. Back then, as it is now, having a reliable income was no small thing.

Practical Rolloff Roof Observatory in Michigan USA

As it happens, my father is a carpenter. I told him my plans and showed him my model. I kinda knew he'd help He quickly drew up a list of materials. To keep snow off the roof, he suggested a 6 12 pitch roof. To maintain head clearance, he suggested using church trusses. With 12 ft (3.7 m) church trusses, the bottom 2 in x 4 in (50 mm x 100 mm) doesn't go straight across. Instead, two 6 ft (1.8 m) horizontal 2in x 4 in (50 mm x 100 mm) pieces connect to a vertical 2 ft 6 in (0.8 m) 2inx4in (50 mm x 100 mm), creating an interior 3 12 pitch. As soon as the snow melted, I contracted a bulldozer to clear and level the top of my hill. My dad ordered the trusses, custom made, from the local lumber company. One regular 12 ft (3.7 m) truss (for the northern gable), and three of the 12 ft (3.7 m) church trusses. Meanwhile, I ordered four 16 ft (4.9m) sections of 1 inx in (44mmx19mm) aluminum channel from a local sheet metal shop. The church trusses make the inside look like a cathedral (see...

Elliptic and circular orbits 0 e

The ellipse is the general form of a closed orbit and is shown in Figure 4.5. The major axis is called the line of apsides, recalling that half an ellipse is shaped like the apse of a church. The angle 0 is termed the true anomaly. The dimensions are related and may be expressed in terms of the physical constants h and e. For example,

Colin Burgess

One of those swept up in contemporary office politics was Dr. Duane Graveline, who had been selected in the first scientist-astronaut group in 1965. Former NASA physician, Dr. Fred Kelly, once described Graveline as a man I considered head and shoulders above all the other scientist-astronaut selectees,'' yet he ignominiously fell victim to NASA policies of that era, when his wife sued for divorce following his selection. A media-sensitive NASA dragged him back to Houston from the beginning of his flight training and showed him the door. Although several pilot-astronauts' marriages were on the rocks, these men were America's new Cold War heroes, and they were portrayed by the popular press as impeccable, All-American, church-going family men, with lives untainted by controversy. Everyone knew that any hint of divorce would see an end to their astronaut career. It's the way things were at the time, and Graveline became the first victim of this career-ending policy. He was a shattered...

Nicholas Copernicus

In civilized history when the Catholic Church governed much of Europe, and to suggest possibilities beyond what was accepted by the church as a known truth, such as the Ptolemaic model of the solar system, was considered heresy equivalent to denouncing God. The times, however, were changing. Ideas were beginning to be questioned. The Middle Ages were over, and Europe was in the middle of a social change called the Renaissance. Freethinking and deviation from the accepted scientific truths dictated by the early philosophers and upheld by the Catholic Church were slowly changing society. As an astronomical mathematician, Copernicus was chief among these revolutionary thinkers.

Night Falls

A love of elegant simplicity also characterized the classical world, but Ptolemy's era was already falling away from classical elegance and toward the cobwebbed mysteries that so appealed to people in the Dark Ages, when complexity and obscurity, not simplicity and clarity, were taken as the hallmarks of truth. Besides, Ptolemy's model, while highly imperfect, agreed pretty well with actual observation it kept Aristotle safely on his pedestal, and it let humankind stay right where the Church said that God had intended at the center of everything.

What Is a Signal

Signals convey information that you want to listen to, look at, measure, or act on. A semaphore flag, the voice on a telephone, television pictures, and the pixel values in a CCD image are all signals. Each of these signals encodes data that you interpret as information, something meaningful. Two lanterns in the church tower were a meaningful signal to Paul Revere the photons striking the pixels in your CCD camera is a meaningful signal to you.

Solar calendars

Had challenged the authority of the Pope earlier in the 16th century for a variety of reasons, and the movement known as the Reformation had altered the religious landscape of northern Europe. Countries in which Protestant churches were dominant demonstrated their independence from the Vatican by retaining the Julian calendar for many more years. In Switzerland the adoption of the Gregorian calendar was a localized, gradual and prolonged process, canton by canton. Great Britain and its overseas territories did not adopt the Gregorian calendar until 1752. By that time the required adjustment had grown to eleven days, and so 2nd September was followed immediately by the 14th, provoking protests from people who believed that their lives had been shortened by the manoeuvre. The authorities took a more realistic view and required convicted prisoners to serve the full number of days implied by their original sentence. Sweden adopted the new system in 1753 and the Lutheran states in what...

Galileos Findings

He viewed this as undeniable proof that the planets orbited the sun and that Earth was not the center of the universe. Confident in his newfound knowledge, he began to argue publicly in favor of Copernicus's theory, which was still considered a contradiction of biblical teachings. Even though many years had passed since Copernicus's book had shocked and angered the church, any Catholic who supported his theories was in danger of persecution. As a result of his controversial views, Galileo was accused of being a heretic and put on trial. Much to his relief, he was declared innocent and received only a strong warning not to teach Copernican theory. Yet even threats from the church could not stop Galileo from continuing to observe the skies with his telescope. In 1632 he published Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, a book that clearly stated his theory that the universe was not Earth centered. The book infuriated the church, and Galileo was again condemned for...

The First Telescope

Lenses that he had shaped and polished for spectacles. By holding one lens close to one eye and the other at arm's length, he inadvertently peered through them in the direction of a distant church steeple. Initially everything was a blur, but the apprentice fiddled with the lenses, changing the distance between them by moving his arm until the image of the church steeple miraculously snapped into focus. Stunned by the sudden clarity of the steeple, the young man stumbled backward by the shock of suddenly seeing it closer than it had been without the lenses. Calling excitedly to his master, the apprentice handed the two lenses to Lippershey, who looked for himself and immediately recognized the significance of the discovery.

Aristotles Legacy

Aristotle's whole approach to studying nature fitted in neatly with Occidental theology. The idea that every organism was beautifully crafted for a particular function-its final cause, as Aristotle called it-in the grand scheme of nature pointed to the conclusion that the world had been designed. Also, Aristotle was deeply interested in the concept of nous, or eternal intelligence, and this, too, made his work readily acceptable to the Church of the middle ages. Even his chauvinist views weren't out of line with male-dominated orthodox theology. Full excellence, he insisted, could be realized only by the mature male adult of the upper class, not by women, children, barbarians (non-Greeks), or salaried mechanics (manual workers). Some of his other silly ideas, such as that women had fewer teeth than men and that a baby's sex was determined by the wind's direction at the time of its birth, could be safely swept under the philosophical carpet. Backed by the...


Named in memory of Lado Gudiachvili (1896-1980), a great painter and a dear friend of the discoverer. Born in Ducheti, Georgia, he studied in Tbilisi, and after a period in Paris (1919-1927), he returned to his native country, where he remained the rest of his life. He early developed a very personal style, to some extent influenced by early church frescoes. His persistent affection for beauty in all its aspects and his uncompromising pursuit of poetic and sometimes fantastic expressions was only fully recognized at a later time. His drawings and paintings are frequently of a philosophical or allegorical nature, and many are connected with the turbulent history of Georgia. He is one of the founders of twentieth-century Georgian art and became a national legend during his lifetime. (M 6835)

Need To Know

What do I mean when I say this is our origin story Just whom am I referring to A bunch of males who are not only dead but white Is this story accepted and embraced by everyone Of course not. But our knowledge of Cosmic Evolution is not in conflict with the core beliefs of most of the religions, and it certainly isn't necessary to discard or discredit older origin stories to embrace this new one. Even if you go to church, temple, or ashram for the singing and the dancing (that's the part I like), for the comfort of spiritual community, or to receive ancient wisdom, you probably accept that science has clued us in to some big truths about our origins that the writers of our ancient texts could not have known. Except for some Rastas I used to play with in a reggae band, and some Jehovah's Witnesses who've knocked on my door, I haven't met many people who take a seven-day Genesis literally.

Medieval Cosmology

In AD 312, Constantine the Great embraced Christianity which became the officially sanctioned faith in the Empire. The Church was, during its first centuries of existence, either indifferent to or even against science. There were extremists who opposed classical culture and attacked the Alexandrian library and those working there, murdering the mathematician Hypatia in AD 415. Among other works, she is thought to have assisted her father Theon with a commentary on the Almagest. Many scholars found it safer to go to the Academy in Athens and to Constantinople, the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire. When the library was destroyed and who did it is controversial, partly because there was a main library and an annex in a temple to Serapis in a different part of the city. The Roman historian Plutarch says a city fire started during an attack by Julius Caesar in 48 BC burned the main library. Another possibility is an attack on the city by the emperor Aurelian in the third century AD....

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