Debate on Geocentrism

Quoting my opponent Esteban Maradona (possibly not the football player but a fan?):

I’d think the following statement is worded fairly, and is probably narrow enough: “Geocentrism can and should be considered a physical reality, not heliocentrism.” I’m obviously arguing against the statement, and you are arguing in favor. I’d also like to point out that I’m not going to expect hardcore quotes, references, etc., just straightforward logic… almost like the Socratic method.

I had already answered an original less specific wording with:

To begin, this post of mine:

http://assortedretorts.blogspot.com/2015/07/on-little-general-challenge-on.html

It is about [not identic with] one foolproof or supposedly such refutation of Geocentrism.*

I link to it* in post and the post also contains my comments.

+Esteban Maradona , if you were going to say Geocentrism means stars and galaxies moving at minimum 8760 times speed of light, I already just answered it.

We don’t know the distances to the stars by any sure empirical means.

See my link for more details, if you like.

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hglundahl

I might be attacking groups - if they see it as attacks. But not anonymously. My name is real, I was born in Vienna, I am Swedish. I did time, for resisting a policeman taking me to shrinks by taking his own gun for some moments (5-II-1998). I started blogging (2001) after release (in 2000).

48 thoughts on “Debate on Geocentrism”

  1. Fantastic, I’m glad we’ve been able to find something useful. I have no idea why G+ was giving us trouble… I use it daily.

    And yes, Diego is my dad’s cousin (he’s kind of a jerk, but the best soccer player nonetheless).

    Allow me to begin by introducing myself. I was born and grew up in St. Marys, Kansas, going to the SSPX Academy there, graduating from high school in 2005, followed by an Associates in Liberal Arts at St. Marys College. In 2010 I graduated with a Bachelor’s in Engineering from Kansas State University, thereupon moving to Boston working as an engineer for Raytheon, and have been since.

    Now to begin discussing the topic at hand: in an effort to establish a sort of baseline or common ground, allow me to state what should be fairly obvious from a philosophical/theological perspective: when God created the material universe, he made it intelligible — that is, the whole universe and all things in it are capable of potentially being grasped and understood. Furthermore, this means that any and all truths that pertain purely to the physical realm in God’s creation are attainable by human intelligence and reason alone, and with no necessity for God to reveal it to us. The distinction is important: it does not preclude the involvement of God’s Word, but it is not a necessity.

    The purpose of stressing this point is for us (and the audience) to understand that humans, by definition, have all necessary faculties to both make an objective statement of fact (such as “the temperature of this rock is exactly 78°F and it has a mass of 2.5 kg.,”) as well as fully capable of seeing another person state it and thereby reach the same result independently. It should also be obvious that the intelligibility of the Universe is unchanging through time: the laws governing nature today are the same as those yesterday, and tomorrow.

    This brings us to the word “science” — so terribly abused today. It is not a god, but a process. Specifically, it is a process by which man discovers, determines, and develops a deeper understanding of the Universe and all things within it, in such a way as to be able to reliably repeat the results of said process. I can therefore measure the weight and temperature of the rock, and be confident that I’ll be able to consistently and reliably measure that rock with a quantitative result.

    To conclude this beginning philosophical part, I stress that, from this point forward, all discussion can and should remain on purely empirical/scientific grounds, as the physical fact of “geo” or “helio” has no bearing on a philosophical nature, just as much as the density of water or the energies of chemical reactions do.I conclude my opening statement by saying that, thanks to reliable and consistent scientific means and measurements, we have been able to conclusively prove without any doubt that, in fact, the sun is a star like all others, around which several planets revolve, one of which is our planet, the Earth.

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    1. Oh, you are from SSPX? I could ALMOST tell, from the way you are shifty in discussions with Geocentrics, but that must pass. I was SSPX most of my time, including as a Geocentric at St Nicolas du Chardonnet and as being treated … well, let’s not get into that. Shall we say, YOU are the first SSPX since 2009 who has either offered to debate or to agree with me. And that offer is one of debate, and you start off with ten thousand cautionary requests. OK, 4. 3 of them placent juxta modum, 4th non placet.

      1) “when God created the material universe, he made it intelligible — that is, the whole universe and all things in it are capable of potentially being grasped and understood.”

      Definitely true.

      Note the word potentially. Some things are too small to be grasped by senses in any way (even aided by microscope) and therefore cannot by the intellect be grasped as given by senses as real. I finally understood, if Bouw is correctly representing PLanck, what Planck particles are, but I cannot understand THAT they are or that for instance Aristotelian unbroken continuum is not. Because that small is impossible to see. EVEN with electronic microscopy.

      2) “Furthermore, this means that any and all truths that pertain purely to the physical realm in God’s creation are attainable by human intelligence and reason alone, and with no necessity for God to reveal it to us.”

      God can tell us if there are Planck particles or Aristotelian continuum, I don’t think our reason can. Because it builds on the senses and PLanck particles are not in the senses. Aristotelian continuum is, but if Planck particles (as understood by Bouw) were true, this would look the same.

      3) “The purpose of stressing this point is for us (and the audience) to understand that humans, by definition, have all necessary faculties to both make an objective statement of fact (such as “the temperature of this rock is exactly 78°F and it has a mass of 2.5 kg.,”) as well as fully capable of seeing another person state it and thereby reach the same result independently.”

      Yes, if you can get around to actually put a thermometer on the rock. To follow your example.

      The purpose I have in stressing this condition is that MUCH of what passes for science involves measuring things indirectly by help of such and such a hypothesis indicating it should be possible to indirectly measure a thing – but if opposite hypothesis is true, those measures are moot. Also an observation among those used for indirect measuring can invalidate the hypothesis or a subhypothesis of it on which the values for the indirect measures are based.

      If I make a paralogism and someone else makes the same paralogism all around the world, because a logically irreproachable possibility has world wide been reputed as untrue on other grounds, this “independent” confirmation is valueless.

      Since you get back to the rock, do go and take a check on the rocks formed at Mount St Helen’s (by train/busrides or by internet). They give a very interesting light on measures by means of Ka-Ar dating, which elsewhere are used as a reliable scientific method.

      4) “To conclude this beginning philosophical part, I stress that, from this point forward, all discussion can and should remain on purely empirical/scientific grounds, as the physical fact of “geo” or “helio” has no bearing on a philosophical nature”

      Oh, they DO have a bearing on philosophy of metaphysics.

      A Geocentric universe is not possible to explain for a materialist.

      So, NO, I very much do NOT intend to keep discussion purely to scientific/empirical grounds, if by grounds you include “grounds for explanation”.

      THIS ON YOUR PRELIMINARIES.

      “I conclude my opening statement by saying that, thanks to reliable and consistent scientific means and measurements, we have been able to conclusively prove without any doubt that, in fact, the sun is a star like all others, around which several planets revolve, one of which is our planet, the Earth.”

      Well, I already knew this was your position and was waiting for an ARGUMENT!

      I take it you will NOT use as an argument “Geocentrism would imply closest equatorial stars spinning around earth each day 8760 times speed of light”, since I have already debunked THAT argument above!

      Or do you find a defense for these distance measures? (Make my day, if you like …)

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  2. 3 out of 4 is pretty good… I usually am incapable of even reaching this far with a geocentrist. In a debate, it’s important to establish the common ground, and thereby progress to the dichotomy.

    I have one question regarding your statement: “The purpose I have in stressing this condition is that MUCH of what passes for science involves measuring things indirectly by help of such and such a hypothesis indicating it should be possible to indirectly measure a thing – but if opposite hypothesis is true, those measures are moot.”

    I entirely leave up to you the option to kindly provide an example of this. I may infer that you believe there are common cases where observers today make assumptions regarding their observation method that cannot logically be made?

    Regarding the 4th point. I really do believe this is the ultimate root cause of your error.

    You adamantly hold that empirical data can and must be considered as false (or at best, misinterpreted) if you observe it to be misaligned in some way with another truth deemed to be “of a higher order” (e.g. Biblical, or even philosophical). This is in fact a gross insult to scholasticism and any pure search for knowledge and truth.

    If one observes something as occurring, and all instruments and methods of observation fall correctly into established physical phenomena, it is grossly imprudent to disregard — outright — all the data SIMPLY because it doesn’t fit a pre-established narrative. If one is REALLY AND TRULY pure in his search for knowledge and truth, he would rightfully dig further into the discrepancy with no bias. After all, it is obviously untrue that a process or method or instrument will inherently desire to mislead you and lie. If an error occurs, it is a human one. More importantly, the observed phenomena doesn’t “choose to take place” for an intelligent purpose (in other words, phenomena take place simply and only because it HAS to… regardless of the presence of a human with intent to interpret it).

    If you are to argue that an empirical outcome cannot be true, it is illogical — unacceptable, even — to resort to ideological argument to prove it false (moving forward I will use the word “ideological” to stand in place of “philosophical/theological/Biblical/et.al.) . In other words, due to the intelligibility of the Universe it MUST be possible to arrive at the truth with our own capacity and measurement. The burden of (dis)proof falls on you, using equally empirical means, to overthrow an empirically determined outcome.

    Moreover, to be quite honest, it is incorrect/imprudent to apply the same logical exactness to empirically defended hypotheses and physical truths as that which is expected and needed in ideology. I guess what I’m trying to say is that, due to the ever-lingering possibility of human sense error (which is absent in ideology), a physical reality will always be defended as “true” by means of what can be colloquially worded as “overwhelmingly evident.”

    I conclude this part by reiterating the immense importance of understanding the difference between how scientific hypotheses must be proven/disproven, as opposed to how ideological hypotheses are proven/disproven. Within empirical science, the words “theory,” “overwhelming evidence,” “conclusive proof,” “established theory,” etc DO NOT AND CANNOT be interchangeable with their use in an ideological context precisely because of sense error.

    Heliocentrism is exactly an example of a truth that has been proven *conclusively with overwhelming empirical evidence* ….. even more forcefully due to the fact that geocentrism (or any other theory) cannot even approach a similar level of empirical proof. I therefore resolutely state that geocentrism cannot possibly be considered true, whereas heliocentrism clearly should be. You can make whatever ideological claim you desire, but this is insufficient to dislodge an empirically proven truth, because the ends and means of philosophy and empirical science do not and cannot align (ideology answers the WHY and nothing else… empirical science answers the WHEN, WHERE, and HOW, and nothing else… certainly not the why!). Ideological argument is useful to START OFF an ingress of empirical inquiry, but it will, and must, inevitably end in empirical proof.

    For me (and all true, unbiased scientists) to be truly persuaded towards geocentrism, a scientist must be able to empirically prove this is true — and in addition, explain how all the empirical proof for heliocentrism is wrong, misinterpreted, etc.

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  3. A couple comments so far:

    A short addendum to a statement I made: “a physical reality will always be defended as “true” by means of what can be colloquially worded as “overwhelmingly evident.” What is meant by “overwhelmingly evident?” Allow me a short “parable” so to speak. If I am holding a rock, and I then let go of the rock, I observe it falling towards the ground, until it hits the ground and rests there. It is “overwhelmingly evident” that the correct explanation of this event is as described, and NOT that: the rock suddenly vanished from reality the moment I let it go, thus triggering a momentary illusory hologram-image of itself falling, followed by its subsequent and immediate reappearance once I touch it lying on the ground.

    A recognition you made, of which I am thankful for: you chose to comment on my use of the word “potentially” — a word I explicitly made use of, because I know full well that although we have found answers to many many things, there still lies a “dark void” of as yet undiscovered knowledge, as well as existing knowledge which may potentially be found incorrect (and corrected only by replacement of a “better explanation”).

    A continuation upon a comment you made: “God can tell us if there are Planck particles or Aristotelian continuum…” Of course He can! But it isn’t a necessity — one that will cause humans to therefore know. Otherwise we run afoul of the intelligibility of the Universe. To expand a bit, regarding what God tells us: the scientific MO (modus operandi) excludes revelation, as it is founded upon the intelligibility clause; its basis is certainly not divine authority. That is not to say that it “doesn’t need God” in a general meaning… only that revelation cannot provide empirical proof. I do not use math to prove why murder is immoral… I cannot. It’s an insanely silly and meaningless thought.

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  4. Can I also ask what your educational background is? Just very briefly, nothing intense. It’s good to know, as it colors the context of your identity. Thanks.

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  5. “I entirely leave up to you the option to kindly provide an example of this. I may infer that you believe there are common cases where observers today make assumptions regarding their observation method that cannot logically be made?”

    1) C14 method “calibrated by uniformity” (as opposed to calibrated by checkable historic artefacts or graves, in which range method is valid) back to 40.000 years BP (Before Present).
    2) As I asked you to get to St Helens and do some checks on rocks, Ka-Ar (the one most common in dating lava under or over a fossil bearing layer to millions of years ago).
    3) Not sure if Geologic Column can count as a “measure”, but perhaps as a measure of relative chronology, if not of absolute.

    These three are very COMMONLY debunked in very similar grounds by all Recent Creation & Flood Geologists.

    4) If you take up the challenge, I am btw just starting to read your comments, there might be one involved in stellar distances too.

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  6. I My fourth point as STATED by me:

    4) “To conclude this beginning philosophical part, I stress that, from this point forward, all discussion can and should remain on purely empirical/scientific grounds, as the physical fact of “geo” or “helio” has no bearing on a philosophical nature”

    Oh, they DO have a bearing on philosophy of metaphysics.

    A Geocentric universe is not possible to explain for a materialist.

    II Your answer cum DISTORTION of it:

    “Regarding the 4th point. I really do believe this is the ultimate root cause of your error.

    You adamantly hold that empirical data can and must be considered as false (or at best, misinterpreted) if you observe it to be misaligned in some way with another truth deemed to be “of a higher order” (e.g. Biblical, or even philosophical). This is in fact a gross insult to scholasticism and any pure search for knowledge and truth.”

    III Let us break this idiocy down, bit by bit.

    “You adamantly hold” – some things and not others.

    “that empirical data can and must be considered as false (or at best, misinterpreted)” – we are not talking about calling a pure EMPIRIC datum false.

    If there are cases of indirect measures based on false hypotheses, a datum based on interpretation of an empiric datum can be misinterpreted.

    ” if you observe it to be misaligned in some way with another truth deemed to be “of a higher order” (e.g. Biblical, or even philosophical). ”

    Empiric datum itself being misaligned with a truth of higher order was NOT the question either.

    I am talking of when the false hypothesis used for interpreting either directly is the denial or indirectly is based on the denial of a truth of higher order, like existance of divine and angelic causes, beside, behind and above human and animal and vegetal and elemental ones.

    “This is in fact a gross insult to scholasticism and any pure search for knowledge and truth.”

    What I actually do adamantly hold, as per my corrections here, is very evidently not so.

    It would be on the contrary an insult to St Thomas to say “this empiric observation is corporeal, therefore the hidden efficient cause of this observation must be corporeal too.”

    He did not agree, and saying it follows from his method is a REAL insult to him (or blasphemy, if you prefer when it comes to saints).

    Be warned, if you persist in falling back in this abject misconstruction of what I say, I must consider fair play and debate and Socratic method off on your side and will have to seek another debater. (In mere technicalities, your comments including such things may be deleted, or if I find out how, you may be blocked).

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  7. “If one observes something as occurring, and all instruments and methods of observation fall correctly into established physical phenomena, it is grossly imprudent to disregard — outright — all the data SIMPLY because it doesn’t fit a pre-established narrative.”

    My case exactly FOR Geocentrism.

    Unless you would exclude angelic action from established physical phenomena, in which case of course you are showing a preference for Atheistic methodology (or anangelic one) and risk on it to be excluding data given and confirmed by several sense organs, instruments and methods of observation.

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  8. “If one is REALLY AND TRULY pure in his search for knowledge and truth, he would rightfully dig further into the discrepancy with no bias. After all, it is obviously untrue that a process or method or instrument will inherently desire to mislead you and lie.”

    It is however very true that a process or method or instrument may be less apt to tell me the truth than I thought.

    It is also very true that a certain logical method may be based on one or other developer’s desire to exclude certain truths from being discovered.

    Can for example the Marxist method of history be based on Engels’ desire to exclude you from discovering just régimes in the recent or less recent Christian past?

    Well, so may certain methods in natural sciences, when it comes to someone’s (e g Lyell’s) desire to “disprove” Moses.

    So while the words on the paper outlining the method have no desire, there may be a desire behind them.

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  9. “If an error occurs, it is a human one. More importantly, the observed phenomena doesn’t “choose to take place” for an intelligent purpose (in other words, phenomena take place simply and only because it HAS to… regardless of the presence of a human with intent to interpret it).”

    It’s immediate cause may chose it to take place.

    When pans fly through the room without any visible cause, as happened at least once in the convent of Sor Eusebia Palomino Yenes, and as ended when she prayed to the Blessed Virgin, the pans have no desire. But the demon acting Poltergeist has.

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  10. “If you are to argue that an empirical outcome cannot be true, it is illogical — unacceptable, even — to resort to ideological argument to prove it false (moving forward I will use the word “ideological” to stand in place of “philosophical/theological/Biblical/et.al.) ”

    OK, someone has been through a hypnosis session and has empirically in that state relived moments of a previous life. Shall we say he has had no previous life, because Reincarnation is against the faith? Or would that break your rule?

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  11. “In other words, due to the intelligibility of the Universe it MUST be possible to arrive at the truth with our own capacity and measurement.”

    Oh, I VERY definitely agree about the general intelligibility of the Universe!

    NB, when it comes to measurement, note what I said previously about indirect methods based on false hypotheses not being reliable measurements.

    “The burden of (dis)proof falls on you, using equally empirical means, to overthrow an empirically determined outcome.”

    Since Geocentrism is an empirically determined outcome since the dawn of history, the burden of proof is on the contrary on YOU.

    EVERY day, I can see the ground still, and I can feel it still when I rest on it. That is an empirical datum based on two senses.

    EVERY DAY I AM OUT AND IT IS NOT CLOUDY, I can see the Sun move, if I watch long enough when it’s close to a boundary.

    St Thomas in Prima via (either Summa Theologiae or its parallel in Summa Contra Gentes) says “it is evident to the senses that somethings move, for instance the sun”.

    It is up to you (you may if you wish recapitulate what scientists have already done, but nota bene, as good syllagisms based on their observation, not as “so and so proved” without giving any proof yourself) to prove the movement of Sun an illusion based on ourselves moving against its observed direction, to prove the stability seen and felt in the ground as an illusion caused by us moving with it – namely, daily around our own axis. NB, prove. Not “prove that it is possible”, but “prove that it is fact”.

    Similarily, every night we see stars move, however when it comes to ecliptic we can know indirectly (for we do not directly observe the Sun at night) that such and such a sign of zodiac is hidden behind the Sun : it moves relatively Eastward along the zodiac making a circle in a year, while all together move Westward about as fast as the Sun, every night.

    It is up to you to prove (same observation as previous) that this is an illusion which is really instead based on Earth moving along zodiac around the Sun, each year, while stars turning West each night were a similar illusion to Sun turning West each day due to Earth turning.

    These things are up to you to prove. They are very clearly not proven by simply daily observation only, it is for you to specify which reasoning based in which observations completing the dfaily commonplace ones should be considered as proving your thesis, but just stating “scientists have proved it, they tell us it is best evidenced empirically”, just stating that is not a proof, it is a piece of advertisement.

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  12. ” I guess what I’m trying to say is that, due to the ever-lingering possibility of human sense error (which is absent in ideology), a physical reality will always be defended as “true” by means of what can be colloquially worded as “overwhelmingly evident.” ”

    Except in cases of ideological takes on what is “overwhelmingly evident”.

    It is “overwhelmingly evident” that the Emperor’s new tailor is a man of genius, and that the Emperor was a man of excellent taste to hire him. The apparel nearly – just very, very nearly, of course! – suggests the stature and majesty of Adam in Eden.

    If you are well read enough to get the allusion.

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  13. As for my education, let’s say for now, it includes both H. C. Andersen (see above) and St Thomas Aquinas. Not forgetting JRRT and CSL. Nor St Augustine or St Francis of Sales.

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  14. Come on! I am waiting!

    Your definition of a “rational debate in scholastic method” is not infallible, and my not agreeing to every little jot and tittle of it and especially not to giving up points I want to debate in the rules does not make someone who does not “concede the principles”.

    I would be one not conceding the principles if I were for instance to deny that we see the Sun move westward every day and the stars move westward every night, and that we see the alignment of sun and stars roll a circle along that of the seasons. These really ARE the principia of any astronomic debate, along with similar ones.

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  15. Oh, I actually forgot to answer one part I never saw:

    “A continuation upon a comment you made: “God can tell us if there are Planck particles or Aristotelian continuum…” Of course He can! But it isn’t a necessity — one that will cause humans to therefore know. Otherwise we run afoul of the intelligibility of the Universe. ”

    Not so.

    Aristotelian continuum is as such visible. However, it would still be so if all of it were divided into tightly packed Planck particles.

    These are too small to verify.

    So, the one thing I can do by intelligibility of universe is deny atoms and similar particles come inside a complete void. If what were between two atoms were really and truly a void, it would be nothing and if nothing separated them, they would get together.

    But it can very well be for us totally impossible to decide whether there are Planck particles or not.

    Since both scenarios exclude void, both are compatible with universe being intelligible. But deciding between them is not a requirement for the universe to be so.

    I can intelligently understand what is meant by “mass of Jupiter” – it is a “mass”, i e specific weight times volume, and not a speed or a colour, it belongs to Jupiter, not to the Moon.

    But I can also understand that the Mass of Jupiter is sth I cannot directly measure.

    So, Mass of Jupiter not being able to be measured (because there might be no reliable indirect measuring method either) does not hurt the intelligibility of the universe.

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  16. Apologies for my absence; as previously stated, it can be difficult to find the time, since I have a full-time job. You can expect a response from me today, once I’ve read what I’ve missed so far and formulate my counter-responses. Thank you.

    (For the record, I’m truly enjoying this debate, as I am learning some things from “the other side,” especially as regards what “makes your argument tick,” what its weaknesses and strengths are, etc. I hope the same is true for you).

    Let’s press onward.

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  17. I’m back.

    Regarding: “These three are very COMMONLY debunked in very similar grounds by all Recent Creation & Flood Geologists.”

    I expected these examples, and I’m very aware of the logical weakness of the assumptions made, even including circular reasoning at their worst. While I wholeheartedly agree that these assumptions fall short of logical certitude, and cede your point, I nonetheless maintain a healthy respect for the theories resulting from them for the following simple reason: the explanations resulting from said assumptions provide the best explanation of what can be observed empirically, without resorting to ideological means. In other words, at best, you and I can legitimately resort to “pulling the rug” from underneath the assumptions, but unfortunately without the capability of providing an empirical explanation of equal or greater logical certitude. By all means, tear down the theory, but no one will take this action seriously if no alternative is provided that is of greater certitude. The scientist is looking for the best explanation that fits the data, as it stands, even if it means admitting to logical weakness here or there (hence, an effort is put forth in resolving the issue by non-ideological means).
    Without delving into the insanely deep rat-hole that is Creationism vs. Evolutionism, all I will say is that (in your favor) there are very strong ideological arguments against evolution (e.g. “order from chaos without intelligent management”), but also that (not in your favor) there are weak empirical arguments against evolution and for Creationism. I reiterate the fact that I do not wish to entertain Evolution vs. Creationism topics… I just wish to illustrate my stance that there is a distinction that can and should be made between how empirically-derived explanations are handled, as opposed to driving natural explanations with a bias of ideological positions. Therefore, you are justified in your claims as regarding Creationism/Evolution, but certainly not regarding Geo/Helio-centrism, as there is no meaningful, equivalent situation that can apply (more on that below).

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  18. Moving to your comments: What you begin with are fair specifications of nuance… I have no quarrel there, up until…

    “Empiric datum itself being misaligned with a truth of higher order was NOT the question either.

    I am talking of when…”

    You make mention of “… divine and angelic causes…,” “Atheistic/anangelic methodology” Here is where I again stress the fallibility of your method. Divine or angelic cause, while certainly possible (i.e. “nothing is impossible for God’s omnipotence”), cannot be held as the ordinary efficient cause of material phenomena, as it painfully grinds against the inherent intelligibility of the universe, and incapable of being objectively verified and predicted. I critically emphasize here the use of the word ORDINARY. You actually provide helpful examples… analogies which I assume you believe are an adequate disproof of what I state, i.e., “When pans fly through…” and “OK, someone has been through a hypnosis session…”

    In the first case, there is no currently existing ADEQUATE and ORDINARY empirical explanation. After all, pans don’t ORDINARILY fly around. My kitchen contains pans that stay where they are, as described by the physical laws of Newtonian motion, just like everyone else’s pans (I hope…). There is no possible way to predict and reproduce those effects by experiment and hence discover some new law of the material universe… a.k.a. the scientific process. Until then, these kinds of “once-in-a-lifetime” events must be reserved to an anecdotal experience, which we gratuitously assign to super-material efficient causes (e.g. angelic/divine) IN SPITE of the intelligibility of the universe.

    In the second example, the subject’s experience, as vivid as it may be, is precisely incapable of being submitted to the tests of observation and repetition via the scientific method, because there is no way to gather and produce any objective empirical data of the existence of that past life (e.g. a photograph) that is consequently attainable and verifiable by any/every human that chooses to determine for himself/herself the existence of that precise past life (and NOT of his/her OWN potential past life). Until then, this subject’s experience must be reserved to the confines of anecdotal experience that is unverifiable, unworthy of rigorous scientific explanation, and thus assigned to the creative workings of the imagination, in spite of the intelligibility of the universe.

    A more appropriate counter-example that’s right up your alley of argumentation is the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, as it is a material object capable of being subjected to scientific inquiry (i.e. objective, verifiable, repeatable experimentation, theoretically accessible to any/every human). And notice, CRITICALLY, what the results of said inquiries are: “There is no scientific explanation for this phenomena.” No scientist can ever say “I conclude that a supernatural power has caused this” and remain a scientist. That is, as I have said, science does not provide the “Why,” just the “What/When/How.”

    To conclude my comments on these two cases: notice that in both, a rigorous scientific process must be maintained; namely, objectivity, reproducibility, verifiability, predictability, etc. REGARDLESS of potentially valid immaterial efficient causes. In other words, THE MOMENT we, as scientists and discoverers of the truths of this material universe, find it unable to assign some sufficiently acceptable scientific explanation, it thereby exits the realm of science, and enters the realm of ideology (or perhaps falsity), potentially until some newly discovered material truth can provide some kind of explanation in a verifiable, objective, reproducible/predictable way (e.g. “dark energy” or “instantly-collapsing black holes” or “common-human-consciousness”… I’m totally making stuff up… but it’s what the word “potentially” means, in case anyone’s imagination fails to provide adequate examples).

    I confidently continue to maintain that the positions and relative actions of celestial objects cannot possibly be construed as remaining exclusively outside the realm of science, and, coupled with the fact that their events are continuous, ordinary, physical, and even predictable, they MUST be explainable by empirical, non-ideological truths, ENTIRELY independently from ideology. And hence why I absolutely – and rationally – “exclude angelic action from established physical phenomena…” since after all, by definition, no sense organ exists that can scientifically observe and test said angelic action, being immaterial.

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  19. Regarding “It is also very true that a certain logical method may be based on one or other developer’s desire to exclude certain truths from being discovered.”

    I certainly concur. That pertains to logical method, not a scientific process/method/instrument. The data emanating from the latter things is unbiased, and any potential for error (and hence the opportunity to extrinsically introduce bias) exists ONLY from data that’s missing, and attainable via an additional scientific process/method/instrument. My mistake for assuming the obvious implicitness of the word “scientific” when I said “it is obviously untrue that a process or method or instrument will inherently desire to mislead you and lie.”

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  20. A comment on “Since Geocentrism is an empirically determined outcome since the dawn of history, the burden of proof is on the contrary on YOU.

    EVERY day, I can see…” as well as all subsequent demands for proof that you state, in relation to various sense observations.

    Incorrect application of burden, as neither the temporal value nor the immediacy of sense measurement determine the burden. Instead, when it comes to empirical data, the explanation that best fits ALL the empirical data known at the given time is to be considered stronger. After all, that’s exactly what happened to Galileo, in his time: the Church (and the scientists of his day) all clamored for some kind of proof for his heliocentric theory, and were (reluctantly) ready to re-evaluate the current basis of astronomical knowledge, but when he failed to provide, he was found wanting. It turns out that the only error Galileo committed (besides the outright unacceptable personal failings of personal pride, arrogance, and lack of diplomacy) was being born too soon, and thus having no access to adequate instrumentation to back up his (correct) theory. By the way, please do not accuse me of saying he “was born too soon” out of some misplaced belief in the diabolical ideas pushed by liberals that he suffered unjustly at the hands of the “oh-so-horrible Church and Inquisition.” I explicitly refute these Church-hating claims, and defend the Church’s disciplinary actions as entirely justified, as I indicate above.

    (Regarding the insertion of the word “reluctantly:” the Galileo story is rich with historical context. On face value alone, we have the calamity of Protestantism and personal interpretation vis a vis sola scriptura. But that’s neither here nor there. We have on our hands a decidedly non-historical debate.)

    A thought experiment:

    How could a medieval scientist possibly explain cellphones, GPS systems, computers, aircraft, etc. given the knowledge that existed at the time? In short he/she would be incapable. It therefore does NOT necessarily follow that immaterial efficient causes are the explanation; only that no empirical, scientific explanation fits the available data, and so, very justifiably, but ultimately, erroneously – when adjusted for temporal progression (i.e. all these things are as theoretically possible in his/her day as they are realistically present in ours) – immaterial causes are consequently assigned, to make sense of his/her material universe.

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  21. Explanations aren’t empirical. I say this with regards to these words:

    I expected these examples, and I’m very aware of the logical weakness of the assumptions made, even including circular reasoning at their worst. While I wholeheartedly agree that these assumptions fall short of logical certitude, and cede your point, I nonetheless maintain a healthy respect for the theories resulting from them for the following simple reason: the explanations resulting from said assumptions provide the best explanation of what can be observed empirically, without resorting to ideological means.

    Explanations are by definition what you might call ideological.

    Limiting explanations to what one has empirical access to means leaving nearly everything unexplained.

    Limiting explanations to PARALLELS to what one has access to is one ideology.

    PLUS there is an uncertainty whether the parallels are really parallels.

    In other words, at best, you and I can legitimately resort to “pulling the rug” from underneath the assumptions, but unfortunately without the capability of providing an empirical explanation of equal or greater logical certitude. By all means, tear down the theory, but no one will take this action seriously if no alternative is provided that is of greater certitude. The scientist is looking for the best explanation that fits the data, as it stands, even if it means admitting to logical weakness here or there (hence, an effort is put forth in resolving the issue by non-ideological means).

    What if, for Creation Evolution controversy, the Recent Creation, Global Flood, Rapid Speciation (?) within Fixed Kinds is the explanation that best fits the data?

    And what if, for the Heliocentric Geocentric controversy, the Geocentrism with Tychonian Orbits worked by Angelic Movers within an Ether turned about Earth each day by God is the explanation that best fits the data?

    The relevance of “exercises in mere logic” is that, whether they admit it or not, scientists claiming the opposite explanations as best fitting the data, are relying on LOGICAL relations between data and explanations, and therefore a paralogism in their reasoning really does hurt their case.

    If they use false reasoning, there is nothing to be respectful about.

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  22. also that (not in your favor) there are weak empirical arguments against evolution and for Creationism.

    I am perfectly willing to get up another thread on that topic, I agree it should not clutter this thread.

    Chromosome numbers are a very strong empirical case against evolution, which has been ignored. Geological column for land fauna is very strongly so far NOT a column, which is a strong empirical case preliminarily for a Global Flood. BUT, another thread or not as you wish, not here.

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  23. You make mention of “… divine and angelic causes…,” “Atheistic/anangelic methodology” Here is where I again stress the fallibility of your method. Divine or angelic cause, while certainly possible (i.e. “nothing is impossible for God’s omnipotence”), cannot be held as the ordinary efficient cause of material phenomena, as it painfully grinds against the inherent intelligibility of the universe, and incapable of being objectively verified and predicted.

    Absolutely not.

    First of all, explanations are ordinarily not verifiable. Apart from what they explain. Second, existence of God and angels is, uncommonly kindly for us in this case, verifed apart from this. Third, we are dealing with predictability and for that it suffices that God turns the universe around Earth with a very exact regularity and that angels move the planets and perhaps stars too with a very exact regularity.

    The every day walk of Immanuel Kant was a very predictable event, so much that Königsberg set their clocks according to his walk. God and angels are capable of an exactitude amounting to microseconds per year no disruption, and therefore predictability of the universe is not in question.

    Nor is its “inherent intelligibility”, unless by “inherent” you mean immanent really.

    The universe is inherently intelligible as incabable of by itself providing day and night, seasons and lunar faces and so on, and therefore by its intelligibility points to God and angels.

    THIS is indeed the major historical proof of God’s existence (night and day, that is), and is referenced somewhat obscurely in Prima Via, but more clearly in its parallel in Summa Contra Gentes, and it becomes clearer still whan Q11 A3 points back to one-ness of observed movement of universe (i e movement providing day and night) to one-ness of its mover, when it comes to proving that God not only exists but is ONE.

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  24. I critically emphasize here the use of the word ORDINARY. You actually provide helpful examples… analogies which I assume you believe are an adequate disproof of what I state, i.e., “When pans fly through…” and

    Whether God ordinarily or only rarely (thankfully the latter) gives demons permission to fly around with pans and pots, He certainly gives them no more inherent power than they usually have, and thus the point is illustrated that angels ordinarily have the power to move visible things even if not themselves visible.

    This is not against the intelligibility of the universe, this is part of a correct intellection or understanding of it.

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  25. and “OK, someone has been through a hypnosis session…”

    Here my point was simply your ineptitude in formulating methodology. My point is that with your methodology, someone who had EXPERIENCED (during a hypnosis session) having been alive during the French and Indian Wars or when Argentina was under Spain, would according to YOUR methodology be obliged to believe he really had a previous life.

    Empirical means experienced.

    I was not giving hypnosis sessions as parallels to anything I wish to explain, only noting your bad formulation.

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  26. To conclude my comments on these two cases: notice that in both, a rigorous scientific process must be maintained; namely, objectivity, reproducibility, verifiability, predictability, etc. REGARDLESS of potentially valid immaterial efficient causes.

    No.

    You are confusing “scientific method” as unerstood by many scientists today with “scholastic method” or Socratic method.

    Besides, science does deal in explanations, and thus, risking to miss the right ones because they are immaterial or spiritual is not science, but bad methodology.

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  27. In other words, THE MOMENT we, as scientists and discoverers of the truths of this material universe, find it unable to assign some sufficiently acceptable scientific explanation, it thereby exits the realm of science, and enters the realm of ideology (or perhaps falsity), potentially until some newly discovered material truth can provide some kind of explanation in a verifiable, objective, reproducible/predictable way (e.g. “dark energy” or “instantly-collapsing black holes” or “common-human-consciousness”… I’m totally making stuff up… but it’s what the word “potentially” means, in case anyone’s imagination fails to provide adequate examples).

    1) Geocentrism is what we observe. It is an empirical datum.
    2) Physical Science is not capable of explaning geocentrism. I am not making this up, I have been up with astronomers. Their best argument against geocentrism is it cannot be explained in terms of physical science. Let’s suppose they are right, this means when we try to explain the cosmos as it is, we leave the realm of Physical Science and got onto …
    3) not necessarily “ideology” but certainly metaphysics.
    4) As to your made up examples of newly discovered truths in the corporeal realm, “dark energy”, “instantly-collapsing black holes” or “common-human-consciousness” they are not verifiable (even apart from them being absurd).

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  28. I confidently continue to maintain that the positions and relative actions of celestial objects cannot possibly be construed as remaining exclusively outside the realm of science,

    Not EXCLUSIVELY.

    They are within science on the side of observability.

    They are outside science on the side of direct observability of causations.

    and, coupled with the fact that their events are continuous, ordinary, physical, and even predictable, they MUST be explainable by empirical, non-ideological truths, ENTIRELY independently from ideology.

    Not so, since what a thing is in itself does not limit what explanations it can have – except upwards, the observed working of the mind as experiencing and understanding cannot depend on anything that lacks these powers. But observations cannot limit their explanations downwards.

    And hence why I absolutely – and rationally – “exclude angelic action from established physical phenomena…” since after all, by definition, no sense organ exists that can scientifically observe and test said angelic action, being immaterial.

    Neither can any sense organ verify the gravitational supposed pull of sun on Earth. Gravitational pull is invisible, and the way it affects inner ears these are affected only by that of Earth, not by that of Sun on Earth, if such a thing exists.

    So, by reasoning out why angelic movers of celestial bodies and God as mover of night and day should be excluded (nota bene against tradition), you have done modern science no great favour, since rationally speaking your reason of exclusion would exclude their explanations too.

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  29. Incorrect application of burden, as neither the temporal value nor the immediacy of sense measurement determine the burden. Instead, when it comes to empirical data, the explanation that best fits ALL the empirical data known at the given time is to be considered stronger.

    The “explanation that bests fits all the data” is not immediately accessible to us in that quality.

    We are DISPUTING on whether this is Geocentrism or Heliocentrism.

    What is IMMEDIATELY GIVEN empirically is accessible to us.

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  30. After all, that’s exactly what happened to Galileo, in his time: the Church (and the scientists of his day) all clamored for some kind of proof for his heliocentric theory,

    Nota bene, in one way (the one that concerns our Socratic debate) because Geocentrism is an immediate given.

    If it be an illusion, that should be proven.

    and were (reluctantly) ready to re-evaluate the current basis of astronomical knowledge, but when he failed to provide, he was found wanting.

    It was not just astronomical knowledge, it was not even mainly that, it was first and foremost empirical given of Geocentrism (if we now leave out the Biblical confirmations of it). Flatness of Earth was disproven by Eratosthenes and by Vasco da Gama.

    Potentially Galileo could have had on his hand a card amounting, if not to a da Gama for Heliocentrism, at least to an Eratosthenes for Heliocentrism.

    It turns out that the only error Galileo committed (besides the outright unacceptable personal failings of personal pride, arrogance, and lack of diplomacy) was being born too soon, and thus having no access to adequate instrumentation to back up his (correct) theory.

    My contention is that if he were today to be judged by judges as circumspect as St Robert, the instrumentations accessible with new empiric data since then would not prove his point.

    I’ll come to that in a moment, as soon as you come to the new empiric data which you think have since then vindicated Galileo’s thesis if not the way he made a case for it.

    By the way, please do not accuse me of saying he “was born too soon” out of some misplaced belief in the diabolical ideas pushed by liberals that he suffered unjustly at the hands of the “oh-so-horrible Church and Inquisition.” I explicitly refute these Church-hating claims, and defend the Church’s disciplinary actions as entirely justified, as I indicate above.

    Nearly good. Except that you included “the outright unacceptable personal failings of personal pride, arrogance, and lack of diplomacy” in the righteousness of the Church.

    That is unacceptable, since involving an unacceptable position about pastoral. The pastoral rights of the Church in face of Galileo did not amount to then and do not amount to now the suppression of a good theory well proven just because it was presented by a jerk.

    Precisely as it would be extremely horrible to say that Luther’s theses were condemned because Luther was a jerk. In 1517, after which 41 theses were condemned, he had not yet proven that. So that could not justify the condemnation of 41 theses. What does justify the condemnation is that they are erroneous.

    Mutatis mutandis, similarily for Galileo case.

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  31. How could a medieval scientist possibly explain cellphones, GPS systems, computers, aircraft, etc. given the knowledge that existed at the time? In short he/she would be incapable.

    Given the knowledge that was available at the time, if he or more rarely she were transported to modern times, it would take a few seconds to explain to them what was missing.

    Aircraft would not even need an extra explanation they would just note “oh, they discovered how Albatross wings work and have imitated it”.

    As for the other examples, it would suffice to say “light and magnetism are related qualities and also related to a quality pair we call electricity, because it is observed on the surface of amber, which Greeks call electron, when it is rubbed with wool cloth – this we use for a number of machines, and some of these work like an abacus moved very quickly and some of these furthermore encode letters into the numbers”.

    That is all.

    It therefore does NOT necessarily follow that immaterial efficient causes are the explanation; only that no empirical, scientific explanation fits the available data, and so, very justifiably, but ultimately, erroneously – when adjusted for temporal progression (i.e. all these things are as theoretically possible in his/her day as they are realistically present in ours) – immaterial causes are consequently assigned, to make sense of his/her material universe.

    Cell phones were not there, and as I just explained, the medieval scientist would have no ultimate need to invoke spiritual causes for the workings.

    Therefore your implied implication that if Medieval Scientists assigned Divine and Angelic efficient causes to astronomic phenomena, this was a case of “God of the gaps”, and “angels of the gaps”, is not really an implication of your example.

    [Edited for two orthographic mistakes]

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  32. PERHAPS YOU MISSED A POINT:

    //4) “To conclude this beginning philosophical part, I stress that, from this point forward, all discussion can and should remain on purely empirical/scientific grounds, as the physical fact of “geo” or “helio” has no bearing on a philosophical nature”

    Oh, they DO have a bearing on philosophy of metaphysics.

    A Geocentric universe is not possible to explain for a materialist.

    So, NO, I very much do NOT intend to keep discussion purely to scientific/empirical grounds, if by grounds you include “grounds for explanation”.//

    I did not say I wanted to include for instance Holy Scripture in the grounds for PROOF.

    Though I could take that discussion too.

    I did simply say that Geocentrism as empirically shown HAS a bearing as proof on the metaphysical realities that have a bearing as explanation.

    If you back out of that, you are showing that you cannot establish Heliocentrism independently of exclusion of divine and angelic direct causation of some movements. And empirically we have no reason to exclude them.

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  33. Regarding evolution, I am not ready to debate the topic, for two reasons: I don’t find myself fully prepared to defend either position, and I am still not certain for myself what the truth is. I can understand some aspects/respects in favor, in others, not in favor.

    First of all, explanations are ordinarily not verifiable. Apart from what they explain.

    How can you possibly hold this as a premise? Explanations are what we, as rational creatures, make use of to approach the nature of things, and since truth cannot change with time, they absolutely can be verified. There must be some completely different meaning to “verifiable” that you are using. According to a dictionary, the common meaning is: “capable of being established as truth, and/or accurate, and/or real” (depending on the nature of the object being verified).

    In the realm of empirical science, all explanations are verifiable as to their accuracy of matching factual measurement. This is a fundamental premise upon which all scientific endeavor is built upon. The measurements (“facts”) are what constitutes “truth” or “reality.” If explanations cannot be ordinarily verified, then there is no purpose to explanation… all is reduced to conjecture and, ultimately, a bizarre refusal to be able to resolve reality as being objective and factual. And since accuracy is the name of the game, then by definition there will always be room for a potentially more accurate explanation. Until that time, the current explanation holds sway, and is used by man to make sense of his surroundings.

    And when it comes to matter and material things, not only is intelligibility at play here, but even natural order. Little cherubs don’t make my car operate; devils aren’t whispering in the lion’s ear convincing it to attack the child; there is no bacteria shepherd-devil causing disease. God certainly may call upon his angels (and call/ permit devils) to suspend natural law and directly act upon matter, but any angelic or divine act is not therefore a natural act. By definition, it is not. Otherwise there is no such thing as “natural cause” as opposed to “supernatural cause.” This is how nature and the universe works, my esteemed colleague: God created it with laws, and these laws are there, regardless of whether God created angels to suspend or override them, and regardless of whether God created humans to discover, observe, and harness them for his own purposes (regarding the latter: reality remains even if humans aren’t there to observe it).

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  34. … we are dealing with predictability and for that it suffices that God turns the universe around Earth with a very exact regularity and that angels move the planets and perhaps stars too with a very exact regularity.

    As stated above, God (or His angels, by extension) does not “predictably” act DIRECTLY on ANY matter apart from pure existence (and ideological consequences of such act). If He did, then we would, by definition, be able to demonstrably verify the existence of God (or angels) as having a material, measurable, empirical, PREDICTABLE presence. You and I both know that is not the case. As a matter of fact, this is a premise of today’s “science-atheist.” He will claim since there is no “God-property” in nature, there is no God.

    We can certainly marvel at the ideological aspects of our reality (e.g. order, ultimate causality, etc.) as a proof of the existence of God, and especially life itself, but it isn’t a scientific measurement. Instead it is a mirror, reflecting His existence, indirectly.

    Perhaps a simpler means to indicate this reality is by getting at the phrase “God is everywhere.” He is actually and perfectly present in Heaven, but is present “everywhere” by extension: through His laws and instituted order. This is similar to how we find the authority and Will of God within the legitimate dictates of our superiors. We don’t need God to literally tell us what to do. He uses His legitimate authorities to enact and execute His moral laws.

    Again, I MUST reiterate the important premise that the cause of pure existence is God Himself. I really hope these are wasted words, but I can’t be too sure any more.

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  35. Whether God ordinarily or only rarely…

    The word “ordinary” is not a definition of temporal frequency (instead, frequency is a consequence), but of hierarchical cause. Sort of how we have the terms “ordinary jurisdiction” as opposed to “extraordinary jurisdiction” in the Church. Thus, I reaffirm that “God does not ordinarily… (finish sentence as I originally stated).”

    … angels ordinarily have the power to move visible things even if not themselves visible.

    Similar to above, this statement proves nothing. As stated, concedo. Sed nego its counter-statement: “visible things ordinarily are moved by angels…” Thus, I reaffirm that “visible things are not ordinarily moved by angelic power.”

    You are confusing “scientific method”… Besides, science does deal in explanations, and thus, risking to miss the right ones because they are immaterial or spiritual is not science, but bad methodology.

    The object of science is the material universe. The instant you delve into immaterial/spiritual explanations, you have left the realm of science. These explanations will NEVER be the right ones, not just by definition, but also by verification (don’t forget: science is a process). No one, including myself, can – as a scientist – take you seriously if you continue to butcher the definition of science by stating that science can somehow observe and describe immaterial things

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  36. Physical Science is not capable of explaning geocentrism. I am not making this up, I have been up with astronomers. Their best argument… (to end of paragraph).

    First sentence: my point exactly. Second sentence: I AM an amateur astronomer (I own a telescope and use it often); I AM an engineer personally and directly involved with space technology. For the rest: again, just because one claim is impossible to explain, it does NOT follow that ANY other claim within the same bounds of assumption is impossible to explain. No need to leave the realm of physical science. You can if you want to, but nothing is achieved, and any conclusions reached beyond physical science have zero credibility within science. Moreover, given the nature of science, a consequence of deriving claims beyond it is the lack of usefulness to harness and use the “new” knowledge to 1) derive and extrapolate to new, further explanations and 2) derive applications of the knowledge to manipulate matter and objects (such as building cars or computers).

    … they are not verifiable (even apart from them being absurd).

    That was my point. I purposefully picked things that are unverifiable at this time. But there’s one “gotcha” moment: I used the word “potentially.” What I mean is: who knows? Some great new thing might be discovered in the future that can verify the existence of these. It’s possible… An attitude of “never” is precisely the death of new knowledge. THANK GOODNESS most scientists don’t have this attitude.

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  37. Some good stuff:

    They are within science on the side of observability.

    They are outside science on the side of direct observability of causations.

    If causations are outside of your odd definition of “science,” then “science” has lost purpose. It has literally become an identical synonym for “observation.”

    Not so, since what a thing is in itself does not limit what explanations it can have… (to end of paragraph).

    Your word choice makes it difficult for me to understand what you’re trying to say. I think you’re saying: “given a tier of reality, the things in that tier can provide explanations to its tier and lower tiers, but not higher tiers.” This makes sense to me… Concedo. However, your conclusion would seem to be: since higher tiers can explain lower tiers, then, in specific cases, it can be true that the higher tier will ALWAYS explain the lower tier, AT THE COST of all order exclusively present in the lower tier. This conclusion I find highly problematic. If physical science has determined that water and acid interacts the way it does, per chemical Laws, then you are requiring the belief that a case may exist where the Law is superseded by other, higher activity exclusively beyond scientific inquiry, EACH AND EVERY TIME THE CASE HAPPENS. This is contrary to the scientific premise (in reality, it’s a philosophical one, and is mirrored in a similar way in science) that phenomena are predictable and deterministic, given a knowledge of all initial conditions.

    Neither can any sense organ verify the gravitational supposed pull of sun on Earth. Gravitational pull is invisible, and the way it affects inner ears these are affected only by that of Earth, not by that of Sun on Earth, if such a thing exists.

    Tidal forces. Check it out. It’s a perfect illustration of gravity varying with distance. And yes, we do have the capacity to directly sense gravity, or more correctly, a change in gravity (just like temperature: we sense its change, not its absolute value). The problem is sensitivity. If we would be able to place ourselves near an object of sufficiently high enough mass density, we would have the capacity to directly observe the changes in force across our body. For now, though, we must be content with observing the changes with the assistance of instrumentation, as can be seen in experiments which measure the weight of an object at sea level as opposed to a high mountaintop. This alone should be sufficient, but that’s probably too much to assume from my esteemed opponent.

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  38. I saved the best for last. This post treats your insistent usage of the generally conclusive phrase “Geocentrism is immediately given.”

    1)Geocentrism is what we observe. It is an empirical datum.

    Incorrect. The lack of observable motion between ourselves the observer, and the earth the object, is the empirical datum. Just like when you get into an elevator, after initial acceleration, the empirical datum is: zero relative motion between yourself and the observable surroundings. To a geocentrist, the elevator has been proven to stop moving. To a heliocentrist, the available empirical data is insufficient to prove motion OR non-motion. By extension, as a thought experiment: if the elevator was a super-tall one, such that a child was born within it, and grew in age, and grew old, and died, all while the elevator was moving up, it is incorrect for the person to affirm that he can determine on his own whether the elevator was moving or not. In other words, lack of evidence for a claim is not proof of its opposite.

    The “explanation that bests fits all the data” is not immediately accessible to us in that quality.

    We are DISPUTING on whether this is Geocentrism or Heliocentrism.

    What is IMMEDIATELY GIVEN empirically is accessible to us.

    You refuse to allow any data besides your own as accessible, or even acceptable. As I said, “what is immediately given” does not determine burden of proof, neither does the fact that thousands of years have spoken to geocentrism. According to you: if you lived your entire life with blurry vision, and then, at the ripe age of 70, are graciously assisted by an optometrist who prescribes you a set of glasses, which you try on and see clearly, your reaction – to match your attitude towards geo/helio – should be “prove to me that my vision is supposed to be ‘not blurry.’ The immediacy of sense data shows my vision to be blurry between my eyes and the glasses themselves, and I have seen the world like this my whole life. Therefore, I reject the idea that ‘clear vision’ is a real thing. Instead, I posit that YOUR eyes are being divinely assisted, in a regular, ordinary way. Prove me wrong.” See the problem with your usage of burden of proof?

    Your entire Galileo response in respect to geo/helio is founded on the statement: Geocentrism is an immediate given.

    I will assume you will discontinue your claim that geocentrism is an immediate given from now on. It is just as much an immediate given as the belief that a moving elevator is not moving, or that a non-moving elevator IS moving.

    This claim you keep making has got to stop, because I have abundantly shown that 1) immediacy is insufficient/irrelevant, and 2) that geocentrism cannot be supported exclusively by the lack of observable motion between object and observer.

    Regarding point 2: it is logically acceptable to say that lack of relative motion is an immediate given. But not that geocentrism is. For heaven’s sake, we’re ON the Earth! Of course it doesn’t look like it is moving! Motion is a relative property of matter. Its reality consists of relationship.

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  39. And finally:

    Regarding your response to the “Medieval time travel” thought experiment: This is EXACTLY the “God of the Gaps.” None of the electromagnetic phenomena that make cellphones work is available to your odd formulation of “sense measurement.” Immediate communication across vast distances was an “exclusively divine power” for thousands of years. And yet you freely admit that “a few seconds of explanation” is all that is necessary. The assumption necessary for you to make that claim: as I said, the medieval scientist had all means and methods potentially available to know all this already; id est, nature and the universe didn’t change, the conscious scope of physical science did.

    Using Holy Scripture as grounds for proof is ill-advised for either of us (especially you). We are not Protestants; the Church is the exclusive authority of interpretation. I cannot, in good conscience, tempt you to use God’s Holy Word in such manner, nor can I, in good conscience, presume to know what He exactly meant on a truth that is not dogmatic in nature (i.e. geo/helio in itself has no bearing on salvation).

    With this group of responses, I affirm for the confines of this debate that I have conclusively taken apart the concept, and revealed its absurdity: “Geocentrism is an immediate given” or “Geocentrism is an empirical datum we can observe.”

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  40. //First of all, explanations are ordinarily not verifiable. Apart from what they explain.//

    “How can you possibly hold this as a premise? Explanations are what we, as rational creatures, make use of to approach the nature of things, and since truth cannot change with time, they absolutely can be verified. There must be some completely different meaning to “verifiable” that you are using. According to a dictionary, the common meaning is: “capable of being established as truth, and/or accurate, and/or real” (depending on the nature of the object being verified).”

    Simple example.

    I come to the office. I see the boss is not in the common room, but his hat is on the hat shelf.

    I explain the presence of his hat by supposing the fact that he has come but is on the toilet or in the kitchen.

    In this case I could get out into the kitchen to verify one of my explanations, or wait till he comes from the toilet to verify the other. Or wait, until he comes back to teh common room and thereby verifies the explanation that at least he has already shown up.

    BUT there are millions of examples where such a direct verification is NOT accessible. Where the ONLY verification for the explanation is WHAT it explains.

    To take another simple example, electrons. You haven’t seen an electron, I haven’t seen an electron, nobody has seen an electron. They are supposed to explain the volume of atoms and cohesion of molecules, which have been verified in electronic microscopy, they are supposed to explain electronic microscopy, they are supposed to explain “traces of electrons in Wilson chambers”, they are supposed to explain electricity and in some ways even magnetism (these being supposed to be tied together). But ALL verifications for electrons are by what they are supposed to explain. NONE are independent of what they explain. It’s like ONLY verifying the boss has arrived by seeing his hat on the hat shelf.

    “In the realm of empirical science, all explanations are verifiable as to their accuracy of matching factual measurement.”

    Well, that is an explanation verified by what it is supposed to explain.

    Not an explanation verified independently of what it explains. Not like seeing the boss come from the kitchen with his jacket over the shoulder. Still just verifying his arrival by the fact that his hat is on the hat shelf. It accurately matches fact that this hat model is only worn by the boss, it accurately matches the fact that one has never seen his hat left on the shelf after he went out.

    “This is a fundamental premise upon which all scientific endeavor is built upon. The measurements (“facts”) are what constitutes “truth” or “reality.””

    No, the measurements are PART of reality and statements about them, if accurate are PART of true statements about reality. They do not CONSTITUTE reality or truth.

    “If explanations cannot be ordinarily verified, then there is no purpose to explanation… all is reduced to conjecture and, ultimately, a bizarre refusal to be able to resolve reality as being objective and factual.”

    OK, to you electrons are simply conjecture? Accepting their existence is, ultimately, a bizarre refusal to “resolve reality as being objective and factual”?

    To me that is not so.

    Electrons are not the only possible explanation for the phenomena I mentioned which they explain. So they are not completely verified. But they are at least one major possibility of being real explanation and that statements about them give true information. Believing electrons exist does therefore NOT spell out a bizarre refusal to resolve reality as being objective and factual. Believing it with such certainty that you refuse to consider any other possibilities (like aether flow for electricity and aether volume for volume of atoms and for qualities between them in the matter, and something other unknown, also related to aether, as to electronic microscopy), would still not be a bizarre refusal but just a hasty resolve for one option that really is not the only one.

    “And when it comes to matter and material things, not only is intelligibility at play here, but even natural order. Little cherubs don’t make my car operate;”

    True enough, as long as it has enough fuel. They could make it operate miraculously on an occasion.

    “devils aren’t whispering in the lion’s ear convincing it to attack the child;”

    That is already more than you can know for each occasion. Angels could very possibly withhold it from doing so, even if it was starving. And this would probably happen more often than just occasions you admit as miraculous.

    A donkey between two haystacks of equal appetising material, equal volume at equal distance, is probably guided by angels to one of them so it doesn’t starve to death.

    Remember the donkey who saw an angel and spoke to Balaam? Its speaking was the angel using its ordinary powers in a way ordinatrily not associated with donkeys. But the donkey stopping still out of respect for the angel is probably common occurrence.

    “there is no bacteria shepherd-devil causing disease.”

    Really far more than you know. If devils can shepherd flies, why can’t they shephard bacteria? Obviously they can.

    When they do, bacteria proceed to make their natural stuff which causes immediately the disease, but it is hasty to say they are never or even not very usually used as tools by demons.

    “God certainly may call upon his angels (and call/ permit devils) to suspend natural law and directly act upon matter, but any angelic or divine act is not therefore a natural act. By definition, it is not.”

    False.

    1) For divine causation, it is false since it contradicts 1 and 2 via of proving God’s existence.

    The number of secondary causes between the primary and the effect we are viewing has to be a limited, finite one. That means that one some one level, God is right now, every moment from In the Beginning up to Doomsday, perhaps with a break for Joshua’s long day, causing something, which then in its turn causes something, which then in its turn causes something that we see.

    Miracles are not more divine causation than God provides on a daily basis, but divine causation shown at a closer and more observable range. For instance, God is causing fertility of the fish all over the world in every sea, whichever intermediates he uses (though these are finite in number), the multiplication of fishes is not more nor less divine, it was just shown at closer range, so that people could see, that there is a God who makes fish multiply and that Jesus is this God.

    No natural law is ever either broken or even suspended by a miracle. It is only fulfilled in an unusual way, since the divine and primary cause is causing or moving at an unusual spot. And the first law in physics is not in Principia Mathematica, it is a law before it, everything in the universe obeys a direct will of the Maker.

    2) For angelic causation, it is also false.

    The main reason why one of the two occasionalist philosophers was condemned, is not that it would be unfitting for God to each time He has brought fire into existance and flax into existance and someone brings them close, He Himself decides, in each case, that the flax must burn (and can therefore in some case decide that the flax shall not burn), rather than giving flax a fixed burnable nature (which He can freely override).

    The main reason is that occasionalism by reducing causality of free wills – in that one condemned occasionalist, the other was not – is taking away from the responsability of created wills.

    Now, why does God create secondary causes? To give the creatures the dignity of being causes. And which creatures are highest in dignity and therefore most worthy of this distinction? Created spirits, both man’s soul and angelic beings.

    Therefore, the second law of all physics is also prior to those written in Principia Mathematica. It is that matter obeys spirit when it directly commands, within the limits God has set for each spirit, that limit being in the case of man’s soul, his body or its willed and imagined functions, and in the case of angelic natures that limit is that bodies are only subject in local movement, not as to their nature.

    A poltergeist cannot turn a pan into a water fountain, it can only use a pan it is moving to get water, exactly as a man, visibly holding the pan could. And the angel of the sun cannot turn its fire into cold water.

    Supposing this were not so, you would not be able to even lift a pen as you willed it. It would be a metaphysical impossibility.

    3) Since I mention the laws of Principia Mathematica come only after these two, I can add that I think one of the first three is ill formulated. It is the one where the statement is formulated so as to imply that straight motion in a straight line, unaffected by acceleration or other outer forces, is physically equivalent to rest in one place.

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  41. “This is how nature and the universe works, my esteemed colleague: God created it with laws, and these laws are there, regardless of whether God created angels to suspend or override them, and regardless of whether God created humans to discover, observe, and harness them for his own purposes (regarding the latter: reality remains even if humans aren’t there to observe it).”

    You seem to imply that He created it as a music box.

    I think He created it as a harp, and He is playing it, or it wouldn’t work.

    As to distinction between “supernatural” and “natural” cause, this distinction ONLY applies:

    * a) as to IMMEDIATE cause. All ultimate causation is supernatural, since by God;
    * b) as to immediate cause in cases where the direct cause is USUALLY a natural one.

    Thus, healing illnesses usually involves natural processes or is for some illnesses impossible altogether.

    For Hansen’s disease, popularily called leprosy, the natural immediate cause for curing it as known to doctors is antibiotics taken regularly for six months.

    So, if a leper has NOT had access to modern cures, IS in a fully leprous state, no way near being cured, and someone tells him “I will it : be thou clean” and he is immediately normal in skin and muscles and nerves, both as to colour and texture and as to functions, well, obviously the cause of his cure was a supernatural one.

    But this supposes we do know either leprosy to be incurable naturally (as previously, which was at least right insofar as natural cure was then inaccessible) or curable by six months of certain antibiotics. In cases where we do not study causality at close range, we cannot say that a direct supernatural causation would necessarily be a miraculous one, and we know from prima and secunda via that in some cases this is not so.

    So, supposing your theory of causation of movements “in solar system, including Earth as a normal part of it” is “orbits follow the combined vectorial actions of gravitation from other mass and own inertia from previous moment’s movement”, how do you verify this?

    Obviously, you have not weighed the mass of Jupiter, by stopping solar system into a freeze and then inserting Jupiter into one of a pair of very giant scales above the sun, and then inserted Earth sized weights in the other bowl.

    Still less have you added or subtracted any orbit from it in a way where you can certainly say your action implies this theory as being the ordinary cause of orbits.

    So, your case in astronomy as going to be somewhat different from that of doctors who know leprosy is not ordinarily cured by a direct fiat from God.

    By the way, I start to get impatient about arguments directly pertaining to astronomy, rather than just your repetition of arguments already given for a certain view of science or causation.

    By the way, the two occasionalists were Nicholas Malebranche and Arnold Geulincx – had to look up. Only one of them was condemned in his writings. And it was the one who touched on responsability of freewill. But both would have disagreed with St Thomas and with both of us, and agreed with a certain Arab, about flax and fire.

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  42. “First sentence: my point exactly. Second sentence: I AM an amateur astronomer (I own a telescope and use it often); I AM an engineer personally and directly involved with space technology.”

    So much the better. Then you are the right person to take this discussion with.

    “For the rest: again, just because one claim is impossible to explain,” – namely by purely secondary causes functioning so as to leave the primary cause somewhere far off in the background in the matter – “it does NOT follow that ANY other claim within the same bounds of assumption is impossible to explain.” And you are still not meaning “impossible to explain absolutely”, but with the qualifications given.

    True enough.

    But the claim which is possible to explain without “pulling in God and angels” may have another disqualification. Such as its verification not being directly in senses, and not being even logical unless one is first excluding God and angels. I e, unless one is making a somewhat circular argument of proof.

    Like following syllogism:
    * “we know God and angels have nothing directly to do with movements of celestial objects, because Heliocentric-Newtonian explanation of Laplace does without them”
    * “we know Heliocentric-Newtonian explanation by Laplace is the true one, because we have just established that God and angels have nothing directly to do with movements of celestial objects.”

    ALL the while our senses of sight and inner ears are telling us the corrolary of the explanation, namely an earth moving around itself and around the sun, and sun not moving daily at all much seen from us, is contrary to direct observation.

    “No need to leave the realm of physical science.”

    You mean “corporeal-physical causes”?

    “You can if you want to, but nothing is achieved,”

    Beyond, of course, reestablishing the primacy of observation in them.

    “and any conclusions reached beyond physical science have zero credibility within science.”

    You do not mean logical credibility within the science, you mean social “credibility” within a specified scientific community.

    “Moreover, given the nature of science, a consequence of deriving claims beyond it is the lack of usefulness to harness and use the “new” knowledge to 1) derive and extrapolate to new, further explanations”

    Establish God and angels with Tychonian Geocentrism (since Newtonian-only causes fail to explain it) and you have a very useful tool for studying claims about the miraculous in history.

    “and 2) derive applications of the knowledge to manipulate matter and objects (such as building cars or computers).”

    So GLAD you brought this up!

    You see, the supposed mechanisms given for functioning of solar system have ZERO applicability per se.

    You are NOT going to try to make “earth rotate slower,” so we can get a night-and-day of 25 hours instead of 24. You are not going to build an extra artificial planet “other side of earth’s orbit” to make more room in space for humanity. As far as I know, at least. So, your explanation for the solar system’s functioning has zero direct applicability.

    It has some applicability for making a good model for testing the mechanism.

    Now, you have as certainly as I heard the classical “stone on string” model.

    It is a bad one. It is bad, because over and above string possibly representing an inward force, possibly vectorially the x factor between stone’s inertia forward and the circular orbit of stone, first and foremost a solid object with a cohesion superior to the tug of the stone on it.

    Precisely as, if you construct a building, you will not say it stays up because upward and inward forces exactly equal downward and outward forces, you will say, rather, that its stability is superior in its material parts and their cohesion, to the downward and outward forces.

    Though, when it comes to vaults, downward forces are actually used to add to stability of cohesion.

    So, “stone on string” is a bad one.

    However, object having a two or threedimensional freedom of movement around an object with magnetic or electric attraction, is a fairly good model.

    Did I really forget to post a link to Don Petit’s water droplets?

    Here we go:

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  43. You see, though science cannot directly observe immaterial observations, it can be used to exclude proposed natural ones.

    Precisely as a medical doctor will deny the “natural” explanation that Christ cured leprosy by hypnosis. On the pertinent ground that leprosy is not among the parameters of the body which can be affected by hypnosis, let alone instantaneously so.

    And when you claim that scientists never affirm supernatural explanations, you are forgetting the medical doctors in Lourdes, who, for each case a miracle has been recognised by the Church, have negated all known natural explanations. And probably even all known or potential but as yet unexplored ones.

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  44. Now, you have indulged in some bad exegesis of what I wrote and proposed.

    “If causations are outside of your odd definition of “science,” then “science” has lost purpose. It has literally become an identical synonym for “observation.””

    I reaffirm my position : for some phenomena, like socker players and movements of the ball, both causation and effect are within the limits of direct observation.

    But for some phenomena, science can indeed directly observe an effect, but cannot observe causation.

    For instance, electrons may or may not be good science, I am not denying they are, I am not affirming they are. But it is obvious that electrons are not directly observed. They are an explanation given outside the realm of the observable. They may be correct science, but they are not in any meaningful meaning of the word empirical in themselves.

    Now, to some more arguments of yours:

    “Incorrect. The lack of observable motion between ourselves the observer, and the earth the object, is the empirical datum. Just like when you get into an elevator, after initial acceleration, the empirical datum is: zero relative motion between yourself and the observable surroundings. To a geocentrist, the elevator has been proven to stop moving. To a heliocentrist, the available empirical data is insufficient to prove motion OR non-motion.”

    In nearly all elevators I have had access to as a child, I could observe the floors moving downwards outside door windows as the elevator moved up.

    In some where this is not so, the floors one passes are shown by lamps lit next to numeral or by display of numeral.

    Also, I heard machinery of elevator while feeling the tug of acceleration, and could therefore conclude movement might be going on as machinery was sounding.

    BUT, the main thing is that your geocentrist is – even without this – a strawman.

    My real position is more like this : I could (if I were deaf and the elevator had interior doors that were closed) believe that movement had stopped, until the deceleration when elevator slowed down showed me that it hadn’t that it was now it was stopping. And my just barely possible assumption movement had stopped as soon as I no longer felt acceleration would be further corrected as soon as I stepped out and looked out through a window and saw how high up I had come.

    My position about inner ears is not that they absolutely beyond any appeal prove earth stands still. My position is that they preliminarily prove this to be probably so, but this assumption is theoretically subject to correction by further sense proof.

    Now, excluding God and angels is NOT further sense proof, it is in my book just bad and sloppy philosophy.

    So, will you FINALLY start getting to the supposed further sense proof according to which we should reevaluate the evidence of the inner ears?

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  45. Esteban was asked and denied the charge. He has said he has little time for now. Meanwhile, “anonymous” – or another such – has made some attempts of arguing between the insults, and I have answered.

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  46. Link again? No. Link is sufficiently close still. Copy my dialogue with Esteban here too? Yes, I got his permission:

    HGLundahl :

    You are not the guy who anonymously commented on this one? Here:

    [linking here]

    EMaradona :

    Oh my gosh I just read the anonymous comments… absolutely not

    we may certainly disagree at even an emotional level but I can never and have never gone as low as insulting my adversary.

    these last couple weeks have been very intense at work… If I’m unable to find time to respond to our debates by this weekend, I may unfortunately have to recuse myself from the debate. I had plenty of time 4 or 5 weeks ago, but this is no longer the case.

    HGLundahl :

    I thought so after posting the comment, so I thought I had better get your what is it called when you tell you are not the guilty one when you are’nt ….

    May I post the q and your response under the debate thread so as to keep you free from suspicions?

    As to your getting lots of work, I am not really surprised. I mean, someone might be more foreknowing of the probable outcome than you are (after following me for ten years or part of it) and therefore might have thought it a great idea to get you more to do.

    For my own part, I have been given less time on the internet.

    A library with generous hours and you could line up for another internet ticket every forty minutes has just excluded me because of my macramé bag.

    But if I get another debater, I will try to make it a priority to satisfy him with responses.

    If you could please try to get a standin?

    I wouldn’t even have thought of you in a very tired moment, unless the anonymous person hadn’t used an appeal to Catholic Tradition.

    EMaradona :

    Yes feel free to use my answer on the thread of the anonymous guy, I appreciate your effort to clear my name.

    HGLundahl :

    Wonderful, will do. He revealed himself as a non-Catholic anyway, but even so.

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