Re: Copernicus was wrong?

From: Moorad Alexanian (
Date: Mon Aug 06 2001 - 09:47:58 EDT

  • Next message: Ted Davis: "Copernicus: simply science?"

    The discovery of Copernicus was a scientific discovery about the solar
    system and has nothing to do with humans. He may have displaced the earth,
    but we know nothing about displacing humans. Moorad

    -----Original Message-----
    From: Ted Davis <>
    To: <>
    Date: Sunday, August 05, 2001 10:39 PM
    Subject: Copernicus was wrong?

    >Glenn Morton writes (correctly) that Copernicus is usually credited with
    >moving humans out of the center. However, as I have noted in other forums
    >several times, this very common notion is very wrong. In short, Copernicus
    >did not move humanity from the center--because we were never there!
    >and others since antiquity were well aware of the earth's approximate size
    >and shape, and medieval intellectuals were fully aware that we are a very
    >significant 4000 miles from the "center" of the universe. Furthermore, it
    >was not desireable to be in the center at all, for that's where hell was
    >thought to be. This feature of Copernicanism--moving humanity away from
    >center--did not bother people at the time; what bothered them was the
    >ridiculous claim that the earth is moving.
    >The myth that Copernicus assaulted human dignity may have been invented by
    >Freud, as part of a selve-serving idea that Copernicus moved us out of the
    >center, Darwin reduced our uniqueness, and he (Freud) had assaulted our
    >rationality. I say "may have been," b/c I am not confident this part of
    >the story is right. But I'm confident the first paragraph is right.
    >Ted Davis
    >Edward B. Davis
    >Professor of the History of Science
    >Messiah College
    >Grantham, PA 17027
    >717-766-2511 (voice)
    >717-691-6002 (fax)

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