Monday, November 15, 2010

My Refusal to Wrangle With Robert Sungenis Over Geocentrism and a Supposedly 10,000-Year-Old, Non-Rotating Earth


[Hulton Archive/Getty Images ]
Astronaut James Irwin salutes in front of the landing module of Apollo 15 in August 1971.
Asked what he believed about the lunar landings, Robert Sungenis stated on my site: "I do not know whether they were real or fake."

[Robert Sungenis' words will be in blue]

I'm one of the few Catholic apologists who has always tried to stay out of all the continual controversies that seem to surround Robert Sungenis, whether regarding his beliefs about Jews or his eccentric views on cosmology (and also issues such as anthropomorphism and whether God can change and whether He has emotions, and so forth).

Bob can believe whatever he likes about the earth and whether it rotates; how old it is, etc. Others will disagree with him as well, and this ought not be the cause for personal attacks or disparagement of someone's Catholicism. That is the line that ought not be crossed. I haven't questioned his Catholicism, and he shouldn't question my commitment to the magisterium of the Catholic Church.

Moreover, Sungenis wants to make a matter of infallibility a thing that is assuredly not (geocentrism). That's why he feels so strongly about the issue, because he believes it is the infallible teaching of the Church; therefore, that individual Catholics are required to accept the view, and that apologists should defend it alongside transubstantiation or the Immaculate Conception of Mary.

Geocentrism is not something I wish to devote any time to. I am accountable for how I spend my time under God (i.e., stewardship). It's my life and my abilities that I am trying to devote to what I feel is most important at any given time. That is between myself and God (and those I am directly accountable to, such as my publishers), not between myself and Bob Sungenis, or any other apologist or critic of mine, who want to dictate to me how I ought to spend my time. But Bob doesn't buy that.

I am under no obligation to debate at extreme length (which is what any debate with Bob involves) anything and everything I may make a passing comment about. I have referred people to other exchanges where this was done (particularly my friend Gary Hoge's replies to him on these matters -- Bob has stated that Gary was a complete gentleman in his replies). See:

Scientific Disproof of Geocentrism
(Ken Cole, with four replies by Sungenis and four counter-replies from Cole) [2nd alternate URL]
As the Universe Turns: Is it physically possible for the whole universe to orbit the earth? (Gary Hoge)
Why the earth can't be the center of mass of the universe (+ Part II) (Gary Hoge vs. Robert Sungenis)

Debate between Gary Hoge and Robert Sungenis on Geocentrism

One James B. Phillips came onto a combox of mine, announcing the new paper Bob was writing: critiquing my stated positions on the Galileo affair: setting the stage for the latest hoped-for pseudo-controversy and tempest-in-a-teapot. I replied:

I have neither time nor desire to interact with this. I know Bob's position, and disagree with it. My own position regarding Galileo has been laid out in several papers and in my new book on science.

If Bob wants to start critiquing me now, let him do it if he must. I've deliberately stayed out of all the internal conflicts between him and other apologists / Catholics, and he knows this. I don't think it is wise or prudent for him to start writing against my positions now, but I also believe in free speech, so he is free to do as he wishes.

I am also free to decide how to spend my time, and I choose to do so in defending Christianity and Catholicism in particular against the charges of atheists, not misguided accusations of fellow Catholics that I have inaccurately presented things.
Bob is disturbed that I am inclined to accept what NASA tells me about science. This makes perfect sense, I reckon, since in one exchange the following skepticism regarding the authenticity of the moon landings is documented:

Jordanes had stated earlier in the combox thread that he didn't think you asserted that the moon landings were faked. Someone ("Pete") produced "documentation" that you did believe this. I find this to be insufficiently documented, as it was based on "gossipy"-type hearsay from a former associate, and from a post on a hostile website. So if you think the lunar landings actually happened, I'd be happy to hear you clarify that, so that it can be stated as a matter of record on my blog that this is an unjust charge against you.

I do not know whether they were real or fake.
He expanded his "lunar skepticism" to 9-11 as well in his piece, "Response to Jared Olar":

As for my right to be an agnostic about the moon landings, I’m certainly not the first and won’t be the last. Any intelligent person who has studied the issue is going to have doubts as to whether the United States had the capability to put a man on the moon in 1969 when, for example, the processing power of a 1969 computer was less than one-tenth of that in a typical cell phone of today, especially when the U.S. was at the height of the Cold War and was still stinging from the Russian launch of Sputnik in 1957, and especially when the ability to fake a moon landing in a hidden studio was well within the talents of Hollywood technicians. My suspicions are only heightened when I see Neil Armstrong holding an American flag on the moon and suddenly a gust of wind forces the lower part of the flag to move up to the upper part of the flag. Any fool knows there is no wind on the moon. You can see this video on the Internet and in the documentaries made of the moon landings. [see one lengthy critique of this theory] Yes, and I might as well tell you so I can beat Mr. Olar to the punch: I also believe 9-11 was an inside job and that the Muslims had nothing to do with it, and I maintain this belief along with several thousand other intelligent scientists, engineers, military personnel, airline pilots, firemen and the like who, from their expertise in this area, are thoroughly convinced that we have been sold a bill of goods by our government.

I'm obviously part of this nefarious conspiracy, myself, being named Armstrong . . .

On his own site, Bob wrote:

Accordingly, an earth of approximately 10,000 to 15,000 years old agrees with much current scientific evidence on a number of fronts.

He also states in another article:

. . . our model holds that the universe rotates around the earth once per day, hence the aether also rotates around the earth once per day, and thus, all the objects we see from earth are rotating with the aether. [and he believes that the earth doesn't rotate]

And (I confess this is my favorite) in a recent article (7-21-10) Bob presented a lengthy section entitled "Dinosaurs Co-Exited With Humans."


The image “http://mulibraries.missouri.edu/specialcollections/images/hamlinii1.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

And again, he has also stated (9-14-10):

If the earth is motionless in the center of the universe then the Big Bang is not possible. . . . The point in fact remains that a central and immobile Earth was, and is, the simplest and best answer to account for the equi-distribution of all objects, energies and forces we see surrounding us in the universe, everything from gamma rays, X-rays, the cosmic microwave background radiation, quasars, galaxy distribution, etc.

As I said, I have no interest in debating what I consider to be an altogether ludicrous position: held by virtually no scientists of any repute.

I must say that I don't feel so badly about disagreeing with Robert Sungenis, concerning geocentrism and the permissibility of belief in theistic evolution, since I'm in very good company. He feels perfectly entitled to disagree with the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, (as well as Pope John Paul II) on the question of the supposed young earth and evolution, and on whether the latter was condemned by the Church "de fide." The pope says no; Bob says yes, and he is fool enough to think that we ought to accept his word simply because he says it, rather than believe that the pope knows better than he about what the Church teaches and doesn't teach, and permits as a belief and doesn't permit:

I stand by what I said, and I will even make it clearer and stronger in my follow up: Evolution is a heretical view of cosmogony due to the de fide statements from the magisterium given to us over 650 years that deny evolution and affirm ex nihilo creation. Those de fide statements are found in Lateran Council IV and Vatican Council I. . . .

As for whether we can criticize Pope Benedict for listening to the “vast majority of (expert) scientists,” we can do so if Pope Benedict has made a concerted effort to ignore the other scientists in the world who have shown that evolution is impossible. Unfortunately, Pope Benedict has decided to ignore the alternative evidence and give more credence to evolution, just as John Paul II did. I know from various colleagues who talked with Cardinal Ratzinger, face to face at the Vatican. The Cardinal was presented with scientific evidence on stratigraphy showing that the geologic column was not created over millions of years but was made over a matter of months, but he simply rejected the evidence and sided with the status quo of evolution, and he did so by his own private judgment, even though he has no scientific credentials. That is what I am talking about, David. I don’t make my accusations lightly.

(Question 296: "Are you being too harsh on Pope Benedict regarding evolution?")

This is, of course, a Protestant-like private judgment to a remarkable degree (a thing sadly common among many radical Catholic reactionaries, and is its own refutation. In acting in this fashion, Bob shows himself quite similar in approach to Martin Luther at the Diet of Worms in 1521: standing there defying the Church and thinking he knew better than Holy Mother Church.

446 comments:

1 – 200 of 446   Newer›   Newest»
Frank said...

Ken Cole's great dialogue with Sungenis on geocentrism used to be just in the Web archives but it has been posted here.

http://www.philvaz.com/apologetics/GeocentrismDisproved.htm

Cole did a really great job of explaining things. He clearly bested Sungenis in that exchange and met the $1000 challenge. I'm not too surprised that he never got the money though.

messenger said...

"This is, of course, arrogance and (purely Protestant) private judgment to a truly ridiculous degree (a thing sadly common among many Catholics who label themselves so-called "traditionalists"), and is its own refutation. In acting in this ludicrous fashion, Bob shows himself not a whit different in approach from Martin Luther at the Diet of Worms in 1521: standing there defying the Church and thinking he knew better than Holy Mother Church. Bob Sungenis has often fallen into the same exact error as Luther and the early Protestants."

But David, if Bob is holding to a teaching of the Church and you are holding to a personal thought that contradicts the original teaching, then who is acting like the Protestant?

Thanks,
Michael

Dave Armstrong said...

If geocentrism is a teaching of the Church, then why doesn't the Holy Father and the previous pope hold to it? And why am I somehow less of a Catholic than Sungenis because I take the same position that they do?

Two popes and lil' ol' me vs. Bob Sungenis. Let the reader decide . . .

Bob knows more about what the Church teaches and about the magisterium than popes do. He knows more about science than Einstein; more about soteriology than Scott Hahn, etc. One does detect a certain pattern, doesn't one?

juscot said...

Michael is right Dave. You are holding to a personal thought and belief instead of the original teaching of the Church Fathers. Nearly all the Fathers believed in Geocentricism. They knew about heliocentricism, but they they were geocentrics, Why? Well, that story about Joshua long day where the sun stood still (Joshua 10:12-13) might be one reason. The sn stood still, not the earth. Then there's that story about Ahaz's sundial were the sun moved backward. (Isa 38:8) And then there's all these referances through out the Bible about sunrise/sunset that only make sense if the earth is stationary. Yeah, I think the Church Fathers were rigtht to reject heliocentricism for geocentricism. and you might try reading Sngensis's book. You don't want to look as foolish as Shea did when he condemned Jones's book without even reading it.

Dave Armstrong said...

If I'm not gonna engage this with Bob, I'm certainly not gonna do it with you. Nice try.

Frank said...

Oh come on guys knock it off. This has been settled way higher up on the food chain than you.

"The unshrinking defense of the Holy Scripture, however, does not require that we should equally uphold all the opinions which each of the Fathers or the more recent interpreters have put forth in explaining it; for it may be that, in commenting on passages where physical matters occur, they have sometimes expressed the ideas of their own times, and thus made statements which in these days have been abandoned as incorrect. Hence, in their interpretations, we must carefully note what they lay down as belonging to faith, or as intimately connected with faith -- what they are unanimous in. For 'in those things which do not come under the obligation of faith, the Saints were at liberty to hold divergent opinions, just as we ourselves are,' according to the saying of St. Thomas....The Catholic interpreter, although he should show that those facts of natural science which investigators affirm to be now quite certain are not contrary to the Scripture rightly explained, must nevertheless always bear in mind, that much which has been held and proved as certain has afterwards been called in question and rejected. And if writers on physics travel outside the boundaries of their own branch, and carry their erroneous teaching into the domain of philosophy, let them be handed over to philosophers for refutation."

Leo XIII, Providentissimus Deus 19

"The first and greatest care of Leo XIII was to set forth the teaching on the truth of the Sacred Books and to defend it from attack. Hence with grave words did he proclaim that there is no error whatsoever if the sacred writer, speaking of things of the physical order "went by what sensibly appeared" as the Angelic Doctor says, speaking either "in figurative language, or in terms which were commonly used at the time, and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even among the most eminent men of science." For "the sacred writers, or to speak more accurately - the words are St. Augustine's - the Holy Spirit, Who spoke by them, did not intend to teach men these things - that is the essential nature of the things of the universe - things in no way profitable to salvation"; which principle "will apply to cognate sciences, and especially to history," that is, by refuting, "in a somewhat similar way the fallacies of the adversaries and defending the historical truth of Sacred Scripture from their attacks."

Pius XII, Divino Afflante Spiritu 3

Dave Armstrong said...

EXCELLENT! I'm delighted to see that my opinions on the matter are completely supported by popes.

Dave Armstrong said...

No problem for Sungenis, of course. He'll simply say that Popes Leo XIII and Pius XII were wrong and he is right. They don't know their science and philosophy (and logic) as well as he does, etc. . . .

Bob has an answer for everything. We know he's perfectly capable of such an answer. I'm not even exaggerating (sure wish I was), because he did exactly this with Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI when it came to evolution and the alleged young earth.

If Bob knows better, he's the first to tell anyone and everyone (including popes) that he does!

Frank said...

Well maybe. Or he'll claim that Leo XIII and Pius XII weren't really talking about geocentrism (or the age of the earth, or evolution) but those other famous and prominent areas where it has been claimed that natural appearances and scientific observation conflict with the Bible and the Catholic Faith. You know, those other ones. Cmon you know which ones I mean. Don't you?

Neil Parille said...

Dave,

Benedict thinks that the Pastoral Epistles were not written by Paul.

Is he wrong?

Reginald de Piperno said...

Had I known that juscot is a geocentrist, I wouldn't have wasted time and electrons replying to him in that other thread. Caveat lector. :-(

RdP

Jordanes said...

Benedict thinks that the Pastoral Epistles were not written by Paul.

Not only were the Pastoral Epistles not written by St. Paul, but neither were St. Paul's other epistles written by St. Paul. Only a few verses in I Corinthians, Galatians, Colossians, II Thessalonians, and Philemon were actually written by him. The remainder of St. Paul's epistles were written by amanuenses. We even know the name of the man who wrote St. Paul's epistle of the Romans -- his name was Tertius (Rom. 16:22).

Anyway, the beliefs of popes are not binding unless they are magisterial, expressing something taught at all times by the Church as an article of the Faith. Geocentrism has never been held by the Church to be an article of the Faith. Thus, we cannot dismiss what Leo XIII and Pius XII taught on the interpretation of Holy Scripture, but what Benedict XVI may or may not believe about how St. Paul's Pastoral Epistles were written is a you-can-take-it-or-leave-it thing.

Dave Armstrong said...

Hi Neil,

Where and when did he state this (assuming you are correct)?

johnmartin said...

Some relevant points Robert makes concerning geocentrism as taught by the church are as follows -“The proposition that the sun is the center of the world and does not move from its
place is absurd and false philosophically and formally heretical, because it is
expressly contrary to the Holy Scripture.”

“The proposition that the Earth is not the center of the world and immovable but
that it moves, and also with a diurnal motion, is equally absurd and false
philosophically and theologically considered at least erroneous in faith.”

After the 1633 decree, Pope Urban VIII sent letters to all the papal nuncios and universities of Europe stating that Galileo had been condemned and that heliocentrism was branded as “formally heretical” and not to be taught by anyone. 4 Most important is the fact that the 1633 decision condemning heliocentrism as formally heretical has never been overturned by the Catholic Church, even to the present day.

Prior to Urban VIII there was Paul V. In 1615 he appointed a commission of 11 cardinals, including Cardinal Robert Bellarmine, to analyze the claims of Galileo. They reported back to the pope that Galileo’s thesis that the earth revolved around the sun was “formally heretical.” From this report, the pope had the Sacred Congregation issue a canonical injunction against Galileo to renounce his teachings and never again teach on the subject for the rest of his life.

Prior to Paul V was Pius V and the Catechism of the Council of Trent. In four separate places of the 1566 catechism the geocentric conception of the universe is taught. This is especially significant since the preface states that the catechism was written with the goal of teaching and clarifying the doctrinal beliefs of the Catholic Church.

Prior to Pius V was the whole medieval period, led by Thomas Aquinas. Except for two, all of them were geocentrists. Prior to the medievals were the Church Fathers who were in absolute unanimous consensus on geocentrism. Moreover, their consensus was not by default. They held to their position of geocentrism against many of the Greek philosophers who were teaching heliocentrism, namely, the Pythagorean school.

After Urban VII, in 1664, there was Alexander VII. He signed his name to the Index of Forbidden books, and included in the forbidden list of books the teachings of heliocentrism by Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler.

After Alexander VII was Benedict XIV who in 1741 and 1758 continued to keep Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler on the Index and did not allow any book written on heliocentrism to be published that treated it as a thesis.

Dave, this is information you cannot ignore or easily pass over. The ordinary magesterium has spoken repeatedly. Evidently geocentrism has been revealed by God.

tbc . . .

JM

johnmartin said...

I've had a brief review of the centre of mass argument by Gary Hoge and its seems to be bogus based upon my calcs -

Estimated mass of the universe is 8 × 10^52 kg

Estimated universe size is at least 13 billion light years

1 light year = 1x10^12 miles

Therefore the size of the universe is = 1x10^12x 13x10^9 =1.3x10^22 miles wide

If the earth is at the centre of the universe then it is 6.5x10^21 miles from the edge of the universe.

The mass of the solar system is 1.992 x 10^30kg

We can assume the universes mass is equally distributed or distributed around the universe in shells. Either way the answer is the same regarding this calculation.

Worst case scenario regarding the position of the centre of mass of the universe is when all the planets and sun are to align themselves, making the centre of mass of the solar system located within the sun. Does this change the centre of mass of the universe outside of the earth?

The distance from the earth to the sun is 93 million miles

The centre of mass should be the balancing point of the universe within the earth. If we take the centre of mass of the universe

Using a = 93 million miles.

M1= 8 × 10^52
M2= 1.992 x 10^30

R1 = 93 x 10^6 x (1.992 x 10^30/(8 × 10^52+1.992 x 10^30)
= 93 x 10^6 x 2.4 x 10^-23
2.3 x 10 ^ -15 miles
1.61 x 10^6 x 2.3 x 10 ^ -15 = 3.7 x 10^-9 mm

Which means, when using the centre of mass concept, in the worst case scenario when the sun and planets align the centre of mass of the universe does not move.

Anyone is welcome to check my calcs.

Regardless of the calcs the centre of mass concept is bogus anyway. Its simply only a mathematical figment based upon an assumed that doesn't stand up to logical scrutiny. Lets take the example of two object orbiting each other. What accounts for this mechanism in Newtons mechanics? The bodies must orbit the centre of mass, which itself has not physical property other than any other point, other than this - it is a mathematical average. Simply put - a mathematical average doesn't explain orbiting bodies with a physical mechanism. A mathematical average is only a tool to quantify motion within a numerical model that assumes an idealized understanding of gravity. Therefore the centre of mass problem is merely an idealized invention and not real. Therefore it is not a realistic refutation of geocentrism.

Newtonian mechanics requires us to believe that 1. bodies resting next to each other with a zero distance between the bodies have an infinite gravitational pull. 2. Gravitational force travels instantaneously through space, even though relativity restricts the fastest movement to c. 3. Pretty much doesn't have an answer to the three body problem. 4. Doesn't account for the increasing Saturn Orbit. 5. Doesn't seem to account for slow satellite decay.

In short, geocentrist's believe Newtonian mechanics is a useful, but inadequate model of orbital mechanics and gravitational theory.

JM

johnmartin said...

According to the Catechism of the Council of Trent the universe is geocentric -

“…He also gave to the sun its brilliancy, and to the moon and stars their beauty; and that they might be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years. He so ordered the celestial bodies in a certain and uniform course, that nothing varies more than their continual revolution, while nothing is more fixed than their variety.”

“The earth also God commanded to stand in the midst of the world, rooted in its own foundation and made the mountains ascend, and the plains descend into the place which he had founded for them.…”

“But though God is present in all places and in all things, without being bound by any limits, as has been already said, yet in Sacred Scripture it is frequently said that He has His dwelling in heaven. And the reason is because the heavens which we see above our heads are the noblest part of the world, remain ever Incorruptible, surpass all other bodies in power, grandeur and beauty, and are endowed with fixed and regular motion.”

“…all goods both natural and supernatural, must be recognized as gifts given by Him from whom, as the Church proclaims, proceed all blessings. If the sun by its light, if the stars by their motion and revolutions, are of any advantage to man; if the air with which we are surrounded serves to sustain us...nay, those very causes which philosophers call secondary, we should regard as so many hands of God, wonderfully fashioned and fitted for our use, by means of which He distributes His blessings and diffuses them everywhere in profusion.

JM

Frank said...

You are probably right not even to get into this stuff Dave. This topic has been pounded over at the Catholic answers forum and these guys never quit. Here is the way I see it. First, Popes Leo XIII and Pius XII put the nix on the appeal to the Fathers on scientific matters. This is not a matter of faith or morals and therefore their witness does not bind and is not magisterial. Period.

With respect to the Galileo business it does not appear that there is any document that actually bears a Pope's signature condemning heliocentrism. Jeff Mirus is good on this,

http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?id=559

The Catholic Encyclopedia says this about it,

"As to the decree of 1616, we have seen that it was issued by the Congregation of the Index, which can raise no difficulty in regard of infallibility, this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree. Nor is the case altered by the fact that the pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi, that is to say, to the extent needful for the purpose intended, namely to prohibit the circulation of writings which were judged harmful. The pope and his assessors may have been wrong in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.

As to the second trial in 1633, this was concerned not so much with the doctrine as with the person of Galileo, and his manifest breach of contract in not abstaining from the active propaganda of Copernican doctrines. The sentence, passed upon him in consequence, clearly implied a condemnation of Copernicanism, but it made no formal decree on the subject, and did not receive the pope's signature."

You can better believe that if on another topic Sungenis wanted to discount it was found that the Pope had never formally signed off on it he would be trumpeting that to high heaven.

johnmartin has pretty much misrepresented Hoges argument so there is not much need to answer that. And if the Bible itself can be read according to the language of the senses and does not become a source of doctrine on the physical universe how much more would that be true of the Catechism of Trent which can certainly be read the same way. It is just using the language of the Bible after all so I don't see how that adds anything to the argument.

Popes Leo XIII and Pius XII were clear on this. These scientific matters are not part of the deposit of Faith and these guys are way, way out of line making these issues into some sort of bottom line that all Catholics have to believe.

Dave Armstrong said...

Those were excellent papal quotes, Frank; very helpful and relevant to the discussion.

It's ironic that Sungenis would rather accept the primitive science of Church fathers rather than the modern science of popes in the last 130 years and their statements that this science does not bind present Catholics.

These popes are the magisterium today. Catholics have a living, breathing, ongoing authority; we don't just hearken back to a Golden Era like the Protestants do with Luther, Calvin and "Reformation" confessions.

Our guidance is ongoing. But Sungenis wants to hang around 600 A.D. and the science of that period, for some reason.

johnmartin said...

F- You are probably right not even to get into this stuff Dave. This topic has been pounded over at the Catholic answers forum and these guys never quit. Here is the way I see it. First, Popes Leo XIII and Pius XII put the nix on the appeal to the Fathers on scientific matters. This is not a matter of faith or morals and therefore their witness does not bind and is not magisterial. Period.

JM – But the Popes cited in my recent posts say the motionless earth is a matter of faith so what the church fathers have to say on the matter is relevant to the faith.

With respect to the Galileo business it does not appear that there is any document that actually bears a Pope's signature condemning heliocentrism. Jeff Mirus is good on this,

http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?id=559

JM – The Papal Bulls cited on this blog condemn heliocentrism and these are also cited in the article you linked to.

F- The Catholic Encyclopedia says this about it,

"As to the decree of 1616, we have seen that it was issued by the Congregation of the Index, which can raise no difficulty in regard of infallibility, this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree. Nor is the case altered by the fact that the pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi, that is to say, to the extent needful for the purpose intended, namely to prohibit the circulation of writings which were judged harmful. The pope and his assessors may have been wrong in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.

JM- The Catholic Encyclopedia has less authority than the congregation and far less authority than the papal bulls, scripture and church fathers. In fact the Catholic Encyclopedia is merely a fallible guide with no more authority than any other document with an imprimatur. Its very low when it comes to authority.

F- As to the second trial in 1633, this was concerned not so much with the doctrine as with the person of Galileo, and his manifest breach of contract in not abstaining from the active propaganda of Copernican doctrines. The sentence, passed upon him in consequence, clearly implied a condemnation of Copernicanism, but it made no formal decree on the subject, and did not receive the pope's signature."

JM- If the sentence was never overturned then Catholics are bound to it, especially in light of the fact that Popes have released Papal Bulls stating a moving earth is against the faith.

F- johnmartin has pretty much misrepresented Hoges argument so there is not much need to answer that. And if the Bible itself can be read according to the language of the senses and does not become a source of doctrine on the physical universe how much more would that be true of the Catechism of Trent which can certainly be read the same way. It is just using the language of the Bible after all so I don't see how that adds anything to the argument.

JM- In what way did I misrepresent Hoges argument? In the mean time I’ll take your statement seriously and review Hoges argument in detail and then repost in due time.

Currently, you are merely hand waving through the catechism of the Council of Trent which clearly indicates the stars move and the earth is motionless. You have a lot of work to do to overcome the universal consent of the church fathers, the literal sense of the scriptures as understood by the fathers, the Papal documents condemning a moving earth, the books of Copernicus and Galileo placed on the index of forbidden books and the lack of scientific support for a moving earth.

F- Popes Leo XIII and Pius XII were clear on this. These scientific matters are not part of the deposit of Faith and these guys are way, way out of line making these issues into some sort of bottom line that all Catholics have to believe.
. . .

johnmartin said...

JM – You quoted Leo XIII PD – “"The unshrinking defense of the Holy Scripture, however, does not require that we should equally uphold all the opinions which each of the Fathers”. This only means the fathers had opinions on matters and these opinions are not binding because they were not universally held. We know this from the context of PD which states “each of the Fathers” as individuals. Otherwise PD has contradicted Trent which says the church is bound by the universal consent of the fathers.

You cite “Hence, in their interpretations, we must carefully note what they lay down as belonging to faith, or as intimately connected with faith -- what they are unanimous in.” But you failed to notice PD says “what they are unanimous in”, which is exactly what Trent said about the Fathers. When we are careful about what the Fathers are unanimous in, we note they were unanimous in affirming geocentrism as being revealed by God. After all they could not have known geocentrism was true from science, therefore their conclusion must have been from faith.

You cite “those things which do not come under the obligation of faith, the Saints were at liberty to hold divergent opinions, just as we ourselves are,” which is no problem for geocentrism because there was universal consent on geocentrism which makes it come under faith. This is so because the fathers taught it was revealed by God from scripture as part of the creation event. Regarding the second part of the statement, the divergent opinions are held by Saints when the thing is not under faith – not a problem at all.

You cite “there is no error whatsoever if the sacred writer, speaking of things of the physical order "went by what sensibly appeared", which is not a problem for geocentrism because what is sensibly appeared conforms to what has been revealed. We see the sun and stars move around the earth because they really do move around the earth. Trying to apply "went by what sensibly appeared", to avoid the conclusion that the church fathers were unanimous and scripture teaches geocentrism along with Popes does nothing for your case. Of course the scriptures and fathers "went by what sensibly appeared". How could they do otherwise? Were they meant to read scripture then look at the universe and say it looks like the sun, moon and stars orbit the earth and the scriptures say the sun, moon and stars move, so we are to say otherwise, therefore the Earth really moves and the sun and stars do not move. Rather absurd position to take.

You cite “in terms which were commonly used at the time, and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even among the most eminent men of science." And yet this does not necessarily mean geocentrism is included in this statement because some men of science have believed the earth is stationary and use layman terms to indicate such. Anyway this statement also assumes science has demonstrated something to be at odds with scripture. If we are to apply this to geocentrism, the burden of proof lies on the shoulders of those who want to go against scripture and the fathers.

You cite “the Holy Spirit, Who spoke by them, did not intend to teach men these things - that is the essential nature of the things of the universe - things in no way profitable to salvation"; which principle "will apply to cognate sciences” and yet geocentrism is associated with salvation because the church has spoken on the matter, meaning if we ignore or go against what the church has said about geocentrism, then we don’t believe the church is infallible in the ordinary teaching magesterium. Therefore geocentrism is linked into mans salvation according to the formal object of the ecclesial faith, which is God revealing through His church.

JM

johnmartin said...

Dave - you really should answer Sungenis recent article against you on the matter of geocentrism. You are an apologist and you have entered into the geocentric debate with your comments on this blog and your comments in your one minute apologist book. Your position on the matter seems to be rather evasive.

I have read Sungenis article and it is articulate and full of historical facts concerning the church's position on geocentrism. As an apologist you are responsible for what you say about what the church teaches. Therefore I believe you are morally obligated to respond to Robert or change your position on the matter of geocentrism.

JM

Dave Armstrong said...

The fathers were also virtually unanimous in asserting the immutability and impassibility of God, yet that doesn't stop Bob for one second from denying those things and ridiculously claiming that God can change His mind (which also overthrows His omniscience).

That will be my next paper: restoring old dialogues with Bob on these matters that I removed purely out of charity and desire for unity.

Since Bob has decided to forget that (and he has even publicly misrepresented what happened) and to start attacking me personally, I'll be more than happy to now expose his heretical beliefs about God Himself (still not attacking his person; only his false beliefs).

This is one reason why I said it was not wise for Bob to decide to start attacking me, with these skeletons in his closet.

If he wants a fight, I'll be glad to oblige; it just ain't gonna be about geocentrism and men riding on dinosaurs' backs, and whether 9-11 and the moon landings were not what they were thought to be. It will be on the doctrine of God, where Bob is guilty of blatant heresy and denial of de fide Catholic dogmas.

Dave Armstrong said...

Therefore I believe you are morally obligated to respond to Robert or change your position on the matter of geocentrism.

I'm not morally obligated to respond to ludicrous arguments at all, as I have already made quite clear. But Bob is obligated to explain just how it is that he feels perfectly justified in denying Catholic dogmas about the nature of God (see my previous comment).

Adomnan said...

johnmartin:

Estimated mass of the universe is 8 × 10^52 kg

Estimated universe size is at least 13 billion light years

1 light year = 1x10^12 miles

Therefore the size of the universe is = 1x10^12x 13x10^9 =1.3x10^22 miles wide, etc.

Adomnan: If you believe that the astronomers are wrong about such relatively simple matters as the rotation of the earth and our planet's elliptical path around the sun, then why do you accept their calculations of the size of the universe, the speed of light and so on? Clearly nothing they teach is trustworthy, given their utter incompetence and propensity to deceive, as portrayed by you.

But what I'm really curious about is how sane people can get caught up in such worthless and absurd preoccupations as you waste your time on. Can you explain that to me? What sort of pride can lead to such blindness and arrogance?

Jordanes said...

He expanded his "lunar skepticism" to 9-11 as well in his piece, "Response to Jared Olar":

Sungenis' response is an attempted rebuttal of a newspaper column found here:

http://www.pekintimes.com/opinions/columnists/x1916546987/Setting-the-record-crooked-on-Galileo

Olar includes two quotes from St. Augustine, to which John Martin should give heed:

"One does not read in the Gospel that the Lord said, ‘I will send to you the Paraclete who will teach you about the course of the sun and moon.’ For He willed to make them Christians, not mathematicians."

"One could ask which shape and form of heaven must be accepted by faith on the authority of Holy Scripture. Many dispute about these things which the sacred writers passed by in silence, because they are without importance for attaining eternal life."

S said...

"Fr. William A. Most, theology professor at the Notre Dame Apostolic Catechetical Institute in Alexandria, Virginia, draws attention to two separate items. First of all, he claims, there are at least three conditions that need to be filled before one can claim something in the Patristic writings is authoritative...Second, they must admit to be relating something they themselves have received from the beginning; that is, from Christ and the Apostles." http://www.ewtn.com/library/answers/extreccl.htm

Sungenis agrees with that condition:

Sungenis: ""It is the divine origin of a particular doctrine that makes the doctrine a requirement of belief for salvation, not the majority or common opinion of the Fathers, the medievals or theologians and prelates of today"

http://www.catholicintl.com/catholicissues/enoeli.pdf

Sungenis: "In order for a massive conversion of Jews at the end of time to be the abiding view of the Church, there would have had to be an apostolic teaching that such was the case. As it stands, none of the early Fathers...say they received such teaching from the apostles."

http://www.catholicintl.com/epologetics/dialogs/pastoral/intense-dialog-print.htm


But I don't see where any of the quotes from the Fathers listed by the Galileo Was Wrong conference meet that condition. Does anyone else?

http://www.scripturecatholic.com/geocentrism.html

Adomnan said...

If human beings can come to know something by their natural faculties (sense perception and reason), then there is no reason for God to reveal it.

Divine revelations are only of truths we cannot know, or cannot know for sure, unless God reveals them to us.

What God has revealed is the proper object of faith. The matters that astronomers and physicists discover, such as the rotation of the earth, can be known through our natural human faculties, and therefore are not and cannot be objects of faith. Anyone who tries to make such things objects of faith does not know what faith is, and that includes Mr. Sungenis and his school.

For the same reason, God hasn't revealed scientific facts such as the periodic table, the structure of the atom, the laws of chemistry and physics, the speed of light, etc.

I challenge anyone to identify a single scientific fact -- that is, a fact that can be verified by the scientific method -- that God has revealed. Again, there are no such revealed scientific facts because, if a fact can be ascertained by ordinary human means, there is no need for God to reveal it.

The principle is quite simple. I don't see why some people can't see it.

johnmartin said...

Olar includes two quotes from St. Augustine, to which John Martin should give heed:

"One does not read in the Gospel that the Lord said, ‘I will send to you the Paraclete who will teach you about the course of the sun and moon.’ For He willed to make them Christians, not mathematicians."

"One could ask which shape and form of heaven must be accepted by faith on the authority of Holy Scripture. Many dispute about these things which the sacred writers passed by in silence, because they are without importance for attaining eternal life."
Augustine was a geocentrist
Augustine: Let not the philosophers, then, think to upset our faith with arguments from the weight of bodies; for I don't care to inquire why they cannot believe an earthly body can be in heaven, while the whole earth is suspended on nothing. For perhaps the world keeps its central place by the same law that attracts to its center all heavy bodies. (City of God, Bk XIII, Ch 18)
Augustine: For an eclipse of the sun had also happened; and this was attributed to the divine power of Romulus by the ignorant multitude, who did not know that it was brought about by the fixed laws of the sun's course (City of God, Bk III, Ch 15)
Augustine: This he said either of those things of which he had just been speaking--the succession of generations, the orbit of the sun, the course of rivers,--or else of all kinds of creatures. that are born and die. (City of God, Bk XII, Ch 13).
Augustine: Who else save Joshua the son of Nun divided the stream of the Jordan for the people to pass over, and by the utterance of a prayer to God bridled and stopped the revolving sun? Who save Samson ever quenched his thirst with water flowing forth from the jawbone of a dead ass? Who save Elias was carried aloft in a chariot of fire? (Tractates, XCI, Ch XV, 24-25, 2).
http://www.scripturecatholic.com/geocentrism.html

JM

johnmartin said...

Adomnan: If you believe that the astronomers are wrong about such relatively simple matters as the rotation of the earth and our planet's elliptical path around the sun, then why do you accept their calculations of the size of the universe, the speed of light and so on? Clearly nothing they teach is trustworthy, given their utter incompetence and propensity to deceive, as portrayed by you.

But what I'm really curious about is how sane people can get caught up in such worthless and absurd preoccupations as you waste your time on. Can you explain that to me? What sort of pride can lead to such blindness and arrogance?”

JM- So I take I you think I’ve answered Hoge’s argument against geocentrism.

JM

johnmartin said...

The fathers were also virtually unanimous in asserting the immutability and impassibility of God, yet that doesn't stop Bob for one second from denying those things and ridiculously claiming that God can change His mind (which also overthrows His omniscience).

So logically you are both against the fathers on different topics so you are both in trouble. This doesn’t help your position on geocentrism Dave.

JM

johnmartin said...

"I challenge anyone to identify a single scientific fact -- that is, a fact that can be verified by the scientific method -- that God has revealed. Again, there are no such revealed scientific facts because, if a fact can be ascertained by ordinary human means, there is no need for God to reveal it. "

JM- geocentrism and the act of creation have been revealed by God and are two facts unknown to science.

JM

johnmartin said...

I'm not morally obligated to respond to ludicrous arguments at all, as I have already made quite clear. But Bob is obligated to explain just how it is that he feels perfectly justified in denying Catholic dogmas about the nature of God (see my previous comment).

JM - I don't believe there is anything ludicrous about Roberts position on geocentrism and his recent paper against your position makes a lot of sense. That's why you should answer him.

JM

Dave Armstrong said...

I don't believe there is anything ludicrous about Roberts position on geocentrism and his recent paper against your position makes a lot of sense. That's why you should answer him.

You're you and I'm me. If I took your position, maybe I would think it was worth my time interacting with. But since I'm not you, I don't.

S said...

“Let me also speak about the issue of geocentrism…If you can’t accept it, then, if I can impose on you, just consider it Robert Sungenis’ quirk and that will be fine with me. I know this issue is much too shocking and controversial at present for me to expect many people to consider what I have to say”


ROBERT SUNGENIS

http://www.surprisedbytruth.com/...p? TOPIC_ID=1759

I agree with Sungenis here. This is common sense. Geocentrism is so quirky that you shouldn't expect many people to even consider it. It's too bad that he and his supporters have moved so dramatically from this more humble statement to accusing anyone who disagrees with them of being heretics.

I'm also struck by the disconnect between the conditions he's previously laid down for whether or not one must accept a common view of the Fathers on an issue as being authoritative and what he's saying now. None of the quotes from the Fathers that he and his GWW conference associates have given meet his own conditions as far as I can see. What he's said in the past agrees with Fr. Most:

"Fr. William A. Most, theology professor at the Notre Dame Apostolic Catechetical Institute in Alexandria, Virginia, draws attention to two separate items. First of all, he claims, there are at least three conditions that need to be filled before one can claim something in the Patristic writings is authoritative...Second, they must admit to be relating something they themselves have received from the beginning; that is, from Christ and the Apostles." http://www.ewtn.com/library/answers/extreccl.htm

"It is the divine origin of a particular doctrine that makes the doctrine a requirement of belief for salvation, not the majority or common opinion of the Fathers, the medievals or theologians and prelates of today" Robert Sungenis

http://www.catholicintl.com/catholicissues/enoeli.pdf

"[N]ot one of the witnesses ever provide exegesis of the passages, nor cited early patristic support for their interpretation, nor showed that the apostolic tradition demanded their interpretation." Robert Sungenis

http://www.catholicintl.com/epologetics/dialogs/pastoral/intense-dialog-print.htm

"In order for a massive conversion of Jews at the end of time to be the abiding view of the Church, there would have had to be an apostolic teaching that such was the case. As it stands, none of the early Fathers...say they received such teaching from the apostles." Robert Sungenis

http://www.catholicintl.com/epologetics/dialogs/pastoral/intense-dialog-print.htm

Where do any of the Fathers say that geocentrism is of Apostolic origin?

johnmartin said...

"Where do any of the Fathers say that geocentrism is of Apostolic origin? "

Its assumed when the fathers are unanimous. This is why Trent assumed when it said the unanimous consent is binding. Why? Because it is assume that such consent has an apostolic origin.

JM

johnmartin said...

You're you and I'm me. If I took your position, maybe I would think it was worth my time interacting with. But since I'm not you, I don't.

JM - OK then if you don't comment on Roberts article, I will assume that's it for Dave regrading any further statements about geocentrism.

JM

johnmartin said...

I notice Frank has moved on and hasn't answered my comments.

Seems a shame to not respond.

JM

S said...

I wrote: "Where do any of the Fathers say that geocentrism is of Apostolic origin? "

John wrote: "Its assumed when the fathers are unanimous."

That's not what Sungenis said in the past. Although, maybe that was only because Jews were the subject when he was writing then.

I still think he and his followers should remember what he said previously when he's tempted to condemn people now:

“Let me also speak about the issue of geocentrism…If you can’t accept it, then, if I can impose on you, just consider it Robert Sungenis’ quirk and that will be fine with me. I know this issue is much too shocking and controversial at present for me to expect many people to consider what I have to say”


ROBERT SUNGENIS

http://www.surprisedbytruth.com/...p? TOPIC_ID=1759

Like I said, this is common sense. Geocentrism is so quirky that you shouldn't expect many people to even consider it. And it's too bad that he and his supporters have moved so dramatically from this more humble statement to accusing anyone who disagrees with them of being heretics.

I just read Dave's new article where he quotes Sungenis warning people who don't listen to him that he's "sure they will answer to God for their negligence."

I'm not trying to be unkind, but there's something seriously wrong there. If you want to follow him, that's certainly your choice.

Frank said...

Frank has a life and will get back to this when and if he can. For Frank, it's not the burning issue that it is for you since he sees that Leo XIII and Pius XII made it absolutely clear that this is not a matter of faith. In betweeen that you might want to go back and notice more than a few questions that you've left unanswered. I'll get back to this as I can.

Adomnan said...

JM- So I take I you think I’ve answered Hoge’s argument against geocentrism.

Adomnan: I think you shouldn't waaste your and our time on nonsense, meaning of course your geocentric nonsense. No one is interested ln discussing this flapdoodle except kooks and those kind enough, like Mr. Hoge, to take on the futile task of trying to restore sanity to kooks.

Adomnan said...

JM- geocentrism and the act of creation have been revealed by God and are two facts unknown to science.

Adomnan: The creation of the universe by God is not a fact that can be determined by scientific inquiry. Therefore it is a natter of divine revelation.

The earth's rotation is something that can be ascertained by scientific inquiry, and so is not a matter of revelation.

Besides, you missed my point. Certainly God reveals things "unknown to science." In fact, He only reveals things unknown to science.

There is no point in His revealing what can be known by ordinary human means. Revelation is logically impossible in cases where we can discover something on our own.

You don't understand what divine revelation is.

S said...

That's an interesting argument, Adomnan. I never thought of it that way.

So, according to your argument, Sungenis' work in this area is fundamentally conflicted and illogical - geocentrism can't be both a matter of revealed faith AND a matter of natural science. He has one entire volume dedicated to proving "scientifically" that the earth is in the center of the universe and not moving. Then he has another volume dedicated to proving that the Church has taught geocentrism as revealed Catholic truth.

So, in your view, he should make up his mind. Either it's revealed truth or its natural, "scientific" truth. Am I following you?

Regardless, it is kind of hard to pay too much attention to him when he's warning Catholics that he's sure God will judge them for not listening to him.

Jordanes said...

Augustine was a geocentrist.

Irrelevant. Pope St. Clement I also believed in the existence of the Phoenix. But the erroneous opinions of the Fathers on scientific matters have no bearing on the Catholic faith, of which geocentrism is not and has never been an article. As Adomnan has explained, it is impossible for a purely scientific matter to be a matter of the Faith.

On this question, you can listen to the Church, or you can listen to Bob Sungenis. Choose.

Adomnan said...

S: So, according to your argument, Sungenis' work in this area is fundamentally conflicted and illogical - geocentrism can't be both a matter of revealed faith AND a matter of natural science.

Adomnan: Exactly, Sungenis's arguments for geocentrism are of course scienfically absurd; but, beyond that, the whole endeavor is wrongheaded.

I maintain that the facts of natural science and the objects of faith (i.e., divine revelations) do not and cannot overlap at all. God does not "reveal" truths that human beings can discover through their natural endowments of sense perception and reason.

For example, God cannot reveal to me that I have two hands, because I can see that I have two hands. And He cannot reveal to me that the circumference of a circle equals pi times its diameter, because sense perception (measurement) and reason tell me that this is so.

In the same way, God cannot reveal to me that the earth rotates or is stationary, because we human beings can use our senses and reason to ascertain the facts of the matter. While discovering the truth of the earth's motion is somewhat more complicated than seeing my hands or calculating pi, it's the same operation in principle: ascertaining the natural and/or logical facts through sensory observation and ordinary human reasoning.

S: He has one entire volume dedicated to proving "scientifically" that the earth is in the center of the universe and not moving.

Adomnan: That's not worth the paper it's written on.

S: Then he has another volume dedicated to proving that the Church has taught geocentrism as revealed Catholic truth.

Adomnan: A scientific fact cannot be a revealed truth, by definition.

S: So, in your view, he should make up his mind. Either it's revealed truth or its natural, "scientific" truth. Am I following you?

Adomnan: Yes, the two classes of truth don't overlap at all.

You'll notice that the only example of a scientific truth that johnmartin could cite as a revealed truth (divine creation not being a valid second example) was his geocentric theory.

With johnmartin's one supposedly revealed scientific truth eliminated, that leaves none, hardly a surprise given that scientific facts are precisely those truths we are able to discover apart from revelation.

Given that talk about geocentrism is an absurd waste of time, I thought I'd broaden the discussion to something that might be more useful; namely, a consideration of the nature of divine revelation and how it differs from ordinary human knowledge. Natural science concerns only the latter.

S: Regardless, it is kind of hard to pay too much attention to him when he's warning Catholics that he's sure God will judge them for not listening to him.

Adomnan: If God is to judge anyone, He will judge Sungenis and his disciples -- for misusing their gift of reason and "making the worse case appear the better," as the sophists did. However, I suspect He'll judge them lightly, because God is indulgent to children and fools.

johnmartin said...

I'm not trying to be unkind, but there's something seriously wrong there. If you want to follow him, that's certainly your choice.

JM - We are only following the church because Robert has highlighted the facts regarding geocentrism and the universal consent in the fathers. If it was only Roberts quirk then we would make such a fuss about it. It is precisely because it is the church's that we are adamant the universe is geocentric.

JM

johnmartin said...

Frank has a life and will get back to this when and if he can. For Frank, it's not the burning issue that it is for you since he sees that Leo XIII and Pius XII made it absolutely clear that this is not a matter of faith. In betweeen that you might want to go back and notice more than a few questions that you've left unanswered. I'll get back to this as I can.

JM - What questions?

JM

johnmartin said...

Adomnan: I think you shouldn't waaste your and our time on nonsense, meaning of course your geocentric nonsense. No one is interested ln discussing this flapdoodle except kooks and those kind enough, like Mr. Hoge, to take on the futile task of trying to restore sanity to kooks.

JM - Those kooks include the church fathers and Trent as well.
;-)

JM

johnmartin said...

JM- geocentrism and the act of creation have been revealed by God and are two facts unknown to science.

Adomnan: The creation of the universe by God is not a fact that can be determined by scientific inquiry. Therefore it is a natter of divine revelation.

JM – I agree, but then again many scientist believe the creation even comes under science. So your initial question is subjective.

Ad- The earth's rotation is something that can be ascertained by scientific inquiry, and so is not a matter of revelation.

JM- More than science is required because of Mach’s principle and the theory of relativity.

Ad- Besides, you missed my point. Certainly God reveals things "unknown to science." In fact, He only reveals things unknown to science.

JM- The soul is known to the science of philosophy, so we also know something of the afterlife as well through science. Both of these truths have been confirmed by revelation. The existence of morality, sin and historical events have also been verified by revelation. The existence of angels can be determined from reason and experience and has also been verified by revelation.

Ad- There is no point in His revealing what can be known by ordinary human means. Revelation is logically impossible in cases where we can discover something on our own.

JM – There is a good reason for God revealing – it is simply this – manhas a fallen nature and finds it difficult to know the truth. For this reason, God has confirmed the truths previously known to confirm the value of human reason and science and provide a natural foundation for supernatural truth.

Ad- You don't understand what divine revelation is.

JM – no value here.

JM

johnmartin said...

So, according to your argument, Sungenis' work in this area is conflicted and illogical - geocentrism can't be both a matter of revealed faith AND a matter of natural science. He has one entire volume dedicated to proving "scientifically" that the earth is in the center of the universe and not moving. Then he has another volume dedicated to proving that the Church has taught geocentrism as revealed Catholic truth.

JM - its a matter for both faith and science. Faith points to a revelation made about the physical universe and science is used to verify the truth given. Although because science cannot positivley prove geocentrism, there is a lot of evidence that points in that direction. Robert is right to use both faith and science in regard to geocentrism.

JM

johnmartin said...

J- Irrelevant. Pope St. Clement I also believed in the existence of the Phoenix. But the erroneous opinions of the Fathers on scientific matters have no bearing on the Catholic faith, of which geocentrism is not and has never been an article. As Adomnan has explained, it is impossible for a purely scientific matter to be a matter of the Faith.

JM – where is the universal consent of the belief of the Pheonix in the fathers and any reference to it in scripture, let alone any reference to it in the church documents. None of course, so your straw man argument is answered.

J- On this question, you can listen to the Church, or you can listen to Bob Sungenis. Choose.

JM – And the church has officially backed geocentrism.

JM

Ben m said...

Sungenis writes:

"Any intelligent person who has studied the issue is going to have doubts as to whether the United States had the capability to put a man on the moon in 1969 when, for example, the processing power of a 1969 computer was less than one-tenth of that in a typical cell phone of today…"

First, let me say that I think Bob Sungenis has done some very admirable apologetic work. However, his suspicions about the moon landing being a fake and this geocentrism stuff is just too silly for words.

But leaving the geocentrism business aside, I’ll grant the Apollo program was an astounding technological accomplishment given the technology of the day. And it almost seems incredible that we managed it. Yet I'm convinced it was indeed a real accomplishment, not a hoax .

So how did we do it? How did we get to the moon with the ‘primitive’ tech of the 1960's? Simply by having an indefatigably strong “can do” attitude, hard work, a lot of good old American ingenuity, and a very healthy absence of “software bloat”. ;)

I would also suggest we be more cautious about comparisons of the Apollo guidance computer with computers of today (see for example, pp. 141-143 of this ).

In any event, it’ll be interesting to hear what our skeptical friends say when private enterprise starts sending back images - in the next 3 or 4 years (most likely) - of Tranquility Base !

This is gonna be good! ;)

Adomnan said...

JM - Those kooks include the church fathers and Trent as well.

Adomnan: They held to opinions about the earth's motionlessness that were tenable at the time, given their level of scientific knowledge. So they weren't kooks. Nowadays the same opinions are untenable, and so anyone who holds them is a kook.

JM – I agree, but then again many scientists believe the creation even comes under science. So your initial question is subjective.

Adomnan: Since we both agree that divine creation is a matter of revelation, not a scientifically verifiable fact, then we both agree that it is not a good example of a revealed scientific fact, which was your original position, now apparently abandoned.

JM- More than science is required because of Mach’s principle and the theory of relativity.

Adomnan: Mach's principle and the theory of relativity are scientific theories/principles. Therefore, they can hardly be "more than science."

JM- The soul is known to the science of philosophy, so we also know something of the afterlife as well through science.

Adomnan: True. However, when I have used the term "science," I meant it in its popular connotation as "the natural sciences," and so I was excluding philosophy and theology, which can also be called sciences, although they are not natural sciences.

My usage of the term "science" has been consistent with its use in this discussion so far. If you wish to expand the word's meaning, I have no objection to that. From now on, I will simply write "natural sciences" where before I used the shorthand "science."

I think it is possible that facts like the existence of the soul (depending, of course, on how you define the soul) and of the afterlife can be ascertained to some sxtent by the natural sciences (e.g., by parapsychology). But to the extent that they can be, the existence of the soul and an afterlife are natural phenomena, not matters of divine revelation. In the Bible, the soul and the afterlife are simply assumed, the way the body and the mind are assumed. They are not revealed.

Adomnan said...

JM: The existence of morality, sin and historical events have also been verified by revelation.

Adomnan: Morality and sin are not matters that can be determined by the natural sciences. The term "historical science" is sometimes used, but history is not a natural science either. It's more akin to philosophy.

JM: The existence of angels can be determined from reason and experience and has also been verified by revelation.

Adomnan: If angels' existence can be determined by the natural sciences, then that is no different in principle from discovering a new species of animal. Their existence would then be classified as a scientific fact rather than a revelation. We could say, "The biologists have discovered the species 'angel'."

On the other hand, it seems to me that angels cannot be known, unless they reveal themselves. Therefore, the thesis that their existence is a revelation rather than a scientific fact is more tenable. In this case, it might be called an angelic revelation rather than a divine revelation, but it would be revelation from above either way.

Essentially, the world above us makes itself known through self-revelation. The world below us yields its secrets to our natural inquiry. We cannot pry into the world above unless those beings are open to our searching. We cannot wrest their secrets from them, as we can wrest from nature her secrets, such as the fact that the earth rotates.

JM: It is simply this – man has a fallen nature and finds it difficult to know the truth.

Adomnan: And yet man has discovered all of modern science and technology with his fallen nature. You're not into "total depravity," are you? As St. Paul pointed out, the mind (or "nous") of man was preserved through the Fall. That's why we can rely on reason.

JM: For this reason, God has confirmed the truths previously known to confirm the value of human reason and science and provide a natural foundation for supernatural truth.

Adomnan: But your geocentrism is rejected by modern science, and so it is hardly a "truth" that "confirms the value of human reason and science." If you were right, human reaons and science would be overturned, not confirmed.

Ad- You don't understand what divine revelation is.

JM – no value here.

Adomnan: On the contrary, this is the main point. You are corrupting the faith by insisting on belief in things that are not and cannot be articles of faith. That's what heretics do.

Yet, you're not so much a heretic as, well, a kook.

S said...

Sungenis believes the lunar landings were a NASA hoax, too? And he's a 9-11 truther? After searching a bit, I did read where he believes NASA is behind crop circles in order to secure more federal funding and to discredit the Bible.

http://bellarmineforum.xanga.com/702646935/question-139---what-do-you-think-of-ufos/

How does he explain the presence of the mirrors on the moon that scientists use to determine changes in the distance to the moon etc? That would be certainly be interesting to read. Maybe he believes the mirrors are just part of the continuing conspiracy/hoax?

http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2004/21jul_llr/

How did he get so deeply into the world of conspiracy theories as a Catholic apologist? There's a whole article just covering his conspiracy theories here: http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2008/08/sowing-confusion-distrust-and.html

Sorry for the digression, but this is amazing to me. I can't fathom how one goes from writing Not by Faith Alone to all of this.

johnmartin said...

JM: The existence of morality, sin and historical events have also been verified by revelation.

Adomnan: Morality and sin are not matters that can be determined by the natural sciences. The term "historical science" is sometimes used, but history is not a natural science either. It's more akin to philosophy.

JM2 – history is a science, no doubt about it.

JM: The existence of angels can be determined from reason and experience and has also been verified by revelation.

Adomnan: If angels' existence can be determined by the natural sciences, then that is no different in principle from discovering a new species of animal. Their existence would then be classified as a scientific fact rather than a revelation. We could say, "The biologists have discovered the species 'angel'."

JM2 – the sciences of philosophical psychology and ontology present some evidence for the existence of the angels. Aristotle called them the intelligences. He worked out the angles probably do exist from reason. Revelation is given to verify the findings of reason.

We also have evidence of angels from Satanism and the activity of the devil who uses preternatural powers over man. Satan has also been revealed as a verification of Satanism. Therefore revelation confirms experience.

Adomnan: On the other hand, it seems to me that angels cannot be known, unless they reveal themselves. Therefore, the thesis that their existence is a revelation rather than a scientific fact is more tenable. In this case, it might be called an angelic revelation rather than a divine revelation, but it would be revelation from above either way.

Essentially, the world above us makes itself known through self-revelation. The world below us yields its secrets to our natural inquiry. We cannot pry into the world above unless those beings are open to our searching. We cannot wrest their secrets from them, as we can wrest from nature her secrets, such as the fact that the earth rotates.

JM2- The supernatural and the preternatural are posited to exist from reason. We can posit what an angel would be if it existed. We know it exist from revelation so we have some relationship with other ways of existing before they are formally revealed to men. When the revelations are given, they are not totally foreign to us because we know the other ways of existing are real.

JM: It is simply this – man has a fallen nature and finds it difficult to know the truth.

Adomnan: And yet man has discovered all of modern science and technology with his fallen nature. You're not into "total depravity," are you? As St. Paul pointed out, the mind (or "nous") of man was preserved through the Fall. That's why we can rely on reason.

JM2- Fallen nature is standard Catholic theology. Revelation of natural and supernatural truths is Catholic teaching.


JM: For this reason, God has confirmed the truths previously known to confirm the value of human reason and science and provide a natural foundation for supernatural truth.

Adomnan: But your geocentrism is rejected by modern science, and so it is hardly a "truth" that "confirms the value of human reason and science." If you were right, human reaons and science would be overturned, not confirmed.

JM2- And what are these facts of science that demonstrate geocentrism is a false position? Robert’s book is pretty thorough, so I expect nothing new . . . nevertheless I am waiting for the unexpected.

Ad- You don't understand what divine revelation is.

JM – no value here.
Adomnan: On the contrary, this is the main point. You are corrupting the faith by insisting on belief in things that are not and cannot be articles of faith. That's what heretics do.

Yet, you're not so much a heretic as, well, a kook.

JM2- My position is the standard Catholic teaching on the nature of revelation.

JM

johnmartin said...

JM: The existence of morality, sin and historical events have also been verified by revelation.

Adomnan: Morality and sin are not matters that can be determined by the natural sciences. The term "historical science" is sometimes used, but history is not a natural science either. It's more akin to philosophy.

JM2 – history is a science, no doubt about it.

JM: The existence of angels can be determined from reason and experience and has also been verified by revelation.

Adomnan: If angels' existence can be determined by the natural sciences, then that is no different in principle from discovering a new species of animal. Their existence would then be classified as a scientific fact rather than a revelation. We could say, "The biologists have discovered the species 'angel'."

JM2 – the sciences of philosophical psychology and ontology present some evidence for the existence of the angels. Aristotle called them the intelligences. He worked out the angles probably do exist from reason. Revelation is given to verify the findings of reason.

We also have evidence of angels from Satanism and the activity of the devil who uses preternatural powers over man. Satan has also been revealed as a verification of Satanism. Therefore revelation confirms experience.

Adomnan: On the other hand, it seems to me that angels cannot be known, unless they reveal themselves. Therefore, the thesis that their existence is a revelation rather than a scientific fact is more tenable. In this case, it might be called an angelic revelation rather than a divine revelation, but it would be revelation from above either way.

Essentially, the world above us makes itself known through self-revelation. The world below us yields its secrets to our natural inquiry. We cannot pry into the world above unless those beings are open to our searching. We cannot wrest their secrets from them, as we can wrest from nature her secrets, such as the fact that the earth rotates.

JM2- The supernatural and the preternatural are posited to exist from reason. We can posit what an angel would be if it existed. We know it exist from revelation so we have some relationship with other ways of existing before they are formally revealed to men. When the revelations are given, they are not totally foreign to us because we know the other ways of existing are real.

JM: It is simply this – man has a fallen nature and finds it difficult to know the truth.

Adomnan: And yet man has discovered all of modern science and technology with his fallen nature. You're not into "total depravity," are you? As St. Paul pointed out, the mind (or "nous") of man was preserved through the Fall. That's why we can rely on reason.

JM2- Fallen nature is standard Catholic theology. Revelation of natural and supernatural truths is Catholic teaching.


JM: For this reason, God has confirmed the truths previously known to confirm the value of human reason and science and provide a natural foundation for supernatural truth.

Adomnan: But your geocentrism is rejected by modern science, and so it is hardly a "truth" that "confirms the value of human reason and science." If you were right, human reaons and science would be overturned, not confirmed.

JM2- And what are these facts of science that demonstrate geocentrism is a false position? Robert’s book is pretty thorough, so I expect nothing new . . . nevertheless I am waiting for the unexpected.

Ad- You don't understand what divine revelation is.


Adomnan: Yet, you're not so much a heretic as, well, a kook.

JM2- My position is the standard Catholic teaching on the nature of revelation.

JM

johnmartin said...

How does he explain the presence of the mirrors on the moon that scientists use to determine changes in the distance to the moon etc? That would be certainly be interesting to read. Maybe he believes the mirrors are just part of the continuing conspiracy/hoax?

JM - I thought about this for some time. Maybe the mirrors were placed there by robots. Robert only denies man has been on the moon. As far as I know he hasn't said a ship wasn't sent to the moon.

Robert has a good observation concerning funding for NASA. The large budget needs to be propped up with something, so why not invent a need to get the money? Seems pretty obvious.

JM

Jordanes said...

where is the universal consent of the belief of the Pheonix in the fathers and any reference to it in scripture, let alone any reference to it in the church documents.

In the same place where the universal consent of the Fathers regarding salvific faith in geocentrism is found. The same number of Scriptures and Church documents teach geocentrism as an article of faith as teach the existence of the Phoenix.

"Geocentric" language is found throughout Scripture, of course, but then Isaiah also refers to the Phoenix in Isa. 40:31. However, that language is not prescriptive of a doctrine which must be believed in with saving faith.

None of course, so your straw man argument is answered.

It's no straw man, because there is just as much unanimous consent of the Fathers in favor of the alleged Catholic doctrine of the Phoenix as there is in favor of the alleged Catholic doctrine of geocentrism. I.e., none at all.

JM – And the church has officially backed geocentrism.

When did She make the fatal error of proposing geocentrism as an infallible and irreformably binding article of the Catholic faith?

Jordanes said...

My position is the standard Catholic teaching on the nature of revelation.

St. Paul teaches in Hebrews that faith is the evidence of things not seen. How then can geocentrism be an article of faith? And how does believing that the earth is the unmoving center of the entire universe effect or advance the salvation of souls?

S said...

Johnmartin: "Maybe the mirrors were placed there by robots. Robert only denies man has been on the moon. As far as I know he hasn't said a ship wasn't sent to the moon."

One of Sungenis' arguments was that the technology wasn't nearly sophisticated enough to send a man to the moon:

ROBERT SUNGENIS: "Any intelligent person who has studied the issue is going to have doubts as to whether the United States had the capability to put a man on the moon in 1969 when, for example, the processing power of a 1969 computer was less than one-tenth of that in a typical cell phone of today"

So, they didn't have a computer sophisticated enough to do the calculations necessary to land a manned ship on the moon, but they did have one sophisticated enough to land and UNmanned ship on the moon and also make a robot that could place a mirror properly on the moon?

That doesn't make much sense. They've been pinging those mirrors for almost 4 decades now. So he must think all the other astronomers, et al are in on the hoax, too.

Johnmartin: "seems pretty obvious."

That's not what seems obvious to me, honestly.

So, you believe the moon landings were a hoax, too?

S said...

By the way, the links and comments by Ben M above were really helpful on the lunar landing. You should read them over. It covers the computer aspect and more.

http://socrates58.blogspot.com/2010/11/robert-sungenis-opts-for-personal.html?showComment=1289188772314#c8898095462528009541

S said...

Johnmartin, I'm curious. Did you come to your beliefs about geocentrism, the moon landings and whatever else along those lines before knowing Sungenis or only after reading his writings on these subjects?

johnmartin said...

where is the universal consent of the belief of the Pheonix in the fathers and any reference to it in scripture, let alone any reference to it in the church documents.
In the same place where the universal consent of the Fathers regarding salvific faith in geocentrism is found. The same number of Scriptures and Church documents teach geocentrism as an article of faith as teach the existence of the Phoenix.

JM- I know the fathers are unanimous on geocentrism http://www.scripturecatholic.com/geocentrism.htmland now you can show me the universal consent of the fathers on the Phoenix.

"Geocentric" language is found throughout Scripture, of course, but then Isaiah also refers to the Phoenix in Isa. 40:31. However, that language is not prescriptive of a doctrine which must be believed in with saving faith.

JM- Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real.

None of course, so your straw man argument is answered.
It's no straw man, because there is just as much unanimous consent of the Fathers in favor of the alleged Catholic doctrine of the Phoenix as there is in favor of the alleged Catholic doctrine of geocentrism. I.e., none at all.

JM- See link above. Plenty of evidence in favour of geo in the fathers.

JM – And the church has officially backed geocentrism.
When did She make the fatal error of proposing geocentrism as an infallible and irreformably binding article of the Catholic faith?

JM – The papal bulls previously posted in this blog.

JM

johnmartin said...

My position is the standard Catholic teaching on the nature of revelation.

St. Paul teaches in Hebrews that faith is the evidence of things not seen. How then can geocentrism be an article of faith? And how does believing that the earth is the unmoving center of the entire universe effect or advance the salvation of souls?

JM- there is more to faith than things not seen. The formal object of faith is God revealing and whatever He reveals is to be believed. If He reveals a natural truth then it is to be believed.

Paul does not say faith is the evidence of things only not seen

JM

johnmartin said...

So, you believe the moon landings were a hoax, too?

I'm aware of the mirrors and I've used the mirrors on the moon in the Lunar laser ranging experiment to argue for a fixed earth.

I'm not currently aware of the arguments proposed either way concerning the moon landings so I have no firm opinion either way on their value.

JM

S said...

Phil Plait: “Finding passages in the Bible to support this belief isn’t hard; Genesis is loaded with them.”


Sungenis: “Actually, Genesis has very few. Most are in the Psalms.”


http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2010/09/14/geocentrism-seriously/


JM: “JM- Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real.”


So, as the Psalms are poetical, that would eliminate what Sungenis says are “most” of his Biblical citations for geocentrism?

S said...

Johnmartin,

This is very interesting to me. You've never even looked at the arguments Sungenis (and other conspiracy theorists) have made about the lunar landings supposedly being a massive hoax. And yet you're equally willing to believe such a thing as to not.

Again - I'm curious. Did you come to your beliefs about geocentrism before knowing Sungenis or only after reading his writings on these subjects?

Also, you seem very committed to geocentrism. Were you involved in the Galileo Was Wrong conference? Did you make a presentation there? Or did you just attend it? You seem very deeply committed to it.

johnmartin said...

So, as the Psalms are poetical, that would eliminate what Sungenis says are “most” of his Biblical citations for geocentrism?

JM - The psalms are only one part of the geocentric evidence. We use the scriptures in toto, the fathers uiniversal consent and the church's teaching on the matter. All combined, with the scientific evidence, the case for geo is very strong.

JM

Ben m said...

An example of moon hoax nonsense and trickery.

This video makes a very amateurish attempt to prove that the Apollo 11 astronauts were actually in earth orbit, rather than well on their way to the moon when they transmitted video of earth back to Mission Control. But notice what the earth isn't doing in this video – it’s NOT MOVING! It remains fixed, static - the entire time!

Had Apollo 11 actually been in earth orbit, the dynamics of the earth’s motion beneath the Command Module would have been unmistakable, as it has been in EVERY video taken ever taken from orbit!

Here’s an example of how the movement of the earth appears to astronauts actually in orbit.

The Soyuz of course makes a good reference and tracking device!

And speaking of the Russians, check out the earth's motion in this early space walk vid.

johnmartin said...

S- Johnmartin, This is very interesting to me. You've never even looked at the arguments Sungenis (and other conspiracy theorists) have made about the lunar landings supposedly being a massive hoax. And yet you're equally willing to believe such a thing as to not.

JM - I read some statements by Dr Neville Jones where he expressed his concerns about a prominent astronaut presenting a lemon on a simulator as one of many signs the space project was a farce. He also believes some of the astronauts were murdered. Again, I've only read this in passing and I cannot confirm the validity of the statements. I only remember the seemed pretty convinced of the falsity of the space project.

I found Dr jones study on the flight paths of the planets to be solid evidence for a special place for the earth in the universe. Only the earth has a concentric flower pattern for the other planets when the earth is taken to be stationary. If we take any other planet, the other planets do not form this

S- Again - I'm curious. Did you come to your beliefs about geocentrism before knowing Sungenis or only after reading his writings on these subjects?

JM - i sort of worked it out myself and had some doubts about it originally. Questions like "How could NASA deceive man? Didn't Einstein and Copernicus prove the earth moved? All the standard questions people ask about this issue went through my thoughts. It nagged away at me for some time until I stumbled across Roberts book. I've since read it about three times and it find the cumulative case convincing.

I've also done study in philosophy and theology and worked out Einstein’s relativity theory requires a false understanding of time.

These and several other pieces of evidence came together to convince me of the geo position. I'm gratreful to Robert for taking such a gamble with his time to write such a ground breaking book. I have no doubt many will ignore and attack it and maybe the attacks will eventually lead into a better understanding of the geo position. We shall see . . .

S- Also, you seem very committed to geocentrism. Were you involved in the Galileo Was Wrong conference? Did you make a presentation there? Or did you just attend it? You seem very deeply committed to it.
No to the first three. Yes I am committed to it. I think it is the correct position on cosmology.

JM

Adomnan said...

JM2 – history is a science, no doubt about it.

the sciences of philosophical psychology and ontology present some evidence for the existence of the angels.

Adomnan: You're quibbling about the meaning of the word "science." I agree that history and philosophy (ontology being a branch of philosophy) can be called "sciences" in some contexts. Theology can be called a "science," too, meaning a field of knowledge. However, these are not "natural sciences;" that is, they are not what so-called "scientists" study.

No truth of the natural sciences is divinely revealed.

I can see that you are someone who likes to juggle with words, but you have no real understanding of the concepts underlying the words. That's why you indulge in absurd opinions.

JM: Revelation is given to verify the findings of reason.

Adomnan: Wrong. Although revelation does not conflict with reason, it does not merely verify it. Revelation provides us with knowledge we could not have through reason alone.

Reason only assures us of consistency, so that we do not hold contradictory opinions. It cannot give us the ideas or facts that it helps us organize and analyze. Those come from direct perception or intuition.

The madman's world is perfectly round, but it's the size of a billiard ball. The problem with kooks is not always that fhey fail to use reason. It's that they fail to see reality.

A universe of which the earth is the motionless center is thinkable: it's just not real.

JM: "Revelation confirms experience."

Adomnan: How could something be a revelation if we already knew it? And anything that is confirmed is already known.

Opinions, not experience, require confirmation.

JM: The supernatural and the preternatural are posited to exist from reason.

Adomnan: Sure. But what we can know about these things from reason is hardly a revelation.

Faith is assent to revelation, not assent to reason, which is prudence.

JM: We know (angels) exist from revelation.

Adomnan: If you say we require revelation to know they exist, then you are admitting we cannot know their existence from reason. Reason merely allows us to conjecture their existence and examine our conjecture for consistency.

JM2- Fallen nature is standard Catholic theology. Revelation of natural and supernatural truths is Catholic teaching.

Adomnan: I disagree. Revelation of supernatural truths is Catholic teaching. Natural truths aren't revealed from above because we can know them through our natural endowments. Revelation of the facts of nature, which we can ascertain for ourselves, would be pointless, and therefore doesn't occur.

JM: Robert’s book is pretty thorough, so I expect nothing new . . . nevertheless I am waiting for the unexpected.

Adomnan: No, you're not. You're never going to peek out of that dark little cell you're in, even though the door is wide open.

JM2- My position is the standard Catholic teaching on the nature of revelation.

Adomnan: No, it isn't.

Jordanes said...

The same number of Scriptures and Church documents teach geocentrism as an article of faith as teach the existence of the Phoenix.

JM- I know the fathers are unanimous on geocentrism http://www.scripturecatholic.com/geocentrism.htmland now you can show me the universal consent of the fathers on the Phoenix.


As I said, the same number of Scriptures and Church documents teach geocentrism as an article of faith as teach the existence of the Phoenix as an article of faith. No one can show unanimous consent of the Fathers on the Phoenix, and no one can show unanimous consent of the Fathers on geocentrism -- because unanimous consent of the Fathers has to do only with matters of the faith, and geocentrism is purely a matter of science.

Sungenis' associate Rick DeLano earlier this year provided me with a list of Fathers who allegedly taught as a religious doctrine that the days of Creation Week were ordinary 24-hour days. I went through the list systematically and found that most on that list didn't say anything on the question at all, that the evidence does not support unanimous consent of the Fathers on that point, and in any event the Church had already said that it is perfectly acceptable to propose that the days of Creation Week were not 24-hour days. The same thing is true regarding the Fathers' opinions and beliefs on other scientific questions, including their belief in geocentrism. It is no more an article of faith that the earth is the unmoving center of the universe than it is an article of faith that the Pharaoh of the Exodus was named Achencheres.

When did She make the fatal error of proposing geocentrism as an infallible and irreformably binding article of the Catholic faith?

JM – The papal bulls previously posted in this blog.


See the old Catholic Encyclopedia on this question. The Galileo affair includes no infallible and irreformable teachings binding us to believe in geocentrism. That stands to reason, since the Church is infallible and cannot err in its teaching, which would not be the case if She had bindingly taught geocentrism as an article of faith.

St. Paul teaches in Hebrews that faith is the evidence of things not seen. How then can geocentrism be an article of faith?

JM- there is more to faith than things not seen.


True, but irrelevant.

The formal object of faith is God revealing and whatever He reveals is to be believed. If He reveals a natural truth then it is to be believed.

As Adomnan has explained, God doesn't "reveal" things we can discover and establish through reason alone (He does affirm various natural truths while revealing the Truth, but since such things do not need supernatural intervention to be discovered and known, He never "reveals" them), and He never "reveals" things that are not true, such as geocentrism.

Paul does not say faith is the evidence of things only not seen

Once again, true, but irrelevant. He also does not say that faith is the evidence of things seen.

Now then, perhaps you might try to answer my question: How does believing that the earth is the unmoving center of the entire universe effect or advance the salvation of souls?

johnmartin said...

A reply to Ken Coles disproof og geocentrism.

Premise (B2): According to Newton’s laws, less massive objects orbit more massive objects.

JM- False – according to Newtons laws objects orbit the centre of mass. This is not the same as saying the smaller rotates around the larger.
Premise (B3): If (B1) is true, then (B2) predicts that the Sun is less massive than the Earth.

JM- only if we assume the only way to explain the motion of the sun is in an isolated system as required by Newtons physics. Geocentrists do not make this assumption, but use the revealed truth that the universe rotates. Coles Premise B3 is logically flawed through the fallacy of inconsistency, whereby he inconsistently applies B2 to the earth sun system in isolation from the rest of the universe.

Premise (B4): But Conclusion (A) is proven true, and scientists understand that the Sun is more massive than the Earth.

JM – The sun is more massive than the earth, but Cole has used the mass of the earth in a way that is inconsistent with geocentrisms understanding of the mechanism that causes the sun mass. According to geo, the mass is not caused by the inherent property of the sun, but the sun acting within an aether flow. This is an important difference between Newtons mechanics and geo mechanics. Newtons mechanics requires instantaneous action at a distance for his gravity theory to work. Yet this same assumption is abandoned in relativity theory. In short, Coles claims that scientists understand the sun is more massive than the earth, requires us to overlook a contradiction in modern physics. Therefore Premise B4 contains an implicit contradiction and his proof is invalidated.

Premise (B5): Given (B4), then either geocentrism (B1) is false or Newton’s laws (B2) are false.

JM- Newtons laws are not a good description of the universe according to a physical mechanism and Newton assumes what he had to prove regarding the nature of gravity and the motion of every smaller body around every larger body. This apparent universal law is only apparent and if it is not proven to be universal, then it cannot be used against geocentrism. To assume observations of moons orbiting around planets demonstrate all the planets must be orbiting the larger mass of the sun, is the inductive fallacy. This means a number of individual observations does not necessarily conclude to the universal principle of planetary orbits assumed by Cole. Therefore Cole’s argument is invalidated.

Conclusion (B): Either the geocentric view is incorrect or Newton’s laws are incorrect.

JM – Or Cole has misapplied Newton in several ways. The argument is invalid.

JM

S said...

I wrote: "So, as the Psalms are poetical, that would eliminate what Sungenis says are “most” of his Biblical citations for geocentrism?"

JM wrote: "The psalms are only one part of the geocentric evidence. We use the scriptures in toto, the fathers uiniversal consent and the church's teaching on the matter. All combined, with the scientific evidence, the case for geo is very strong."

But that's avoiding the point, Johnmartin. By your own standard, "most" of your own Scriptural evidence for geocentrism has just been eliminated from valid use. So, you should remove those from your list of supposed evidence.

johnmartin said...

Adomnan: You're quibbling about the meaning of the word "science." I agree that history and philosophy (ontology being a branch of philosophy) can be called "sciences" in some contexts. Theology can be called a "science," too, meaning a field of knowledge. However, these are not "natural sciences;" that is, they are not what so-called "scientists" study.

No truth of the natural sciences is divinely revealed.

JM – Which is to beg the question because the scriptures and church fathers say otherwise concerning geocentrism. We can also posit many historical events occurred which are no easy or may not be possible to verify through science. For example Pauls experiences in his missionary journeys. These are simply not the subject of any natural science, yet they are believed because they were recorded in scripture.

JM: Revelation is given to verify the findings of reason.

Adomnan: Wrong. Although revelation does not conflict with reason, it does not merely verify it. Revelation provides us with knowledge we could not have through reason alone.

JM – men deduced the existence of the soul and an afterlie before the time of Christ and outside the life of Israel in the OT. These conclusions were verified by revelation. This is part of the revelation process. By God revealing truths previously known, He is validating human reason and therefore par to His creation.

JM: "Revelation confirms experience."

Adomnan: How could something be a revelation if we already knew it? And anything that is confirmed is already known.

JM – not all men agree on what is already known, so revelation verifies what is already known by some an disputed by others. Revelation is given to confirm the truth and present more truths beyond what could be known.

Ad- Opinions, not experience, require confirmation.

JM2- Experience includes opinion.

JM: We know (angels) exist from revelation.

Adomnan: If you say we require revelation to know they exist, then you are admitting we cannot know their existence from reason. Reason merely allows us to conjecture their existence and examine our conjecture for consistency.

JM2- We can posit they exist, but we cannot know apodictically they exist. The existence of angels is therefore a probable conclusion from reason, based upon the hierarchy of reality.

JM2- Fallen nature is standard Catholic theology. Revelation of natural and supernatural truths is Catholic teaching.

Adomnan: I disagree. Revelation of supernatural truths is Catholic teaching. Natural truths aren't revealed from above because we can know them through our natural endowments. Revelation of the facts of nature, which we can ascertain for ourselves, would be pointless, and therefore doesn't occur.

JM3- God revealed the commandments to Moses. Most of these commandments were already known to men before they were revealed. This fact destroys your thesis concerning God not revealing natural truths, for the commandments are truths concerning the natural moral act.

JM2- My position is the standard Catholic teaching on the nature of revelation.

Adomnan: No, it isn't.

JM3 – Its also the scriptural position; see above for details.

Still waiting for the evidence against geocentrism.

JM

johnmartin said...

But that's avoiding the point, Johnmartin. By your own standard, "most" of your own
Scriptural evidence for geocentrism has just been eliminated from valid use. So, you should remove those from your list of supposed evidence.
JM – poetry also includes truths that are real. In the case of geo, the poetry is talking about a reality concerning the stationary earth. We verify this by what other scriptural passages say and what the church fathers and the church has said.

JM

Frank said...

Wow, I've seen some threads over on Catholic answers and its the same way. Not always a good answer, but always an answer and never stopping. Anyway, I have a few minutes here and I think it is important to return to the authority I quoted earlier. How about Leo XIII first. He said "they have sometimes expressed the ideas of their own times, and thus made statements which in these days have been abandoned as incorrect. Hence, in their interpretations, we must carefully note what they lay down as belonging to faith, or as intimately connected with faith -- what they are unanimous in. For 'in those things which do not come under the obligation of faith, the Saints were at liberty to hold divergent opinions, just as we ourselves are,' according to the saying of St. Thomas"

Jordanes has asked you to produce the quotes from the Fathers in which they state that geocentrism belongs to the Faith. So far you have not produced any. He said that another guy produced quotes from the Fathers for literal days of creation but that none of those presented it as a matter of the Faith either. That does not surprise me. I repeat, Pope Leo XIII made it perfectly clear that on these scientific matters the faithful are at liberty to hold different views. You guys are out of line to suggest that geocentrism is a matter of faith.

Now to Pius XII. He said that the Holy Spirit "did not intend to teach men these things - that is the essential nature of the things of the universe" So again these are not matters of the Faith. He said that specifically with respect to some matter where Scripture speaks of "what sensibly appeared" using "terms which were commonly used at the time, and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even among the most eminent men of science." I can see that the description fits the language of the sun rising and the sun setting to a tea. I do not see any other matter that makes any sense. I see that you guys don't seem to think he was talking about geocentrism, which is the most obvious thing. So what does the Pope mean, if not that language like that of sun rising and sun setting is not intended in Scripture nor obviously in the Fathers to be something the Holy Spirit is teaching about the nature of the universe and hence not a matter of Faith. If it does not refer to geocentrism then to what? Please do not say you don't know and try to leave it at that. If it walks and quacks like a duck it is a duck and saying you don't know what a duck looks like is not any more convincing than saying that you don't know whethter the moon landings are a hoax.

If you consider this still to be a matter of the Faith then tell us plainly is a rejection of geocentrism still a formal heresy? Yes or no.

johnmartin said...

A partial Reply to Gary Hoge –

H- If the geocentrists are right about the nature of the universe, would it be possible for the earth to be at the center of mass of such a system? The answer is, yes! To make this happen, it would only be necessary to have some other mass balance the mass of the nearby sun and thereby skew the center of mass of the whole system out to where the earth is located.

JM – Hoges first mistake is to assume Newtons assumptions concerning the cause of gravity have been proven, when in fact geocentrists take a very different view of the cause of gravity. Geocentrism according to Hildegard, scripture and the fathers involves the interaction of a firmament, aether flow, cosmic winds, rotating stars and heavenly bodies. The interaction of these celestial substances causes all the gravitational forces we observe. Geos claim this is one reason why Newtons laws have to be modified for distant galaxies – the laws are simply not universal and are not based on well understood physical causes.

Furthermore, the centre of mass concept is merely a mathematical construct used within Newtonian mechanics and as such cannot be used to invalidate geocentrism without falling into the logical fallacy of inconsistency. For the supposed invalidation of geocentrism requires the reader to believe Geocentrists embrace Newtonian mechanics in toto, with its assumed magical properties of matter as the cause of gravity, when geocentrists do not embrace such a mechanism. In short, the very notion of the centre of mass is problematic, and as such cannot be used in an invalidation of geocentrism without Mr Hoge first establishing the concept as a real thing and not merely a derived mathematical concept.

H- So far, so good. But here's where the geocentrists make a crucial error. Even if they were right about our solar system being at the center of the universe, they fail to take into account the fact that the universe is in a constant state of motion. The planets all move relative to the sun, and relative to each other, and over the course of a year, the sun moves all the way around the sky, relative to the stars. As all of these masses move relative to each other, obviously their combined center of mass is going to move too.

JM- Hoges statements make the same assumptions concerning the nature of gravity not embraced by Geocentrists.

H- For example, I noted above that if Jupiter were the only planet in the solar system, both it and the sun would orbit a fixed point in space forever. But Jupiter isn't the only planet in the solar system. As the other heavy planets move to different positions around the sun, they cause the center of mass of the solar system to shift.

JM – Hoges merely assumes Newtonian mechanics is valid in this regard and does not mention the fact the Geocentrists see the fallacies of the model. Because of this Hoges observations fall into the fallacy of inconsistency.

Geocentrists believe the motion of the planets is caused by cosmic winds circulating throughout the universe. The planets are propelled around each other due to these winds. Therefore geos do not hold to the same physical cause of planetary motion and therefore his comments regarding the centre of mass, though interesting, are of no consequence for geocentrism.

tbc

johnmartin said...

H- The figure on the left shows the location of the solar system's center of mass for each year between 1945 and 1995. As you can see, over a fifty-year period, the complex motion of the heavy outer planets, especially Jupiter, profoundly affects the location of the solar system's center of mass. In 1983, for example, the center of mass was located a considerable distance from the center of the sun. That's because in that year, all of the outer planets – Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune – were on the same side of the sun, putting almost all of the solar system's planetary weight on one side of the sun, and thus skewing the center of mass away from the sun. But in 1990, the center of mass of the solar system almost coincided with the center of the sun. That's because in that year, Jupiter, which is heavier than all the other planets combined, was on the opposite side of the sun from Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. Thus, these large planets tended to balance each other out, and leave the center of mass near the center of the sun.

JM – The solar system centre of mass is only the construct of Newtonian mechanics and modelling. This moving centre of mass has never been observed and how could it anyway? Its simply only a mental construct, based upon assumptions and a model. Any logician does not admit to an invalidation of a system through the fallacy of inconsistency being used in the apparent disproof. Geocentrists hold the same logical standard for Hoges argument as well.

H- The point of all this is to illustrate the fact that the center of mass of a moving system will always be moving, too. So, if the earth ever were at the center of mass of the universe, even a geocentric universe, it wouldn't be there for long. Also, recall that in order to compensate for the mass of the nearby sun and skew the center of mass out to the location of the earth, it was necessary to assume that the "shell" of stars was slightly heavier in the direction opposite that of the sun. But the sun is constantly moving relative to the stars, completing a full circuit of the sky over the course of a year. So even if the stars were heavier in a given direction, the sun would only be located opposite that direction at one time during the year. Six months later, the sun would be located in the same direction from the earth as the heavier side of the shell of stars, and that would skew the center of mass back toward the sun.

JM – The centre of mass can move all it wants, for it is merely a mental construct unrelated to geocentrism.

JM

S said...

I wrote, "But that's avoiding the point, Johnmartin. By your own standard, 'most' of your own
Scriptural evidence for geocentrism has just been eliminated from valid use. So, you should remove those from your list of supposed evidence."

John wrote, "poetry also includes truths that are real. In the case of geo, the poetry is talking about a reality concerning the stationary earth. We verify this by what other scriptural passages say and what the church fathers and the church has said."

John, you're still missing the point and confusing the issue. You refused to accept Jordanes' citation of the Phoenix in Isaiah because "Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real." Period.

If Isaiah is eliminated as a reliable proof of reality because it's poetry, then the Psalms are eliminated a fortiori. You can't have it both ways. What you believe the Fathers or other scripture passages teach is irrelevant to the validity of the Psalms as a "proof" for geocentrism. Therefore, you've already given the standard by which "most" of your own scriptural "proofs" of geocentrism are eliminated.

S said...

ROBERT SUNGENIS: "Let me also speak about the issue of geocentrism... In our promotion [of Galileo Was Wrong], however, we will avoid all implications that Catholics are required, by force of Catholic dogma, to hold the geocentric position (something we did not make clear previously)."

Things have changed pretty drastically since he made that statement.

ROBERT SUNGENIS: "If you can’t accept it, then, if I can impose on you, just consider it Robert Sungenis’ quirk and that will be fine with me. I know this issue is much too shocking and controversial at present for me to expect many people to consider what I have to say...I’ll let future generations decide the merits of my work."

http://www.surprisedbytruth.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1759

Sungenis' more humble attitude has changed pretty drastically since this statement too. I wonder if perhaps he found that he wasn't gaining enough attention based on the merit of his work alone and so he turned to being more condemnatory and confrontational in order to get attention for it?

johnmartin said...

Frank - Wow, I've seen some threads over on Catholic answers and its the same way. Not always a good answer, but always an answer and never stopping. Anyway, I have a few minutes here and I think it is important to return to the authority I quoted earlier. How about Leo XIII first. He said "they have sometimes expressed the ideas of their own times, and thus made statements which in these days have been abandoned as incorrect. Hence, in their interpretations, we must carefully note what they lay down as belonging to faith, or as intimately connected with faith -- what they are unanimous in. For 'in those things which do not come under the obligation of faith, the Saints were at liberty to hold divergent opinions, just as we ourselves are,' according to the saying of St. Thomas"

JM- Frank is repeating something already answered. Not good Frank. Shows me he is either not reading what I’ve said or he’s completely lost his bearings.

F- Jordanes has asked you to produce the quotes from the Fathers in which they state that geocentrism belongs to the Faith. So far you have not produced any. He said that another guy produced quotes from the Fathers for literal days of creation but that none of those presented it as a matter of the Faith either. That does not surprise me. I repeat, Pope Leo XIII made it perfectly clear that on these scientific matters the faithful are at liberty to hold different views. You guys are out of line to suggest that geocentrism is a matter of faith.

JM- I repeat where there is a unanimous consent of the fathers on matters of faith and morals we are bound to their belief. If the creation days and geocentrism are not a matter of faith Frank, then what are they? If they are a matter of science then you have to show us where the fathers got this information from science of the day. Gee wiz man they must have had some pretty good science back then, they even knew the number of days in the creation week from science no less . . . um I don’t think so. The fathers got the information in the same source we get the information from – scripture no less. The fathers have spoken unanimously on the literal interpretation of the creation week and the matter of geocentrism, so the case is closed.

Do the fathers need to expressly state the matter they are discussing is a matter of faith, when they are interpreting the literal sense of scripture? No they do not and Trent and Leo say the literal sense dominates and the unanimous consent dominates the interpretation.

F- Now to Pius XII. He said that the Holy Spirit "did not intend to teach men these things - that is the essential nature of the things of the universe"

JM – Since when is a literal six day creation week and geocentrism about the nature of the universe? Its really only a brief description about some aspects of the creation act and what body moves relative to another. Pius was talking about detailed scientific facts, like that of the natural sciences are not found in scripture. This is almost self evidently true. The only way we can take of the statements on scripture by the church and the fathers, is to arrive at the creation week and geocentrism.

F- So again these are not matters of the Faith. He said that specifically with respect to some matter where Scripture speaks of "what sensibly appeared" using "terms which were commonly used at the time, and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even among the most eminent men of science." I can see that the description fits the language of the sun rising and the sun setting to a tea.
. . .

johnmartin said...

JM- Sure Frank, except the father interpreted the passages literally, and unanimously, so it is a matter of faith.

F- I do not see any other matter that makes any sense. I see that you guys don't seem to think he was talking about geocentrism, which is the most obvious thing. So what does the Pope mean, if not that language like that of sun rising and sun setting is not intended in Scripture nor obviously in the Fathers to be something the Holy Spirit is teaching about the nature of the universe and hence not a matter of Faith. If it does not refer to geocentrism then to what? Please do not say you don't know and try to leave it at that. If it walks and quacks like a duck it is a duck and saying you don't know what a duck looks like is not any more convincing than saying that you don't know whether the moon landings are a hoax.

JM- This is your problem. You think it’s our interpretation of Leo that you can play around with. It simply is not. The fathers were unanimous in their literal understanding of the passages that spoke of a literal six days and geocentrism. Leo is talking about individual fathers who had opinions on a whole range of matters that were not unanimously held. Otherwise Leo has contradicted Trent. Leo has not contradicted Trent, because the church is indefectible. Therefore Leos quote, taken in context cannot be applied to geocentrism.

F- If you consider this still to be a matter of the Faith then tell us plainly is a rejection of geocentrism still a formal heresy? Yes or no.

JM – Well lets look at what the Popes said at the time of Galileo . .. they used the word heresy, so why couldn’t a modern Catholic take the Popes statements at face value and actually believe what he said? There is no reason of course. So yes, a denial of geocentrism can be understood as formal heresy. Yet we must be careful to distinguish the knowledge of the person who denies this truth, because we live in an age of confusion, misinformation and unbelief. So even if a Catholic apologist denies geocentrism, he should be given a big opportunity to reconsider the position in light of all the facts. We should pray about it and discuss it in a spirit of fraternal charity.

JM

johnmartin said...

John: You're still missing the point and confusing the issue. You discounted citation of the Phoenix in Isaiah because "Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real." Period.

If Isaiah is eliminated as a proof because its poetic language, then the Psalms are eliminated for precisely the same reason. What you believe the Fathers or other scripture passages teach is irrelevant. You've already given the standard by which "most" of you scriptural proofs of geocentrism are eliminated.

JM – Isaiah’s reference to the phoenix is probably only a projection into the text because the text itself never uses the word. Furthermore, the phoenix is not present unanimously in the fathers nor is it part of church teaching. So the three sources check out – the phoenix is not part of the apostolic faith.

JM

S said...

John, you eliminated the validity of using Isaiah to support belief in the Phoenix because "Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real." Period. I pointed out that this same exact criteria that you stated would eliminate the validity of what Sungenis described as "most" of your scriptural proof for geocentrism. The Psalms are poetry, a fortiori.

So you're using a double standard.

All of the subsequent arguments you've made are irrelevant to the point. If a biblical text being poetry eliminates it from valid consideration as a true proof for belief in something (as you stated), then it eliminates it. Period.

Now you are introducing other factors and arguments to bolster your case. But they weren't your original argument.

Your original argument eliminates what Sungenis describes as "most" of your scriptural proofs for geocentrism. I can certainly understand why you wouldn't want to admit that. But it is what it is.

S said...

ROBERT SUNGENIS: "Let me also speak about the issue of geocentrism... In our promotion [of Galileo Was Wrong], however, we will avoid all implications that Catholics are required, by force of Catholic dogma, to hold the geocentric position (something we did not make clear previously)."

Vs.

JOHNMARTIN: "yes, a denial of geocentrism can be understood as formal heresy."


Could you answer without qualifiers like "could be understood as"? Is it your position that geocentrism is a teaching that Catholics are required to believe - it's a heresy to not believe in geocentrism?

johnmartin said...

John, you eliminated the validity of using Isaiah to support belief in the Phoenix because "Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real." Period.

JM - An answer was given which you have not responded to.

S- Could you answer without qualifiers like "could be understood as"? Is it your position that geocentrism is a teaching that Catholics are required to believe - it's a heresy to not believe in geocentrism?

I could if I knew more about the weight the church places on the doctrine. Not all denials of doctrine are heresy.

It seems to me that the geo was probably part of the ordinary magesteriums teaching, so it is binding on Catholics who are informed of church history and dogmatics.

The question of heresy is something I'm not really interested in at the moment. I'm more interested in the pros and cons of the truth of geo than the consequences of its denial.

JM

johnmartin said...

The same number of Scriptures and Church documents teach geocentrism as an article of faith as teach the existence of the Phoenix.

JM- I know the fathers are unanimous on geocentrism http://www.scripturecatholic.com/geocentrism.htmland now you can show me the universal consent of the fathers on the Phoenix.

As I said, the same number of Scriptures and Church documents teach geocentrism as an article of faith as teach the existence of the Phoenix as an article of faith. No one can show unanimous consent of the Fathers on the Phoenix, and no one can show unanimous consent of the Fathers on geocentrism -- because unanimous consent of the Fathers has to do only with matters of the faith, and geocentrism is purely a matter of science.

JM2 – Not answering the evidence and reaffirming a logically flawed argument doesn’t help your case.

J - Sungenis' associate Rick DeLano earlier this year provided me with a list of Fathers who allegedly taught as a religious doctrine that the days of Creation Week were ordinary 24-hour days. I went through the list systematically and found that most on that list didn't say anything on the question at all, that the evidence does not support unanimous consent of the Fathers on that point, and in any event the Church had already said that it is perfectly acceptable to propose that the days of Creation Week were not 24-hour days. The same thing is true regarding the Fathers' opinions and beliefs on other scientific questions, including their belief in geocentrism. It is no more an article of faith that the earth is the unmoving center of the universe than it is an article of faith that the Pharaoh of the Exodus was named Achencheres.

JM2- Some evidence from the church fathers on the 6 day creation week - http://www.scripturecatholic.com/evolution.html.

J - When did She make the fatal error of proposing geocentrism as an infallible and irreformably binding article of the Catholic faith?

JM – The papal bulls previously posted in this blog.

See the old Catholic Encyclopedia on this question. The Galileo affair includes no infallible and irreformable teachings binding us to believe in geocentrism. That stands to reason, since the Church is infallible and cannot err in its teaching, which would not be the case if She had bindingly taught geocentrism as an article of faith.

JM2 – Provide the link please. The encyclopedia is only a guide anyway. What are we to make of the content of those Papal Bulls that state a moving earth is heresy? Seems rather obvious the Popes have spoken on the matter and the church hasn’t seen fit to change the decree.

tbc

johnmartin said...

JM- there is more to faith than things not seen.

J - True, but irrelevant.

JM2- Seems like double speak to me.

JM- The formal object of faith is God revealing and whatever He reveals is to be believed. If He reveals a natural truth then it is to be believed.

J- As Adomnan has explained, God doesn't "reveal" things we can discover and establish through reason alone (He does affirm various natural truths while revealing the Truth, but since such things do not need supernatural intervention to be discovered and known, He never "reveals" them), and He never "reveals" things that are not true, such as geocentrism.

JM2- I’ve already given example of what God has revealed which are naturally knowable. For example the ten commandments, the existence of the soul, the existence of the after life, the existence of morality, sin and merit. We also have Vatican I binding believers to the notion that the existence of God can be known through reason – this too was also revealed by God trough His church. There are several clear examples of God revealing truths that can be known through reason. God does this because all men do not agree on what can be known by reason. Therefore God make it clear that certain truths can be known by reason and verified by faith and others can be known by faith alone.

JM- Paul does not say faith is the evidence of things only not seen

J- Once again, true, but irrelevant. He also does not say that faith is the evidence of things seen.

JM2- Its relevant to the point in question. Nowhere does Paul deny God reveals naturally knowable truths.

J- Now then, perhaps you might try to answer my question: How does believing that the earth is the unmoving center of the entire universe effect or advance the salvation of souls?

JM2- It forces the unbeliever to sit up and take notice of the true faith. If there is a truth that is not directly knowable through science, but has circumstantial scientific evidence pointing to that truth, then the secular mind is confronted with a big truth. This one truth can lead to faith and salvation. However if the earth is just another planet somewhere in space, then the secular minded are not confronted with such a big truth and may easily dismiss other truths such as creation. The more truth there is about God and the church without revelation, the more likely men are to take note of truths with revelation and thereby join the true faith.

Geocentrism also promotes the Papacy, because it is only the Papacy and its followers who have bee faithful to the fullness of truth revealed by God. So if geocentrism is vindicated in the science establishment, then the Papacy and consequently the church is vindicated and promoted for the salvation of souls. That’s one good reason I’m promoting geocentrism.

JM

S said...

Johnmartin: "An answer was given which you have not responded to."

Sure I did, John. I responded on Tue Nov 09, 03:26:00 AM EST. My post is the very next one under your "response."

As I've said, you're introducing new arguments that you didn't originally make now in order to bolster your case. As you won't admit such an easily demonstrable fact, then there's no hope you'll ever admit something more complicated. There's nothing to be gained in continuing.

Just so you can see your original argument against Jordanes again on this specific point, on last time, here it is:

++++++++++

JORDANES: "Geocentric" language is found throughout Scripture, of course, but then Isaiah also refers to the Phoenix in Isa. 40:31. However, that language is not prescriptive of a doctrine which must be believed in with saving faith.

JOHMARTIN: Isaiah is poetry so we shouldn’t expect the Phoenix to be real.

++++++++

That's all you wrote on that specific point. According to you, all that was required to dispatch the use of Isaiah as a proof was to note that it's "poetry." That argument stood all by itself.

What you've done now is to to introduce additional arguments AFTER I pointed out that this same criteria you stated eliminates what Sungenis describes as "most" of your own scriptural references supporting geocentrism (the Psalms). If Isaiah is poetry and therefore isn't a valid proof, then the Psalms are eliminated a fortiori.

There's no way around that, John.

S said...

John,

You wrote:

"lets look at what the Popes said at the time of Galileo . .. they used the word heresy, so why couldn’t a modern Catholic take the Popes statements at face value and actually believe what he said? There is no reason of course. So yes, a denial of geocentrism can be understood as formal heresy."

Then, I quoted Sungenis stating this:

"Let me also speak about the issue of geocentrism... In our promotion [of Galileo Was Wrong], however, we will avoid all implications that Catholics are required, by force of Catholic dogma, to hold the geocentric position (something we did not make clear previously)."
http://www.surprisedbytruth.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1759

After which you backpedaled and wrote:

"I could if I knew more about the weight the church places on the doctrine. Not all denials of doctrine are heresy. It seems to me that the geo was probably part of the ordinary magesteriums teaching, so it is binding on Catholics who are informed of church history and dogmatics. The question of heresy is something I'm not really interested in at the moment."

And you accused Jordanes of double speak? :-/

Sungenis doesn't seem to be able to make up his mind, either. Sometimes he just wants people to consider the possibility of geocentrism or at least to allow him his "shocking" geocentric "quirk". Other times he's out attacking people for not believing geocentrism.

It's very off-putting and weird.

S said...

Johnmartin:

I honestly wanted to try to understand how conspiracy theorists think and how someone becomes so susceptible to conspiracy theories (geocentrism is certainly well within that realm - the lead talk at the Galileo Was Wrong conference was "they know it but they're hiding it.”) I've gotten some good additional insight about that in this this combox watching your responses. So thank you for that.

I believe you're what could be called a true believer, John. No amount of evidence will change your mind. If, after having used the mirrors on the moon and admitting that you’ve haven’t really studied the alleged proof that you moon landing was a hoax, you nevertheless have any serious doubt about the issue, then you have a deeply paranoid and suspicious mindset. That’s a very powerful mindset that drives people, John. For people with that mindset, it’s not really about a search for “truth.” It’s about finding what one is pre-disposed to find. So, ironically, people with your mindset are guilty of the exact thing geocentrists accuse modern scientists of - it's just that you're on the opposite extreme.

I don’t condemn or judge you for that. But I do honestly feel a little sorry for you, because that’s a terrible frame of mind from which to live your life. You might want to read the chapter titled “the Maniac” in Chesterton’s “Orthodoxy”. It’s a wake-up call.

And I do also object to the way you and your fellow geocentrists have attempted to co-opt the authority of the Church in order to brow-beat them into accepting your (unusual) opinion. And I do object to the fact that, because you’re (mis)using the name of the Church, you’ve allowed the secular press to use you in embarrassing her. It’s just weird and unseemly.

Unless I have more time and something seems useful here, I think I’ve spent enough time on it.

ThePalmHQ said...

Responding to another geocentrist I laid out a pretty detailed case that answers many of the questions and assertions raised here by johnmartin, especially with respect to the authority of the magisterial documents involved in geocentrism. Suffice to say that he's vastly overstating his case. See here:

http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=496804&highlight=heliocentrism&page=2

Dave Armstrong said...

Hey David!

How ya be these days? I'll have to check out your paper for sure.

Dave Armstrong said...

I read the comments at Catholic Answers (by David Palm) and they are fantastic: perhaps the best treatment of the Galileo affair and its relation to infallibility and geocentrism that I have seen, and very well-written and organized (as David's writings always are). I will be putting it up as a paper on my site.

Extreme kudos for an excellent job.

How ironic that the hardest I have to fight to show that the Galileo fiasco has no effect on Catholic infallibility, is with an atheist (recent debate with Jon) and fellow Catholic Bob Sungenis . . .

johnmartin said...

Sungenis doesn't seem to be able to make up his mind, either. Sometimes he just wants people to consider the possibility of geocentrism or at least to allow him his "shocking" geocentric "quirk". Other times he's out attacking people for not believing geocentrism.

It's very off-putting and weird.

JM- Well I don't think I have the authority to state what is and is not heresy. Both of my previous statements conveyed some doubt on the matter of heresy. There was snot double speak.

JM

johnmartin said...

Johnmartin:

I honestly wanted to try to understand how conspiracy theorists think and how someone becomes so susceptible to conspiracy theories (geocentrism is certainly well within that realm - the lead talk at the Galileo Was Wrong conference was "they know it but they're hiding it.”) I've gotten some good additional insight about that in this this combox watching your responses. So thank you for that.

JM – projecting conspiracy theorist mentality onot me is just that – projection. So I’ve learnt something of those who attempt to tear down the truth with innuendo.

S- I believe you're what could be called a true believer, John. No amount of evidence will change your mind. If, after having used the mirrors on the moon and admitting that you’ve haven’t really studied the alleged proof that you moon landing was a hoax, you nevertheless have any serious doubt about the issue, then you have a deeply paranoid and suspicious mindset. That’s a very powerful mindset that drives people, John. For people with that mindset, it’s not really about a search for “truth.” It’s about finding what one is pre-disposed to find. So, ironically, people with your mindset are guilty of the exact thing geocentrists accuse modern scientists of - it's just that you're on the opposite extreme.

JM – Maybe I didn’t express myself as well as I could have in the post where I said “I thought about this for some time. Maybe the mirrors were placed there by robots. Robert only denies man has been on the moon. As far as I know he hasn't said a ship wasn't sent to the moon.” I’ll clarify my comment as follows – I currently believe man landed on the moon and placed the retro mirrors on the moon. My previous comment was referring to what Robert may believe about the placement of the mirrors on the moon. I say this because the Lunar laser ranging experiment is discussed in GWW.

Now with this clarification I conclude your comments are not based on anything I have said concerning the manner in which I came to believe in geocentrism.

S- I don’t condemn or judge you for that. But I do honestly feel a little sorry for you, because that’s a terrible frame of mind from which to live your life. You might want to read the chapter titled “the Maniac” in Chesterton’s “Orthodoxy”. It’s a wake-up call.

JM- your pity is based on a false premise.

S- And I do also object to the way you and your fellow geocentrists have attempted to co-opt the authority of the Church in order to brow-beat them into accepting your (unusual) opinion. And I do object to the fact that, because you’re (mis)using the name of the Church, you’ve allowed the secular press to use you in embarrassing her. It’s just weird and unseemly.

JM- the answers to the church statements concerning the Galileo incident and geocentrism are very weak. The consilience of evidence from the church, fathers, scripture and science point directly to a created geocentric universe.

S- Unless I have more time and something seems useful here, I think I’ve spent enough time on it.

JM – Sounds good to me. You’ve probably run out of ideas anyway.

JM

ThePalmHQ said...

Hi Dave,

My family and I are doing well and I hope yours are the same. Thanks for asking and for your gracious compliments as well.

The one thing I would emphasize from my postings at CAF is that there is no papal decree, no papal bull that condemns heliocentrism. These modern proponents of geocentrism like "johnmartin" manifestly exaggerate and misrepresent the level of authority of the documents generated during the Galileo controversy. And they do so with no seeming regard for the completely untenable position they put themselves into with respect to the Church's indefectibility.

I think that one thing we can see clearly here is that when it comes to these matters over in the Sungenis camp it's All Conspiracy Theories, All the Time.

The thing that blows me away is how, if only one held Sungenis' own standards on how he dismisses the teaching of the Fathers on the future conversion of the Jews (he is very big on double standards) you would have grounds on which to throw out every single one of the citations he presents from the Fathers for geocentrism.

See my piece on there here: http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2007/02/ongoing-role-of-jews-in-salvation.html

At least twenty one Fathers, of whom nine are Doctors of the Church, teach a future, special conversion of the Jews. None deny it. How does Bob wiggle out of all that in order that he can deny it? Well, first he insists that because they don't present a detailed exegesis of the Scriptural passages involved, therefore their testimony may be dismissed. But do any Fathers present a detailed exegesis of the passages that allegedly teach geocentrism? No. And isn't it true that in many of the patristic passages Sungenis cites there is no appeal to Scripture at all? Yes. So those are all out on his standards.

Then he argues that if any Father allegedly gets any detail wrong, then he can't be trusted at all on the topic and he can be thrown out. But as I'll show in another posting here, many Fathers get scientific details wrong with respect to geocentrim. By his standards, out they go.

He accuses various Fathers of being bunglers and duplicitous exegetes (!). So I don't see why we should believe them on geocentrism if they are actually downright duplicitous on matters pertaining to Jews.

And he insists that if they don't say that they are handing on an apostolic tradition, that what they teaching is a matter handed on to them as part of the depost of Faith, then their testimony does not count toward establishing unanimous consensus. Here he's actually gotten closer to a truth. But it so happens that whereas various Fathers DO in fact say that the future conversion of the Jews is a Tradition handed on in the Church, they never say anything of the sort with respect to geocentrism.

Of course, his standards only apply if you need them to deny something good that might happen to Jews. If it's something bad about Jews, like the allegation that the Antichrist will be a Jew, then all you need are two patristic quotes and three pages of quotes that are completely unrelated but make you look like you've got a lot of evidence and you can claim that "Catholic tradition . . . has unofficially declared that the future Antichrist will be of Jewish extraction". See the link above as well as this one: http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2009/07/lies-plagiarism-and-anti-semites.html

But if it’s a pet position like geocentrism that’s being defended, then all of a sudden these standards go out the window.

As has already been said here, it is the plain teaching of the Popes that these matters of "how the heavens go" are not part of the deposit of faith. It does not matter how many of the Fathers were or were not geocentrists, because their testimony on a matter that does not belong to the deposit of faith, while perhaps interesting, does not bind us as Catholics.

God bless,

David

ThePalmHQ said...

Here are some of the many examples in which the Fathers are wrong on details, even from a modern geocentrist perspective. Again, these should all count against establishing any sort of patristic consensus given the standards deployed elsewhere.

Augustine: "And yet, when it pleased Him who with sovereignty and supreme power regulates all He has created, a star conspicuous among the rest by its size and splendor changed its color, size, form, and, most wonderful of all, the order and law of its course!" (City of God, Book XXI, Ch 8) But the sun is NOT conspicuous for its size and splendor. There are billions of stars as big or bigger than it.

Clement of Rome: "The sun and moon, with the companies of the stars, roll on in harmony according to His command, within their prescribed limits, and without any deviation." (First Epistle to the Corinthians, Ch XX). Correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that the moon's path DOES change and the distance to the earth DOES change. Do geocentrists deny this?

Gregory Nanzianzus: "The sun is extolled by David for its beauty, its greatness, its swift course, and its power, splendid as a bridegroom, majestic as a giant; while, from the extent of its circuit, it has such power that it equally sheds its light from one end of heaven to the other, and the heat thereof is in no wise lessened by distance. (Funeral Orations for St. Basil, 66). Try saying that while on Mercury vs. Pluto.

Gregory of Nyssa: "And how does earth below form the foundation of the whole, and what is it that keeps it firmly in its place? what is it that controls its downward tendency?" (Answer to Eunomius’ Second Book) There is nothing pulling the earth "down".

Gregory of Nyssa: "And when you look at the waning and waxing moon you are taught other truths by the visible figure of that heavenly body, viz. that it is in itself devoid of light, and that it revolves in the circle nearest to the earth" (On the Soul and Resurrection). Not a "circle", sorry. Geocentrists have for centuries had to admit that the orbits are ellipses.

Hippolytus: “But that the circle of the sun is twenty-seven times larger than the moon, and that the sun is situated in the highest (quarter of the firmament); whereas the orbs of the fixed stars in the lowest.” (Refutation of All Heresies, Bk V, Ch 22) Wrong twice.

Archelaus: “Then, again, the living Spirit created the luminaries, which are fragments of the soul" (Disputation with Manes, 22) The stars are "fragments of the soul"? Well, no, sorry.....St. Jerome thought the idea was idiotic.

Gregory of Nyssa: "when the body of heaven compassed all things round, and those bodies which are heavy and of downward tendency, the earth and the water, holding each other in, took the middle place of the universe" (On the Making of Man, 30, 1, 1) The earth is in the center of the universe because it's the heaviest? Well, no. And also, this is a purely pseudo-scientific reason for saying the earth is in the center rather than suggesting it was from Tradition. Sorry there, too

Basil : “the celestial bodies move in a circular course” (Nine Homilies of the Haxameron, Homily I ) No, they do not "move in a circular course". Again, they are ellipses. Geocentrists agree with that, do they not?

St. Cyril of Jerusalem states that the “firmament” is literally comprised of water. But modern geocentrists don’t believe that.

There are many more examples that could be cited, but I think this is sufficient to demonstrate the problem. According to a certain apologist's standards, if these witnesses can't get the details right then they simply cannot be said to form a unanimous witness.

S said...

John,

No offense, but I don't think you're reading what you've written previously before giving more answers.

Johnmartin NOW: "I’ll clarify my comment as follows – I currently believe man landed on the moon and placed the retro mirrors on the moon. My previous comment was referring to what Robert may believe about the placement of the mirrors on the moon."

VS.

Johnmartin THEN: "I'm not currently aware of the arguments proposed either way concerning the moon landings so I have no firm opinion either way"

Johnmartin THEN: "I thought about this for some time. Maybe the mirrors were placed [on the moon] by robots."

Johnmartin THEN: "Robert has a good observation concerning funding for NASA. The large budget needs to be propped up with something, so why not invent a need to get the money? Seems pretty obvious."

You weren't just referring to what Sungenis believes in the beginning. You were pretty sympathetic to conspiracy views involving NASA all on your own and even came up with a new explanation. And you're forgetting that goecentrism itself fits within the genre of "conspiracy theories". Remember? "Geocentrism: they know it, but they're hiding it." So, you do have a conspiracy mindset.

You also eliminated most of the scriptural proof for geocentrism but haven't admitted that, either. So I would agree with you that a couple of things "seem pretty obvious".

Adomnan said...

David Palm, Frank, Jordanes and S have provided all the discussion of the Fathers needed to refute johnmartin and Mr. Sungenis. I'm just playing around, for fun, with the concept of revelation that johnmartin presupposes.

If you, johnmartin, believe that natural science proves geocentrism, then you believe that geocentrism is an established scientific fact. But if geocentrism were an established scientific fact, then it wouldn't be a divine revelation. God cannot reveal what is known or can be known apart from Him by the exercise of ordinary human endowments.

That's why God can't reveal that we have eyes and ears, because we can see that we have eyes and ears. In the same way, any scientific fact is merely an exercise of perception on a larger scale, coupled with the sort of logical reasoning that is accessible to every human being. This is something utterly different from divine revelation.

To say, "X is an established scientific fact" and "X is revealed by God" is a contradiction in terms. X can only be one or the other, not both.

The world of nature is below man on the ontological scale and so subject to our investigation. It is what is above us in being that must be revealed if we are to know it. It is true that we have a faculty of the soul that is capable of knowing God, but only if God condescends to be known. That's why faith is a gift of God's grace.

What gift of grace do we need to discover whether the earth moves or not -- if, as johnmartin maintains, this can be established by scientific inquiry? If no grace is involved, then no faith is involved, and no revelation is involved.

Thus, even if the world were geocentric and the earth motionless, there would be no divine revelation and no faith involved in affirming that.

Moreover, there is no point in God's "confirming" scientific facts or theories, because science itself confirms or falsifies them.

Divine revelation and natural science are two completely separate and non-overlapping spheres, which is why there can never be any conflict between them, even in principle.

Note, johnmartin, that you were able to adduce only one fact of the natural sciences that you (falsely) believe God revealed; namely, geocentrism. If God is in the business of revealing facts of natural science, then why did He limit Himself to just one? (Your other examples concern philosophy, morality and history and do not fall into the category of natural science.)

Jordanes said...

I repeat where there is a unanimous consent of the fathers on matters of faith and morals we are bound to their belief. If the creation days and geocentrism are not a matter of faith Frank, then what are they?

They are questions of science, history, and philosophy the correct answers to which have no bearing on the content of the Catholic faith, without which no soul can be saved.

The fathers have spoken unanimously on the literal interpretation of the creation week and the matter of geocentrism, so the case is closed.

As you've already been told, the unanimous consent of the Fathers is a principle for establishing Church doctrine, not for answering questions that pertain to the natural sciences. Geocentrism is no more a Church doctrine than is the old, widespread and erroneous belief that the human body is unformed until some time after conception.

Since when is a literal six day creation week and geocentrism about the nature of the universe?

The question of how long the days of creation week lasted has nothing to do with salvation, which is why the Holy Spirit never told us how long those days lasted. The same with the scientific facts regarding the courses and motions of the heavenly bodies and the physical laws which govern them (which certainly does have to do with the essential nature of the things of the universe). They have no bearing on salvation, and therefore the Holy Spirit told us nothing about them.

Its really only a brief description about some aspects of the creation act and what body moves relative to another. Pius was talking about detailed scientific facts, like that of the natural sciences are not found in scripture.

Ahem! The courses and orbits of the heavenly bodies, and the laws of physics, are detailed scientific facts, are they not?

This is almost self evidently true. The only way we can take of the statements on scripture by the church and the fathers, is to arrive at the creation week and geocentrism.

St. Robert Cardinal Bellarmine didn't think so. He was absolutely convinced those statements did support geocentrism, but still acknowledged the possibility that the Church could reexamine them and propose alternative interpretations.

Sure Frank, except the father interpreted the passages literally, and unanimously, so it is a matter of faith.

You are applying a Protestant "fundamentalist" hermeneutic to Scripture and the Fathers' statements, when you should be applying a Catholic hermeneutic. In the Catena Aurea, St. Thomas Aquinas compiled the various interpretations of the Fathers and offered them for our edification, even when the Fathers contradicted themselves and offered mutually exclusive interpretations. Aquinas also wrote in his Summa Theologiae, "First, hold the truth of Scripture without wavering. Second, since Holy Scripture can be explained in a multiplicity of senses, one should adhere to a particular explanation only in such measure as to be ready to abandon it if it be proved with certainty to be false -- lest Holy Scripture be exposed to the ridicule of unbelievers, and obstacles be placed to their believing." This is what the Church has done with geocentrism: we have abandoned the geocentric explanation of those passages since it has been established beyond all reasonable doubt that the earth is not the stationary cosmographical center of the universe.

Jordanes said...

Leo is talking about individual fathers who had opinions on a whole range of matters that were not unanimously held. Otherwise Leo has contradicted Trent. Leo has not contradicted Trent, because the church is indefectible. Therefore Leos quote, taken in context cannot be applied to geocentrism.

Where you go wrong in your reasoning is your premise that the Fathers unanimously held as an article of salvific faith that the earth is the unmoving center of the universe. There is no doubt Leo XIII was referring, among other things, to the geocentrism question. After all, by his day the Church had lifted its old prohibition on the teaching of heliocentrism in Catholic schools, something which would not be possible if the Church held geocentrism to be an infallible doctrine of the Faith.

JM – Well lets look at what the Popes said at the time of Galileo . .. they used the word heresy, so why couldn’t a modern Catholic take the Popes statements at face value and actually believe what he said?

Not everything a Pope says is infallible and irreformable -- namely, what the Popes once said about geocentrism and Galileo.

So yes, a denial of geocentrism can be understood as formal heresy.

Not by an informed orthodox Catholic it can't.

Jordanes said...

Not answering the evidence and reaffirming a logically flawed argument doesn’t help your case.

I've reaffirmed no logically flawed argument -- the Fathers' geocentric opinions are of the same class as the Fathers' and Isaiah's belief that there was a kind of bird of prey that could molt its feathers and die and then regenerate itself out of its own ashes. Neither belief is an article of faith.

As for the alleged evidence of a patristic consensus in support of geocentrism, there is no need to go through all of the places where to wrote in "geocentric" language, because we are bound to accept what the Fathers taught when they addressed matters of the Faith, and geocentrism is a matter of natural science, not a matter of the Faith.

JM2- Some evidence from the church fathers on the 6 day creation week - http://www.scripturecatholic.com/evolution.html.

Yeah, thanks, but as I said, I've already systematically gone through the alleged patristic consensus on that question, and found that such consensus does not exist.

JM – The papal bulls previously posted in this blog.

Which David Palm has explained, showing how Sungenis has misrepresented their level of authority.

Jordanes said...

JM2 – Provide the link please.

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06342b.htm

"Can it be said that either Paul V or Urban VIII so committed himself to the doctrine of geocentricism as to impose it upon the Church as an article of faith, and so to teach as pope what is now acknowledged to be untrue? That both these pontiffs were convinced anti-Copernicans cannot be doubted, nor that they believed the Copernican system to be unscriptural and desired its suppression. The question is, however, whether either of them condemned the doctrine ex cathedra. This, it is clear, they never did. As to the decree of 1616, we have seen that it was issued by the Congregation of the Index, which can raise no difficulty in regard of infallibility, this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree. Nor is the case altered by the fact that the pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi, that is to say, to the extent needful for the purpose intended, namely to prohibit the circulation of writings which were judged harmful. The pope and his assessors may have been wrong in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.

"As to the second trial in 1633, this was concerned not so much with the doctrine as with the person of Galileo, and his manifest breach of contract in not abstaining from the active propaganda of Copernican doctrines. The sentence, passed upon him in consequence, clearly implied a condemnation of Copernicanism, but it made no formal decree on the subject, and did not receive the pope's signature. Nor is this only an opinion of theologians; it is corroborated by writers whom none will accuse of any bias in favour of the papacy. Thus Professor Augustus De Morgan (Budget of Paradoxes) declares

"It is clear that the absurdity was the act of the Italian Inquisition, for the private and personal pleasure of the pope — who knew that the course he took could not convict him as pope — and not of the body which calls itself the Church."

"And von Gebler ("Galileo Galilei"):

"The Church never condemned it (the Copernican system) at all, for the Qualifiers of the Holy Office never mean the Church."

"It may be added that Riceloll and other contemporaries of Galileo were permitted, after 1616, to declare that no anti-Copernican definition had issued from the supreme pontiff."

The encyclopedia is only a guide anyway.

It's more than "only a guide." It's a trustworthy reference work, published under an imprimatur at a time when an imprimatur undeniably meant something. We cannot have such confidence in Sungenis' book on Galileo, which is junk science and bad theology unvetted by the Church.

What are we to make of the content of those Papal Bulls that state a moving earth is heresy?

Read David Palm and learn.

Seems rather obvious the Popes have spoken on the matter and the church hasn’t seen fit to change the decree.

If the Church hasn't seen fit to change the decree issued in the Galileo case, how is it that Benedict XIV in 1741 gave the Holy Office of the Inquisition permission to grant an imprimatur to the first edition of "The Complete Works of Galileo"? And how could Pius VII in 1822 have had the Holy Office grant an imprimatur to Canon Settele's work, in which Copernicanism was presented as a fact and not just just a hypothesis?

Jordanes said...

JM2- I’ve already given example of what God has revealed which are naturally knowable. For example the ten commandments, the existence of the soul, the existence of the after life, the existence of morality, sin and merit.

One can deduce from reason the existence of the soul and of some kind of afterlife, and also can deduce the principles of natural law, sin and merit: that is why these things were not revealed by God, though He confirms the intellect weakened through original sin by affirming them in His inspired Word. They are not articles of faith, just as the existence of God and its logical proofs are not articles of faith.

I suppose, given the confusion you've demonstrated in this discussion, that I should not be surprised you would claim that one can know through natural reason the content and the divine origin of the Ten Commandments. Even the commandment to rest from Friday sundown to Saturday sundown can be known through natural reason?

We also have Vatican I binding believers to the notion that the existence of God can be known through reason – this too was also revealed by God trough His church.

Yes, it is an article of faith (and hence not capable of demostration through reason alone) that the rational proofs of God's existence are not to be called articles of faith.

There are several clear examples of God revealing truths that can be known through reason.

No, not "revealing" in the proper sense.

Nowhere does Paul deny God reveals naturally knowable truths.

And nowhere does he say God reveals naturally knowable truths. He does, however, tell us what faith has to do with: things unseen, and salvation. Physics can't save anyone. Only Jesus can save.

Well, thanks at least for trying to answer my question: How does believing that the earth is the unmoving center of the entire universe effect or advance the salvation of souls?

JM2- It forces the unbeliever to sit up and take notice of the true faith.

Many, many things can do that, serving as a sort of preparation for the Gospel. The laws of chemistry, the workings of photosynthesis, the intricacies of human anatomy and embryology -- all of them can and do make unbelievers sit up and take notice of the true faith -- yet none of them is a part of the deposit of faith as you and Sungenis claim geocentrism is.

Furthermore, none of them can remit a single sin, or infuse grace into a soul, or cleanse a soul of original sin, or sanctify a soul.

If there is a truth that is not directly knowable through science,

But the questions of the earth's motion and location are directly knowable through science. That, coupled with the fact that no one can be saved from hell by holding to a fact of natural science, shows that geocentrism cannot be an article of faith.

Geocentrism also promotes the Papacy, because it is only the Papacy and its followers who have bee faithful to the fullness of truth revealed by God.

Would that be the same papacy that grants imprimaturs to works of Galileo and Copernican cosmology, and that reexamines Galileo's condemnation?

So if geocentrism is vindicated in the science establishment, then the Papacy and consequently the church is vindicated and promoted for the salvation of souls.

No, that would never happen, even granting that geocentrism is true (which it is not). The papacy that at first condemned Galileo and then later said, "We shouldn't have done that," would actually lose credibility if it turned out, "Well whaddayaknow, we were right about Galileo after all, and wrong about our being wrong about Galileo! Whoops! Sorry about that folks!"

juscot said...

All of these postings are just an extended attack on Bob Sungensis's character. Mr Palm is an old hand at this sort of character assasination. About a year ago, Matthew Bellisario of the Catholic Champion blog had a post on Mark Shea's visious and uncalled for attack on Fr Harrison, because Father's interpetation of the torture issue wasn't to Shea's liking. Matthew defended the good Father against Shea's vemon and immediately Mark started to flood the comboxes with his hot air. Mr Palm also chimed in, but not about Fr Harrison. All of his post were about Sungensis. Bellisario told Palm to knock off the attacks on Sungensis, he wasn't the subject of the post. Palm insisted on attacking Bob, and finally, Matt told him to take a powder. Matt told Palm he had no use for a man who helped set up a blog to slander or libel a man's (Sungensis) character. Well, it sonds like its old home week here, right Mr Palom!?

Jordanes said...

It seems juscot hasn't bothered to read any of the postings in this thread -- either that or he's deliberately misrepresenting "all" of the postings in this thread. In fact, the ideology of Sungenocentrism is not the sole topic under discussion here: rather more posts have to do with geocentrism than Sungenocentrism.

Anyway, I've read David Palm's interaction with Cassini, and he does an excellent job of explaining how denial of geocentrism cannot be a heresy. Cassini's response pretty much boiled down to well poisoning, since he effectively believes the gates of hell prevailed against the Church defected circa 1740, and that therefore everything the Church or members of the Church have said about geocentrism, heliocentrism, and Galileo since then is tainted. But then one wonders why Cassini even cares about this question if he really believes the Church and all the Popes since circa 1740 have not only permitted but encouraged hellish doctrine to flourish in the Church.

ThePalmHQ said...

I think it's worthwhile to look too at the various passages of Scripture that geocentrists advance in support. What's interesting is that although they claim to be taking them literally, it's not actually true. See this thread in which a fellow interacts with our "johnmartin"'s listing of various Scripture texts which he claims support geocentrism (the vast majority from the Psalms, poetry which "johnmartin" above said was worthless to establish anything and the backtracked, although he has not yet honestly admitted his blunder):

http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?72513-Geocentrism-Discussion&p=1469499#post1469499

Sure, lots of passages of Scripture state that the sun rises/set or goes up/down. But geocentrists don't believe that it literally goes up and down, rather they say that it orbits around the earth. So they do not apply a literal hermeneutic--even they have to admit that it only appears to go up and down. Neither is there literally an enclosure somewhere for the sun (Psa 19:4) nor does the sun have legs with which to run (Psa 19:5).

Again, Pope Pius XII addressed this sort of language of the senses and specifically stated that we do not derive any scientific information from it, since the Holy Spirit did not intend to convey such. But it's worth noting that even geocentrists do not take this language literally, as they claim.

Dave Armstrong said...

All of these postings are just an extended attack on Bob Sungensis's character.

How about the following. Is it an attack on my character?:

"this kind of dismissive apologetic will eventually destroy the Catholic Church, not help it, yet it is the only apologetic that the Dave Armstrongs are willing to use. . . . Mr. Armstrong is not really an 'apologist' for the Catholic Church. He’s an apologist for popular science. He has accepted popular science as his infallible dogmatic truth."

As I noted in the paper, Bob decided to come gunning after me. I had been ignoring him, and I have deliberately stayed out of all of the controversies regarding him. He knows this. But he decided to attack me and my status as a legitimate apologist: not just my opinions.

He has no one to blame but himself for that, and I think he will come to regret it, because it doesn't help his cause to come attacking and slandering me.

johnmartin said...

David Palm- The one thing I would emphasize from my postings at CAF is that there is no papal decree, no papal bull that condemns heliocentrism. These modern proponents of geocentrism like "johnmartin" manifestly exaggerate and misrepresent the level of authority of the documents generated during the Galileo controversy. And they do so with no seeming regard for the completely untenable position they put themselves into with respect to the Church's indefectibility.

JM- I’ve read you posts at CAF and I’m not convinced of your arguments. You cite the Catholic encyclopedia in its statements concerning the non competence of the commission to make a judgment about the Galileo case. Yet the encyclopedia doesn’t have the authority to make such a statement. The encyclopedia is merely an opinion with an agenda concerning the value of a commission and the value of the Papal bull stating Galileos belief in a moving earth is heresy.

We can take this further and note other documents given imprimaturs. For example, Raymond Brown has been promoted by Popes and imprimaturs issued on his books and he held to a number of heterodox positions concerning the priesthood, the knowledge of Christ and so on. Evidently an imprimatur doesn’t carry much weight at all and Popes, bishops and clergy have remained silent on Browns views as well. Are they then traitors, dupes, and cowards? According to your argument, they must be. The fact is that an imprimatur is of far less weight than a congregation, several Popes, Trent and the church fathers – all of which explicitly or implicitly teach geocentrism as being revealed by God.

The fact is the encyclopedia is only a guide and the other sources used to defend geocentrism have far more authority than the encyclopedia. Furthermore, we do not need to have a Pope to speak from the chair, like was done with the immaculate conception and bodily assumption, for a doctrine to be believed. All we need is a tradition found in the fathers which was then taught by the ordinary magesterium. Such teaching is assumed by the Popes who spoke against Galileo, therefore geocentrism is in infallible doctrine of the faith.

Even if we accept for the sake of argument that the Papal Bull only had authority in forma communi, this assumes that the commission did not have the power to make a judgment on the Galileo case concerning whether geocentrism was part of the faith, or if Galileo was teaching heresy. Yet this commission was set up by the Pope himself, who as head of the church has the authority to act as he pleases to delegate his authority to other members of the church to make decisions and recommendation for the Pope to ratify. Therefore it is eminently reasonable to conclude that the commission had the powers it needed to investigate Galileo and his heliocentric theory. If we conclude that the commission did not have the authority to make such a decision then the Papacy itself did not have the authority to set up the commission, nor did it have the competence to sign the Papal Bull condemning Galileo.

The counter argument in short is this –

The Pope has the authority over the church as head of the church.
The Pope can bind and loose as he chooses as head of the church.
The Pope has seen fit to delegate his authority to a commission to investigate Galileo.
The commission makes its findings concerning the heresy of heliocentrism.
The Pope ratifies the decision of the commission.
Therefore the commission has the competence to make the decision, because the competence is granted to it from the Pope.
Therefore the claim that the Popes Bull only has authority in forma communi is based upon a formal misunderstanding of the authority the Pope has and his ability to delegate authority to other commissions.
. . .

johnmartin said...

The Pope has the authority over the church as head of the church.
The Pope can bind and loose as he chooses as head of the church.
The Pope has seen fit to delegate his authority to a commission to investigate Galileo.
The commission makes its findings concerning the heresy of heliocentrism.
The Pope ratifies the decision of the commission.
Therefore the commission has the competence to make the decision, because the competence is granted to it from the Pope.
Therefore the claim that the Popes Bull only has authority in forma communi is based upon a formal misunderstanding of the authority the Pope has and his ability to delegate authority to other commissions.

Alternatively the statement that Papal Bull only had authority in forma communi, is merely assertion and not based on anything contained within the Papal text. Accordingly the assertion is not well founded and therefore the conclusion that the Papal Bull is not infallible is unsound through the unfounded premise of “in forma communi”.

You then make reference to an encyclical by Benedict XVI, the context of which is only an address to teachers concerning the poet Dante. The document contains the following statement -

If the progress of science showed later that that conception of the world rested on no sure foundation, that the spheres imagined by our ancestors did not exist, that nature, the number and course of the planets and stars, are not indeed as they were then thought to be, still the fundamental principle remained that the universe, whatever be the order that sustains it in its parts, is the work of the creating and preserving sign of Omnipotent God, who moves and governs all, and whose glory risplende in una parte piu e meno altrove; and though this earth on which we live may not be the centre of the universe as at one time was thought, it was the scene of the original happiness of our first ancestors, witness of their unhappy fall, as too of the Redemption of mankind through the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ.

“If the progress of science showed later that” is the tell all beginning that qualifies the Popes statement. “If” then “may not be the centre of the universe as at one time was thought” can easily be understood as a mere hypothetical and in no way permits or binds Catholics to believe heliocentrism is a science theory. This is far short of your bold claim that the Pope now allows heliocentrism to be believed by Catholics.

Furthermore, it’s simply fallacious to think an encyclical, which is not addressed to the church, is in any way binding on Catholics anyway.

In short the substance of your arguments are easily answered and you have NOT –

1. established that the Papal Bulls condemning Galileo are of no value,
2. Nor have you established that they are based on incompetence
3. Nor have you established the Bulls have no authority.

If we extend your argument concerning the period in which the church has stopped teaching geocentrism is part of the faith, then we can also extend this to other parts of the faith such as –

johnmartin said...

1. Contraception which is not formally outlawed in many parts of the church,
2. The abuse of the annulment procedures show the church has been lax in applying its laws,
3. The use of the sacrament of confession is also ignored in many parts of the church, especially for communicants who are known to have been away from Sunday mass for years,
4. The relaxation of practices to screen out homosexuals and pedophiles from the priesthood,
5. The incompetence of Catholic schools to convey the catholic faith to generations of Catholics.
6. The almost universal acceptance of errancy of the scriptures by Catholic theologians and bible scholars.
7. The failure of the church to protect Catholics from liberal bishops and liberal theologians who routinely flout Catholic morality.

Yes David, examples like these shows the church has been lax in areas other than just geocentrism. Is it any surprise the Church has dropped the teaching of geocentrism? Not at all.

Other reasons why the church has not formally taught geocentrism may include –

1. The deception used to obtain imprimaturs for books containing the error of heliocentrism has leads other within the church to think the heliocentrism question had been resolved.
2. Many men in the church do not have the competence to judge about matters of science and therefore when they see books endorsed by bishops and the so called proofs offered by science for heliocentrism, they fell silent on the matter of heliocentrism.

It has been stated on this thread that the fathers did not state geocentrism was part of the faith and therefore even though they were unanimous on the subject, we are free to believe the fathers were wrong. However this simply begs the question, for where does the church teach the fathers must expressly state the subject they hold in unanimity is part of the faith? If the church has not spoken on this matter, then the argument that says the fathers need to expressly state a subject is part of the faith for the subject to be part of the faith is invalid. Indeed we can easily conclude that when the fathers are unanimous on geocentrism, then they are speaking about part of the faith, because they obtained this doctrine from scripture and they thought God had made the universe that way. Therefore geocentrism is implied in the dogma of creation, the inerrancy of the scriptures and the infallibility of tradition. This is the way the Papacy understood the issue and therefore geocentrism was understood to be part of the faith according to its acceptance and teaching by the ordinary teaching magesterium. In conclusion, geocentrism is part of the apostolic faith as taught by the ordinary magesterium.

David, even if you show the fathers differed on minor details on geocentrism, this is irrelevant, because they were unanimous on the fact of geocentrism, which means they all thought the earth was stationary. This is inferred wherever the fathers say the sun or stars move relative to the earth. To concentrate on minor differences is a case of special pleading whilst ignoring the bigger picture.

JM

johnmartin said...

I think it's worthwhile to look too at the various passages of Scripture that geocentrists advance in support. What's interesting is that although they claim to be taking them literally, it's not actually true. See this thread in which a fellow interacts with our "johnmartin"'s listing of various Scripture texts which he claims support geocentrism (the vast majority from the Psalms, poetry which "johnmartin" above said was worthless to establish anything and the backtracked, although he has not yet honestly admitted his blunder):

JM - we also have many other passages that are not poetry, so when poetry is used we know the poems are expressing a literal truth. Its really that simple.

JM

johnmartin said...

Catholic encyclopedia says - The question is, however, whether either of them condemned the doctrine ex cathedra.

JM - This needs clarification. Does a Pope have to declare a heresy ex cathedra for the condemnation to be binding and normative? I doubt it very much and if those who think so want to make an argument of it then the burden of proof is on them.

So far the statement "The question is, however, whether either of them condemned the doctrine ex cathedra." is merely speculation concerning its value and necessity.

Take for example Davids Palms recent comments concerning Pope Benedict and the movement of the earth. The Popes encyclical written to a group of Catholics (which is not binding on the church) was thought by David to be clear evidence that Catholics are free to believe helio is true and not part of the faith. Yet surely an encyclical is not ex cathedra.

We could also extend this to an example of the finding published early in the 20th century by the pontifical biblical commission. Those statements on a whole range of biblical matters are considered normative for Catholics. Yet these were not made ex cathedra either. Yet ask a old earther where he goes for a precedent to understand yom as a long time period and he will inevitably end up in the commissions documents. Again we see the ex cathedra argument is faulty.

Clearly the encyclopedias argument is ad hoc.

JM

johnmartin said...

7. The failure of the church to protect Catholics from liberal bishops and liberal theologians who routinely flout Catholic morality.

Just thought I'd add another important point where the church has failed Catholics -

8. There is no solid evidence that the Popes since the time of Fatima have properly consecrate Russia to the immaculate heart of Mary. We know this because there is simply no fruits in Russia to evidence the consecration.

Therefore David Palm's argument concerning the ineptitude of the church since Galileo fails. Clearly the church has been inept in several areas and continues to be so.

JM

johnmartin said...

Where you go wrong in your reasoning is your premise that the Fathers unanimously held as an article of salvific faith that the earth is the unmoving center of the universe. There is no doubt Leo XIII was referring, among other things, to the geocentrism question. After all, by his day the Church had lifted its old prohibition on the teaching of heliocentrism in Catholic schools, something which would not be possible if the Church held geocentrism to be an infallible doctrine of the Faith.

JM – There is no doubt you merely assume Leo was referring to heliocentrism.

J- Not everything a Pope says is infallible and irreformable -- namely, what the Popes once said about geocentrism and Galileo.

JM – called begging the question on matters of faith and morals taught in the ordinary magesterium.


JM – Popes have spoken and no Pope has spoken against the previous Popes. Its simply not up to David Palm or the authors of the encyclopedia to overturn Papal statements. They simply do not have the authority to do so. And neither do you by the way.

J- As for the alleged evidence of a patristic consensus in support of geocentrism, there is no need to go through all of the places where to wrote in "geocentric" language, because we are bound to accept what the Fathers taught when they addressed matters of the Faith, and geocentrism is a matter of natural science, not a matter of the Faith.

JM – So your position that God has not revealed any naturally knowable truths and yet several naturally knowable truths have been shown on this thread to have been revealed by God. You ignored this and merely replied it was not revealed in the proper sense, which begs the question what the proper sense really means. After all did God fail to reveal the commandments to Moses in the proper sense because Moses knew killing and sealing was bad. Of course not, so your position is logically flawed. Therefore geocentrism can and does fall under truths revealed by God.

JM2- Some evidence from the church fathers on the 6 day creation week - http://www.scripturecatholic.com/evolution.html.

Yeah, thanks, but as I said, I've already systematically gone through the alleged patristic consensus on that question, and found that such consensus does not exist.

JM – Well I haven’t seen this systematic review of the fathers. I can tell you I’ve read quite a few of the quotes from the fathers and they are geocentrists to a man.

JM

johnmartin said...

This is what the Church has done with geocentrism: we have abandoned the geocentric explanation of those passages since it has been established beyond all reasonable doubt that the earth is not the stationary cosmographical center of the universe.

JM- Certainly not. Edwin Hubble noticed it looked like the earth was at the centre of the universe. Einstein and Feynman have stated experiments have failed to detect the motion of the earth. This is just a very small sample of evidence known by science which verifies revelation of geo truth.

JM

ThePalmHQ said...

>> In short the substance of your arguments are easily answered and you have NOT –

1. established that the Papal Bulls condemning Galileo are of no value, <<

Here I would ask you again please not to exaggerate the nature of the documents involved. It is my understanding that there is only one truly papal text in this whole discussion, Alexander VII’s bull republishing the Index. But again, according to his own word he only included earlier documents in order to establish the history of the various matters. This is the only actual papal document of which I am aware. The 1616 and 1633 documents were from Roman congregations and neither was approved by the Pope in forma specifica.

>> 2. Nor have you established that they are based on incompetence <<

I have said only that the decrees of Roman congregations approved in forma communi do not and cannot bind the universal Church to an irreformable, infallible doctrine. This is obvious even to honest inquirers outside the Church (as cited by the CE).

>> 3. Nor have you established the Bulls have no authority. <<

See above and below. The Church does not teach geocentrism as a matter of faith. She never has. On the contrary, she has given us the direct principle—taught by the great Doctors Augustine and Thomas—that on matters of scientific inquiry, on “how the heavens go”, we are free to pursue these matters and come to varying conclusions. THAT is the teaching of the Church, as has been demonstrated here.

>> If we extend your argument concerning the period in which the church has stopped teaching geocentrism is part of the faith, then we can also extend this to other parts of the faith such as – <<

Here is where you argument goes serious astray. You admit that the Church has stopped teaching geocentrism as a part of the Faith. Good, I'm glad you admit that openly. Now, let’s look at the specific instances you cited. Let’s ask ourselves, has the Church stopped teaching THOSE things as part of the Faith?

* The evil of contraception. Still explicitly taught.
* The indissolubility of marriage. Still explicitly taught.
* The nature of and need for the Sacrament of Confession. Still explicitly taught.
* The grave sin of homosexual behavior. Still explicitly taught.
* Scriptural inerrancy. Still explicitly taught.
* The Virgin Birth. Still explicitly taught.
* The establishment of the Sacrament of Holy Orders by Christ Himself. Still explicitly taught.

*** Geocentrism. Not taught. Not even implicitly. Not only not taught, but every indication given that this is no part of the deposit of Faith, that Catholics are perfectly free to hold divergent views.

So, burden of proof is squarely on you to show how this could be reconciled with the dogma of the Indefectibility of the Church. I have already demonstrated how the matters surrounding the Galileo incident can be so harmonized.

Your interaction with the quote from Benedict XV made me smile. Imagine that he had said, “If subsequent study has shown that Jesus Christ really is St. Michael the Archangel” or that “the Blessed Virgin Mary really didn’t maintain a virginal state throughout her life” or that “the Sacrament of Holy Orders really was not established by Christ”, then the encyclical would have immediately been tagged, especially by the enemies of the Church, as containing an obvious nod to heresy. But nobody blinked an eye. Why? Because the Church does not teach geocentrism as a matter of Faith. She never has.

Viva la difference.

juscot said...

Dave if you and Mark Shea are going to teach evolutionism, old earth creationism, and you and yor buddies ridicule Catholics who believe in the traditional doctrines of the faith, your credentials as a Catholic apologist needs to be questioned if not outright denied by those of s who accept the true faith.

Dave Armstrong said...

Hi juscot,

I asked you if Bob's remarks were an attack on my character. You took a pass on that and instead upped the ante and made yet more attacks, even more severe.

Dave if you and Mark Shea are going to teach evolutionism,

Where do I "teach" that?

old earth creationism,

I do hold to the old earth, yes.

and you and yor buddies ridicule Catholics who believe in the traditional doctrines of the faith,

Where do I do that?

your credentials as a Catholic apologist needs to be questioned if not outright denied by those of s who accept the true faith.

What is the true faith, and what is it that I supposedly adhere to, in opposition to that? I'm all ears.

S said...

Juscot,



You write: "All of these postings are just an extended attack on Bob Sungensis's character."

I agree with Jordanes. You're misrepresenting this thread. It's filled with a great deal of substantive refutation of geocentrism. And David Palm just presented the most thorough material. So why not deal with his substance rather than his person?

And is this the same Juscot who Dave Armstrong wrote about here?

http://socrates58.blogspot.com/2010/09/bloggers-spam-function-deletes-some.html

S said...

(continued)

You then complained about Palm supposedly assasinating Sungenis' character on another blog, but in this combox you brought up something totally irrelevant about Mark Shea, obviously just to assassinate his character:

"You don't want to look as foolish as Shea did when he condemned Jones's book without even reading it."

Ironically, I found this article about Mark Shea, Jones's book and Sungenis. Is this what you're talking about? If so, according to this article, your accusations against Shea aren't true and are therefore a true case of character assassination:

http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2008/05/more-slander-fraudulent-quotes-and.html

And Dave Armstrong has another good point. Where are you complaints about Sungenis' attacks on Dave's character?

If you won't be consistent, then it would help if you at least stopped complaining about everyone who disagrees with you on geocentrism.

Jordanes said...

You cite the Catholic encyclopedia in its statements concerning the non competence of the commission to make a judgment about the Galileo case. Yet the encyclopedia doesn’t have the authority to make such a statement. The encyclopedia is merely an opinion with an agenda concerning the value of a commission and the value of the Papal bull stating Galileos belief in a moving earth is heresy.

The writers of the old encyclopedia certainly did have the authority to say what they said. First of all, every human being has the authority to speak the truth. Secondly, the Church's imprimatur on their statements means the Church acknowledged their authority to explain the facts of the matter. Remember, as I said, this was back when an imprimatur undoubtedly meant something.

The fact is the encyclopedia is only a guide and the other sources used to defend geocentrism have far more authority than the encyclopedia.

No, as I said, it's more than "only a guide." And while the source misused to defend geocentrism are of more authority than the encyclopedia, the defense of geocentrism is of less authority than the encyclopedia.

Now how about you leave the tangent of what authority the encyclopedia has, and deal with the facts and arguments that the encyclopedia offers?

Even if we accept for the sake of argument that the Papal Bull only had authority in forma communi,

That's like accepting for the sake of argument that water is wet. There is no way to dispute this point.

this assumes that the commission did not have the power to make a judgment on the Galileo case concerning whether geocentrism was part of the faith, or if Galileo was teaching heresy.

You're confusing authority with infallibility. Just because a commission has authority to issue a ruling on a subject doesn't mean their findings or rulings are graced with infallibility or cannot be later revisited and reversed.

Therefore the claim that the Popes Bull only has authority in forma communi is based upon a formal misunderstanding of the authority the Pope has and his ability to delegate authority to other commissions.

The Pope cannot delegate papal infallibility to anybody. If he doesn't personally make it infallible, it's not infallible. As the old Catholic Encyclopedia explained, the Galileo decrees were not infallible and irreformable. That's why the Church reformed them.

Sorry, but you simply don't know what you're talking about. You don't understand how authority and infallibility works in the Church, and how Catholics discern which papal statements and acts constitute an infallible and irreformable statement and which do not.

Just thought I'd add another important point where the church has failed Catholics - 8. There is no solid evidence that the Popes since the time of Fatima have properly consecrate Russia to the immaculate heart of Mary. We know this because there is simply no fruits in Russia to evidence the consecration. Therefore David Palm's argument concerning the ineptitude of the church since Galileo fails.

Fatima is a private revelation, not a part of the deposit of faith, yet you offer it as a example of the Church failing to teach the Faith. Again this is not all that surprising. You don't know what faith is and entails, and now we find that you think something that is only "worthy of belief" is on the same level as matters of the faith which bind the consciences of the faithful. You have such ignorance and lack of facility with reason that you simply have no business talking about these things. No wonder you're a geocentrist.

Jordanes said...

There is no doubt you merely assume Leo was referring to heliocentrism.

There is no doubt his words perfectly apply to the geocentrism question.

J- Not everything a Pope says is infallible and irreformable -- namely, what the Popes once said about geocentrism and Galileo. JM – called begging the question on matters of faith and morals taught in the ordinary magesterium.

Is it now your contention that everything a Pope says is infallible and irreformable?

As for the question of whether what the Popes once said about geocentrism and Galileo is infallible and irreformable, the question was not begged, since the demonstration was supplied from the old Catholic Encyclopedia.

Popes have spoken and no Pope has spoken against the previous Popes. Its simply not up to David Palm or the authors of the encyclopedia to overturn Papal statements. They simply do not have the authority to do so. And neither do you by the way.

Don't be silly. We have more authority to speak the facts than you have to misstate them. It is not David Palm or the Catholic Encyclopedia that overturned any papal statements, but the Church acting within her competence. We're only telling you what the Church has done.

So your position that God has not revealed any naturally knowable truths and yet several naturally knowable truths have been shown on this thread to have been revealed by God.

No, not a single one of them has been shown to have been supernaturally revealed to mankind.

You ignored this and merely replied it was not revealed in the proper sense,

If I replied, then obviously I didn't ignore it.

which begs the question what the proper sense really means.

The proper sense of divine revelation is God revealing something that we could never otherwise discover. Just because His inspired Word speaks of something, that doesn't mean it has been "revealed."

After all did God fail to reveal the commandments to Moses in the proper sense because Moses knew killing and sealing was bad. Of course not, so your position is logically flawed.

No, it's your statement here that is logically flawed, that is in fact gibberish. God did reveal the commandments to Moses in the proper sense of "revelation" -- both their content and form as well as their divine origin. He already knew many of the commandments through natural law, but he did not have the Sabbath commandment, which is a divine law, not a natural law discernible through unaided reason.

Therefore geocentrism can and does fall under truths revealed by God.

Non sequitur. It does not follow that because God speaks of naturally knowable facts, therefore those facts are articles of faith that cannot be demonstrated by natural science.

Well I haven’t seen this systematic review of the fathers.

http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2010/07/does-vatican-council-ii-allow-for.html#comments

Edwin Hubble noticed it looked like the earth was at the centre of the universe.

It also looks like I am at the center of the universe, though I obviously am not.

Anyway, I'm not going to waste my time on supposed scientific arguments in favor of geocentrism. Even if the universe were geocentric, it wouldn't make the slightest difference to human salvation. The question at issue here that is of real importance is whether or not geocentrism is a binding doctrine of the Catholic faith. You claim it is, but as we have shown, the Church says it isn't. I'm with the Church on this one.

Dave Armstrong said...

your credentials as a Catholic apologist needs to be questioned if not outright denied by those of [u]s who accept the true faith.

By the way, my writing has received two Imprimaturs from two different bishops (one my current one in the archdiocese of Detroit). My first book was also highly recommended (Foreword) by the late Fr. John A. Hardon, S. J.: one of the most rock-solid, orthodox, respected Catholic catechists of the 20th century. He was a close advisor to both Pope Paul VI and Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity, and his cause for sainthood is proceeding.

What does your bishop think of you, juscot? What are your "Catholic credentials" (if you have any at all)? Or is Fr. Hardon a flaming liberal who denied "the true faith" too?

juscot said...

So what if you got imprimaturs for your previous books. So many bishops are so liberal these days that an imprimature can be granted for just about anything. And as for Fr. Hardon, your appeal to authority doesn't impress me. He was orthodox as they come, but I'm willing to believe you never discussed your real views on evolution, old earth, etc with him.

Dave Armstrong said...

I see. So now you claim that Fr. Hardon was a young-earth creationist? Sorry to disappoint you. In his Catholic Catechism (pp. 91-99), Fr. Hardon argues that some form of evolution is completely compatible with the Catholic faith, provided that one believes that the individual soul is an immediate creation of God and that God "exercised a special providence over whatever process preceded the origin of man's body" (p. 93).

In his Modern Catholic Dictionary he reiterated the same position and stated that "Theistic evolution is compatible with Christianity . . ." (p. 199)

Once again you are all wet and out in left field. I would think that gets old after a while.

I asked you about your Catholic credentials and what your bishop thinks of you. You didn't answer. Why? The best you can do is lie about me and about Fr. Hardon?

So now what do you do? You just stated that "He was orthodox as they come," so now that he agreed that theistic evolution is permissible for Catholics, do you eat your own words.

You're free to make a fool and ass of yourself on my blog, if you insist on doing that.

Dave Armstrong said...

Hi juscot,

Bob Sungenis wrote this about Fr. Hardon:

"Hardon, I believe, was okay, but he had one or two areas that one might question. I would say that John Paul II is a modernist at heart, except as pope he must often curb his own modernist tendencies (e.g., Ordinatio Sacerdotalis, 1994), since he cannot, dogmatically, go against Tradition."

http://www.catholicintl.com/qa/qa_2004_12_december.htm

We can all rest easy tonight, knowing that Bob thinks Fr. Hardon is "okay" (barring one or two things) and that JPII was "a modernist at heart." What would we do without him to confirm what is orthodox and what isn't?

My bishop is Allen Vigneron. "Magisterium-of-One" Bob Sungenis gave him his seal of approval along with five other bishops:

"despite the liberal bent of the USCCB on many other issues there are still some faithful representatives within its walls that will do the right thing."

http://www.catholicintl.com/articles/Reply%20from%20Vatican%20to%20Robert%20Sungenis.pdf

So these two are good solid Catholics according to tThe One who alone seems to know what a solid Catholic is. They gave an imprimatur for and Foreword for my work.

So do I get to be a good orthodox Catholic now?

I feel like an absolute idiot even having this exchange. Your thinking is an example of what Malcolm Muggeridge called "fathomless imbecility."

S said...

Juscot,

:-/

Do you really believe what you're saying or are you just venting or something? In all seriousness, it's getting to the point where one might start to think you're an anti-geocentric mole. ;-)

You complain about character assassination and personal attacks but then you do it yourself.

Your accusations against Dave Armstrong are slanderous and ridiculous. No reasonable, respected Catholic I know of has ever even hinted at his heterodoxy. And your accusation against Mark Shea supposedly being dishonest was itself false and slanderous, too.

Again, is this or is this not what you were talking about with Mark Shea supposedly criticizing Jones' book "without even reading it"?
http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2008/05/more-slander-fraudulent-quotes-and.html

I find it hard to believe there was another circumstance you were referring to.

So do you have anything of actual substance to add to the discussion or are you just going to complain, insult and slander Dave Armstrong and everyone else who disagrees with you?

I've been enjoying just watching for a while here, but you're ruining a fine discussion and distracting everyone from the real issues.

Frank said...

Juscot says "So what if you got imprimaturs for your previous books. So many bishops are so liberal these days that an imprimature can be granted for just about anything." Oh wow, except that Sungenis can't get one. Bet you'll say that is another conspiracy huh?

Anyway, it is just like I said these guys will go on forever even if their case is shredded. Their like some kind of Terminator Bunny or something. Thanks to the guys who have hung in here though explaining and defending the Cathlic Faith instead of conspiracy central. I have learned a lot.

johnmartin said...

1. established that the Papal Bulls condemning Galileo are of no value, <<

Here I would ask you again please not to exaggerate the nature of the documents involved. It is my understanding that there is only one truly papal text in this whole discussion, Alexander VII’s bull republishing the Index. But again, according to his own word he only included earlier documents in order to establish the history of the various matters. This is the only actual papal document of which I am aware. The 1616 and 1633 documents were from Roman congregations and neither was approved by the Pope in forma specifica.

JM –The 1616 document was signed off by the Pope, so the commissions finding were that of the Pope. The other documents signed by Cardinals assume the ordinary magesterium has spoken, therefore those documents are binding and normative. All the documents combined, the fathers, scripture and science provide us with sufficient evidence to conclude geo is taught by the ordinary magesterium and such teaching was assumed by the commission and the popes who acted against Galileo.

>> 2. Nor have you established that they are based on incompetence <<

I have said only that the decrees of Roman congregations approved in forma communi do not and cannot bind the universal Church to an irreformable, infallible doctrine. This is obvious even to honest inquirers outside the Church (as cited by the CE).

JM- Obvious to those who don’t have any authority and who probably believe in helio, so if they are friendly with the church, then they look for ways to remove the geo problem posed in the Papal documents. Hardly much of a case David. In fact it’s outright lousy.

Furthermore David has not interacted with my argument copied below –

The Pope has the authority over the church as head of the church.
The Pope can bind and loose as he chooses as head of the church.
The Pope has seen fit to delegate his authority to a commission to investigate Galileo.
The commission makes its findings concerning the heresy of heliocentrism.
The Pope ratifies the decision of the commission.
Therefore the commission has the competence to make the decision, because the competence is granted to it from the Pope.
Therefore the claim that the Popes Bull only has authority in forma communi is based upon a formal misunderstanding of the authority the Pope has and his ability to delegate authority to other commissions.

All David has is a document with an imprimatur and some other persons opinions concerning the competence of the Commission. Yet history says the Popes thought otherwise about the authority and competence of the commission and that’s why several Popes took official positions against Galileo on the matter of the moving earth.

johnmartin said...

If we want to see how forceful the teaching of the Popes is all we have to note is that Galileo himself held to geocentrism. This fact of history is note well noted, but it is brought to the readers attention in GWW. You see once men realist Galileo was a geocentrist, then the entire incident falls in favour of the church, scripture, science and history. They are all consistently geocentric.

>> 3. Nor have you established the Bulls have no authority. <<

See above and below. The Church does not teach geocentrism as a matter of faith. She never has. On the contrary, she has given us the direct principle—taught by the great Doctors Augustine and Thomas—that on matters of scientific inquiry, on “how the heavens go”, we are free to pursue these matters and come to varying conclusions. THAT is the teaching of the Church, as has been demonstrated here.

JM- Those statements were made within a context. The context was various opinions of the fathers and the saints on various matters of science. However as was explained to Frank, this excludes matters with universal approval from the fathers. Rather simple really. Furthermore, any change to the interpretation of the text must be made from the text based upon the literal sense f the text. St Thomas uses the phrase “several senses” only to indicate the text has the literal and the spiritual senses.

Again, this is nothing new or controversial and nothing can be obtained from the literal sense of the text to arrive at the conclusion that the earth is doing the moving, when the text says the sun and the moon do the moving. Its simply projecting false theories of science into a text to produce the required conclusion that requires people like you to misrepresent Leo and Aquinas on the matter of interpretation of scripture.

>> If we extend your argument concerning the period in which the church has stopped teaching geocentrism is part of the faith, then we can also extend this to other parts of the faith such as – <<

Here is where you argument goes serious astray. You admit that the Church has stopped teaching geocentrism as a part of the Faith. Good, I'm glad you admit that openly. Now, let’s look at the specific instances you cited. Let’s ask ourselves, has the Church stopped teaching THOSE things as part of the Faith?

* The evil of contraception. Still explicitly taught.
* The indissolubility of marriage. Still explicitly taught.
* The nature of and need for the Sacrament of Confession. Still explicitly taught.
* The grave sin of homosexual behavior. Still explicitly taught.
* Scriptural inerrancy. Still explicitly taught.
* The Virgin Birth. Still explicitly taught.
* The establishment of the Sacrament of Holy Orders by Christ Himself. Still explicitly taught.
*** Geocentrism. Not taught. Not even implicitly. Not only not taught, but every indication given that this is no part of the deposit of Faith, that Catholics are perfectly free to hold divergent views.
So, burden of proof is squarely on you to show how this could be reconciled with the dogma of the Indefectibility of the Church. I have already demonstrated how the matters surrounding the Galileo incident can be so harmonized.

johnmartin said...

JM- You avoided the point I was making. Anyone who knows the history of Catholic teaching from bishops and theologians knows all of the above doctrines have been challenged within Catholic universities and imprimaturs have been given to works of dissident theologians. This is historical fact. To ignore these facts as David has done means he knows his argument has collapsed. His argument was the church could not teach false teaching, otherwise there was a breach of the church’s doctrine concerning indefectibility. Yet informed Catholics know aberrant teaching have been tolerated for decades on a whole range of doctrines and the church has not acted consistently against those aberrations. Therefore the case that the church has not acted against heliocentrism, even though it was condemned is consistent with the behaviour of large parts of the church in other doctrinal areas as well. This strengthens the case for geocentrism.

D- Your interaction with the quote from Benedict XV made me smile. Imagine that he had said, “If subsequent study has shown that Jesus Christ really is St. Michael the Archangel” or that “the Blessed Virgin Mary really didn’t maintain a virginal state throughout her life” or that “the Sacrament of Holy Orders really was not established by Christ”, then the encyclical would have immediately been tagged, especially by the enemies of the Church, as containing an obvious nod to heresy. But nobody blinked an eye. Why? Because the Church does not teach geocentrism as a matter of Faith. She never has.
Viva la difference.

JM – So David chooses not to directly interact with the criticism of his argument. Nothing new of course. I’ve noted above he has avoided the guts of some of my arguments because he knows his arguments aren’t nearly as strong as he wants his readers to think.

If we take a closer look at what Benedict said, the case for Catholicism becomes weaker and not stronger. According to David Palm, Benedict has basically stated several scientific discoveries have been made that overturn cherished beliefs concerning the nature of the universe that were once thought to be revealed truths by several popes and the church fathers. Benedict says -

“If the progress of science showed later that that conception of the world rested on no sure foundation, that the spheres imagined by our ancestors did not exist, that nature, the number and course of the planets and stars, are not indeed as they were then thought to be, still the fundamental principle remained that the universe, whatever be the order that sustains it in its parts, is the work of the creating and preserving sign of Omnipotent God, who moves and governs all, and whose glory risplende in una parte piu e meno altrove; and though this earth on which we live may not be the centre of the universe as at one time was thought, it was the scene of the original happiness of our first ancestors, witness of their unhappy fall, as too of the Redemption of mankind through the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ.”

So if we take Benedict’s statement logically, how can Benedict seriously believe science has apparently overturned geocentrism and yet still think our first parents lived in a state of original justice, when science apparently has strong evidence for evolutionary theory? Certainly science would mock the first parent theory and mock the fall theory as well, let alone the need for redemption. The passage is a convoluted series of inconsistent notions that don’t fit together very well at all. Yet David Palm must overlook this problem, because for him, the apparent fact that Benedict now permits Catholics to believe in helio is all that matters. This is yet another instance of wanting to see what science supposedly tells us we must see at the expense of reason and truths of the faith.

JM

johnmartin said...

You cite the Catholic encyclopedia in its statements concerning the non competence of the commission to make a judgment about the Galileo case. Yet the encyclopedia doesn’t have the authority to make such a statement. The encyclopedia is merely an opinion with an agenda concerning the value of a commission and the value of the Papal bull stating Galileos belief in a moving earth is heresy.

The writers of the old encyclopedia certainly did have the authority to say what they said. First of all, every human being has the authority to speak the truth. Secondly, the Church's imprimatur on their statements means the Church acknowledged their authority to explain the facts of the matter. Remember, as I said, this was back when an imprimatur undoubtedly meant something.

JM- so a document with an imprimatur has the authority to determine the authority of Papal statements. Where is the church teaching that a document with an imprimatur has such authority? Cite the document with the wording.

The fact is the encyclopedia is only a guide and the other sources used to defend geocentrism have far more authority than the encyclopedia.

No, as I said, it's more than "only a guide." And while the source misused to defend geocentrism are of more authority than the encyclopedia, the defense of geocentrism is of less authority than the encyclopedia.

JM- But the defence of geo uses the authority of the Papal statement, which means the defence is consistent with the document with the greater authority. Surely this is the logical approach to take. The anti geo position is thoroughly illogical regarding the value and use of the authority of church documents.

Now how about you leave the tangent of what authority the encyclopedia has, and deal with the facts and arguments that the encyclopedia offers?

JM- I’ve answered those statements and David Palms answers were found to be evasive.

this assumes that the commission did not have the power to make a judgment on the Galileo case concerning whether geocentrism was part of the faith, or if Galileo was teaching heresy.

You're confusing authority with infallibility. Just because a commission has authority to issue a ruling on a subject doesn't mean their findings or rulings are graced with infallibility or cannot be later revisited and reversed.

johnmartin said...

JM- The encyclodepia assumes in its statement that the commission was neither competent nor infallible and therefore the Popes statements are not infallible and therefore reformable. However the encyclopdia is merely assuming what it has to prove. Why? Because it assumes the Pope doesn’t have the authority to set up a council which can make authoritative statements concerning the extent of the faith, when in fact the opposite was exactly what happened in the Galileo case. The poes set up the commission, the commission made its findings and the Pope made an official statement based on this findings and His own authority as head of the church. Both the commission and the Pope were in agreement – Galileo held to a position concerning the motion of the earth that was against scripture and hence was formal heresy. How did the commission and the Pope know the literal interpretation of the scriptures stated geo was revealed by God? Was it through their own exegesis of the texts or a theologians exegesis of the texts? No, they knew the literal meaning of those texts through what they knew from the unanimous consent of the church fathers. Therefore such knowledge was known back then from the ordinary teaching magesterium and therefore geo was considered to be part of the faith which had been infallibly revealed by God.

Therefore the claim that the Popes Bull only has authority in forma communi is based upon a formal misunderstanding of the authority the Pope has and his ability to delegate authority to other commissions.

The Pope cannot delegate papal infallibility to anybody. If he doesn't personally make it infallible, it's not infallible. As the old Catholic Encyclopedia explained, the Galileo decrees were not infallible and irreformable. That's why the Church reformed them.

JM – The pope can and has routinely delegated real authority to other men throughout church history. Therefore the commission did receive the authority required of it from the Pope to make an authoritative decision. This decision was then ratified by the Pope, who made a statement concerning the content of the faith and Galileos breach of that faith.

Sorry, but you simply don't know what you're talking about. You don't understand how authority and infallibility works in the Church, and how Catholics discern which papal statements and acts constitute an infallible and irreformable statement and which do not.

JM- You have only merely asserted I am confusing authority with infallibility when I am not. In fact it is you that has confused the authority of the encyclopedia to imply within its statement that because the Popes statement was not irreformable, then the encyclopdia can infer the Popes statements was in error. Therefore the encyclopedia was overstepped its authority to judge on the authority and reformability of the Popes statements.

Just thought I'd add another important point where the church has failed Catholics - 8. There is no solid evidence that the Popes since the time of Fatima have properly consecrate Russia to the immaculate heart of Mary. We know this because there is simply no fruits in Russia to evidence the consecration. Therefore David Palm's argument concerning the ineptitude of the church since Galileo fails.

Fatima is a private revelation, not a part of the deposit of faith, yet you offer it as a example of the Church failing to teach the Faith. Again this is not all that surprising. You don't know what faith is and entails, and now we find that you think something that is only "worthy of belief" is on the same level as matters of the faith which bind the consciences of the faithful. You have such ignorance and lack of facility with reason that you simply have no business talking about these things. No wonder you're a geocentrist.

johnmartin said...

JM – Fatima was probably the biggest miracle known to man since the resurrection other than maybe Guadalupe. Fatima was approved by the church and the mother of God demanded the consecration of Russia by the Pope and the bishops and this was not done. Therefore the church leaders have let down the church and Russia has not been converted to the immaculate heart of Mary. This is no small thing and to say it is merely a private revelation is like saying St Paul received a private revelation on the road to Damascus and then proceeded to ignore it. What a poor decision that would have been. Similarly, the church leaders of today have chosen to ignore the demands of the mother of God, even after all her predictions came true. Something is seriously wrong with the church when such a simple action cannot be achieved in almost 100 years.

J- Not everything a Pope says is infallible and irreformable -- namely, what the Popes once said about geocentrism and Galileo. JM – called begging the question on matters of faith and morals taught in the ordinary magesterium.

Is it now your contention that everything a Pope says in infallible and irreformable?

JM- When a pope speaks directly about the faith and it is known to be consistent with what the church fathers said, then yes, the statement is irreformable. How could it possibly be otherwise?

As for the question of whether what the Popes once said about geocentrism and Galileo is infallible and irreformable, the question was not begged, since the demonstration was supplied from the old Catholic Encyclopedia.

JM- The demonstration assumed an authority in the authors they did not have. Therefore they beg the question regarding the basis upon which they make their statement concerning the authority of the Papal statement. The assumed authority in the encyclopedia simply does not exist, therefore its conclusion is not binding.

Popes have spoken and no Pope has spoken against the previous Popes. Its simply not up to David Palm or the authors of the encyclopedia to overturn Papal statements. They simply do not have the authority to do so. And neither do you by the way.

Don't be silly. We have more authority to speak the facts than you have to misstate them. It is not David Palm or the Catholic Encyclopedia that overturned any papal statements, but the Church acting within her competence. We're only telling you what the Church has done.

JM – Its the church members, such as the bishop and the authors who wrote the encyclopedia who misused authority to think writing what they did involved and authority to bind Catholics to their opinion. Its simply a misuse of authority in the encyclopedia. Don’t worry, this isn’t the first time such abuse has occurred. History contains several such instances of the abuse of authority.

So your position that God has not revealed any naturally knowable truths and yet several naturally knowable truths have been shown on this thread to have been revealed by God.

No, not a single one of them has been shown to have been supernaturally revealed to mankind.

johnmartin said...

JM- So when Moses went up the mount and came down with the commandments on stone, that was not from a supernatural revelation of God? Of course it was. Similarly when the church speaks and binds men to natural truths as we saw in the Nicaean creed then God has acted supernaturally. The case is closed man and you have lost the debate.

You ignored this and merely replied it was not revealed in the proper sense,

If I replied, then obviously I didn't ignore it.

JM- You ignored it by inventing a counter argument unrelated to my answer.


which begs the question what the proper sense really means.

The proper sense of divine revelation is God revealing something that we could never otherwise discover. Just because His inspired Word speaks of something, that doesn't mean it has been "revealed."

JM- which begs the question concerning God revealing natural truths. You simply cannot remove natural truths from your definition of divine revelation and declare victory. Its simply fallacious, especially in light of several examples which show otherwise.

After all did God fail to reveal the commandments to Moses in the proper sense because Moses knew killing and sealing was bad. Of course not, so your position is logically flawed.

No, it's your statement here that is logically flawed, that is in fact gibberish. God did reveal the commandments to Moses in the proper sense of "revelation" -- both their content and form as well as their divine origin. He already knew many of the commandments through natural law, but he did not have the Sabbath commandment, which is a divine law, not a natural law discernible through unaided reason.

JM- All I had to establish was god had revealed to man some truths manalready knew by reason. I’ve done that, so your argument has been answered. You take this position so you can avoid the logical consequences of geo being revealed by God. Enough said on this matter.

Therefore geocentrism can and does fall under truths revealed by God.

Non sequitur. It does not follow that because God speaks of naturally knowable facts, therefore those facts are articles of faith that cannot be demonstrated by natural science.

JM – your statement is a straw man. I’ve demonstrate God has revealed naturally knowable truths. The motion or lack there of, of the earth is a truth subject to human reason and as such is naturally discernable. God has revealed the earth is stationary. Therefore God has revealed the natural truth of geocentrism.

johnmartin said...

Edwin Hubble noticed it looked like the earth was at the centre of the universe.

It also looks like I am at the center of the universe, though I obviously am not.

JM- avoiding the consequences of what Hubble said. Hubble saw the earth was at the centre of the universe according to his observations, yet he was forced to deny it because of his presuppositions about the nature of the universe. Hubble is typical of the science establishment who see data that points to geo, you must seek an explanation to according for the stunning reality in their midst. Actually it sounds just like you – you are presented with evidence after evidence and you talk around and around the point.

Anyway, I'm not going to waste my time on supposed scientific arguments in favor of geocentrism. Even if the universe were geocentric, it wouldn't make the slightest difference to human salvation. The question at issue here that is of real importance is whether or not geocentrism is a binding doctrine of the Catholic faith. You claim it is, but as we have shown, the Church says it isn't. I'm with the Church on this one.

JM – The science points directly to geo. Yep you can ignore it as well.

JM

johnmartin said...

Frank - Anyway, it is just like I said these guys will go on forever even if their case is shredded. Their like some kind of Terminator Bunny or something. Thanks to the guys who have hung in here though explaining and defending the Catholic Faith instead of conspiracy central. I have learned a lot.

JM- so far the conspiracy theory is the helio agenda and not the geo agenda. The geo agenda has far more evidence in its favour than the helio agenda. Its interesting to see how they must twist church teaching on a number of doctrines to arrive at their conclusions.

The helios require a consistent superficiality to their apologetic to maintain any semblance of a case. When that is exposed, numerous fallacies appear. Your statement above being one of them.

JM

ThePalmHQ said...

Johnmartin says, “The [Catholic] encyclopedia is merely an opinion with an agenda concerning the value of a commission and the value of the Papal bull stating Galileos belief in a moving earth is heresy.”

The leader of your own geocentric group disagrees with you. Below, Sungenis considers the Catholic Encyclopedia to be such a solid and authoritative source for proof of Catholic teaching that he uses it as a key witness to what “Catholic tradition” has "declared". And he even puts great stock in its prophetic competence:

R. Sungenis: ““In fact,…Catholic tradition… has unofficially declared that the future Antichrist will be of Jewish extraction. As late as 1911 the Catholic Encyclopedia stated it quite plainly…”

http://web.archive.org/web/20060519140616/www.catholicintl.com/noncatholicissues/politics-protestant.htm

And

R. Sungenis: “As we have documented earlier, our Catholic saints and doctors have said the same thing. The 1911 Catholic Encyclopedia predicts that the Antichrist will come from Jewry. The 1936 Catholic Encyclopedia followed this by predicting that a Temple would be built for him in Jerusalem…”

http://catholicresistence.blogspot.com/2006/08/sungenis-on-nwo-zionism-and-end.html

Why the double standards?

ThePalmHQ said...

Johnmartin: “It has been stated on this thread that the fathers did not state geocentrism was part of the faith and therefore even though they were unanimous on the subject, we are free to believe the fathers were wrong. However this simply begs the question, for where does the church teach the fathers must expressly state the subject they hold in unanimity is part of the faith?”

I’m just applying the same standard employed by the leader of your geocentric group again, John.

R. Sungenis: "It is the divine origin of a particular doctrine that makes the doctrine a requirement of belief for salvation, not the majority or common opinion of the Fathers, the medievals or theologians and prelates of today" (Enoch and Elijah, p. 3).

R. Sungenis: “"[N]ot one of the witnesses ever provide exegesis of the passages, nor cited early patristic support for their interpretation, nor showed that the apostolic tradition demanded their interpretation." ("Intense Dialogue on Romans 11").

R. Sungenis: ". . . no Catholic is under any compulsion whatsoever to abide by whatever was predicted about Israel among even a majority of patristic writers ... even if the Fathers are in consensus on a given topic, we are still permitted to add information that has been gleaned from fresh studies of Scripture" (Never Revoked, p. 12).

R. Sungenis: "John Damascene … offers little evidence of an apostolic precedent for his view. He certainly doesn’t cite any patristic witness to back up his claims." ("Intense Dialogue")

R. Sungenis: "First, you’ll notice that Gregory does not cite any earlier patristic witness. In order for a massive conversion of Jews at the end of time to be the abiding view of the Church, there would have had to be an apostolic teaching that such was the case. As it stands, none of the early Fathers …say they received such teaching from the apostles." ("Intense Dialogue")

ThePalmHQ said...

One of the posters above also noticed the criteria as stated by renowned theologian, Fr. William Most:

"In responding to the passage attributed to St. Fulgentius, Fr. William A. Most, theology professor at the Notre Dame Apostolic Catechetical Institute in Alexandria, Virginia, draws attention to two separate items. First of all, he claims, there are at least three conditions that need to be filled before one can claim something in the Patristic writings is authoritative...Second, they must admit to be relating something they themselves have received from the beginning; that is, from Christ and the Apostles."

So, again, none of the Fathers you’ve provided ever give any indication that geocentrism was a teaching that had been handed on to them. Therefore, according to Sungenis’ own standard (and the conditions as laid out by Fr. Most), even if they were unanimous (which they are not, again, according to Sungenis’ own standards – see below), Catholics are not therefore required to hold what they indicated.

ThePalmHQ said...

If the geocentrists simply allowed their case to stand or fall on the scientific merits, I wouldn't really care. But the fact that this group led by Bob Sungenis has decided to play a dangerous game of "all or nothing" with the Church's reputation is reckless and incredibly self-centered. The geocentric group led by Bob Sungenis has repeatedly demonstrated its willingness to "burn down the house", as it were, in order to kill a rat.

I invite readers to consider the real-world effect this "all or nothing" approach can have on those who are considering the Catholic Church or who are struggling within the Church. Below are two examples. Ironically, the first can be found right on the pages of E. Michael Jones' own Culture Wars magazine from a sympathetically disposed person who attended Sungenis' presentation in Estonia.

"The prize for most controversial presentation went to Robert Sungenis for his exposition of the case for geocentrism. I have expressed my objections to Sungenis’s geocentrism in letters to Culture Wars, but the Estonians in the audience were introduced to them through simultaneous translation and a computer graphic of the sun, bouncing up and down in the outline of a slinky to explain the seasons. Worse, the presentation of dueling popes in 1616, 1835, and 1992 could not help but bring the very idea of religious truth (so carefully established by Father Harrison) into disrepute, in spite of the fact that the quotes demonstrated the action of the Holy Spirit (the early condemnation was so narrowly posed as not to intersect Newtonian science).

Jerzy Przystawa walked out in disgust, but I felt I had to try to fight it. So did many others, especially Estonians, to such a degree that it pushed the other presentations out of the question periods. And we learned a sobering lesson: even the wall of mathematics, in defense of scientific truth, has been breached. As Thrasymachus said, “truth is the opinion of the powerful,” in this case whoever controls the computer graphics."

(Lawrence Dickson, Culture Wars, http://www.culturewars.com/2007/Trialogos.htm)

ThePalmHQ said...

The second example can be found on a blog written by a thoughtful Protestant who attended the Galileo Was Wrong conference this month. This is what he has to say about Bob's talk:

"The bulk of Sungenis's talk was spent on what happened after Galileo, in which he emphasized that it was the infallible Magisterium of the church that condemned Galileo and therefore the condemnation could not be rescinded without admitting that the Magisterium had made a mistake. I found this section very interesting, but given Sungenis's mistreatment of Galileo, I have to say I'm dubious of some of his claims here."

http://toddcwood.blogspot.com/2010/11/hanging-out-with-geocentrists-part-3.html


So here is a man who clearly doesn't have any real animus toward the Church and is relatively circumspect about the whole thing. Fortunately, he was a very well balanced, intelligent sort. As a result, he thankfully took Sungenis' absolutisms with a heap of salt and so wasn't as negatively affected as he might have been. But think of the damage Sungenis and his group do to those who ARE disposed to dislike the Church or those who are truly confused.

As others have noted, when you type "geocentrism" into a word processor, you'll notice that a corrective is offered: EGOcentrism. And, indeed, that certainly seems to be the case with this group. They don't seem to care a whit about the damage they do in their quixotic quest. Their leader has a long history of misappropriating the authority of the Church in order to give his personal agenda and opinions the appearance of greater weight. And he has lied about and slandered most anyone who dares to correct him - including his bishop. If anyone doubts any of this, I invite you to read the following links:

http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2009/09/bishop-rhoades-and-dual-covenant-theory.html

http://sungenisandthejews.blogspot.com/2008/03/by-sungenis-alone_29.html#two


This is strong criticism, no doubt, but what these men are doing is very wrong. At least E. Michael Jones and Sungenis should know better.

ThePalmHQ said...

Now johnmartin, you have made claims about the authority of Roman commissions to which the Pope delegates authority to make decisions. If he ratifies those decisions, you say, then the results are irreformable.

You upheld the belief here that the days of creation were literal 24 hour days is also taught unanimously by the Fathers.

"On June 30, 1909, the Pontifical Biblical Commission replied to the following questions:
Whether, since it was not the intention of the sacred author, when writing the first chapter of Genesis, to teach in a scientific manner the innermost nature of visible things as well as the complete order of creation, but rather to furnish his people with a popular account, such as the common parlance of that age allowed, one, namely, adapted to the senses and to the mental preparation of the persons, we are strictly and always bound, when interpreting these affirmations, to seek for scientific exactitude of expression. Answer: In the negative (DS 3518).

Whether the word yôm (day), which is used in the first chapter of Genesis to describe and distinguish the six days, may be taken either in its proper sense as the natural day or in an improper sense as signifying a certain space of time; and whether free debate on this question is permitted among exegetes. Answer: In the affirmative (DS 3519)" (cited here http://www.rtforum.org/lt/lt141.html)

This was issued by the PBC when it was still a papal commission and this ruling was approved at least in forma communi by Pope St. Pius X. As Rick DeLano has admitted, “a Saint, Pope Pius X, explicitly attributed His own authority to the statements of this commission” (http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2010/07/does-vatican-council-ii-allow-for.html#comments).

Will you please tell us if the ruling of the PBC on the creation days and the intention of the sacred author to hand on “the innermost nature of visible things” is irreformable? If you say no, then could you please tell us how it is that you can maintain that the commission that ruled on Galileo has to be? If you say yes, then could you please tell us how that can be harmonized with your personal view of the unanimity of the Fathers on the creation days viz-a-viz Trent?

My own position is consistent: I do not believe that either of these commissions’ ruling are irreformable in themselves. But this latter ruling is consistent with the repeated teaching of the Church that on the matters of “how the heavens go”, Catholics have freedom to come to differing viewpoints and that on these matters neither Scripture nor the Fathers intended to hand on matters belonging to the deposit of Faith.

The Galileo incident was unfortunate, but it does not jeopardize the Church’s claim to infallibility. Your view most certainly does and as yet you have not lifted one finger to show how your view can be harmonized with the dogma of the Indefectibility of the Church. At the very least it can be stated, not too strongly I think, that you are flirting with heresy.

S said...

Johnmartin: "The helios require a consistent superficiality to their apologetic to maintain any semblance of a case."

"The helios”?

Has anyone in the combox said they're a heliocentrist? I don't remember anyone saying that. I know I haven't. (My understanding is that the current state of science is "a-centric". But I'm not a scientist and I don't pretend to be one.)

I don't mean to be unkind, but this is the way that you and your friends seem to view the world and apparently even the Church itself. Us vs. them. Conspiracies. Evil intent and deception all around you. I said it before, but I honestly feel sorry for people who see the world that way. It's a terrible burden. All seems to be black and white to you and that's what leads to your pushing of quirky positions on everyone else.

You're not satisfied with believing these "quirky" things amongst yourselves, you feel that you have got to push it on everyone else under the appearance of supposed Catholic authority. It seems that you're unwilling to allow your scientific theories to stand or fall on their own merit, to be tested over time like every other scientific theory.

Personally, at least on a scientific level, it's just a fairly interesting question to me. I agree with Sungenis that it's pretty "quirky" and "shocking" but if someone wants to believe it, that's fine. And if certain points are made through the normal, long vetting process of geocentric theory that help to refine our collective understanding of science, then great. But my faith and my life aren't going to change one way or the other if it's true or if it's false. So, my feeling is, go for it if that's what floats your boat. Really.

But you shouldn't try to force your beliefs down Catholic throats by giving the false impression that you speak with the authority of the Catholic Church. You're not the magisterium. Your approach reminds me of many sedevacantists. They're equally aggressive and they appeal to the teaching of the Church - giving the appearance of being ultra-Catholic - but they've actually only set themselves up as their own magisterium. They've convinced themselves that they're the only ones who know what the Church really means and anyone who disagrees with them is the real heretic.

Again, not to be unkind, but you're also embarrassing the Church and the news media are very willing to use you toward that end. You do know that's why so many of them picked up your conference, don't you? I'm sure that's not your intention, but it's the reality.

So, why not do what real scientists do? Make your case. Take your lumps. Endure the often long, grinding and frustrating vetting process that "shocking" and "quirky" (to use Sungenis' own words) new theories inevitably encounter. Try to get published in legitimate scientific journals. Keep trying as you inevitably get turned down . Earn your recognition and legitimacy like other real scientists do.

But you can't expect us not to see your particular presentation of Scripture, the Fathers and the Magisterium as all that different from the Sola Scripturists who pretend to merely be following the Word of God when they're really only following themselves.

johnmartin said...

has unofficially declared that the future Antichrist

JM - That makes Robert's unofficial opinion of the unofficial declaration of tradition some sort of double standard invented by Palm. I unofficially declare David Palm is desperate for an argument.

JM

johnmartin said...

Johnmartin: “It has been stated on this thread that the fathers did not state geocentrism was part of the faith and therefore even though they were unanimous on the subject, we are free to believe the fathers were wrong. However this simply begs the question, for where does the church teach the fathers must expressly state the subject they hold in unanimity is part of the faith?”

I’m just applying the same standard employed by the leader of your geocentric group again, John.

JM- Are you for real man? Look at my question. Where does the question say anything about what a leader of a geo group thinks? Nowhere. I’ve asked you - where does the church teach the fathers must expressly state the subject they hold in unanimity is part of the faith? Do you get it David? The church teach . . . .? So far no answer David.

D- "In responding to the passage attributed to St. Fulgentius, Fr. William A. Most, theology professor at the Notre Dame Apostolic Catechetical Institute in Alexandria, Virginia, draws attention to two separate items. First of all, he claims, there are at least three conditions that need to be filled before one can claim something in the Patristic writings is authoritative...Second, they must admit to be relating something they themselves have received from the beginning; that is, from Christ and the Apostles."

So, again, none of the Fathers you’ve provided ever give any indication that geocentrism was a teaching that had been handed on to them. Therefore, according to Sungenis’ own standard (and the conditions as laid out by Fr. Most), even if they were unanimous (which they are not, again, according to Sungenis’ own standards – see below), Catholics are not therefore required to hold what they indicated.

And of course Fr. William A. Most must establish what he is saying in church teaching. Maybe he has and maybe he hasn’t but David hasn’t established that yet. The fact is Trent was adamant that the scriptures cannot be interpreted against the unanimous consent of the fathers – they were all geocentrists, so if you interpret the scriptures against the fathers, you are against Trent. That’s the church David – don’t forget it.

D- If the geocentrists simply allowed their case to stand or fall on the scientific merits, I wouldn't really care. But the fact that this group led by Bob Sungenis has decided to play a dangerous game of "all or nothing" with the Church's reputation is reckless and incredibly self-centered. The geocentric group led by Bob Sungenis has repeatedly demonstrated its willingness to "burn down the house", as it were, in order to kill a rat.

JM – All statements without merit of course. The church has repeatedly acted to resolve issues and geo is one of those instances. David cannot handle the facts of history are against his theory so now he attacks Robert.

. . .

JM

johnmartin said...

D- I invite readers to consider the real-world effect this "all or nothing" approach can have on those who are considering the Catholic Church or who are struggling within the Church. Below are two examples. Ironically, the first can be found right on the pages of E. Michael Jones' own Culture Wars magazine from a sympathetically disposed person who attended Sungenis' presentation in Estonia.

"The prize for most controversial presentation went to Robert Sungenis for his exposition of the case for geocentrism. I have expressed my objections to Sungenis’s geocentrism in letters to Culture Wars, but the Estonians in the audience were introduced to them through simultaneous translation and a computer graphic of the sun, bouncing up and down in the outline of a slinky to explain the seasons. Worse, the presentation of dueling popes in 1616, 1835, and 1992 could not help but bring the very idea of religious truth (so carefully established by Father Harrison) into disrepute, in spite of the fact that the quotes demonstrated the action of the Holy Spirit (the early condemnation was so narrowly posed as not to intersect Newtonian science).

Jerzy Przystawa walked out in disgust, but I felt I had to try to fight it. So did many others, especially Estonians, to such a degree that it pushed the other presentations out of the question periods. And we learned a sobering lesson: even the wall of mathematics, in defense of scientific truth, has been breached. As Thrasymachus said, “truth is the opinion of the powerful,” in this case whoever controls the computer graphics."

(Lawrence Dickson, Culture Wars, http://www.culturewars.com/2007/Trialogos.htm)

JM – I wasn’t there so I cannot offer any comment. Anyhow, these are only very small comments and Roberts responses are not given. Sounds like another DP ploy to destroy geo through secondary sources without context. Would that be David’s ploy?

JM

johnmartin said...

Johnmartin: "The helios require a consistent superficiality to their apologetic to maintain any semblance of a case."

"The helios”?

Has anyone in the combox said they're a heliocentrist? I don't remember anyone saying that. I know I haven't. (My understanding is that the current state of science is "a-centric". But I'm not a scientist and I don't pretend to be one.)
JM- I’m sure you know what I mean by helios.

S- I don't mean to be unkind, but this is the way that you and your friends seem to view the world and apparently even the Church itself. Us vs. them. Conspiracies. Evil intent and deception all around you. I said it before, but I honestly feel sorry for people who see the world that way. It's a terrible burden. All seems to be black and white to you and that's what leads to your pushing of quirky positions on everyone else.

JM – I honesty feel sorry for those who fail to see simple statements for what they are. Those who beleive the earth orbits the sun are helio’s. And they have been making some pretty superficial arguments.

S- You're not satisfied with believing these "quirky" things amongst yourselves, you feel that you have got to push it on everyone else under the appearance of supposed Catholic authority. It seems that you're unwilling to allow your scientific theories to stand or fall on their own merit, to be tested over time like every other scientific theory.
JM – The church has spoken acording to the ordinary and extra ordinary magesterium on the matter in favour of geocentrism. The matter is closed. Those who oppose the church on this matter do so through a belief in science theory and ad hoc contortions of church authority. This has been demonstrated on this thread.

S- Personally, at least on a scientific level, it's just a fairly interesting question to me. I agree with Sungenis that it's pretty "quirky" and "shocking" but if someone wants to believe it, that's fine. And if certain points are made through the normal, long vetting process of geocentric theory that help to refine our collective understanding of science, then great. But my faith and my life aren't going to change one way or the other if it's true or if it's false. So, my feeling is, go for it if that's what floats your boat. Really.
JM – If the church fathers were wrong on geo and the church’s judgment was wrong about geo and the literal sense of scripture is wrong as well then we cannot trust what they say on other matters either. Geo is front and centre of the faith and reason debate and trying to distance yourself from the issues is intellectual whimpery.
. . .

johnmartin said...

S- But you shouldn't try to force your beliefs down Catholic throats by giving the false impression that you speak with the authority of the Catholic Church. You're not the magisterium. Your approach reminds me of many sedevacantists. They're equally aggressive and they appeal to the teaching of the Church - giving the appearance of being ultra-Catholic - but they've actually only set themselves up as their own magisterium. They've convinced themselves that they're the only ones who know what the Church really means and anyone who disagrees with them is the real heretic.
JM – another straw man argument. When the church is quoted, geos are following the church. When they make arguments consistent with the church’s teaching they are following the church as well. We do not force others to follow out inventions. We make arguments to convince others of the Catohlic position. Its that simple. Again, I say your statement is a straw man.

S- Again, not to be unkind, but you're also embarrassing the Church and the news media are very willing to use you toward that end. You do know that's why so many of them picked up your conference, don't you? I'm sure that's not your intention, but it's the reality.
JM – Picked up your conference? What the . . . ?

S- So, why not do what real scientists do? Make your case. Take your lumps. Endure the often long, grinding and frustrating vetting process that "shocking" and "quirky" (to use Sungenis' own words) new theories inevitably encounter. Try to get published in legitimate scientific journals. Keep trying as you inevitably get turned down . Earn your recognition and legitimacy like other real scientists do.
JM – the book has been written and published. Go read it and see the arguments for yourself.

S- But you can't expect us not to see your particular presentation of Scripture, the Fathers and the Magisterium as all that different from the Sola Scripturists who pretend to merely be following the Word of God when they're really only following themselves.

JM – The desperation of the anti geo camp shows again. Apparaently citing the fathers and the church along with scripture is not all that different from SS.Evidently idiocy knows no bounds in the anti geo camp.

I suppose when the geo uses science, that too is special pleading or eisegeis by projecting the church, scripture, the fathers and reason into the data. Can the geo ever win, no matter how much evidence is in his favour?

JM

johnmartin said...

Now johnmartin, you have made claims about the authority of Roman commissions to which the Pope delegates authority to make decisions. If he ratifies those decisions, you say, then the results are irreformable.

You upheld the belief here that the days of creation were literal 24 hour days is also taught unanimously by the Fathers.

JM - I've since clarified my statment and added - when the Pope speaks in accordinace with tradition as taught by the fathers. As geo was taught by the fathers, then the Papal statements are irreformable.

I can turn this on you David. You think the encyclopedia has reforemd the Papal statements on geo. Well the encyclopedia only has a imprumatur, so is the statements of the encyclopdeia reformable? If so why should we take the position serisously in light of what the Popes and the fathers have said, especially when there is nothing in the science to overturn geo? Well is it reformable David or not? Evidently it is reformable according to authrotitative statements made bt Popes and the ordinary magesterium. Your anti geo case is very flimsy indeed isn't it David.

JM

Jordanes said...

so a document with an imprimatur has the authority to determine the authority of Papal statements.

Yes, obviously. Not only the authority, but the obligation to do so, when addressing the subject of what Popes have said and done. If they didn't have that authority, it would be an abuse of the Church's authority for Her to encourage and license the production of volumes such as the Catholic Encylopedia.

It's understandable that you'd want to waste our time by denying the encyclopedia's authority -- it's because it related facts and cogent arguments that are fatal to your opinions. But like I said, you are morally obliged to get off this tangent of whether or not the Catholic Encyclopedia is authoritative when it tells us the facts of history, and deal with the facts that the Catholic Encyclopedia tell us. Truth is its own authority. Address the facts and arguments adduced by the Catholic Encyclopedia, or else concede and withdraw.

Where is the church teaching that a document with an imprimatur has such authority? Cite the document with the wording.

Where is document that gives you the authority to claim without evidence that the Catholic Encyclopedia's explanations of the levels of authority of church documents are incorrect? Cite the documents with the wording.

JM- But the defence of geo uses the authority of the Papal statement,

So too does the explanation that geocentrism is not a revealed article of the Faith -- with the difference that it addresses that authority accurately, whereas "geocentrism-ism" makes false statements about the level of authority of the relevant papal declarations.

The anti geo position is thoroughly illogical regarding the value and use of the authority of church documents.

No, not "illogical" -- the word you want is "correct."

Now how about you leave the tangent of what authority the encyclopedia has, and deal with the facts and arguments that the encyclopedia offers? JM- I’ve answered those statements and David Palms answers were found to be evasive.

When did you do that? You certainly haven't done it in this discussion.

Now how about you leave the tangent of what authority the encyclopedia has, and deal with the facts and arguments that the encyclopedia offers?

JM- The encyclodepia assumes in its statement that the commission was neither competent nor infallible

It doesn't assume it -- it explains it.

Because it assumes the Pope doesn’t have the authority to set up a council which can make authoritative statements concerning the extent of the faith, when in fact the opposite was exactly what happened in the Galileo case.

You're wrong again. The encyclopedia authors did not assume that -- rather, they take for granted that the Pope does have that authority, but explain that's not what he did in this case.

Jordanes said...

How did the commission and the Pope know the literal interpretation of the scriptures stated geo was revealed by God?

They didn't know that -- they mistakenly believed it.

Therefore the claim that the Popes Bull only has authority in forma communi is based upon a formal misunderstanding of the authority the Pope has and his ability to delegate authority to other commissions.

No, it's based on the facts of the case. The Congregation of the Index did not have the authority to make an infallible dogmatic judgment (if you say it did, then prove it -- show the apostolic constitution establishing the congregation with such competence). Furthermore, the authors of the judgment themselves understood that they weren't issuing an infallible, irreversible declaration. St. Robert Cardinal Bellarmine wrote, "I say that if a real proof be found that the sun is fixed and does not revolve round the earth, but the earth round the sun, then it will be necessary, very carefully, to proceed to the explanation of the passages of Scripture which appear to be contrary, and we should rather say that we have misunderstood these than pronounce that to be false which is demonstrated."

Sure, St. Robert was convinced there would never be any such proof available, since he was sure geocentrism was true -- but even so, that's not the kind of thing you say when you believe geocentrism is a divinely-revealed doctrine of the Faith, an irreformable and infallible dogma. Obviously he didn't think it was irreformable or that the Scriptures couldn't be interpreted differently.

JM – The pope can and has routinely delegated real authority to other men throughout church history. Therefore the commission did receive the authority required of it from the Pope to make an authoritative decision.

Irrelevant. That he can delegate authority, and that the Congregation was competent to make its ruling, does nothing to establish that he delegated to them his infallibility or that their decree was irreversible.

This decision was then ratified by the Pope,

And yet he did not even personally sign it.

Fatima was approved by the church

And yet the Church did not declare that it was public revelation (because it's not).

and the mother of God demanded the consecration of Russia by the Pope and the bishops and this was not done.

Well, some people claim it wasn't done, but even if it wasn't done, Fatima is still a private revelation, not a dogma of the Catholic faith.

This is no small thing and to say it is merely a private revelation is like saying St Paul received a private revelation on the road to Damascus and then proceeded to ignore it.

There you go again, placing a private revelation on the same level as St. Paul's conversion on the road to Damascus, which constitutes public revelation.

Something is seriously wrong with the church when such a simple action cannot be achieved in almost 100 years.

If you feel that way, you should probably reconsider whether or not Catholicism really is the true religion. Indeed, it is hard to understand why you, who like "Cassini" believe the Church since circa 1740 has been not only permitting but encouraging people to accept a heresy, would want anything at all to do with my religion.

Jordanes said...

JM- When a pope speaks directly about the faith and it is known to be consistent with what the church fathers said, then yes, the statement is irreformable. How could it possibly be otherwise?

No pope has ever made any such statement regarding geocentrism, nor are the erroneous scientific opinions of Church Fathers determinative of the content of the deposit of faith.

JM- The demonstration assumed an authority in the authors they did not have.

The only authority it was assumed the authors had is the authority they certainly had -- the authority to tell the truth. That is what they did. Prove them wrong, if you really believe you are right and they are wrong. Quit wasting our time and get on with it -- tackle their statements of fact and their arguments. Prove that the Catholic Encyclopedia's authors didn't understand how authority and infallibility works in the Church, but that you do.

Therefore they beg the question regarding the basis upon which they make their statement concerning the authority of the Papal statement. The assumed authority in the encyclopedia simply does not exist, therefore its conclusion is not binding.

Once again, this isn't a question of authority -- it's a question of truth. Show us with evidence and argument that you are right and that Holy Mother Church for the past four centuries has been wrong.

JM- So when Moses went up the mount and came down with the commandments on stone, that was not from a supernatural revelation of God? Of course it was.

Yep, it was -- and that he received the commandments from God is not something that can be proven scientifically, nor with natural, unaided reason. The Ten Commandments and their reception are not a naturally-knowable facts. Thus, as I said, not a single one of your naturally-knowable facts has been shown to have been supernaturally revealed to mankind.

Similarly when the church speaks and binds men to natural truths as we saw in the Nicaean creed then God has acted supernaturally.

The only "natural truths," as you like to call them, found in the Nicene Creed are things that we must know and believe in order to be saved. In fact, those are the only kinds of "natural truths" taught by the Catholic Church. Geocentrism, however, as I have explained to you, has absolutely nothing to do with salvation, which is why the Church has never held that it is a divinely-revealed, infallible doctrine handed on to us from Christ and the Apostles.

The case is closed man and you have lost the debate.

How could I have lost the debate when my opponent has yet to offer a single valid argument or reach a single correct conclusion?

JM- You ignored it by inventing a counter argument unrelated to my answer.

How could my response have been unrelated to your answer when my response directly addressed what you said, distinguishing between the revelation of truths that science and reason cannot know, and the divine affirmation of facts that can be known through science and reason?

Jordanes said...

JM- which begs the question concerning God revealing natural truths. You simply cannot remove natural truths from your definition of divine revelation and declare victory.

I haven't removed "natural truths" from "my" definition of divine revelation -- I (and Adomnan) have corrected your erroneous understanding of what "revelation" is. God has never revealed a single scientific fact, nor did He tell us in His written Word even one single thing about the laws of physics and how they govern the courses of the heavenly bodies.

Its simply fallacious, especially in light of several examples which show otherwise.

Asked and answered. None of your examples show that God has "revealed" those things to us -- nor, for that matter, do they show that geocentrism is an article of faith.

JM- All I had to establish was god had revealed to man some truths manalready knew by reason. I’ve done that,

No, you haven't done that, because God cannot "reveal" things that man already knows by reason.

the logical consequences of geo being revealed by God.

The logical consequences of geocentrism being revealed by God include this one: that it is not under the purview of the natural sciences. And yet geocentrists sure do spend an awful lot of energy trying to make geocentrism seem like it is a scientific fact.

And all for something that has absolutely no bearing on human salvation.

It does not follow that because God speaks of naturally knowable facts, therefore those facts are articles of faith that cannot be demonstrated by natural science. JM – your statement is a straw man.

No, it's not a straw man -- it's a depiction of what your beliefs would be if you were logically consistent. Articles of faith by definition cannot include things that can be demonstrated by natural science, for if they could be so demonstrated, there would be no need for divine, supernatural faith. It is your contention, however, that geocentrism is an article of faith.

I’ve demonstrate God has revealed naturally knowable truths.

No you haven't.

The motion or lack thereof, of the earth is a truth subject to human reason and as such is naturally discernable.

True. That's why it can't be an article of faith. We can find out if the earth moves through our rational faculties. Furthermore, the answer to the question does not affect how and whether we may be saved. That's why God didn't satisfy our curiosity by speaking to us about such irrelevancies.

God has revealed the earth is stationary.

No, He hasn't.

Therefore God has revealed the natural truth of geocentrism.

Two of your three propositions are false, so you inevitably reached a false conclusion.

Actually it sounds just like you – you are presented with evidence after evidence and you talk around and around the point.

You haven't presented a single shred of relevant evidence, John, and I have talked only about the point at hand, endeavoring to convince you to get serious and take on the evidence and arguments against your opinion, or else to withdraw if you are unable or unwilling to make your case.

Anyway, I'm not going to waste my time on supposed scientific arguments in favor of geocentrism. Even if the universe were geocentric, it wouldn't make the slightest difference to human salvation. The question at issue here that is of real importance is whether or not geocentrism is a binding doctrine of the Catholic faith. You claim it is, but as we have shown, the Church says it isn't. I'm with the Church on this one.

johnmartin said...

so a document with an imprimatur has the authority to determine the authority of Papal statements.

J- Yes, obviously. Not only the authority, but the obligation to do so, when addressing the subject of what Popes have said and done. If they didn't have that authority, it would be an abuse of the Church's authority for Her to encourage and license the production of volumes such as the Catholic Encylopedia.

JM – Good, you’ve just shown the anti geo position concerning the weight of an imprumatur is untenable. Its like saying a bishop can sign off on a document and therefore it is Catholic doctrine and we are bound to believe it. How would this have held out during the arian crisis? After all many bishops held to the Arian understanding of Christ as only a man. Evidently a bishops signoature alone is not nearly as weighty as that of a council or a Pope or a series of Popes. Orthodoxy is not determined by imptrumaturs, but by tradition, scripture, popes and Councils. Geocentrism has authotity from all these and no doubt there were documents throuhout church history as well with imprumaturs stating geocentrism was not against the faith.

J- It's understandable that you'd want to waste our time by denying the encyclopedia's authority -- it's because it related facts and cogent arguments that are fatal to your opinions.

JM – the encyclodeia has weight. It has about as much weight as any other document with an imprumatur and that includes books like those authored by Raymond Brown and his heterodox opinions.

J-But like I said, you are morally obliged to get off this tangent of whether or not the Catholic Encyclopedia is authoritative when it tells us the facts of history, and deal with the facts that the Catholic Encyclopedia tell us.

JM- It only attempts to deal with some of the facts and pushes an agenda by merely asserting the Papal statements are not irreformable, based upon the papal statements colluding with an approved commision. Its seems the encyclopedia wants the Pope to have power, but not that much power to define doctrine and defend the faith when it is required. So those who cannot deal with what the Popes has said, take it upon thmeselves to assume an authority they do not have and merely project the apparent truths of a science theory to conclude the Papal statements are not infallible and not irreformable. These statements are made without any reference to any historical recedent either. This adds further weight to the absurdity of the encyclpdias position. You’d think if the encyclopedia had some precedent for making its claims, it would have cited such precedent. And yet what do we see . . . a mere latin phrase and a conclusion. Very poor scholarship indeed.

The encyclopdia says the commision was not competant to make a judgment, yet history says the Popes thought the commision did have the competance.
. . .

johnmartin said...

The encyclopdia says the Popes statements condemning Galileo and a moving earth are not infallible and are therefore reformable. Yet the encyclopdeia cites no precedent in history for this. Nor does the encyclodpedia detail any reasons why we should take the conclusions of a lesser authority in the church over the greater Papal authority. Furthermore, if the encyclopdia has claimed the Papal statements are irreformable, why hasn’t the church taken steps to offically reform the statements? You’d think the church and modern science has an abundance of evidence for a movnig earth, so the movnig earth theory should be promoted as a fact and geocentrism publically and officially denounced by the church at its higheslt levels. But what do we see the church doing . . . nothing except a vague aplogy to the ay Galileo was treated in an adress to the PAS. No, the church has had plenty of chances to change its position and has not done so. Its as thought the church really has made a public statement in history and the HS has protected the church from formally teaching error on faith and morals, just as the HS has done throughout church history. The geo position is therefore very strong and church statements point directly to a geo universe.

J- Truth is its own authority. Address the facts and arguments adduced by the Catholic Encyclopedia, or else concede and withdraw.

JM- I already have addressed the statements made in the encyclopdia a number of times to David Palm and he has not directly answered the arguments.

Where is the church teaching that a document with an imprimatur has such authority? Cite the document with the wording.

J- Where is document that gives you the authority to claim without evidence that the Catholic Encyclopedia's explanations of the levels of authority of church documents are incorrect? Cite the documents with the wording.

JM- Its well known that the statements of Councils and Popes have more wieght than books with an imprumatur. The church has always acted this way in history. Wherever there was a major doctrinal point to be resolved, it was the Popes and Councils that resolved the issues and not individual bishops with their imprumaturs.

But the defence of geo uses the authority of the Papal statement,

J- So too does the explanation that geocentrism is not a revealed article of the Faith -- with the difference that it addresses that authority accurately, whereas "geocentrism-ism" makes false statements about the level of authority of the relevant papal declarations.
. . .

johnmartin said...

JM- If you are referring to Leos statement in PD, then this has already been answered before. The fathers thought God had revealed the earth was stationary and that why they were so adament the earth was stationary. It was not from anything in science they obtained they knowledge concerning this subject. Patristic theolgoy is clear – the church fathers were unanimous on geocentrism and they a taught so based upon a revelation from God. This is what the church also assumed to be true when it made its Papal statements condeming a moving earth. Therefore geo is an infallible part of the ordinary magesterium and after the Papal statements, extra ordinary magesterium. All of this historical information trumps the puny witness of an ecyclopedia.

The anti geo position is thoroughly illogical regarding the value and use of the authority of church documents.

J- No, not "illogical" -- the word you want is "correct."

JM- Its incorrect for the reasons given above and several others now that remain unansered.

Now how about you leave the tangent of what authority the encyclopedia has, and deal with the facts and arguments that the encyclopedia offers? JM- I’ve answered those statements and David Palms answers were found to be evasive.

When did you do that? You certainly haven't done it in this discussion.

JM- Davids recent posts are desperate attempts to reduce Roberts investigation into geo down to mere competing opinions of fellow Catohlics. Davids posts were exposed as straw man type arguents. David has not answered the orginal critique of his apparently strong arguments against the geo posirion. I dont think he can mount a strong argument in light of history and the counter arguments proposed.

JM- The encyclodepia assumes in its statement that the commission was neither competent nor infallible

It doesn't assume it -- it explains it.

JM- It is assumed by merely asserting the roll of the commision and its competance. This role and competance as uderstood by the encyclopdia does not stand up to logical and historical scrutiny.

Because it assumes the Pope doesn’t have the authority to set up a council which can make authoritative statements concerning the extent of the faith, when in fact the opposite was exactly what happened in the Galileo case.

You're wrong again. The encyclopedia authors did not assume that -- rather, they take for granted that the Pope does have that authority, but explain that's not what he did in this case.

JM – The commision was set up by a recognised authority within the church and that authority was subsequently recognised by the Pope and a public statement was made in conformity to the commisions findings. Therefore, because the Papal statements are from the head of the church, the authority of the commision is consistent with Papal authrity. Therefore the decisions of the commision and the Pope are both authoritative and irreformable. The weight of evidence is clealry in favour of geocentrism and not heliocentrism.

JM

S said...

John,

First you wrote:

"lets look at what the Popes said at the time of Galileo . .. they used the word heresy, so why couldn’t a modern Catholic take the Popes statements at face value and actually believe what he said? There is no reason of course. So yes, a denial of geocentrism can be understood as formal heresy."

Then, I quoted Sungenis stating this:

"Let me also speak about the issue of geocentrism... In our promotion [of Galileo Was Wrong], however, we will avoid all implications that Catholics are required, by force of Catholic dogma, to hold the geocentric position (something we did not make clear previously)."
http://www.surprisedbytruth.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=1759

After which you quickly backpedaled and wrote:

"I could if I knew more about the weight the church places on the doctrine. Not all denials of doctrine are heresy. It seems to me that the geo was probably part of the ordinary magesteriums teaching, so it is binding on Catholics who are informed of church history and dogmatics. The question of heresy is something I'm not really interested in at the moment."

And now you're back to this:

"The church has spoken acording to the ordinary and extra ordinary magesterium on the matter in favour of geocentrism. The matter is closed. Those who oppose the church on this matter do so through a belief in science theory and ad hoc contortions of church authority. This has been demonstrated on this thread."

Would it be too much to ask you to finally make up your mind? First, Sungenis comes out and says he's going to avoid even giving the mere *appearance* of forcing people to accept geocentrism as though it's required by the Church. Then you come out and say that, yes, a denial of geocentrism is heresy. Then, after I showed you what Sungenis said previously, you quickly backpedaled and said you didn't really mean to say that, and well, you're just not interested in making such judgments.

But now you're right back to insisting that "the matter is closed", back to accusing people who don't accept geocentrism of "oppos[ing] the Church" and "contorting Church authority."

:-/

Do you read what you write? Because this is very strange behavior. You almost sound like two different people at times.

S said...

And speaking of sounding like two different people, after Palm illustrated that Sungenis' stated views contradict one of your points, you wrote:

JM: "Are you for real man? Look at my question. Where does the question say anything about what a leader of a geo group thinks [Sungenis]? Nowhere."

First, it would seem from your angry reaction that you're conceding Palm's point: the leader of your geocentric group has articulated rules that undermine geocentrism. And he's using a double standard to boot.

Second, this is a rather strange and dramatic about-face, JM. Earlier in this comments box you made clear that Sungenis is something of a hero for you. You admitted to me that his work was particularly key in convincing you of geocentrism. And you've basically been carrying his water here.

The name "Robert" is used frequently throughout your posts. Several times you cajoled people to "answer Robert". But when Sungenis says something that you consider pretty stupid and harmful to your argument suddenly he becomes no one of any particular import - just "a leader of a geo group."

I looks like you're doing just the sort of thing others have documented that Sungenis does. You're adopting a totally different approach depending upon what suits your needs at the moment.

Here are some of your statements promoting, defending and carrying water for Bob Sungenis, JM:


JM: Dave - you really should answer Sungenis

JM: That's why you [Dave] should answer him [Sungenis].

JM: I believe you are morally obligated to respond to Robert...

JM: if you don't comment on Roberts article, I will assume that's it for Dave regrading any further statements about geocentrism.

JM - We are only following the church because Robert has highlighted the facts regarding geocentrism and the universal consent in the fathers.

JM - Robert is right to use both faith and science in regard to geocentrism.

JM - It nagged away at me for some time until I stumbled across Roberts book. I've since read it about three times and it find the cumulative case convincing... I'm gratreful to Robert for taking such a gamble with his time to write such a ground breaking book. I have no doubt many will ignore and attack it and maybe the attacks will eventually lead into a better understanding of the geo position. We shall see ...

JM - I have read Sungenis article and it is articulate and full of historical facts concerning the church's position on geocentrism.


Again, this is very strange behavior. Either you don't think we can read, or you keep forgetting what you've previously written. The same thing happened when I showed how you contradicted yourself in regard to NASA.

S said...

I wrote, "Has anyone in the combox said they're a heliocentrist? I don't remember anyone saying that. I know I haven't. (My understanding is that the current state of science is 'a-centric'. But I'm not a scientist and I don't pretend to be one.)"

JM- I’m sure you know what I mean by helios.

The point is that you and your friends have a habit of oversimplifying things and trying to fit people into neat little black and white boxes: us and them. Unfortunately, it's not that simple.

JM: "If the church fathers were wrong on geo and the church’s judgment was wrong about geo and the literal sense of scripture is wrong as well then we cannot trust what they say on other matters either. Geo is front and centre of the faith and reason debate and trying to distance yourself from the issues is intellectual whimpery."

That's just an imagined dilemma, John. It's not real. So open your eyes, come outside and enjoy the sun and your fears will all face away.

I wrote, "So, why not do what real scientists do? Make your case. Take your lumps. Endure the often long, grinding and frustrating vetting process that "shocking" and "quirky" (to use Sungenis' own words) new theories inevitably encounter. Try to get published in legitimate scientific journals. Keep trying as you inevitably get turned down . Earn your recognition and legitimacy like other real scientists do."

JM – the book has been written and published. Go read it and see the arguments for yourself.

You keep missing the point, John. I'm not a scientist. No one in this comments box is. Real scientists prove their mettle by undergoing a rigorous vetting process with REAL SCIENTISTS who are equipped to separate the wheat from the chaff. They don't go to non-scientists. You and your friends keep wanting to bypass mechanisms that serve an important purpose. You, Sungenis and the rest of your geocentric group are far too impatient and presumptuous. I'm sure you'll have a lot of difficulty and I'm sure it will be frustrating. That's just how it is when you introduce a theory that your own leader described as "shocking" and "quirky". I sympathize. But geocentrists would be far better served by exhibiting more humility, patience, fortitude and perseverance than the kind of behavior that I've seen.

S said...

I wrote, "But you can't expect us not to see your particular presentation of Scripture, the Fathers and the Magisterium as all that different from the Sola Scripturists who pretend to merely be following the Word of God when they're really only following themselves."

JM – The desperation of the anti geo camp shows again. Apparaently citing the fathers and the church along with scripture is not all that different from SS.Evidently idiocy knows no bounds in the anti geo camp.

And once again, like a Sola Scripturist, you're failing to recognize the element of interpretation. You're failing to recognize that you're viewing all the evidence through your geocentric glasses. That's precisely why the double standards that have been illustrated here in your case and in the case of Sungenis are so important. These clear inconsistencies and double standards prove your extreme bias and blindness - you're unable to view the evidence with any real objectivity.

And when confronted, rather than admitting error and correcting course, you refuse to recognize the problem or pretend that you didn't say what you said and then move on to another topic. That's the hallmark of a propagandist or a "true believer". You have an agenda and you're fully committed to it. And as I pointed out earlier when dealing with the NASA hoax conspiracy theories, ironically, it's exactly the same thing geocentrists and other conspiracy theorists accuse scientists of.

Candidly, I had been sympathetic to geocentrism and open to the possibility that the geocentrists were right. But instead of just seeking out like-minded people who agreed with it, I kept my mind open and sought out contrary views. I've been watching the debates and arguments for a couple of years now from both sides and I've seen enough to conclude that the geocentrists are at least out of line for portraying geocentrism as a matter of obedience to Church teaching. I also know from personal experience the negative impact it has on evangelism.

And the more that I see the arguments that geocentrists are willing to deploy, the tactics they use and the kind of people who have taken the lead in the movement (if it can really be called that), the more I seriously doubt the veracity of even their scientific claims. I'm not dogmatic about that, though, and I wouldn't ridicule someone who chooses to believe in geocentrism.

Listen, I've got some personal matters I've got to attend to. I might not be able to get back to this and honestly it seems like the conversation's about spent. You're getting angrier, which is a pretty good sign that the substance is pretty much done.

I wish you well.

ThePalmHQ said...

ON THE CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA:
You wrote:

“I can turn this on you David. You think the encyclopedia has reforemd the Papal statements on geo. Well the encyclopedia only has a imprumatur, so is the statements of the encyclopdeia reformable?”

I’m trying hard to to think the best, that you are not being purposely obtuse here. Neither I, nor anybody else here, has claimed that the Catholic Encylopedia has reformed papal statements. The CE lays out a case that the documents in question, by virtue of the level of authority granted to the commissions in question and the level of papal approbation, as not irreformable. As Jordanes has pointed out many times, you have yet to interact with that case, preferring instead to tilt at the windmill of whether the CE has an authority which we never claimed for it. The CE presents a case. If you believe that it has erred on any point in its presentation of the case, then by all means present a counter-argument. If you cannot or will not do so then please just admit that so we don’t have to go over this ground again.

ThePalmHQ said...

JM- "You avoided the point I was making. Anyone who knows the history of Catholic teaching from bishops and theologians knows all of the above doctrines have been challenged within Catholic universities and imprimaturs have been given to works of dissident theologians. This is historical fact. To ignore these facts as David has done means he knows his argument has collapsed. His argument was the church could not teach false teaching, otherwise there was a breach of the church’s doctrine concerning indefectibility. Yet informed Catholics know aberrant teaching have been tolerated for decades on a whole range of doctrines and the church has not acted consistently against those aberrations."

One more time on this -- You admitted outright that the Church “has stopped teaching [that] geocentrism is part of the faith”. You then claimed that “we can also extend this to other parts of the faith” and gave numerous alleged examples.

But I showed that in each and every instance you cited, the Church has NOT stopped teaching those things as part of the Faith. She has continued to teach all of those things, explicitly, despite widespread dissent and even what some consider a large breakdown in ecclesiastical discipline. Thus, there is a difference in principle between every one of the doctrines you cited and geocentrism. The only way you can meet this argument is to show any other teaching of the Church which in the past she has proposed de fide but which she then ceased to teach for nigh onto 300 years; no, more than ceased to teach it but positively encouraged the faithful to embrace a different teaching. If you cannot see or acknowledge this difference in principle then I cannot do more for you. I repeat: your position cannot be squared with the dogma of the Church’s indefectibility and you have not lifted one finger to try. As Jordanes has said, “you should probably reconsider whether or not Catholicism really is the true religion. Indeed, it is hard to understand why you, who . . . believe the Church since circa 1740 has been not only permitting but encouraging people to accept a heresy, would want anything at all to do with my religion.”

ThePalmHQ said...

DPALM: Now johnmartin, you have made claims about the authority of Roman commissions to which the Pope delegates authority to make decisions. If he ratifies those decisions, you say, then the results are irreformable. You upheld the belief here that the days of creation were literal 24 hour days is also taught unanimously by the Fathers.

JM - I've since clarified my statment and added - when the Pope speaks in accordinace with tradition as taught by the fathers. As geo was taught by the fathers, then the Papal statements are irreformable. END

I see. That's an interesting "clarification" you've created for yourself, JM. “when the Pope speaks in accordance with tradition as taught by the fathers” as decided by whom? You, Sungenis and the other geocentrists, of course!

Let’s make sure we’re clear on what you’re saying. Let’s modify your statements according to your new “clarification” and apply it to the example of the PBC’s ruling on the days of creation:

* The Pope has the authority over the church as head of the church.
* The Pope can bind and loose as he chooses as head of the church.
* The Pope has seen fit to delegate his authority on how to interpret sacred Scripture to the Pontifical Biblical Commission.
* The commission makes its findings concerning X.
* The Pope (a sainted Pope!) ratifies the decision of the commission.
* Therefore the commission has the competence to make the decision, because the competence is granted to it from the Pope.
* INSERT JM’s FINAL STEP HERE: The ruling of the papally approved commission is then turned over to Sungenis and Company to decide if it’s irreformable or not. If they decree that it conforms to Tradition as taught by the Fathers, then it’s irreformable. If they decree otherwise, then it may be ignored.

You do realize that by this new argument you only proved true what "S" said about you and your fellow geocentrists earlier. You're like the Sola Scripturist who pretends to submit himself to the Word of God or the sedevacantist who pretends to be submitting to the Scriptures, the Fathers and the Magisterium, while truly only following himself. You've appointed yourselves as the ultimate arbiters of what is Catholic and what is not.

At least Rick DeLano was honest enough to admit that “[the citation from the PBC] is a source of great difficulty for me.”

ThePalmHQ said...

But the real bottom line is that the Church herself gives us the guidance on how to understand these things. The magisterial ruling of the PBC simply echoes the teaching of Pope Leo XIII in Providentissimus Deus 18 where he states that,

“the sacred writers, or to speak more accurately, the Holy Ghost ‘Who spoke by them, did not intend to teach men these things (that is to say, the essential nature of the things of the visible universe), things in no way profitable unto salvation.’ Hence they did not seek to penetrate the secrets of nature, but rather described and dealt with things in more or less figurative language, or in terms which were commonly used at the time and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even by the most eminent men of science. Ordinary speech primarily and properly describes what comes under the senses; and somewhat in the same way the sacred writers -- as the Angelic Doctor also reminds us – ‘went by what sensibly appeared,’ or put down what God, speaking to men, signified, in the way men could understand and were accustomed to.”

Of course, as we have already seen above, Leo XIII applies this principle also to the Fathers in PD 19. Pius XII reiterates this teaching in Divino Afflante Spiritu. In these matters of “how the heavens go”, neither sacred Scripture nor the Fathers pass on to us matters that belong to the deposit of Faith, for as Leo XIII teaches, the Holy Spirit “did not intend to teach men these things (that is to say, the essential nature of the things of the visible universe)”. And as Pope Leo teaches, following St. Thomas, we are bound to follow the Fathers only in matters that do not belong to the faith. Matters of scientific inquiry do not belong to the faith and here we have freedom. As St. Thomas says of inquiry into the days of creation, but he speaks of this in terms of general principles that apply equally to geocentrism:

"I answer that, in discussing questions of this kind two rules are to be observed, as Augustine teaches. The first is, to hold the truth of Scripture without wavering. The second is that since Holy Scripture can be explained in a multiplicity of senses, one should adhere to a particular explanation only in such measure as to be ready to abandon it if it be proved with certainty to be false, lest Holy Scripture be exposed to the ridicule of unbelievers, and obstacles be placed to their believing."

It is thus in this light that we read the injunctions of Trent and Vatican I concerning the unanimous testimony of the Fathers. I see a parallel here to the question about extra ecclesiam nulla salus. There are certain magisterial passages, in the Council of Florence for example, that appear to be absolute on that matter. But even Sungenis knows that these seemingly absolute passages are not taken by themselves but have to be read in light of the whole of magisterial teaching and thus there are exceptions for Baptism of Desire and Baptism of Blood.

The Church has formally adopted the principles of Sts. Augustine and Thomas on these matters of "how the heavens go". The Popes have made them official. Papally approved commissions such as the PBC have acted on these principles in their rulings. These principles have been taken up into other magisterial documents like the CCC and its treatment of the first chapters of Genesis.

It was not the Catholic Encylopedia that “reformed” the rulings of Roman congregations in the 1600s. It was the Church herself, through the teaching of the Popes.

Jordanes said...

Good, you've just shown the anti geo position concerning the weight of an imprumatur is untenable. Its like saying a bishop can sign off on a document
and therefore it is Catholic doctrine and we are bound to believe it. How would this have held out during the arian crisis? After all many bishops held to the Arian understanding of Christ as only a man. Evidently a bishops signoature alone is not nearly as weighty as that of a council or a Pope or a series of Popes. Orthodoxy is not determined by imptrumaturs, but by tradition, scripture, popes and Councils. Geocentrism has authotity from all these and no doubt there were documents throuhout church history as well with imprumaturs stating geocentrism was not against the faith.


Sorry, but there is no connection between what I wrote and your response here. Do you even know what it means and what it doesn't mean when the Church grants an imprimatur? Apparently you don't, as you also don't understand the argument that the Catholic Encyclopedia has an imprimatur whereas Sungenis' books of shoddy theology and pseudoscience do not.

JM - the encyclodeia has weight. It has about as much weight as any other document with an imprumatur and that includes books like those authored by Raymond Brown and his heterodox opinions.

You're making a complete fool of yourself, John. The old Catholic Encyclopedia has as much weight as the books of Father Raymond Brown? I knew you were desperate to avoid grappling with the facts related in the encyclopedia, but I had no idea you were so desperate as to make risible statements like that.

JM- It only attempts to deal with some of the facts and pushes an agenda

Prove that the Catholic Encyclopedia "pushes an agenda." Provide evidence of the encyclopedia's tendentiousness, or else withdraw your accusation.

by merely asserting the Papal statements are not irreformable,

It does more that "merely assert" -- it EXPLAINS WHY they were not irreformable.

based upon the papal statements colluding with an approved commision.

By the way, perhaps you can explain to everyone what this "commission" was that you keep referring to. The 1616 decree came from no commission, but from the Congregation of the Index. In both 1616 and 1633, Galileo was tried before the Inquisition, but no decree was issued in 1633.

Its seems the encyclopedia wants the Pope to have power, but not that much power to define doctrine and defend the faith when it is required.

Yeah, that's the old Catholic Encyclopedia all over the place.

Really, John, you might try reading what the encyclopedia has to say about papal authority and infallibility before issued such negative appraisals.

So those who cannot deal with what the Popes has said, take it upon thmeselves to assume an authority they do not have and merely project the apparent truths of a science theory to conclude the Papal statements are not infallible and not irreformable.

No, John, they haven't reached a conclusion and then selected the evidence and chosen arguments to bolster their preconceived notions. It's you, not the authors of the encyclopedia, who are guilty of that.

Your double standards are tiresome. How come you and folks like Sungenis have permission to "assume an authority they do not have," but the faithful priests and bishops who prepared the encyclopedia -- men who unquestionably had divine authority to teach and write -- are not allowed to exercise that authority?

Jordanes said...

These statements are made without any reference to any historical precedent either.

Really? Without any historical precedent? Aren't you aware that it's no rare thing for lesser authorities in the Church to have their decisions set aside by higher authorities? Popes have canceled entire church councils before. Judgments of the Inquisition have been overturned by popes as well. Just a few years ago, the Church formally, by decree, "rehabilitated" Father Rosmini.

Can you seriously believe that the authors of the encyclopedia knew less about the Catholic faith than you do (and you obviously know only enough to get yourself into major trouble)?

Very poor scholarship indeed.

And what kind of academic training have you had to enable you to tell whether or not the Galileo article is an example of very poor scholarship?

The encyclopdia says the commision was not competant to make a judgment, yet history says the Popes thought the commision did have the competance.

You haven't understood what the encyclopedia says. It says that "the pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi, that is to say, to the extent needful for the purpose intended, namely to prohibit the circulation of writings which were judged harmful." In other words, it says that the Congregation (not "commission") was indeed competent to make a judgment. However, the encyclopedia also explains that the decree of 1616 "was issued by the Congregation of the Index, which can raise no difficulty in regard of infallibility, this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree."

That is correct -- the Congregation certainly was incompetent to make a dogmatic decree. (If you deny that, then prove that the Congregation of the Index was competent to make a dogmatic decree.)

Nor does the encyclodpedia detail any reasons why we should take the conclusions of a lesser authority in the church over the greater Papal authority.

Well, the Congregation of the Index, and the Holy Office of the Inquisition, were and are lesser authorities in the Church. You have not detailed any reasons why we should take the conclusions of those lesser authorities over the greater papal authority which later reversed the decisions of the Index and approved the findings of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences saying Galileo's condemnation was unjust.

Furthermore, if the encyclopdia has claimed the Papal statements are irreformable, why hasn't the church taken steps to offically reform the statements?

We can let the encyclopedia answer that one: "Riceloll and other contemporaries of Galileo were permitted, after 1616, to declare that no anti-Copernican definition had issued from the supreme pontiff."

The Church has taken steps to "officially reform the statements." The same Index that once banned Galileo's works later, at the Pope's instruction, took them off the Index. Later the Church rescinded the ban on teaching Copernicanism in Catholic schools and universities. All of that was before 1850. The late John Paul II directed the Pontifical Academy of Sciences to study the Galileo affair, which it did for 13 years, and when they had completed their work, he received and approved their study, publicly agreeing with their finding that Galileo should not have been condemned. If the old decrees and judgments were still in force, none of that could have happened.

Jordanes said...

You'd think the church and modern science has an abundance of evidence for a movnig earth, so the movnig earth theory should be promoted as a fact and geocentrism publically and officially denounced by the church at its higheslt levels.

This just shows further your inability to distinguish between scientific matters and articles of faith. Be geocentrism true or false, the Church will not make any such finding, as it has no bearing on the things committed to Her by Jesus. Geocentrism is erroneous, but it is not a religious heresy except insofar as certain geocentrists claim or imply that one must believe in geocentrism in order to be saved. Of course no one should believe things that aren't true, even if they are matters of natural science rather than matters of faith, but even so, if one sincerely believes in geocentrism, or flat earthism, or 9/11-trutherism, or Kenyan birtherism, one can still be saved so long as one has divine faith in all the truths taught by the Church as handed down to us from Jesus and the Apostles.

JM- Its well known that the statements of Councils and Popes have more wieght than books with an imprumatur. The church has always acted this way in history. Wherever there was a major doctrinal point to be resolved, it
was the Popes and Councils that resolved the issues and not individual bishops with their imprumaturs.


That's not a document, but well and good -- it is also the case that wherever there was a major doctrinal point to be resolved, it was the Popes and Councils that resolved the issues and not papal dicasteries with their disciplinary and doctrinal judgments. And no pope or council has ever defined geocentrism as an article of faith.

The fathers thought God had revealed the earth was stationary and that why they were so adament the earth was stationary.

Correct -- that is how they came to hold the scientific error of geocentrism.

It was not from anything in science they obtained they knowledge concerning this subject.

Precisely. That is where they went astray -- they looked to the Scriptures to determine the truth of a matter that is the proper subject of scientific study.

Patristic theolgoy is clear - the church fathers were unanimous on geocentrism and they a taught so based upon a revelation from God.

However, God never revealed anything about the courses of the heavenly bodies, since, as St. Augustine said, those matters have nothing to do with salvation.

Therefore geo is an infallible part of the ordinary magesterium and after the Papal statements, extra ordinary magesterium.

If that is true, then in light of the record of history since 1616, the Church has defected from the Faith and Catholicism is not the one, true religion.

All of this historical information trumps the puny witness of an ecyclopedia.

Yawn. Enough with the fallacious argument from authority and well-poisoning.

JM- It is assumed by merely asserting the roll of the commision and its competance. This role and competance as uderstood by the encyclopdia does not stand up to logical and historical scrutiny.

Prove it. Evidence please.

JM - The commision was set up by a recognised authority within the church and that authority was subsequently recognised by the Pope and a public statement was made in conformity to the commisions findings. Therefore, because the Papal statements are from the head of the church, the authority of the commision is consistent with Papal authrity. Therefore the decisions of the commision and the Pope are both authoritative and irreformable.

By that logic, almost every act and decision that comes out of Rome is an infallible, irreformable statement or definition -- including the later decisions that mitigated and eventually reversed the 1616 decree.

ThePalmHQ said...

St. Thomas: "I answer that, in discussing questions of this kind two rules are to be observed, as Augustine teaches. The first is, to hold the truth of Scripture without wavering. The second is that since Holy Scripture can be explained in a multiplicity of senses, one should adhere to a particular explanation only in such measure as to be ready to abandon it if it be proved with certainty to be false, lest Holy Scripture be exposed to the ridicule of unbelievers, and obstacles be placed to their believing."

To anticipate the stock come-back, my interlocutor will claim that geocentrism has not been "proved with certainty to be false" and so St. Thomas' dictum does not apply. I have looked into the matter as much as was necessary to convince me that the arguments against geocentrism are weighty enough to prove with at least moral certainty that it isn't true. 99.9% of the world's scientists and, as far as I can tell the Pope and all of the bishops in communion with him, would agree with that. And therefore, according to the Church's own teaching, I have the freedom to reject it and adopt a different view without any hint that I have fallen into heresy.

By the way, this guy's summary of the conference held this past weekend is quite good:

http://toddcwood.blogspot.com/2010/11/hanging-out-with-geocentrists-part-5.html

If you want to try and convince people of geocentrism by all means go ahead. I think it's a fool's errand, but it's your life. But you need to drop the connection to the Catholic Faith, because the Church does not present it as part of the Faith and you are a cause of scandal when you attempt to usurp her authority to do so.

johnmartin said...

The encyclopedia is merely the work of five editors who were professors. The encyclopedia was given an imprimatur by one archbishop and the encyclopedia was then published by a public publishing house. Therefore the encyclopedia has an authority less than –

The pope acting in an official capacity to define doctrine or discipline members of the church.
An ecumenical council
A plenary council authorized by the Pope.
A commission authorized by the Pope.
A congregation authorized by the Pope.
A commission headed by a cardinal
A statement consistent with other Papal statements and signed by several cardinals – this was done in the Galileo controversy.

johnmartin said...

. . . whether either of them condemned the doctrine ex cathedra
To condemn a doctrine is to state the NEGATIVE about a doctrine.
. . . he defines a doctrine regarding faith or morals to be held by the universal Church . . .
To define a doctrine is to state a POSITIVE.
As a negative is the contradictory of a positive, then the Pope did not make a statement ex cathedra to define a doctrine formally binding Christians.
Therefore the Popes condemnation of Galileo was not ex Cathedra according to the definition of Vatican I.

But can a negative statement from the Pope ever be a statement made ex cathedra? Not according to Vatican I documents. Does this mean the Pope can never make a negative statement concerning error and not have such statements being binding and normative on the church? No. And because the statements are binding and normative, they are to be believed. We can cite examples of this in Pope Pius X in his syllabus of errors and several other Papal condemnations throughout history as well. Pius X condemnations are binding and normative because they are Papal statements. So too Paul V and Urban VIII statements are binding and normative.

The encyclical goes on – “As to the decree of 1616, we have seen that it was issued by the Congregation of the Index, which can raise no difficulty in regard of infallibility, this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree.”

A dogma is defined by the encyclical as – “But according to a long-standing usage a dogma is now understood to be a truth appertaining to faith or morals, revealed by God, transmitted from the Apostles in the Scriptures or by tradition, and proposed by the Church for the acceptance of the faithful.” Therefore the following questions and answers are proposed –

If we focus on the phrase “dogmatic decree” then it is agreed that the commission does not the authority to bind Catholics to such a truth. Yet it was not the commission alone that did the binding, for it was Paul V who signed the document condemning the notion of a moving earth. Furthermore the Pope or the commission did not make a formal statement concerning any dogma of the church. Therefore the encyclopedia has misdirected its statements away from the intent of the commission and the intent of Paul V’s statements. In short, the phrase ““dogmatic decree” is a misdirection meant to compel the reader towards the encyclopedia’s conclusion about the binding nature of Paul V’s statement.

1. Is the encyclopedia correct to say the commission was “absolutely incompetent” to make a dogmatic decree? If we focus on the word “absolutely”, this means there is no possible way the commission had any authority to make its decision binding because of its lack of competence.

2. What is the reason given for the commission being ““absolutely incompetent”? The encyclical says the “pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi”

“Nor is the case altered by the fact that the pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi, that is to say, to the extent needful for the purpose intended, namely to prohibit the circulation of writings which were judged harmful. The pope and his assessors may have been wrong in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.

johnmartin said...

If we see the context of this phrase “in forma communi” in the context of other subjects discussed in the encyclopedia we see -

“Roman Congregations . . .As regards the doctrinal value of Decrees of the Holy Office it should be observed that canonists distinguish two kinds of approbation of an act of an inferior by a superior: first, approbation in common form (in forma communi), as it is sometimes called, which does not take from the act its nature and quality as an act of the inferior. Thus, for example, the decrees of a provincial council, although approved by the Congregation of the Council or by the Holy See, always remain provincial conciliar decrees. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13136a.htm”.

The encyclopedia correctly says the decisions of a provincial council remain that of a provincial council. The decrees are normative for that province by the authority granted to it from the Papacy.

The encyclopedia goes on – “Secondly, specific approbation (in forma specifica), which takes from the act approved its character of an act of the inferior and makes it the act of the superior who approves it. This approbation is understood when, for example, the pope approves a Decree of the Holy Office ex certa scientia, motu proprio, or plenitudine suâ potestatis. Therefore the decision by Paul V is not a statement from the commission “in forma communi” but a statement “in forma specifica”. This means the statement has a binding Papal authority.”

Paul V did approve the findings of the commission using high language concerning his powers and explicitly condemning the moving earth theory. The publication uses the power of the Pope and fulfils “plenitudine suâ potestatis” and is a universal statement, having Galileo’s ideas condemned and his books placed on the index, which is therefore at least at the level of a moto proprio. As such according to the encyclopedia, the Popes condemnation requires “. . . . They call for a true assent, internal and sincere”.

“We can examine this with what the encyclopedia say concerning the document lamentabli sane by Pope Pius X as being “in forma specifica”, therefore just as Pius X condemned modern errors using his Papal powers, which required true internal consent from the faithful, then so too, Paul V condemned helio and the moving earth using his Papal powers, requiring true internal consent from the faithful -

“He cannot pass over the disciplinary decision of the Holy Office (13 January, 1897), whereby it is decreed that the authenticity of the Comma Johanninum may not with safety (tuto) be denied or called into doubt. This disciplinary decision was approved by Leo XIII two days later. Though his approval was not in forma specifica, as was Pius X's approval of the Decree "Lamentabili", all further discussion of the text in question must be carried on with due deference to this decree. (See "Revue Biblique", 1898, p. 149; and Pesch, "Prælectiones Dogmaticæ", II, 250.)

johnmartin said...

If we see the context of this phrase “in forma communi” in the context of other subjects discussed in the encyclopedia we see -

“Roman Congregations . . .As regards the doctrinal value of Decrees of the Holy Office it should be observed that canonists distinguish two kinds of approbation of an act of an inferior by a superior: first, approbation in common form (in forma communi), as it is sometimes called, which does not take from the act its nature and quality as an act of the inferior. Thus, for example, the decrees of a provincial council, although approved by the Congregation of the Council or by the Holy See, always remain provincial conciliar decrees. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13136a.htm”.

The encyclopedia correctly says the decisions of a provincial council remain that of a provincial council. The decrees are normative for that province by the authority granted to it from the Papacy.

The encyclopedia goes on – “Secondly, specific approbation (in forma specifica), which takes from the act approved its character of an act of the inferior and makes it the act of the superior who approves it. This approbation is understood when, for example, the pope approves a Decree of the Holy Office ex certa scientia, motu proprio, or plenitudine suâ potestatis. Therefore the decision by Paul V is not a statement from the commission “in forma communi” but a statement “in forma specifica”. This means the statement has a binding Papal authority.”

Paul V did approve the findings of the commission using high language concerning his powers and explicitly condemning the moving earth theory. The publication uses the power of the Pope and fulfils “plenitudine suâ potestatis” and is a universal statement, having Galileo’s ideas condemned and his books placed on the index, which is therefore at least at the level of a moto proprio. As such according to the encyclopedia, the Popes condemnation requires “. . . . They call for a true assent, internal and sincere”.

“We can examine this with what the encyclopedia say concerning the document lamentabli sane by Pope Pius X as being “in forma specifica”, therefore just as Pius X condemned modern errors using his Papal powers, which required true internal consent from the faithful, then so too, Paul V condemned helio and the moving earth using his Papal powers, requiring true internal consent from the faithful -

“He cannot pass over the disciplinary decision of the Holy Office (13 January, 1897), whereby it is decreed that the authenticity of the Comma Johanninum may not with safety (tuto) be denied or called into doubt. This disciplinary decision was approved by Leo XIII two days later. Though his approval was not in forma specifica, as was Pius X's approval of the Decree "Lamentabili", all further discussion of the text in question must be carried on with due deference to this decree. (See "Revue Biblique", 1898, p. 149; and Pesch, "Prælectiones Dogmaticæ", II, 250.)

johnmartin said...

Furthermore concerning the encyclopedias comments on Paul V comments - does a Papal statement have to be formal about a particular doctrine within a statement for the content of the particular doctrine to be infallible. Probably in so far as the wording of the statement itself may not be infallible, but the particular doctrine matter upon which the Pope speaks is so well known that it is assumed the ordinary teaching magesterium has already taught on the matter, that the subject being spoken of is already infallibly established. For example, when the Pope speaks in an encyclical on contraception, homosexuality, the divinity of Christ, indulgences, grace, the last things, virginity of Mary and so on, these subjects are part of the ordinary magesterium and therefore the statements assume content that is infallible. So too with the statements made by Paul V concerning geocentrism assume an ordinary magisterial authority already established concerning the stationary earth. Therefore even though no attempt was made to “formally” define geocentrism in Paul V condemnation of Galileo, the doctrine is already assumed to have been infallibly defined and embraced by the church. To then say –

1. The statement is not binding because it was not ex cathedra is to ignore the ordinary magisterial authority assumed in the statement.
2. The statement was not ex cathedra but it does not follow that the statement does not assume doctrines and authority already established.
3. The statement was not ex cathedra and therefore not infallible ignores the ordinary teaching magesterium.
4. The statement was not ex cathedra ignores the fact that the statement was Papal and therefore binding on Catholics until such time as the church releases the faithful from the decision through an act of the Pope.

Also the encyclopedia says – “. . . 1616, we have seen that it was issued by the Congregation of the Index, which can raise no difficulty in regard of infallibility, this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree.” This is an emphatic statement derived from its words “absolutely incompetent” and yet

The pope and his assessors MAY HAVE BEEN WRONG in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra. This statement is written to run with the psychology of the science theory of the day. The statement should read as follows –
The pope and his assessors THOUGHT THEY WERE CORRECT in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra. For to say NOT CORRECT but does NOT ALTER THE CHARACTER is to abuse the psychology of the reader.

So in brief concerning the statements made by the encyclopedia we have found –

1. The encyclopedias statements concerning the commission’s competence are not competent or binding.
2. The statement “can be said” is vague.
3. The statement “ex cathedra” is merely an irrelevant truism.
4. The statement ‘absolutely incompetent” is made based upon no authority found in the authors of the encyclopedia.
5. The statement ‘absolutely incompetent” is made at odds with authorities within the church that thought the commission was competent.
6. The statement “untrue” concerning the moving earth, is not established or referenced in the encyclopedia with any evidence.
7. The statement “what is now acknowledged” is vague and therefore meaningless.
8. The statement made by Paul V condemning Galileo are “in forma specifica” and not “in forma communi” as claimed, using the encyclopedias own example of the value of Pius X’s document, lamentabli sane.
9. The statement made by Paul V is therefore binding and normative on Catholics.

johnmartin said...

10. The statement made by Paul V can only be overturned by an authority equal to that of the Pope. As this has not yet been done, (and there seems to be no precedent in church history for it being done), then the Papal statement is still binding on the faithful.
11. The phrase “dogmatic decree.” Used by the encycopedia is a misdirection used to psychologically compel readers to agree with the encyclopedia concerning the nature of the Papal and commissions statements and intent behind those statements.
12. The statement “untrue” associated with geocentrism is not established or cite, making the statement unscholarly and in fact an assumed conclusion based upon parallax discovered in 1838. The statement “untrue” is therefore fallacious.

The encyclopedia did quite a bungled job the Galileo incident. No matter, the church is greater than these men and the truth of geocentrism will be vindicated in full in the next life.

JM

johnmartin said...

D- The only way you can meet this argument is to show any other teaching of the Church which in the past she has proposed de fide but which she then ceased to teach for nigh onto 300 years; no, more than ceased to teach it but positively encouraged the faithful to embrace a different teaching. If you cannot see or acknowledge this difference in principle then I cannot do more for you. I repeat: your position cannot be squared with the dogma of the Church’s indefectibility and you have not lifted one finger to try.

JM – This is simply not true. I’ve presented a list of doctrines that have been de facto denied by the modern church. Take for example the inerrancy of scripture taught by Leo XIII. Inerrancy is routinely denied by many Catholic theologians and many bishops and I even know of a Cardinal who has gone on public record as denying it as well. So if we apply the same criteria you are applying to the Papal decree of Paul V, to Leo XIII, we can say Leos statements are not infallible, therefore reformable and because his opinions have now been discovered to be untrue, then inerrancy is also untrue. This is the logic of the encyclopedia and it is the same logic applied to another doctrine held by the church ( assume in this argument the encyclopedias many errors detailed in a previous post above have been read and understood).

D- As Jordanes has said, “you should probably reconsider whether or not Catholicism really is the true religion. Indeed, it is hard to understand why you, who . . . believe the Church since circa 1740 has been not only permitting but encouraging people to accept a heresy, would want anything at all to do with my religion.”

JM- And again church history is against this sort of thinking. The church has its bishops, theologians and cardinals who have taught doctrines against the church over a long period of time. You say this is merely a lack of discipline. This is clearly false. It is a lack of discipline and a lack of fidelity to the church that allows Catholics to reduce Catholicism to the ill thought out arguments of bishops, theologians and Cardinals when they teach contrary to what Popes and Councils have previously taught. This is the same with the subject of geocentrism. The councils, fathers, Popes, commissions and duly appointed cardinal have made emphatic statements about the truth of geocentrism and the rest of the church has seen fit to conjure up ad hoc arguments to the approval of pseudo science. Your argument has been repeatedly answered now and in each instance you have failed to respond to the guts of my responses.

DPALM: Now johnmartin, you have made claims about the authority of Roman commissions to which the Pope delegates authority to make decisions. If he ratifies those decisions, you say, then the results are irreformable. You upheld the belief here that the days of creation were literal 24 hour days is also taught unanimously by the Fathers.

JM - I've since clarified my statment and added - when the Pope speaks in accordinace with tradition as taught by the fathers. As geo was taught by the fathers, then the Papal statements are irreformable. END

D- I see. That's an interesting "clarification" you've created for yourself, JM. “when the Pope speaks in accordance with tradition as taught by the fathers” as decided by whom? You, Sungenis and the other geocentrists, of course!

JM – Well if the Pope speaks in uniformity with the unanimous consent of the fathers and binds the church to such a statement then how can the Popes statements be irreformable? How can the fathers, scripture, the Popes and Trent say one thing about the binding nature of the fathers and then some nobody encyclopedia come along and say the commission (and therefore I might add, the Papal statement as well) is absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic definition on the matter.

johnmartin said...

D- Let’s make sure we’re clear on what you’re saying. Let’s modify your statements according to your new “clarification” and apply it to the example of the PBC’s ruling on the days of creation:

* The Pope has the authority over the church as head of the church.
* The Pope can bind and loose as he chooses as head of the church.
* The Pope has seen fit to delegate his authority on how to interpret sacred Scripture to the Pontifical Biblical Commission.
* The commission makes its findings concerning X.
* The Pope (a sainted Pope!) ratifies the decision of the commission.
* Therefore the commission has the competence to make the decision, because the competence is granted to it from the Pope.
* INSERT JM’s FINAL STEP HERE: The ruling of the papally approved commission is then turned over to Sungenis and Company to decide if it’s irreformable or not. If they decree that it conforms to Tradition as taught by the Fathers, then it’s irreformable. If they decree otherwise, then it may be ignored.

JM – Problem here Dave. You have not identified the Pope or the statements made. Therefore your argument is too vague to either affirm of deny. Furthermore, even if there is a problem with the days of creation argument, it is a non sequitur to ignore the argument previously made on geocentrism. Therefore you have not yet answered the argument using my points previously made on geocentrism.

D- You do realize that by this new argument you only proved true what "S" said about you and your fellow geocentrists earlier. You're like the Sola Scripturist who pretends to submit himself to the Word of God or the sedevacantist who pretends to be submitting to the Scriptures, the Fathers and the Magisterium, while truly only following himself. You've appointed yourselves as the ultimate arbiters of what is Catholic and what is not.

JM – Ok I’m willing to review the church’s position on the days if creation. If the same argument can be made from church authority regarding the days of creation as was made for geocentrism, then I will maintain belief in a literal creation week. If however you can establish the church has definitively defined what the days and week of Genesis means, I will follow the church. Either way David, it is the church’s teaching on the matter that binds us.

D- At least Rick DeLano was honest enough to admit that “[the citation from the PBC] is a source of great difficulty for me.”

But the real bottom line is that the Church herself gives us the guidance on how to understand these things. The magisterial ruling of the PBC simply echoes the teaching of Pope Leo XIII in Providentissimus Deus 18 where he states that,

“the sacred writers, or to speak more accurately, the Holy Ghost ‘Who spoke by them, did not intend to teach men these things (that is to say, the essential nature of the things of the visible universe), things in no way profitable unto salvation.’ Hence they did not seek to penetrate the secrets of nature, but rather described and dealt with things in more or less figurative language, or in terms which were commonly used at the time and which in many instances are in daily use at this day, even by the most eminent men of science. Ordinary speech primarily and properly describes what comes under the senses; and somewhat in the same way the sacred writers -- as the Angelic Doctor also reminds us – ‘went by what sensibly appeared,’ or put down what God, speaking to men, signified, in the way men could understand and were accustomed to.”

johnmartin said...

JM – the counter to this apparent consent granted to reinterpret the creation week as another time period (or an arbitrary time period) is the creation act is not natural, but supernatural. The creation week is documented to record the actions of God who is creating the universe according to a liturgical supernatural covenant action. Does that mean the days of creation must exactly match 24 hours as measured by the revolution of the sun? Possibly not (this is to be fleshed out by the church and the fathers). It does indicate the mind of the author in using the word yom and associating with a supernatural reality.

D- Of course, as we have already seen above, Leo XIII applies this principle also to the Fathers in PD 19. Pius XII reiterates this teaching in Divino Afflante Spiritu. In these matters of “how the heavens go”, neither sacred Scripture nor the Fathers pass on to us matters that belong to the deposit of Faith, for as Leo XIII teaches, the Holy Spirit “did not intend to teach men these things (that is to say, the essential nature of the things of the visible universe)”. And as Pope Leo teaches, following St. Thomas, we are bound to follow the Fathers only in matters that do not belong to the faith. Matters of scientific inquiry do not belong to the faith and here we have freedom. As St. Thomas says of inquiry into the days of creation, but he speaks of this in terms of general principles that apply equally to geocentrism:

JM - “how the heavens go” is merely a catch all phrase for the intricacies of natural science. This does not mean God has not given us truths man can investigate by the use of his reason. We have already discussed Gods revelations of many natural truths in the OT. This fact is undeniable. After all if you deny God has revealed natural truths, then you must deny God has revealed many natural events recorded in history such as the many wars, cities, ports, construction of Jerusalem and so on. Of course the phrase “how the heavens go” must be nuanced to account for what God has and has not revealed. God has revealed truth we can investigate through science. He has also revealed truth beyond science.

Out of time.
JM

Pete said...

Many thanks to Dave Armstrong, Dave Palm, Jordanes, Johnmartin and the rest for all the time spent here laying out the arguments. Until this point, I've leaned toward geocentrism but after reading through the discussion I have to agree that the geocentrist line of argument is basically just circular reasoning like that put out by sedevacantists. It's essentially unfalsifiable in the way that they frame the argument. And if it's unfalsifiable, then it's not valid.

I'd never really thought about it in this way, but I agree that the geocentrists are basically setting themselves up as the final authority on judging whether a piece of evidence is legitamate and binding or not, whether something is a consensus or not, etc.

As a Catholic, that's what I was most concerned about. I don't want to be disobedient. And now I feel comfortable that its just a matter of science. Thank you all for that. And God bless you for your patience!

Dave Armstrong said...

Glad to hear of it, Pete.

Jordanes said...

John, in your unshakeable faith in geocentrism, you're still completely garbling and misrepresenting the account and explanation in the old Catholic Encyclopedia.

Is the encyclopedia correct to say the commission was “absolutely incompetent” to make a dogmatic decree? If we focus on the word “absolutely”, this means there is no possible way the commission had any authority to make its decision binding because of its lack of competence.

Wrong, wrong, wrong. The Congregation of the Index did not have any competence to make a dogmatic decree. It only had competence to issue disciplinary judgments on books. To state the truth, that the Congregation (not "commission," as you continue to sat) was absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree, is NOT to say that the Congregation was absolutely incompetent to make its decision binding. It clearly had competence to make its ill-founded decision binding, and its decision certainly was binding for quite a long time, until the Popes reversed it beginning in 1741.

The statement ‘absolutely incompetent” is made at odds with authorities within the church that thought the commission was competent.

Really? Name one authority within the Church who thought the Congregation was competent to make a dogmatic decree.

'The pope and his assessors MAY HAVE BEEN WRONG in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.' This statement is written to run with the psychology of the science theory of the day. The statement should read as follows –
'The pope and his assessors THOUGHT THEY WERE CORRECT in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.' For to say NOT CORRECT but does NOT ALTER THE CHARACTER is to abuse the psychology of the reader.


Ah, so now the authors of the old Catholic Encyclopedia are not only wrong, but guilty of psychological abuse as well. The absurdity of your assertions and conclusions only seems to wax, never to wane. The encyclopedia is saying that it could be argued the pope and his assessors were wrong in how they addressed the question, opting to use disciplinary rather than dogmatic measures -- but even if that were the case, it doesn't somehow change the 1616 decision into an ex cathedra decree.

Teófilo de Jesús said...

Oh, Dave, you are indeed dealing with people who walk about with alluminum foil on their heads, men who look for people of repute to engage them, thus, earning credit at your expense.

Yes, you are right, you have a duty to steward your time. Pay these creeps no heed.

-Theo

ThePalmHQ said...

JM – “1. Is the encyclopedia correct to say the commission was “absolutely incompetent” to make a dogmatic decree? If we focus on the word “absolutely”, this means there is no possible way the commission had any authority to make its decision binding because of its lack of competence.

2. What is the reason given for the commission being ‘absolutely incompetent’? The encyclical says the ‘pope approved the Congregation's decision in forma communi’”

No, that is not the reason given by the CE. The Congregation of the Index was incompetent to issue doctrinal decrees because it was formed, as Jordanes said, “to issue disciplinary judgments on books”. The CE goes on to say that this incompetence is not “altered by the fact that the pope approved the Congregation’s decision in forma communi”. Basically, they are heading off your argument that just because the Pope approved this ruling it therefore is automatically transformed into a dogmatic decree that binds the whole Church.

Jordanes is absolutely correct when he says, “The Congregation of the Index did not have any competence to make a dogmatic decree. It only had competence to issue disciplinary judgments on books. To state the truth, that the Congregation (not "commission," as you continue to sat) was absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree, is NOT to say that the Congregation was absolutely incompetent to make its decision binding. It clearly had competence to make its ill-founded decision binding, and its decision certainly was binding for quite a long time, until the Popes reversed it beginning in 1741.”

If you continue to dispute this, he has invited you to cite the Apostolic Constitution that gave to the Congregation of the Index greater competence than this. I do not believe that it can be established that it had greater competence than that which the CE and Jordanes have said.

When the matter was handled by the Holy Office, “this was concerned not so much with the doctrine as with the person of Galileo, and his manifest breach of contract in not abstaining from the active propaganda of Copernican doctrines. The sentence, passed upon him in consequence, clearly implied a condemnation of Copernicanism, but it made no formal decree on the subject, and did not receive the pope's signature.”

This is in direct contrast to the counter-example offered, Lamentabili Sane, which addressed doctrinal issues as its central subject and was approved by the Pope in forma specifica. Therefore that counter-example is not ad rem.

And so it stands that, providentially I would say, the Church was never bound to the doctrine of geocentrism as de fide.

ThePalmHQ said...

With respect to JM’s treatment of the related ruling of the Pontifical Biblical Commission concerning the days of creation, another issue on which, at least initially JM claimed there was a unanimous testimony of the Fathers, I think it’s clear enough that JM’s answer is insufficient and contains a manifest double standard and represents nothing more than special pleading. I am content to leave things as they are on that example.

A more serious matter, however, is this assertion from JM:

JM2- Let me clarify this - “has stopped teaching [that] geocentrism is part of the faith” at the same level it has stopped teaching on inerrancy of the scriptures, the error of contraception, the error of divorce, the error of Christ’s limited knowledge concerning his divinity and so on. The church has never stopped teaching at the magisterial level of the Popes and Councils on these matters, nor on the matter of geocentrism. This is what I have been saying and this is what you have been avoiding.”

I have avoided nothing. I have stated and am prepared to back up with citations to the relevant documents the explicit reaffirmation of each and every one of those doctrines, right up to the present day. I say again that you can do nothing of the sort on geocentrism. Speaking of avoiding the problem, cite the reaffirmation of geocentrism at any time in the past 300 years. You know perfectly well that you cannot do so.

There is a difference in principle here and your denial of that difference in principle has you on a collision course with the dogma of the Church’s indefectibility.

JM2- “And as he church has failed to discipline theologians then she has given tacit approval in act to those perverse doctrines. This is historical fact and it overturns David’s idea that the church has stopped teaching geocentrism, therefore geocentrism is not part of the faith.”

This I categorically deny and repudiate. I am as concerned with the breakdown of ecclesiastical discipline as anyone and have publicly stated that I believe that individuals even in the highest office of the Church have not always done all they should to guard the flock from false teachers. But that is a far cry, another absolute difference in principle, from saying that they thereby give “tacit approval in act to those perverse doctrines”. Many evils may be tolerated if the eradication of those evils will cause greater harm and, indeed, it may be that my own judgment on these prudential matters is flawed. But a parent who, for whatever reason, is unable to control unruly children cannot be said to give “tacit approval” to their disobedience.

“JM – This is simply not true. I’ve presented a list of doctrines that have been de facto denied by the modern church.”

You deny the indefectibility of the Church. This is heresy. If you cannot defend our Holy Mother the Church then please have the integrity to leave her communion. You are a scandal.

Jordanes said...

The encyclopedia goes on – “Secondly, specific approbation (in forma specifica), which takes from the act approved its character of an act of the inferior and makes it the act of the superior who approves it. This approbation is understood when, for example, the pope approves a Decree of the Holy Office ex certa scientia, motu proprio, or plenitudine suâ potestatis. Therefore the decision by Paul V is not a statement from the commission “in forma communi” but a statement “in forma specifica”. This means the statement has a binding Papal authority.”

What evidence do you have that the 1616 decree of the Congregation of the Index was approved "ex certa scientia, motu proprio, or plenitudine suâ potestatis"?

Furthermore concerning the encyclopedias comments on Paul V comments - does a Papal statement have to be formal about a particular doctrine within a statement for the content of the particular doctrine to be infallible. Probably in so far as the wording of the statement itself may not be infallible, but the particular doctrine matter upon which the Pope speaks is so well known that it is assumed the ordinary teaching magesterium has already taught on the matter, that the subject being spoken of is already infallibly established.

You really need to make up your mind. Is the decree a binding dogmatic statement issued in forma specifica, or is it a possibly non-infallible statement that expresses something already infallible in the ordinary magisterium?

After all if you deny God has revealed natural truths, then you must deny God has revealed many natural events recorded in history such as the many wars, cities, ports, construction of Jerusalem and so on.

So, it is your contention that all of those matters of ancient history and architecture and culture can be established as certainly true by natural unaided human reason? And that is wholly apart from the fact that those things were not "revealed" in the proper sense, but were inerrantly affirmed.

Joseph said...

Guys:

As promised a report on the Geocentrism conference from last weekend.

Pam and I had nothing better to do so we spent an extra day in South Bend after visiting friends and family.
First, the agreeable part: The meal that was included with the $50 admission was excellent. Give the devil his due, Crazy Bob knows how to pick a caterer. I had the salmon, Pam had the chicken- FWIW

Now, the conference... If you get the chance to buy and review the videos- Do it! You'll find no bigger indictment of these people than their own words and behavior.
An entire battalion of rent-a-cops was in place, on the look out for ''radical heliocentrists" and "zionist types." If the footage shows people being carried away, I'm sure you'll agree they were all plants to affirm Sungenis' paranoid delusions in the minds of the true believers.

Sungenis' talk was very had to follow. During the Q&A, he did a pretty good Jack Nicholson: "You can't handle the truth."
I've stopped laughing at the guy and started praying for him. He was either drunk or on drugs and the way he slurred his words toward the end made me think he may have suffered from a recent stroke. A non speaker came up from the audience and assisted him from the podium to his chair.

Later, E. Michael Jones spoke. Of course the jews are behind keeping this information away from you. His talk was the dullest and most incoherent of the day; a rambling diatribe against judeo-masonic plots, bilderbergers, trilateralists, Amish etc. One cliche after another. We've heard it all before. There was even some babbling about the cranial capacities of negro skulls and a suggestion that the myth of the Holocaust was hatched by a group yeshiva dropouts in Kiev.

Ralph Delano, a professional combox warrior, was a scream. Seeing again, the deer in the headlights expression he gave an undergrad who questioned him about stellar parallax, will be worth the price of the entire DVD set (if they're dumb enough to try to sell it.)

The real treat came at the end when the young earth paleontologist showed some slides from vacations he and his family took that included some digs. He was the calmest of the bunch but it was Yabba-Dabba-Do Science and he was talking to an audience that had dwindled down to about eleven people by this point.


Well, that's all for now. You probably already have similar reports.

JPK

johnmartin said...

As a Catholic, that's what I was most concerned about. I don't want to be disobedient. And now I feel comfortable that its just a matter of science. Thank you all for that. And God bless you for your patience!

JM – Thus is the deflationary punch type argument meant to stop the geocentrist after he has made compelling arguments against the anti geo position. Your statement is nothing more than mere assertion contrary to the historical facts concerning the authority used to defend geocentrism. According to history we have –

A universal consent of the fathers who taught the earth was stationary based upon the revelation made by God in scripture.
Trent said we are not to go beyond what the fathers taught and we are to believe what the fathers taught when they had unanimous consent. This command of the council points directly to Catholics being bound by the fathers on the matter of geocentrism. These two truths of church history alone are enough to win the day for geocentrism.
Galileo’s theory of the moving earth was condemned by several Popes, the commission set up by the Pope and several cardinals. This too is enough to win the day for geocentrism.
The theory of the moving earth has no definitive scientific evidence to back up its hypothesis and therefore the default position is the earth is stationary until science and the church tell us otherwise.

The anti geo camp has only produced about three arguments against geocentrism. One of which was a statement made by the encyclopedia, which is not even an official document of the universal magesterium (not the pope or an ecumenical council or the fathers). Even when this apparent evidence is brought forward, the arguments used in the document are flimsy and illogical. The anti geo camp is truly in a state of desperation over the authority of the church statements made by the fathers and the church on geocentrism and bottom line is – the anti geo’s know they must give consent to what the Popes, councils and fathers have taught, but they refuse to do so. How do they propose to avid this large problem? The counter argument they offer is imprimaturs have been given on books that teach a moving earth and therefore the church has stopped teaching the stationary earth theory as a truth revealed by God. Yet this is easily overcome by noting imprimaturs have been given on books teaching heterodox doctrines in other areas, just as it has been done for geocentrism. Again this is an historical fact which is undeniable and consequently we are brought back to what the fathers, Popes, Cardinals, councils, commission, scripture and science all teach -> geocentrism.
. . .

johnmartin said...

As a Catholic, that's what I was most concerned about. I don't want to be disobedient. And now I feel comfortable that its just a matter of science. Thank you all for that. And God bless you for your patience!

JM – Thus is the deflationary punch type argument meant to stop the geocentrist after he has made compelling arguments against the anti geo position. Your statement is nothing more than mere assertion contrary to the historical facts concerning the authority used to defend geocentrism. According to history we have –

A universal consent of the fathers who taught the earth was stationary based upon the revelation made by God in scripture.
Trent said we are not to go beyond what the fathers taught and we are to believe what the fathers taught when they had unanimous consent. This command of the council points directly to Catholics being bound by the fathers on the matter of geocentrism. These two truths of church history alone are enough to win the day for geocentrism.
Galileo’s theory of the moving earth was condemned by several Popes, the commission set up by the Pope and several cardinals. This too is enough to win the day for geocentrism.
The theory of the moving earth has no definitive scientific evidence to back up its hypothesis and therefore the default position is the earth is stationary until science and the church tell us otherwise.

The anti geo camp has only produced about three arguments against geocentrism. One of which was a statement made by the encyclopedia, which is not even an official document of the universal magesterium (not the pope or an ecumenical council or the fathers). Even when this apparent evidence is brought forward, the arguments used in the document are flimsy and illogical. The anti geo camp is truly in a state of desperation over the authority of the church statements made by the fathers and the church on geocentrism and bottom line is – the anti geo’s know they must give consent to what the Popes, councils and fathers have taught, but they refuse to do so. How do they propose to avid this large problem? The counter argument they offer is imprimaturs have been given on books that teach a moving earth and therefore the church has stopped teaching the stationary earth theory as a truth revealed by God. Yet this is easily overcome by noting imprimaturs have been given on books teaching heterodox doctrines in other areas, just as it has been done for geocentrism. Again this is an historical fact which is undeniable and consequently we are brought back to what the fathers, Popes, Cardinals, councils, commission, scripture and science all teach -> geocentrism.

There is nothing circular about the geo position. In fact the geo position is the only one that takes the church seriously with all its powers to teach infallibly according to both the ordinary and extra ordinary magesterium. The geo says the extra ordinary magesterium has spoken on the binding nature of the fathers and the fathers have spoken in the ordinary magesterium and taught geocentrism. The anti goes must either ignore or play games of special pleading over the meaning of Trent and the fathers and then special plead over the nature and extent of what Leo XIII taught about “how the heavens go” as being a universal approval for the notion that God did not reveal any natural truths known to science. Again this position was easily answered by several examples of natural truths that have been revealed by God, which are used by science.

. . .

johnmartin said...

Examples include – the existence of the body, nutrition, healing powers of plants, the existence of motion, historical events, construction materials used to build a temple, the commandments, existence of morality, the historical truth of the death of Christ, many historical truths concerning persons, events and places. Of course when we add the motion of the sun and moon and the stationary earth, the anti geos throw up their hands and special plead on some non binding statements by Augustine and poorly understood statements by St Thomas and the selective understanding of Leo XIII. They must ignore the father that the fathers thought and universally taught the stationary earth was revealed by God and the ordinary magesterium taught the same.

The geo position requires rock solid ecclesiology, whereas the anti geo position requires an inconsistent hermeneutic concerning the nature of authority in the church and the value of science. Palm and others merely assert the geo is the final authority on the geo matter because they have run out of ideas and cannot substantially answer the responses made against their arguments.

The fact is Robert Sungenis has done a tremendous job in thoroughly analyzing the Galileo incident and has shown what really occurred in church history. Robert’s book is far better scholarship than the encyclopedia and far better scholarship than any counter argument I’ve seen on this thread or any other thread I’ve read. His research needs to be taken seriously and if it is wrong, it should be thoroughly critiqued. Of course it isn’t wrong and so far there is no serious attempt to deal with the many arguments proposed in his book which clearly show geocentrism was revealed by God and science points towards this truth and not against it.

Geo’s use circular reasoning . . . you have got to be joking!!!!

JM

johnmartin said...

Wrong, wrong, wrong. The Congregation of the Index did not have any competence to make a dogmatic decree. It only had competence to issue disciplinary judgments on books. To state the truth, that the Congregation (not "commission," as you continue to sat) was absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree, is NOT to say that the Congregation was absolutely incompetent to make its decision binding. It clearly had competence to make its ill-founded decision binding, and its decision certainly was binding for quite a long time, until the Popes reversed it beginning in 1741.

JM- Ok I’m corrected. I was a little rushed when I wrote my last piece yesterday. Nevertheless, when the encyclopedia says “this tribunal being absolutely incompetent to make a dogmatic decree” its only saying something that is rather routine and inconsequential to the issue of geocentrism. This is so because the statement made by the Pope and the decision made by the congregation assumes geocentrism to be true from the ordinary magesterium. Therefore the encyclopedia is a misdirected statement used to psychologically compel the reader to follow their statement to their preordained conclusion, based on the assumed scientific evidence for helio at the time; ie parallax.

J - The statement ‘absolutely incompetent” is made at odds with authorities within the church that thought the commission was competent.
Really? Name one authority within the Church who thought the Congregation was competent to make a dogmatic decree.

JM- After reviewing my statement made in haste yesterday I say the following – The congregations decision was based upon a previously well known doctrine of geocentrism. Therefore its powers to make a condemnation of Galileo’s theory were given by the Pope and therefore the congregation was competent to make a binding decision on the nature of Galileo’s theory at odds with the ordinary magesterium. This power was ratified by the Pope, who taught geo was already a dogma of the church and Galileo’s theory was heresy. The matter of making a dogmatic decree is merely a statement irrelevant to the point at hand.

'The pope and his assessors MAY HAVE BEEN WRONG in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.' This statement is written to run with the psychology of the science theory of the day. The statement should read as follows –

'The pope and his assessors THOUGHT THEY WERE CORRECT in such a judgment, but this does not alter the character of the pronouncement, or convert it into a decree ex cathedra.' For to say NOT CORRECT but does NOT ALTER THE CHARACTER is to abuse the psychology of the reader.

J- Ah, so now the authors of the old Catholic Encyclopedia are not only wrong, but guilty of psychological abuse as well. The absurdity of your assertions and conclusions only seems to wax, never to wane. The encyclopedia is saying that it could be argued the pope and his assessors were wrong in how they addressed the question, opting to use disciplinary rather than dogmatic measures -- but even if that were the case, it doesn't somehow change the 1616 decision into an ex cathedra decree.

JM – The psychology of the statement has you confused so now you are arguing for a point that is irrelevant to the issues at hand. The encyclopedia does not use the word ‘question’, but uses the word ‘judgment’ and mixes it in with the notion of ‘ex cathedra’ as well. This is to confuse a negative judgment with a positive doctrinal pronouncement. This only adds more weight to my argument that the encyclopedia was using psychological manipulation to confuse the reader. For even you are now confused over the mixing of the terms.

Furthermore, the matter of the Pope and congregation making a statement that is not ex cathedra is not a relevant matter for reasons stated previously. This is yet more evidence the encyclopedia’s statements are a mixed bag of ad hoc arguments intended to confuse the reader.

. . .

JM

johnmartin said...

Lets face it, the encyclopedia’s statements on the Galileo incident is junk scholarship; no doubt about it. It mixes terms, fails to cite sources and intentionally discusses the irrelevant issue of ex cathedra in the context of a Popes disciplinary decision. Encyclopedia on Galileo is blatant psychological manipulation through a distortion of facts, mixing of terms and irrelevancies. The more I study the text, the more convinced I am these professors were duped by the science theory of the day.

JM

johnmartin said...

Lets have a look at what Augustine says as applied to geocentrism -"I answer that, in discussing questions of this kind two rules are to be observed, as Augustine teaches. The first is, to hold the truth of Scripture without wavering.

If we hold to the truth of scripture without wavering we must hold to baptismal regeneration, the resurrection and geocentrism because we arrive at these truths through the literal sense of the text.

A- The second is that since Holy Scripture can be explained in a multiplicity of senses, one should adhere to a particular explanation only in such measure as to be ready to abandon it if it be proved with certainty to be false, lest Holy Scripture be exposed to the ridicule of unbelievers, and obstacles be placed to their believing."

What does Augustine mean by “sense”, is this the four senses of literal and spiritual? Maybe. Is this more than one literal sense? Maybe. We don’t know for sue from the text itself. If it is the four senses of scripture, then the literal sense is the stationary earth is true, as was understood by Augustine himself. If it is more than one literal sense of the texts, then Augustine held to the stationary earth as revealed through the literal sense and therefore he only held to one literal sense of the text. Either way, when we apply Augustine’s statement to geo, we arrive at a stationary earth. Similarly when applied to baptism and the resurrection, we arrive at what both Augustine and the church taught, just as both Augustine and the church taught on geocentrism. Therefore Davids citation of Augustine strengthens the geo position and weakens his position. For if David was right about his understanding of Augustine then he needs to tell us why Augustine only held to one interpretation of the literal sense and why he thinks the church has embraced Augustine’s teaching and has historically embrace contradictory positions on those same texts concerning the motion of the heavenly bodies.

D- It is thus in this light that we read the injunctions of Trent and Vatican I concerning the unanimous testimony of the Fathers. I see a parallel here to the question about extra ecclesiam nulla salus. There are certain magisterial passages, in the Council of Florence for example, that appear to be absolute on that matter. But even Sungenis knows that these seemingly absolute passages are not taken by themselves but have to be read in light of the whole of magisterial teaching and thus there are exceptions for Baptism of Desire and Baptism of Blood.

JM- Augustine held to geocentrism and this is in light of the doctrine propounded by Augustine. According to you poor old Augustine didn’t even follow his own doctrine concerning the interpretation of scriptures. But some how the church, who you think ignores Augustine’s interpretation of the geo texts, just as they must ignore all the fathers on the same texts, now uses Augustine’s method to arrive at a completely new interpretation of those same texts. This is the convoluted method you must impose on Augustine and the church which doesn’t hold an historical or logical weight. The fact is Augustine, the fathers and the church in union with the fathers has and always will teach geocentrism.

Regarding the use of extra ecclesiam nulla salus. This doctrine has never been overturned, but it has been nuanced and developed from the time it was first stated. We must also take note that extra ecclesiam nulla salus is expressing a law of salvation and as law is determined by its object, intention and circumstance then such laws can develop, when the circumstance changes and the object of the law is better understood. When extra ecclesiam nulla salus was first stated, it must have contained within this statement the fuller sense to include other forms of baptism

. . .

johnmartin said...

So even with these other forms of baptism, the baptism occurs through the grace merited by Christ and the church as the mytical body which conveys that grace. After all ther is only one church and only one way to salvation, so grace must always involve the body of Christ. Therefore any person who is saved must be saved through the working of the church and have at least an imperfect membership in the church. How could it be otherwise? How can someone be saved without having any association with the church whatsoever? Its not possible. There is only one saviour, one church and one means by which that grace is conveyed – through the church.

You have not made a sound case for the church embracing an opposing view of geocentrism through comparing it to the doctrine of extra ecclesiam nulla salus.

D - The Church has formally adopted the principles of Sts. Augustine and Thomas on these matters of "how the heavens go". The Popes have made them official. Papally approved commissions such as the PBC have acted on these principles in their rulings. These principles have been taken up into other magisterial documents like the CCC and its treatment of the first chapters of Genesis.

JM- "how the heavens go" is only a generic statement to cover specific scientific theories with all their details. This does not exclude all science facts, for the bible contains many science facts, even if those facts are not expressed in explicit science language. This is almost self evidently true.

. . .

JM

johnmartin said...

Sungenis' talk was very had to follow. During the Q&A, he did a pretty good Jack Nicholson: "You can't handle the truth."
I've stopped laughing at the guy and started praying for him. He was either drunk or on drugs and the way he slurred his words toward the end made me think he may have suffered from a recent stroke. A non speaker came up from the audience and assisted him from the podium to his chair.

JM- So Robert is only human and maybe his was sick.

Ralph Delano, a professional combox warrior, was a scream. Seeing again, the deer in the headlights expression he gave an undergrad who questioned him about stellar parallax, will be worth the price of the entire DVD set (if they're dumb enough to try to sell it.)

JM- stellar parallax is discussed at length in GWW. It seems irrelevant what Delano did or did not do in the conference.

Nothing here to answer on geocentrism as per usual.

JM

johnmartin said...

If you continue to dispute this, he has invited you to cite the Apostolic Constitution that gave to the Congregation of the Index greater competence than this. I do not believe that it can be established that it had greater competence than that which the CE and Jordanes have said.

JM- And I’ve reviewed some comments made yesterday in haste. I agree the congregation did not have authority to define doctrine. But this is assumed when the Pope commissioned the congregation to investigate the case. Why would the Pope investigate a case on helio if geo was not already front and centre in the mind of the senior authorities of the church? Evidently geo was assumed to be part of the ordinary magesterium and that why successive Popes made their move against helio and they all came up with the same negative statements about helio.

When the matter was handled by the Holy Office, “this was concerned not so much with the doctrine as with the person of Galileo, and his manifest breach of contract in not abstaining from the active propaganda of Copernican doctrines. The sentence, passed upon him in consequence, clearly implied a condemnation of Copernicanism, but it made no formal decree on the subject, and did not receive the pope's signature.”

JM- The encyclopedia clearly states the obvious doesn’t it. “. . . clearly implied a condemnation of Copernicanism”. How do we get from clear unambiguous condemnations by the church and now we believe the reverse is true from science no less and not anything we can find in the church teaching at high levels, scripture or the fathers.

D- This is in direct contrast to the counter-example offered, Lamentabili Sane, which addressed doctrinal issues as its central subject and was approved by the Pope in forma specifica. Therefore that counter-example is not ad rem.

JM- Geo is a doctrinal issue, otherwise why would the Popes have investigated the issue under the pretext of the matter of geo being revealed in scripture. Both Paul V and Pius X released documents condemning false doctrines, so they are of equivalent value. Therefore they are both binding until the church sees fit to say otherwise.

D- And so it stands that, providentially I would say, the Church was never bound to the doctrine of geocentrism as de fide.

JM- Ignoring the fact Paul V thought geo was found in scripture and the fathers and that’s why the congregation was given a commission to investigate the matter. Then Paul concludes the moving earth is heresy – yet David wants us to believe the moving earth is not heresy, the stationary earth is not a doctrine and the Popes statements don’t require assent. Evidently David’s comments are all false.

D- With respect to JM’s treatment of the related ruling of the Pontifical Biblical Commission concerning the days of creation, another issue on which, at least initially JM claimed there was a unanimous testimony of the Fathers, I think it’s clear enough that JM’s answer is insufficient and contains a manifest double standard and represents nothing more than special pleading. I am content to leave things as they are on that example.

JM- D presents three statements and two of which are a jumbled mess of unsubstantiated ideas. “Insufficient”, “double standard” and “special pleading” all rolled into one. David forgot to throw in straw man, equivocation and inconsistency to boot.

D- A more serious matter, however, is this assertion from JM:

JM – More serious than ad hoc accusations of fallacies not proven no doubt.

JM2- Let me clarify this - “has stopped teaching [that] geocentrism is part of the faith” at the same level it has stopped teaching on inerrancy of the scriptures, the error of contraception, the error of divorce, the error of Christ’s limited knowledge concerning his divinity and so on. The church has never stopped teaching at the magisterial level of the Popes and Councils on these matters, nor on the matter of geocentrism. This is what I have been saying and this is what you have been avoiding.”

. . .

johnmartin said...

D- I have avoided nothing. I have stated and am prepared to back up with citations to the relevant documents the explicit reaffirmation of each and every one of those doctrines, right up to the present day. I say again that you can do nothing of the sort on geocentrism.

JM- And David avoids the thrust of my argument yet again. In effect David is either not reading my arguments or he is not being truthful with his readers. I will not insult people’s intelligence and restate my argument in full again. I will simply wait for him to directly answer the argument with more than ‘the church had widespread disciplinary failure’ (paraphrased). Yes David it did and continues to do so and with it there is widespread heresy permitted to be taught at universities and schools around the world on many doctrines. It’s standard fair in the Catholic world.

D - Speaking of avoiding the problem, cite the reaffirmation of geocentrism at any time in the past 300 years. You know perfectly well that you cannot do so.

JM- David might not believe this, but the church lives in turbulent times and is in competition with science. The church has been weak in the past when it failed to adequately respond to the reformation in due time and so too, the church has been weak in responding to mere science theories concerning cosmology in due time. The church has spoken in history and has not revoked its official position on the matter. If David wants to push this and require me to produce documentation where the church officially teaches geo at its highest levels then I will currently plead ignorance on the matter and say “I assume not”. However this only means there is a tacit approval for geocentrism until the church has ruled against previous statements at the same level of those statements.

Even if this change in ruling is possible in theory, is it really possible or even probable in practice? I don’t see how this can be reasonably expected in light of church indefectibility.

D- There is a difference in principle here and your denial of that difference in principle has you on a collision course with the dogma of the Church’s indefectibility.

JM- I disagree. I believe the church silence on the matter of geo in the last 300 years is easily accounted for through either inept leadership or fear of the science establishment. Again I say, the church has spoken and any silence after the matter is consent to the previous decisions. Therefore church indefectibility is saved. You on the other hand have some very big problems concerning church indefectibility. You merely proof text Augustine and Leo XIII and avoid the problems with those proof texts. Then hastily conclude geo is not part of revelation so we need not believe it and be faithful to the church. This line or argument has been answered of course, we shall see if David tries to engage it directly.

JM2- “And as he church has failed to discipline theologians then she has given tacit approval in act to those perverse doctrines. This is historical fact and it overturns David’s idea that the church has stopped teaching geocentrism, therefore geocentrism is not part of the faith.”
. . .

johnmartin said...

D- This I categorically deny and repudiate. I am as concerned with the breakdown of ecclesiastical discipline as anyone and have publicly stated that I believe that individuals even in the highest office of the Church have not always done all they should to guard the flock from false teachers.

JM- Well David if the church leaders were the head of a company and that company was pumping sewage into the local river and they new about it they would be liable. Why? Because they gave tacit approval to an illegal act and therefore they deserve to be punished for it. The same principle holds true for church leaders. They are responsible for the ongoing turmoil and heterodox teaching in the seminaries, universities and schools. After all it is the church that controls these institutions and its up to the local ordinaries to make theologians swear allegiance to the church to ensure they are faithful to the church. It is the bishops who have been signing off on books such as Browns biblical works, which contain either outright heresy or ideas proximate to heresy. This again is tacit approval of heresy.

Does this impinge on indefectibility of the church? No, because these crimes against the faithful have been committed because the church has already spoken on these matters at high levels and because the lower levels do not over turn these teaching the church is officially safe from formally teaching error.

D- But that is a far cry, another absolute difference in principle, from saying that they thereby give “tacit approval in act to those perverse doctrines”. Many evils may be tolerated if the eradication of those evils will cause greater harm and, indeed, it may be that my own judgment on these prudential matters is flawed. But a parent who, for whatever reason, is unable to control unruly children cannot be said to give “tacit approval” to their disobedience.

JM- So now David is admitting the bishops have knowingly let theologians teach heresy. His spin is there is a greater evil to occur if the heresies are eradicated. Did you hear that folks! The eradication of heresy will cause a grater evil than the permission of heresy. We know heresy kills the life of the church, so what could be the greater evil? David doesn’t tell us. In effect David doesn’t tell us because he knows he is trapped and his thesis has been answered. If helio has been taught around the world as being true, even though the high church decrees say otherwise, then this historical fact complies with many other doctrines defined by the church, but not taught by the church at lower levels as well. David is therefore being inconsistent when he expects us to believe the church has reversed its teaching on geo because imprimaturs have been issued that teach helio, but not on many other doctrines that are de facto denied at lower levels. David’s position must ignore the facts of history, when they are against his argument and embrace the facts of history when they are in according with his argument. Therefore David is being inconsistent in his argument against geo.

“JM – This is simply not true. I’ve presented a list of doctrines that have been de facto denied by the modern church.”

D- You deny the indefectibility of the Church. This is heresy. If you cannot defend our Holy Mother the Church then please have the integrity to leave her communion. You are a scandal.

JM- David’s accusation is a result of his inability to deal with what I have been saying. Here merely asserts I deny indefectibility of the Church, when in fact I am assuming the indefectibility of the Church. His false conclusion that I am a scandal to the church is a grave sin against charity. I request David repent of his ill made statement.

JM

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 446   Newer› Newest»