A good article on Galileo by John Farrell from Forbes Magazine.
Interesting, the article didn’t point this out. But Galileo’s timing was atrocious. He published his book as the Protestant Swedes were schooling the Catholic armies in combined-arms warfare. In short, my guess would be that political considerations were just as relevant as religious and scientific ones.
I think I missed something from the reading. Here is a quote:
“The second mistake, Martīnez, points out, was failing to consider Galileo’s thoughtful assessment –which he derived from a correct reading of St. Augustine–on how one should interpret scripture in the light of scientific evidence that seems to contradict it.”
[QUOTED WITHIN THE ARTICLE]
"The second stance is precisely theological and concerns the characterization of Copernican theories as “contrary to Scripture.” Even admitting they described a factual situation, a theological examination of Augustinian exegesis, repeatedly cited by Galileo in the Letter to Christina of Lorraine, and of Thomist exegesis, was to be considered; in such exegesis the literal meaning of Scripture does not identify at all with what Galileo called “the pure meaning of the words.”
“Such an examination, which, from the point of view of Revelation, would have shown the irrelevance of a question concerning the physical order, such as the structure of the universe, was unfortunately totally absent in the process on Copernicanism in 1616 and also later in Galileo’s trial in 1633.”
I must confess… I don’t really know what text of Augustine is being mentioned… any help?
Every story has an ending, and the end of the story is my favorite part.
I would think Galileo was referring to Augustine’s book “On the Literal Interpretation of Genesis.” Augustine said that parts of the Bible that covered matters beyond human understanding could not be interpreted by the strict meaning of the words. The “literal” meaning of Genesis was what the author intended to convey to limited human comprehension.
I found this link to an article about the book:
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