Belonging to the Universe: Explorations on the Frontiers of by Fritjof Capra

By Fritjof Capra

The trailblazer of latest technological know-how and a modern Thomas Merton discover the parallels among new paradigm pondering in technology and faith that jointly provide a remarkably suitable view of the universe.

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He also discovered a supernova in a constellation of Cassiopeia, which is pretty good going for the time. ) Brahe himself believed in the Ptolemaic view of the Universe, which was ironic since his work effectively unpicked it. Apparently, he thought that God must have created a perfect Universe, in which everything would be regularly and neatly ordered and that, being a very tidy god, he would not have put stars randomly all over the place in huge empty spaces. ) It is interesting just how often early theorists of the Universe start from a philosophical position and impose that belief on their observations.

If the Church taught that the Universe was simple and perfect, and as Aristotle had argued, complete and full, then these newfangled ideas clearly implied that the Church was wrong. Given that the Pope was supposed to be infallible, this could be a serious problem. The idea that there were planets out there with moons flying about them that no one had ever known about, and that the earth whizzed about turning on its axis, was enough to turn a saint into a swearing sinner. Galileo had apparently called people who still believed in the old sun went round the earth stuff ‘dumb idiots’ and he implied the Pope was a simpleton in his Dialogo, so his retraction, as he well knew, looked pretty feeble.

That other universal law, ‘there’s nowt so queer as folk,’ springs to mind here when talking about scientific optimism. It is claimed by some that this new reason led to the French Revolution itself, in which a new vision of humanity was put forward, but there was rather a lot of old-fashioned nastiness and cutting off of heads as well, so the idea of a rationally planned society took a back seat for a while. It was left to the nineteenth century to try and invent a science of society, and to the twentieth to prove that it was an idea whose time would come when pigs mastered the law of gravity.

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