On 06.01.2012 23:11 John Clark said the following:
On Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 12:33 PM, Bruno Marchal<marc...@ulb.ac.be>

In fact I do agree often with John Clark, but then he exaggerates
also very often the point.

I've told you a million times I never exaggerate.

The church was asking to Galileo to present his view as a theory

What do you suppose would have happened if Galileo asked the church
to present its views as a theory or conjecture?! Actually Galileo was
not tortured but he was shown the instruments for it, as the worlds
greatest expert on mechanics at the time he certainly understood how
such machines operated, as a result he publicly apologized for his
scientific ideas and said in writing that the church was right, the
Earth was the center of the universe after all. I certainly don't
hold this against Galileo, instead I look at it as yet another
example of the man's enormous intellect. Only 20 years before,
another astronomer Giordano Bruno, said that space was infinite, the
stars were like the sun only very far away and life probably filled
the universe, but Bruno was not as smart as Galileo, he refused to
recant his views. For the crime of telling the truth Bruno was burned
alive in the center of Rome so all could see, according to custom
green wood was used because it doesn't burn as hot so it takes longer
to kill. I imagine Feyerabend would say that the church's verdict
against Bruno was rational and just too.

I am afraid, that what you are talking about is just an example of mass culture that enjoy widespread use in the modern highly educated society. Below there are some quotes from Wikipedia on Bruno "as the martyr for modern science". As for Feyerabend, I believe this his quote is appropriate:

"Do not be misled by the fact that today hardly anyone gets killed for joining a scientific heresy. This has nothing to do with science. It has something to do with the general quality of our civilization. Heretics in science are still made to suffer from the most severe sanctions this relatively tolerant civilization has to offer."


From Wikipedia

"the Roman Inquisition found him guilty of heresy [Giordano Bruno] for his pantheism"

"Some assessments suggest that Bruno's ideas about the universe played a smaller role in his trial than his pantheist beliefs, which differed from the interpretations and scope of God held by the Catholic Church."

"However, today, many feel that any characterization of Bruno's thought as 'scientific' (and hence any attempt to position him as a martyr for 'science') is hard to accept. e.g. "Ever since Domenico Berti revived him as the hero who died rather than renounce his scientific conviction of the truth of the Copernican theory, the martyr for modern science, the philosopher who broke with medieval Aristotelianism and ushered in the modern world, Bruno has been in a false position. The popular view of Bruno is still roughly as just stated. If I have not finally proved its falsity, I have written this book in vain" Frances Yates, Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition, Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1964, p450; see also: Adam Frank, The Constant Fire: Beyond the Science vs. Religion Debate, University of California Press, 2009, p24"

Galileo did endorse the "modern" view of naturalism,

Another reason Galileo was a great man.

and that science *has* to be naturalist

If there are things about the universe that are not naturalistic (and
there might be),  that is to say if there are things that do not work
by reason then science has nothing it can say about them, so yes
science *has* to be naturalistic.

and this *is* a scientific error (as comp illustrates) which has
not yet been corrected (excepting the study of comp).

I don't know what that means.

John K Clark

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