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Contents:
  1. The church and its history
  2. 6 Reasons the Dark Ages Weren’t So Dark - HISTORY
  3. America’s True History of Religious Tolerance
  4. Renaissance
  5. 7. How religion may affect educational attainment: scholarly theories and historical background

In response, the Aristotelian professors of the universities formed a united effort to convince the Church to ban Copernicanism. Initially a beneficiary of church patronage of astronomy, Galileo rose to prominence with the publication of Sidereus Nuncius , which comprised astronomical observations made possible by the invention of the telescope.

Proponents of these alternatives began to work against Galileo and claim a contradiction between the Bible and his theories. Galileo rejected the accusation — quoting Cardinal Baronius : "The Holy Ghost intended to teach us how to go to heaven, not how the heavens go. The leading Jesuit Theologian Cardinal Robert Bellarmine agreed that this would be an appropriate response to a true demonstration that the sun was at the center of the universe, but cautioned that the existing materials upon which Galileo relied did not yet constitute an established truth.

Galileo's career coincided with the reaction of the Catholic Church to the Protestant Reformation, in which the Roman Church found itself in a struggle for authority in Europe, following the emergence of the Protestant Churches and nations of Northern Europe. From , the institution had jurisdiction over books and created the Index of Prohibited Books.


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The historian of science Jacob Bronowski wrote that "Catholics and Protestants were embattled in what we should now call a Cold War. The Church was a great temporal power, and in that bitter time it was fighting a political crusade in which all means were justified by the end. After , when Galileo began publicly supporting the heliocentric view which placed the Sun at the center of the universe, he met with bitter opposition from some philosophers and clerics, and two of the latter eventually denounced him to the Roman Inquisition early in Galileo defended his theories by means of the long-established Catholic understanding of Scripture, that the Bible was not intended to expound scientific theory and where it conflicted with common sense, should be read as allegory.

In March , the Church's Congregation of the Index issued a decree suspending De revolutionibus until it could be "corrected", on the grounds that the supposedly Pythagorean doctrine [73] that the Earth moves and the Sun does not was "false and altogether opposed to Holy Scripture. Urban VIII was an intellectual and patron of the arts and architecture, who had written poetry as a young man in praise of Galileo's astronomical writings.

Galileo met with the new Pope, hoping to persuade him to lift the ban.

The Problems of the American Anglicans

The Preparatory Commission for the trial of Galileo noted that the Pope's stated belief that it would be extravagant boldness to limit the power and wisdom of God to an individual's particular conjecture was put "into the mouth of a fool" in Galileo's text. Galileo was summoned to Rome to be tried by the Inquisition in According to Bronowski, Galileo's accusers relied on a forged document purporting to have, in , forbidden Galileo from in "any way whatsoever" teaching theories of Copernicus, and thus could find him guilty of dishonestly tricking the censors and therefore ban his book without addressing the issues of substance relating to Copernicus found within it.

Galileo remained a practicing Catholic and during his house arrest wrote his most influential work Two New Sciences — a book which had to be smuggled to the Protestant part of Holland in order to be published. The Catholic Church's Index of Prohibited Books omitted the general prohibition of works defending heliocentrism, [81] but retained the specific prohibitions of the original uncensored versions of De revolutionibus and Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems.

Those prohibitions were finally dropped from the Index. The Inquisition's ban on reprinting Galileo's works was lifted in when permission was granted to publish an edition of his works excluding the condemned Dialogue in Florence. In , Pope John Paul II ordered a re-examination of the evidence against Galileo and formally acquitted him in In Pope Pius XII , in his first speech to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, within a few months of his election to the papacy, described Galileo as being among the "most audacious heroes of research He was energetic on this point and regretted that in the case of Galileo.

On 15 February , in a speech delivered at the Sapienza University of Rome , [91] Cardinal Ratzinger later Pope Benedict XVI cited some current views on the Galileo affair as forming what he called "a symptomatic case that permits us to see how deep the self-doubt of the modern age, of science and technology goes today. Her verdict against Galileo was rational and just and the revision of this verdict can be justified only on the grounds of what is politically opportune. He did, however, say: "It would be foolish to construct an impulsive apologetic on the basis of such views.

On 31 October , Pope John Paul II expressed regret for how the Galileo affair was handled, and issued a declaration acknowledging the errors committed by the Church tribunal that judged the scientific positions of Galileo Galilei; this was the result of a study conducted by the Pontifical Council for Culture. Conrad Gessner 's great zoological work, Historiae animalium , appeared in 4 vols. This work is recognized as the starting-point of modern zoology.

The church and its history

There was extreme religious tension at the time Historiae animalium came out. Gesner was Protestant. Under Pope Paul IV it was felt that the religious convictions of an author contaminated all his writings, [] so — without any regard for the content of the work — it was added to the Roman Catholic Church 's list of prohibited books. In the years since the publication of Charles Darwin 's On the Origin of Species in , the position of the Catholic Church on the theory of evolution has slowly been refined. For about years there was no authoritative pronouncement on the subject, though local church figures took on more prominent sides.

Witcomb [] published The Genesis Flood , which argued that there is scientific support for the bible creation story. In October , Pope John Paul II outlined the Catholic view of evolution to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences , saying that the Church holds that evolution is "more than a hypothesis," it is a well-accepted theory of science and that the human body evolved according to natural processes, while the human soul is the creation of God.

Catholic scientists contributed to the development of evolutionary theory. Among the foremost Catholic contributors to the development of the modern understanding of evolution was the Jesuit-educated Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and the Augustinian monk Gregor Mendel Papal pronouncements, along with commentaries by cardinals, indicate that the Church is aware of the general findings of scientists on the gradual appearance of life. The Church's stance is that the temporal appearance of life has been guided by God. Modern Creationism has had little Catholic support.

In the s, the Church's position was one of neutrality; by the late 20th century its position evolved to one of general acceptance of evolution. Today [update] , the Church's official position is a fairly non-specific example of theistic evolution. No infallible declarations by the Pope or an Ecumenical Council have ever been made. There have been several organizations composed of Catholic laity and clergy which have advocated positions both supporting evolution and opposed to evolution.

For example:. As in other countries, Catholic schools in the United States teach evolution as part of their science curriculum.


  • Christianity.
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  • They teach the fact that evolution occurs and the modern evolutionary synthesis , which is the scientific theory that explains how evolution occurs. This is the same evolution curriculum that secular schools teach. At the same time, Catholic parents whose children are in public schools should ensure that their children are also receiving appropriate catechesis at home and in the parish on God as Creator. Students should be able to leave their biology classes, and their courses in religious instruction, with an integrated understanding of the means God chose to make us who we are.

    Gregor Mendel was an Austrian scientist and Augustinian friar who began experimenting with peas around Observing the processes of pollination at his monastery in what is now the Czech Republic , Mendel studied and developed theories pertaining to the field of science now called genetics.

    The paper was not widely read nor understood, and soon after its publication Mendel was elected Abbott of his Monastery.

    He continued experimenting with bees but his work went unrecognised until various scientists resurrected his theories around , after his death. The Brno Monastery was a center of scholarship, with an extensive library and a tradition of scientific research.

    6 Reasons the Dark Ages Weren’t So Dark - HISTORY

    Where Charles Darwin 's theories suggested a mechanism for improvement of species over generations, Mendel's observations provided explanation for how a new species itself could emerge. Though Darwin and Mendel never collaborated, they were aware of each other's work Darwin read a paper by Wilhelm Olbers Focke which extensively referenced Mendel. Bill Bryson wrote that "without realizing it, Darwin and Mendel laid the groundwork for all of life sciences in the twentieth century.

    Darwin saw that all living things are connected, that ultimately they trace their ancestry to a single, common source; Mendel's work provided the mechanism to explain how that could happen. Haldane and others brought together the principles of Mendelian inheritance with Darwinian principles of evolution to form the field of genetics known as Modern evolutionary synthesis.

    The idea became established theory only decades later with the discovery of cosmic background radiation by American scientists. In ancient times, the church supported medical research as an aid to Christian charity. The Church supported the development of modern science and scientific research by founding Europe's first universities in the Middle Ages. Historian Lawrence M. Principe writes that "it is clear from the historical record that the Catholic church has been probably the largest single and longest-term patron of science in history, that many contributors to the Scientific Revolution were themselves Catholic, and that several Catholic institutions and perspectives were key influences upon the rise of modern science.

    Heilbronn in his book The Sun in the Church: Cathedrals as Solar Observatories writes that "the Roman Catholic Church gave more financial aid and support to the study of astronomy for over six centuries, from the recovery of ancient learning during the late Middle Ages into the Enlightenment, than any other, and, probably, all other, institutions.

    Scientific support continues through the present day. The Pontifical Academy of Sciences was founded in by Pope Pius XI, with the aim of promoting the progress of the mathematical, physical, and natural sciences and the study of related epistemological problems. The academy holds a membership roster of the most respected names in 20th century science, many of them Nobel laureates. Also worth noting is the Vatican Observatory , which is an astronomical research and educational institution supported by the Holy See.

    In his encyclical Fides et Ratio , Pope John Paul II wrote that "faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth. In the first few centuries of the Church, the Church Fathers appropriated the best of Greek philosophy in defense of the faith. This appropriation culminated in the 13th century writings of Thomas Aquinas , whose synthesis of faith and reason has influenced Catholic thought for eight centuries.

    Because of this synthesis, it should be no surprise that many historians of science trace the foundations of modern science to the 13th century. The Church has, since ancient times, been heavily involved in the study and provision of medicine. Early Christians were noted for tending the sick and infirm, and priests were often also physicians.

    America’s True History of Religious Tolerance

    Christian emphasis on practical charity gave rise to the development of systematic nursing and hospitals after the end of the persecution of the early church. Notable contributors to the medical sciences of those early centuries include Tertullian born A. Isidore of Seville d. Benedict of Nursia emphasised medicine as an aid to the provision of hospitality. Monasteries of this era were diligent in the study of medicine. Other than theological works, Hildegard also wrote Physica, a text on the natural sciences, as well as Causae et Curae. Hildegard of Bingen was well known for her healing powers that involved practical application of tinctures, herbs, and precious stones.

    Charlemagne decreed that each monastery and cathedral chapter establish a school and in these schools medicine was commonly taught. At one such school Pope Sylvester II taught medicine.

    Renaissance

    Clergy were active at the School of Salerno , the oldest medical school in Western Europe. Among the important churchmen to teach there were Alpuhans , later —85 Archbishop of Salerno, and the influential Constantine of Carthage , a monk who produced superior translations of Hippocrates and investigated Arab literature.

    In Catholic Spain amidst the early Reconquista , Archbishop Raimund founded an institution for translations, which employed a number of Jewish translators to communicate the works of Arabian medicine. Influenced by the rediscovery of Aristotelean thought, churchmen like the Dominican Albert Magnus and the Franciscan Roger Bacon made significant advances in the observation of nature.

    Through the devastating Bubonic Plague , the Franciscans were notable for tending the sick. The apparent impotence of medical knowledge against the disease prompted critical examination.

    7. How religion may affect educational attainment: scholarly theories and historical background

    Medical scientists came to divide among anti- Galenists , anti-Arabists, and positive Hippocratics. In Renaissance Italy, the Popes were often patrons of the study of anatomy, and Catholic artists such as Michelangelo advanced knowledge of the field through such studies as sketching cadavers to improve his portraits of the crucifixion.

    The Jesuit order, created during the Reformation, contributed a number of distinguished medical scientists. In the field of bacteriology it was the Jesuit Athanasius Kircher who first proposed that living beings enter and exist in the blood. In the development of ophthalmology , Christoph Scheiner made important advances in relation to refraction of light and the retinal image.

    In modern times, the Catholic Church is the largest non-government provider of health care in the world. Catholic religious have been responsible for founding and running networks of hospitals across the world where medical research continues to be advanced. Jesuits were leaders of the Counter-Reformation, who have contributed a great many distinguished scientists and institutions of learning, right up to the present.