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Meditation 785
Galileo's Legacy

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Four hundred years ago this week, 25 August 1609, Galileo Galilei demonstrated his ninepower telescope to the Senate in Venice in Venice. With his telescope he was subsequently going to change the way we see the universe and our place in it. And he was going to fatally undermine ideas that were taught as fact by the Catholic Church and all other Christian Churches of the time.

We are so used to the Galilean view by now - it is something that is taught so early and so uncontroversially in our schooling - that today it is difficult to imagine just how major a change he introduced.

When Galileo looked at the skies through his primitive telescope:

Galileo did more than establish that the Earth goes round the sun rather than vice versa. He also established that science trumps religious doctrine. And for that we all owe him thanks.