500 years ago, science WAS the Church, and everyone who did not agree with its doctrines, was severely punished.
Galileo Galilei (*1564) was an Italian physicist, and the first modern astronomer. Among other things, he discovered 4 moons orbiting Jupiter, using his self-made telescope (1610). But the clergy rejected this discovery and would not even deign to look in the telescope. Everybody knew, that Jupiter does not have moons…
His observations challenged the theory of a geocentric, or Earth-centered, universe, which was the only accepted view of the universe at that time. The Church officially declared that the heliocentric theory was “philosophically false and at least an erroneous belief.”
In 1633, Galileo was placed under house arrest at his home near Florence, and he died, blind and still under house arrest, in 1642.
- He published statements that were against the teachings of the ruling scientific establishment: the Church.
In 1992, 350 years later, Pope John Paul II officially declared Galileo innocent: Jupiters moons were really out there â€“ and science itself went through a revolution.
Today, a scientist will not be placed under house arrest because of his or her opinion.