Galileo on religion and science Essay

1657 Words Feb 24th, 2015 7 Pages
Explain Galileo’s attempt to make science and religion compatible, with particular reference to methods of justification. How successful is he? Use Kuhn’s notion of incommensurability to investigate Galileo’s attempt to reconcile the propositions of science and religion.

There will always be a battle between religion and science, it is a truth universally acknowledged. Galileo attempted to make the two compatible by suggesting that the truth can only be sought out if the notion under consideration can be accurately tested and if the opposing view can be founded as false. Galileo’s goes into depth about the truth of scripture and the sciences, intertwined with the reason of man, in his letter to Christina of Lorraine, Grand Duchess of
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He further goes on to admit, that at first the two may seem completely different and closer scrutiny is required. Galileo proves his point further by stating that “two truths can never contradict each other” ultimately, the religious and scientific, must both be compatible for something to be proven true.
The matter of Galileo’s success is dependent largely on his era and the audience. Being a follower of God as well as a man of science and a philosopher, Galileo had to come to terms with both his beliefs and what his physical senses and reasoning told him about the world. He achieved this by describing that the facts produced by reasoning will equal the truth held in the Scripture; both religion and science were correct. However, this was conditional: the Holy Scripture should not be misinterpreted and the notion under consideration should be tested through logic. Following this Galileo, believed that the understanding held by an individual of the Holy Scripture, chiefly relied upon how leaned such a person was and their capacity to understand the true meaning of the Scriptural passages. Primarily Galileo could not disregard the Bible wholly: firstly, as mentioned above he himself believed greatly in God and secondly the people of the time were immersed in the religion from infancy it was to them, “common” knowledge and the truth about the world. Given this Galileo had to find a solution to please both religious beliefs whilst allowing

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