Humanism and Copernicus

Tuesday (19th February) is the 540th anniversary of Copernicus’ birth. He was, of course, the mathematician who posited that we are centred around the Sun and not the Earth. It brought him into conflict with the Church. It is our EGO’s natural assumption that WE are critically important and that all meaning revolves around us; ridiculous when contemplating celestial orbits and the expanding universe. Surely equally naive when addressing the meaning of existence – (that we humans are the centre of everything).

Humanism derives all meaning in us, we, humans and our fulfilment. In this philosophy we are the equivalent of the Earth; but it appears to me that our species on this planet with our narrow senses are only a part of something bigger. With it’s nucleus elsewhere. Effectively, for me, meaning is centred around a philosophical “Sun” rather than on our “Earth”.

Indeed, rather than emphasising the importance of ego – what happens if we accept its insignificance?

One description of life’s journey is the progress from the baby’s unboundaried “I am everything”, to the realisation of our separated triviality. The rich compensation can be the revelation of the depth and infinity of love that we are in our entangled whole.

Nirvana? The truth shall set you free. Let us be spiritual Copernicans.

3 thoughts on “Humanism and Copernicus

  1. Just to clarify… It was not the church who posited that everything revolved around the earth. It was Ptolemy, a Greek mathematician and astronomer, who presented a model of the universe which held earth to be at the center. Based on the evidence available at the time, his model was the most plausible explanation yet developed. Copernicus was rejected not because of pride, but because his math didn’t work. It wasn’t until Kepler fixed the Copernican model by positing ellipsoidal orbits rather than spherical that it began to be accepted in medieval science.

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