Is There Anything That Can't Be Denied?

James McGrath posted a link to the Galileo Was Wrong conference being held in November. The full title is “Galileo Was Wrong: The Church was Right, First Annual Catholic Conference on Geocentrism.”

I’m sure the Catholic Church is just overjoyed by this.

The whole thing is organized by Dr. Robert Sungenis (doctor of theology, as near as I can tell), who has a book out that shares the title of the conference. From the site:

Galileo Was Wrong: The Church Was Right is one of the most unique and penetrating books you will ever read. Now complete in Volumes I and II, authors Robert Sungenis and Robert Bennett take you on a tour of science and history the likes of which you would have never believed possible unless it were told to you in detailed and graphic form. Has modern science led us down the primrose path and convinced us of something that they cannot prove and that is in actuality false? Were the Fathers, the Medievals, our popes and cardinals of the 17th century correct in believing that the Earth, based on a face value reading of Scripture, was standing still in the center of the universe?

It’s odd. Catholics as a whole are much less committed to a “face value reading” of scripture. Apparently Sungenis spent some time as a Protestant. Perhaps that left a mark.

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  • custador

    Beyond faithful and well into feeble minded imho.

  • Mike

    Th capacity for delusion to replace fact with fairytale never ceases to amaze.

  • wintermute

    Ironically, one of his early books was Not By Scripture Alone: A Catholic Critique of the Protestant Doctrine of Sola Scriptura, which means he ought to know better than to make a vace value reading of scripture, right?

    Also, I can’t help but not that every review includes in the byline something like “PhD in Civil Engineering” or “PhD from MIT”. Because, you know, people with PhDs in unrelated fields are never wrong, right guys?

  • Olaf

    Whahah, the discussion that science show that earth stands motionless in space! Hilarious.
    He probably refers to the light experiments showing no matter how fast you move or where, it appears that your are in coordinate 0,0,0.

    So the complete universe is revolving around Earth? And also how does he explain that the moon is also in the centre of the universe and does not move according to the same experiment? And what if the experiment is done in an air-plane, is the air plane then the centre of the universe and the Earth decides to move? What if they do the test in the air-plane and earth. How will they explain that both the air plane and earth is standing still according to these experiments at the same time?

    • Geis

      When you change the frame of reference, that place is the center of the universe. In a plane. In a spacecraft. On the moon. This in no way conflicts with scripture. That merely proves that God created the universe for us and made humanity, collectively and individually, the center of His perfect universe.

      Geez, I can’t believe I actually said that claptrap. But I’ve been reading and writing science fiction and fantasy for a long time. Being irrational, but making it sound rational, comes pretty easy to me.

      • Olaf

        What if 2 people measure the frame of reference?
        2 centres of the universe? So which one reference does not move?

        What if I measure the frame of reference on Mars and on Earth at the same time? Do you mean that Mars and Earth are both in the centre of the universe and do not move?

        • Revyloution

          That’s an easy one Olaf. You are all just figments of my imagination. The one true center is wherever I take it :O

          • Danny wuvs kittens

            The center of the universe is my anus.

            • Ty

              I thought I smelled something. . .

  • Klaus

    Weirdo obviously come in all colors…

    Just a remark:
    Catholics as a whole are much less committed to a “face value reading” of scripture. Apparently Sungenis spent some time as a Protestant. Perhaps that left a mark.
    Having grown up as a Protestant – Bible thumbing never was a big part. Fellow Catholics however were pretty apt at quoting…

    • Susan

      Growing up Catholic, quoting the Bible was barely done at all. I went to a Catholic grammar school and high school. The only time we even used or got a Bible was in sophomore Bible study.
      Anyway the Church already acknowledged Galileo, even if they waited 400 years, I guess the church is wrong too then.

  • mikespeir

    Is There Anything That Can’t Be Denied?

    Of course, they’ll throw that question right back in our faces.

    • Len

      Yes, there isn’t.

  • nomad

    “Is There Anything That Can’t Be Denied?”
    Probably not.

    • nomad

      “I heard where someone said, “Even if it were true, I wouldn’t believe it” the other day.
      Now that is denial.”

  • Mike

    Bob Sungenis has very little credibility….even among very conservative catholic apologists. He also is know for being very anti-semitic.

    • Peter Cross

      That’s “Bob Sungenis, Ph.D.” to you. If you check out the link, you’ll see he puts the Ph.D. after his name on the cover of his books.

      1) People who do that are wankers who are trying to impress you with authority, not content. Check you collection of Richard Dawkins books and you’ll note he doesn’t put “D.Ph” on the cover. Neither does pretty much anyone who is credible.

      2) Vorjack is correct, Sungenis’ Ph.D. is in theology, not astronomy or physics or anything relevant to the topic of the book.

      • wintermute

        Phil Plait put his PhD on the cover of Death from the Skies!, so it’s hardly a hard and fast rule. But, yeah, it’s rare.

  • Unladenswallow

    Galileo Was Wrong? I’m unfamiliar with this. This looks like a Poe to me.

    So which is it, real or parody?

    • Mike

      Sadly, real.

    • Peter Cross

      This is what is known as a “true joke.”

  • mcvouty

    “(A) tour of science and history the likes of which you would have never believed possible unless it were told to you in detailed and graphic form.”

    That pretty much describes the internet, doesn’t it?

  • Custador

    There is no such thing as the center of the universe. There is no such thing as absolute speed, time or possition. They are all mutually intertwined and entirely changeable. How could we possible define a stationary point on a universal scale, anyway? Stationary relative to what? Itself? The debate is complete nonsense to anybody with even the most cursory understanding of physics and/or mathematics.

    • LRA

      LOL! Yeah, if the book was “Galileo was wrong, Einstein was right”, it might interest me.

      Speaking of that, fundies are now attacking relativity over at Conservapediot because, you know… it’s relative…

      • Yoav

        Gave me a good lough when I saw how that moron Andy S*itfly tried to equate relativity with moral relativism.

    • nomad

      The center is the point from which the Bang Bigged.

      • CoffeeJedi

        Yeah, but that’s the wibbely wobbely thing about the Universe, there is no “point” from which the big-bang banged real big. We’re all “in” that point right now, and everything is moving away from everything else, there’s no real “center” to it all.

        I know that’s how it works, and I can you that’s how it works… but I still can’t quite conceptualize it myself.

        • nomad

          Sounds almost mystical.

      • trj

        No, the universe exists in four dimensions (at least). When we’re talking about a center we’re talking about a 3D geographical location (some actual place described by x,y,z coordinates). However, you can’t meaningfully apply 3D coordinates to a 4D system.

        It is equivalent to what happens if we apply 2D coordinates to a 3D system. For instance, we can travel east-west and north-south to any location on Earth, but whereever we go no location is the center because we’re only travelling on the surface of a sphere. Beijing is no more the center of Earth than New York or Cape Town.

        In our uinverse, we’re similarly confined to the 3D surface of a 4D system, since we can’t influence how we travel in the fourth dimension, time; we are bound to simply tag along for the ride.

        But, someone will probably ask, doesn’t this mean that there still is an actual center, it’s just that we can’t get to it? Well, a 4D hypersphere (assuming this is what the universe is) does have a mathematical center. However, the pesky rules of reality get in the way. As a consequence of special relativity we can’t describe the relationship of different (non-stationary) points in space using an absolute frame of reference. When there can be no common point of reference there can be no center – even in 4D. Not only is there no center – we can’t even define one. It simply doesn’t make mathematical sense to insist on a universal center. We tend do so anyway because we’re used to thinking in everyday terms, where it’s trivial to find a center in whatever objects we come across, but our simplistic notions don’t transfer well to cosmological scales and relativistic speeds.

    • CoffeeJedi

      Wait, isn’t the speed of light in a vacuum the “absolute” speed of the Universe, partially due to the fact that space itself is expanding at about that speed?

      • wazza

        the speed limit arises because mass increases as the object approaches the speed of light; at c, mass is infinite, and so the amount of energy required to accelerate it any further is also infinite. Since we don’t have access to infinite energy, travelling faster than light is impossible for massive objects. The same principle is why massless objects like light are obliged to travel at c.

  • Olaf

    I am wondering how they would explain how the universe rotates around earth.
    Especially the physics parts with some maths.

  • Natural Selector

    Well, if you set the frame of reference to the Earth, then the Earth is the center of the Universe.

    But that would make the Earth stationary while everything else is moving, and that is no good for our brain. Do this mental exercise: next time you are traveling in a car or bus or train: try imagining your vehicle as the frame of reference. What would happen is that, whenever you “move”, you don’t actually move, you stay in the same place, while everything else moves towards you (or away from you).

    That really messes with our spacial awareness. We are used to thinking that when we “move” somewhere, we are actually going from point A to point B. We don’t imagine point B coming closer to us and point A moving away from us. This is the reason why I think that choosing the Sun as our point of reference is more appropriate (for our solar system at least). If we don’t, instead of having planets describing nice ellipses around the Sun, we would have planets describing what would appear (from our point of view and taking into account our reference point) to be complicated trajectories that seem completely random. Also, it would make no sense. If all of the planets of the Solar System orbit around the Sun, why pick the Earth as the center?

    As for the center of the Universe: The Universe is too vast to measure, much less create a coordinate system for it right now. We should stick to using the center of our galaxy as the center of our tiny pathetic corner of the Universe. Maybe one day we “might” find something that ties our “universe” together (our “center”), but I doubt any of us will be alive to witness that (or if we ever will find it).

    • Darwin

      There’s also the problem, that everything seems to be moving away from us at a faster and faster speed… or we’re moving away from it. In that case we could be at the centre now or now or even… now.

      • trj

        Not everything.

    • Danny wuvs kittens

      Love it or leave it. If you don’t like our galaxy, I’ll pay your bus fare for up to 400 light years.

      • Ty

        400 light years wouldn’t even get you to the edge of our galaxy, much less to one of our neighbors.

        • Danny wuvs kittens

          Worm holes. DUH. Not my fault your still using shitty intergalactic busing companies. Get with the times, man.

          • Danny wuvs kittens


  • Friedrich

    Yes……….. and the Catholic church is right about Pedophilia too! F**king little boys in the A$$ is perfectly alright!!!!!!!!! As is having rules against Abortion, Birth-Control & Sex Education in an already over-burdened Planet, which can’t even feed the people already living on it! And the Inquisition!!!! Oh, What great fun that was!!! Oh, and how about during WWII when the Catholic church came to an agreement with Hitler, to not interfere with his Final Solution. Yes, I’m reminded about how great the Catholic church is every morning, when I flush a load of shit down the toilet!

  • simcop2387

    Simple question, what does the D mean on that map? the W is obviously water, the L land, the N is most likely north, but D?

    • Danny wuvs kittens

      Dino dicks? Maybe he’s into gay necrophillic beastiality.

    • trj

      Daisy. It’s the name of the giant turtle carrying the disc. Few people realize it’s actually a female turtle.

      Or it could be Darkness.

  • L.Long

    Those people are so silly.
    But they are no sillier then the rest of you.
    Cuz I HAPPEN TO BE THE CENTER OF THE UNIVERSE and everything revolves around me!!!!
    And all others are illusion.
    All praise the lord Tuesday!

    Hey! Anyone can invent BS! Its easy.

  • mojo.rhythm

    Holy jumping fucking shitballs there is some batshit crazies floating around. These people are the creme de la creme; the semi-conscious, air-headed, vacuous ignorami crawling hopelessly at the bottom of the cess-pool of human intelligence. If they were any slower and dumber, their gap-toothed priest would have to water them twice a day before raping their children.

  • Dale G.
    • Jabster

      … and which doctorate in theology is legitimate in your opinion. I mean how long does it take to try and pretend that mythology and reality are the same thing?