Galileo’s head was on the block
The crime was looking up the truth

After a couple of very heavy, existential, somewhat contentious posts, I thought I’d lighten things up a little. Everybody knows who Galileo was. He was born 445 year ago last February, so it’s not exactly a nice round anniversary to celebrate. Lets just say that he inspired a song by the Indigo Girls that I like a lot, and that’s a good enough reason to write a post about him. For those that like their music pulled down towards heavy metal, I don’t think Megadeth has a song in their repertoire about Galileo. (And that’s not a slur on metal music, just a bad allusion to the weight of , you know, heavy metal). Besides, as I said, I’m trying to lighten things up a bit.

Embedding is disabled, but double-click on the video to go to YouTube

The sentiment about getting souls right I don’t find all that helpful,  and the video’s a little too cutesy, but, as a musical paean to the great scientist, it’s a wonderful song. The combination of exhilarating female harmonies mixed with an infectious syncopated percussive beat I find very uplifting. With Jackson Browne helping out on the vocals, it’s a win-win deal.

Checking out Wikipedia, I see that the Roman Catholic Church has recently tried to make amends for the shabby way they treated him in his lifetime, by acknowledging, in 1992, that the Earth actually does revolve around the sun  ( I knew this in 1960, but then I was a mature six year old at the time). And last year they even proposed erecting a statue of him inside the Vatican!

If I was one of his heirs, with some authority to refuse, I’d do just that.

Refuse, that is.

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8 thoughts on “Galileo

  1. cl “So how do you feel about NOMA?”
    NOMA only works where God’s Immutable Truth doesn’t conflict with reality (the “is”). I would argue that what remains (the “ought”) is better answered by philosophy/moral philosophy rather than religion (and even then, philosophers are pretty good at running in circles while speaking in the secular equivalent of tongues, bafflegab), but…whatever. Make of that what you will.

  2. New Orleans Museum of Art? National Organization of Minority Architects? A disease caused by malnutrition? A town in Florida? I guess I missed the NOMA memo.

    I’ve always (well, since I’ve been old enough to be aware of him) admired Galileo. And I am constantly amazed at the sheer number of disparate groups who use him as a flag to rally ’round.

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