Sunday, 5 November 2017

The Naughty Earth

One of the arguments that we are at the centre of the universe is that, when we use right sort of telescope, we can see that (almost) all the galaxies around us (the visible ones) are red-shifted, indicating that they are moving away from us at speeds equivalent to the current distance between us and them.  This "seems" (caveated enough?) to imply that we are in a privileged position because the speed of any galaxy that we can see is related to the distance of that galaxy from us, not from just any old galaxy, but from us.  The further away a galaxy is from us, the quicker it is running away from us.

So, what did we do?  Why is the rest of the universe doing its darnedest to get away from us as quickly as it can (with the notable exception of the Andromeda galaxy which is on its way towards us and will crash into our galaxy in approximately 4 billion years)?  Did they all get together and have a chat about it, perhaps deciding that Andromeda, the largest galaxy in our group (larger than ours), should sacrifice itself in its glacially slow destruction of us while the rest ran away?  Or did some creator god decide that the rest of the galaxies should move away from the bad boys of the Milky Way to ensure that there is no contamination from our sin and corruption, and since floods are out (thank you rainbows!) the next best thing is (possible, but frankly improbable) stellar catastrophe in 4 billion years or so.

Perhaps, taking as humble and non-arrogant position as possible, the facts are that we are so immensely central to the creator god's aeon-to-aeon thinking that using a galaxy that is about as twice as big as the Milky Way to destroy what remains of our civilisation in 4 billion years from now was a hugely pressing concern and the creator god absolutely wanted there to be no witnesses (move on all you other galaxies, there's nothing to see here).  Perhaps over the next 4 billion years, Andromeda will contract into some sort of divine sledgehammer or pile-driver (via a mechanism that will appear totally natural, but [wink, wink] actually isn't), and be aimed directly at us.  And one descendent of our species will be encouraged to build a space-ark ... for forty days and forty nights, stars shall fall upon the face of the Earth, but you, decendent of Noah, shall build a space-ark and collect all the animals that we can currently think of, confusingly numbered based on whether you can eat them or not, and sail above the destruction.  Now that would be story to tell your grandkids, right?


Did anyone get the point, carefully concealed in that satire?  Distant galaxies cannot be both affecting the solar system so as to make the Earth central (as argued by some geocentrists) and also receding at speeds that are ever greater the further from us they are.


Some context might be required here.  There’s a chap over in Craig-Land who is a serious geocentrist, as well as a bit of a literal fundamentalist.  His argument is that the universe is created just-so such that Earth is in a point of zero gravity at the centre (and is thus not pulled into any sort of motion).

It’s an entertaining enterprise to argue physics with someone who primarily bases his understanding of the universe on Genesis (the book of the bible, not the band).   A huge waste of time, of course, but entertaining.

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