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Gerardus D. Bouw, Ph.D.




In the eyes of many, geocentrists are a strange bunch.  To hear tell, we are a throwback to the dark ages, troglodytes ignorant of science, unedu­cated in scientific knowledge and a national disgrace.  An article in the 22 April 1990 issue of The Sunday Times of London, England, headlined: “One in three children thinks the sun goes around earth.”  The text informs us that:


          One in three secondary school children thinks the sun revolves around the earth and that sound travels faster than light.  Nearly as many think radioactive milk is safe when boiled and do not know that oxygen comes from plants.

The gaps in British children’s scientific knowledge have been exposed by a survey of 3,600 pupils in 12 schools.  Some of their teachers who sat the test did no better. …

The results, however, did not surprise Patrick Moore, presenter of the BBC’s The Sky at Night programme and a man who has tried to popularise science.  “Children are interested in science, but they are not being taught properly,” he said.


And there we have it: geocentrists are every bit as ignorant as someone who thinks that sound travels faster than light. 

But are we really all that ignorant?  It was Carl Popper who once wrote to the effect that sometimes it is in the best interest of science for introductory texts to lie.  Is geocentricity such a suppressed truth?  In this paper we shall examine the unsolicited statements from a representative sample of physicists, mostly American, who wrote in response to being sent a sample copy of a secular geocentrist newspaper, now long defunct, called the Braheian Debater.  It was published in 1975 and 1976 by DOTGU (Defenders of the Geocentric Universe).  The organization was actually a late extension of the late 1960s, early 1970s counter-culture which was itself an extension of the hippie movement of 1965.  Remember that these let­ters are more than thirty years old and that the addresses are, too.  The principals may no longer be at the institutions listed.  Nevertheless, these letters show that, although secular scientists may not accept geocentricity as true, they nevertheless recognize that there is no proof against it and that any claims to such proof is spurious.  After them, we shall reprint part of a letter from a first-hand observer of creationists’ reactions to geocentricity and then we shall present the official stand of the Creation Research Society and the Institute for Creation Research on geocentricity.

It’s a Fact!

          I have had your newspaper on my desk for weeks, hoping to find time to write you.  You say in your headline (Fall), “Six Physicists Say it is Pos­sible” that the earth stands still.  I don’t know who your physicists are, but the situation is much simpler than they seem to think.  It is not just possible, it is a fact.

It is also a fact that earth does not stand still.  The fact that makes facts of those two apparently conflicting statements is that, as Einstein said, there are no milestones in the Universe, and thus no absolute stan­dard of rest or motion that makes such categorical statements mutually exclusive.

Whether one says the earth stands still depends on the use to which the statement is put.  To a navigator, the sun and stars rise and set, and it would merely be a bother to him to consider himself on a rolling earth.  To you, there are philosophical reasons that make you wish to take this point of view.  Very well, take it.  It is not in conflict with anything we know, and is unlikely ever to be.

Of course, there is a reason why physicists and astronomers take the other view.  It is this.  These people wish, unlike yourselves, to under­stand the Universe by mathematical laws.  The laws are different depend­ing on whether you take the earth as a standard of rest or whether you consider it in motion.  It is not a question of right or wrong, they are just different; and those used by astronomers and physicists are very much shorter and easier to deal with than those you would have to use if you were interested in doing mathematical astronomy, which I gather you are not.[2]

You cannot blame people for using compact, neat and accurate mathe­matical formulizations when they are available; and of course it is hard not to have the opinion that the Universe is better understood in this way.  But you don’t have to.  If it is important to you to consider the earth to be at rest, then the laws of nature can be formulated in an appropriate way.

The kind of thing that’s involved is this: you have probably seen in museums of elsewhere a long pendulum set swinging at the beginning of the day, whose direction of swing continually changes as the day goes on.  This is usually, and simply, explained as an effect of the earth’s rotation.  [The pendulum is called a Foucault Pendulum. –Ed.]

You don’t have to explain it that way.  The laws of nature that you would use if you were interested in doing mathematical physics while as­suming the earth to be at rest would contain a velocity-dependent force that would act upon the pendulum in such a way as to produce the ob­served rotation.  The whole question is one of philosophic view point, or attitude towards the world.  It is not a question of fact, as the word fact is ordinarily understood.

You will do fine, and perhaps even educate some of the confused people whose letters you publish, if you make this clear enough, often enough.


David Park

Professor of Physics

Thompsonville Physical Laboratory

Williams College

Williamstown, Massachusetts 01267

Geosynchronous Satellites


          To call…a geosynchronous body a satellite, is simply to use “satellite” to connote dependency, as in “Hungary is a Russian satellite.”  But in this sense a “geosynchronous satellite” is a satellite also of all other bodies in the universe, insofar as they all have a gravitational effect on the body.  The expression, “geosynchronous orbit,” would thus make sense only if it is understood to be a misnomer for gravitational equi­libration.

The difficulty of placing a body in “geosynchronous orbit” is merely that of finding the area of relative gravitational equilibration between earth and the other bodies of the universe.  Since synchronous is a sym­metrical, transitive and reflexive relation, a “geosynchronous” body is synchronous with all and only “geosynchronous” bodies.  [Sic]  And since the other stellar bodies, of which a “geosynchronous” body is also a satel­lite are not themselves “geosynchronous,” the area of relative gravita­tional equilibration wanders away from the position occupied by a “geosynchronous” body.  Being no longer gravitationally equilibrated, the body loses its “geosynchronicity;” and the nongeocentrist says, “Aha!  Orbital decay!”


Concerning the “Killer Question” in the winter 1976 issue: In the usual Newtonian treatment of rotating reference systems, one must introduce “fictitious forces,” such as the centrifugal (not to be confused with centripetal) force and the Coriolis force, in addition to “real” forces such as gravitation.  In the case of the geosynchronous satellite orbit as viewed from a reference frame rotating with the earth, the centrifugal and gravitational forces just cancel one another, so the satellite is unac­celerated in that frame and can remain motionless.  (Note that this balance of centrifugal and gravitational forces is valid only here — it is not the correct way of explaining orbital motion in general.)  Again, this only shows that it is possible to use a co-ordinate system in which the earth does not rotate, not that this is in some sense the correct or only system. 

George L. MurphyPhysics

University of Western Australia

Nedlands, Western Australia

Miscellaneous Excerpts


          Since I cannot disprove your theory without further study, I would like to consider it as one possibility for the present.

Lawrence Lynn

Assistant Professor of Physical Science

Meramec Community College



…you indeed are right and also that those opposing … are right.

John Broderick

Assistant Professor of Physics

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University


I think that your theory has some meritthis comment is made as a philosopher with some insight into the scientific method.

Greg Kohlbach

Graduate Student in Philosophy

University of North Carolina


They’re going to realize they can’t prove you wrong.

Joe Kelleher

Teaching Fellow, Philosophy

University of Utah




Make Mach Your Main Man


From this time henceforth, let the name of your newspaper be “The Machian Debater.”  Make Mach your main man!

A twentieth century answer to the question, “Could the earth stand still?” was given in The Science of Mechanics, by Ernst Mach in 1912.  (Heard of airplanes going “Mach 2”?  Same gentleman.)  Here’s the story.  Some Astronomy texts discuss several “proofs” that Earth spins.  A few are: (1) The Earth is bulged at its equator, squashed at the poles.  This proves that the earth turns.  (2) A pendulum swinging at the North Pole slowly changes its direction of swing, making one complete rotation of its swings once each 24 hours.  Standard interpretation: the Earth is turning under the pendulum.

Mach took another look.  All objects have inertia, the property of mat­ter that makes it sluggish, hard to put in motion, hard to stop.  What causes this inertia?  Mach figured that it was the cumulative effect of all of those stars way out there.  The stars in the Universe are very far away but there are very many of them.  Therefore Mach proposed Mach’s Prin­ciple: An object has inertia due to the presence of stars.  An object is hard put to stop (hard to accelerate) because you are trying to change its mo­tion with respect to the stars.

The outcome of this giant leap of imagination is thrilling.  Suppose you assume that the Earth is at rest.  Then the stars must be whirling around us once each 24 hours.  But what then of the proofs that the Earth turns?  The effects in those proofs are due to the whirling stars!  The stars would cause an outward pull on the Earth’s equator (above which the whirling is fastest.)  The pendulum would be whirling around with the whirling stars (roughly like a leaf in a whirlpool.)  Every single observa­tion that has been advanced to “prove” that the Earth spins can also be explained by a fixed Earth and whirling stars.

In the middle of 1913, a young man named Albert Einstein wrote to Mach expressing his appreciation for Mach’s ideas.  Einstein is the fellow who went on to compose the General Theory of Relativity.  The basis of this theory is that all motion is relative!  Einstein wrote his equations describing how the Universe works.  If the Earth spins and the stars are at rest--the equations explain all observations.  But if the Earth is at rest and the stars whirl--the equations still explain all observations.  They must, for the theory begins with the assumption that all motion is relative.  You can’t say positively that any thing is at rest.  Take your choice--the equations of General Relativity come out the same.  Einstein put Mach’s idea into mathematical form and what emerged is surely one of the ul­timate creations of the human mind.


Yours in Mach-ination,

Charles Long, Ph.D.

N. Hennepin State Community College



On a Rotating Universe[3]


          Cosmological models for a universe with expansion and rotation are considered.  In particular, we analyze some effects of the universal rotation on the observational cosmology.

          Since the first studies of Lanczos (1924), Gamow (1946) and Gödel (1949), a great number of rotating cosmological models have been considered in the literature.  Nevertheless, the full understanding of observational manifestations of cosmic rotation is still far from reach.  (P. 121)

          There is a general belief that rotation of the universe is always a source of many undesirable consequences…  The aim of this paper is twofold: to show that [these consequences] are not inevitable (and in fact, are not caused by rotation), and to find true effects of cosmic rotation.  (Pp 121-122.)

          We have shown…quite plausible rotating cosmological models which in many important respects are similar to the standard cosmologies.  As we see, pure rotation can be, in principle, large, contrary to the wide-spread prejudice that large vorticity confronts many crucial observations.  (P. 123.)




What of Christian Scientists?


It is clear from the above quotes that in the mid-1970s there was no great opposition to geocentricity from secular scientists.  Even as an atheist I had similar views to those expressed above.  Back then, most physicists found the idea plausible and somewhat entertaining, though none would necessarily believe it as the true state of affairs.  When it came to Christian scientists, however, the reaction is more akin to the newspaper article referred to at the start of this paper.  One person who was a member of the inner group of creationists and will remain anonymous, wrote the following words on March 28, 1980:


          I can sympathize with creationists who consider this issue too hot to handle.  We have had too long and hard a climb uphill to get creationism to where it is today.  All the world would have to do is tie together creationism and geocentricity, and we could lose it all overnight.  I respect them for this “hands off” approach, offi­cially.  What I cannot understand, however, is why so few of us are willing to entertain the matter unofficially.  As a committed creationist, I can actually live with either a helio or geocentric model.  My delight in the matter is in thinking about how the evolutionists would pop a cork if the geocentric model were ob­jectively and astronomically verified.  Can you just imagine what this would do to uniformitarian theories of solar origins?  It would drive them absolutely bananas!  And furthermore, it would also be a big shot in the arm toward a consistently literal her­meneutic and taking the Bible seriously in matters of science.  One thing the liberals consistently appeal to in their defense of non-literal interpretation is phenomenological language; how I’d love to be in on the action to rip the rug right out from under­neath them.

          What I cannot understand, however, is why so few of us are willing to entertain the matter unofficially” is rather an understatement.  Ac­tually, most have been given some bad advice.  I agree with the author of the statement insofar as damage to creationism is concerned.  But truth is truth, and to emphasize part of it while implicitly denying another part cannot be pleasing unto God.  Is his hand straitened?  I must proclaim the whole truth insofar as I know it, and I know that the word of God is truth. 


There was a brief time when top ranking creationists were considering geocentricity.  That time was back in 1978 when they relied heavily on the advice of two men on this matter: Harold Slusher (then with the Institute for Creation Research at San Diego) and George Mulfinger, who was science chairman at Bob Jones University.  Both men had only M.S. degrees, both were too busy with creationist arguments to devote the required time to study the geocentric papers and references sent them.  They took it on faith that the elementary textbooks from which they daily taught told them the truth.  That this is so is clear from a brief exchange of letters I had with Mulfinger in which he concludes that he may take a look at the copies of references I sent him, time permitting.  The references sent answered all his questions, bar none.  From the following letter it is clear that he dismissed the references without reading them.  The references sent said the same thing as the secular scientists quoted above, except that they did so in a more technical manner.


Mulfinger’s Letter to the Creation Research Society


The following letter was dated December 26, 1978 and was addressed to the late Professor Harold Armstrong of Queens University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada.  Professor Armstrong was sympathetic to geocentricity and, at that time, was the editor of the Creation Research Society Quar­terly, the most prestigious and scholarly of creationist publications.  Copies of the letter were sent to the board of directors of the Creation Research Society as well as to Dr. Duane Gish, Dr. George Howe, and Dr. John Whit­comb.


Greetings from the Southland!  I trust that at this time you are getting some much-needed rest from the rigors of academic life.

The purpose of this letter is to convey my views on the question of geocentrism.  I have felt a growing concern for what might happen to the Society if we go too far in countenancing the Tychonian view, and several other members have expressed a similar concern to me.  However, the displeasure of our members and the reaction of outsiders, although important, is to me but a secondary consideration.  My primary motivation is a desire to do justice to the truth of the matter.  The truth of the heliocentric view is solidly founded on the mathematics of Kepler and Newton.  As you know, their calculations are based on many observa­tions.  Moreover, their equations have been verified by an additional three centuries of rigorous testing.  Any major defects should certainly have become apparent by now; yet today’s space program continues to testify to the essential correctness of the system of celestial mechanics they es­tablished.  Now there is no consistent way to accept both the Keplerian-Newtonian framework and the Tychonian view.  As I am sure you are aware, one of the major outcomes of classical celestial mechanics is that the most massive body in a system will tend to dominate that system gravitationally.  The Tychonian view pictures the sun as revolving around the earth, but the other planets as revolving about the sun.  Ridiculous!  If the earth is massive enough to dominate the sun gravitationally, it will dominate the other planets as well.  If it is not, then it will be dominated by the sun, and will orbit the sun as the other planets do.  The Tychonian view requires, in effect, that there be two “most massive” bodies in the same system.

My initial interest in this question started back in the Sixties when I struck up a correspondence with Walter van der Kamp.  I had felt that something could perhaps be accomplished in his behalf by gradually and methodically calling certain truths to his attention.  However, after years of painful frustration, I saw that it was leading nowhere, and reluctantly gave it up as a lost cause.  I did come to appreciate Mr. van der Kamp as a fellow Christian and to recognize his unusual ability as a writer.  But as an astronomer and physicist he is woefully lacking.  Also, though he is somewhat of a philosopher, I would seriously question his expertise as a logician.  In science we need to be extremely careful how much we at­tempt to deduce from negative results.  Yet van der Kamp seeks to build an entire universe on the null result of the Michelson-Morley experiment coupled with a reinterpretation of what Airy didn’t find.

This letter is being written as a communication from one board mem­ber to another, with copies being sent to some other interested board members.  I see no point in soliciting a response from the other side, as I have already corresponded extensively with van der Kamp, Hanson and Bouw, and I am quite familiar with their “answers.”  I also discussed the question at some length with Hanson when he visited the campus here three or four years ago.  I have found all three of these men to be very friendly, but completely unreasonable.  They refuse to accept clear, logi­cal demonstrations the like of which they would never think to question in other areas of science.  There is no doubt in my mind as to their sin­cerity, but they consistently fail to answer my arguments, and they seem unprepared and unwilling to face the implications of that failure.  Prior to Hanson’s visit I sent him a list of five evidences of the earth’s revolution.  These were: Bradley’s experiment, the parallax of stars, the annual loops of Pluto, the intensification of meteors after midnight, and the annual Doppler shifts of stars.  After he had had some weeks to ponder these, I asked him how he proposed to deal with them.  He replied that potentially he could answer all but one of them--parallax of stars.  When pressed further, however, it became clear that he was unable, in actuality, to deal with any of them satisfactorily.

More recently I corresponded with Bouw.  In this series of letters we concentrated more on the question of the earth’s rotation.  As you are probably aware, these men refuse even to accept the fact that the earth spins on its axis.  They would prefer to have us believe in a universe that rotates around the earth each day!  As evidences of the earth’s rotation I presented the following: the oblate shape of the earth, wind patterns (both general and localized), the force on projectiles and spacecraft, the force on falling bodies, the Foucault pendulum, and direct observations from the moon.  He attempted to explain most of these as the result of a diur­nally rotating gravitational field generated by the spinning universe.[4]  I countered this by bringing up the question of synchronous satellites.  If the earth is indeed stationary and nonrotating as they claim, then the synchronous satellites are also motionless, and we have the very serious problem of what keeps them from falling to the ground!  Bouw claims that the rotating field of the universe would hold them in place.  But he also claims that the same rotating field would impart a sideways (west to east) force on missiles, falling bodies, etc.  How could the same field hold one object in place while imparting a sideways force to another?[5]

In conclusion, I would like to protest the inclusion in the CRSQ of any further papers giving support to the Tychonian perspective.  I believe we have gone too far already.  However, I will accept a large portion of the responsibility for this.  As you know, I included one of van der Kamp’s booklets in my “Symposium of Creationist Astronomy.”  This seemed innocuous at the time, but in retrospect I am convinced it was a mistake.  We should be consistent.  We accept and use the tried and tested laws of physics in other areas; we should accept and use them in this area as well.  (Underscores in original.)


Who, Then, Is right?


The question facing the reader is this: is Mulfinger correct in his claim that heliocentrism is a proven fact, or are the secular scien­tists and Tychonians correct in their claim that heliocentrism is not a proven fact?  Harold Armstrong knew physics well enough not to believe Mulfinger’s arguments and continued as best he could to counter Mul-finger’s directive not to publish any more articles supporting geocentricity.  His continued sup­port became one of the factors leading to his ouster from the editorship of the Creation Research Society Quarterly circa 1985.  Despite that, Armstrong con­tinued to support the Tychonian cause until his death. 

Harold Armstrong knew all the arguments, even as the physicists quoted above.  Armstrong’s university (Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada) never reprimanded him for his geocentric leanings.  Mulfinger, on the other hand, was denied a Ph.D. from Syracuse University on the grounds that he was not Ph.D. material.  In such cases, an M.S. is granted as a consolation prize.  Although Mulfinger maintained that the denial was because of his creationist activities, one wonders at the truth of that on two grounds: first, from personal ex­perience I know that creationists encountered almost no opposition in the physical sciences until about 1980 at which point the opposition came from evolutionary biology, not from physics or astronomy; and second, one would have to doubt the reasoning ability of any man who believes that walking around an object won’t show all sides of the object while having the object turn while one stands still, will (the reference to “direct observations from the moon” in the second-to-last paragraph of his letter).  Donald de Young, of Grace Seminary, made the same blunder in 1988 in an article which appeared in the Australian creationist journal, Ex Nihilo.[6]  Further­more, is it not significant that the first two astronomy Ph.D.s to become creationists both support the Tychonian cause while later ones, having seen the hysterical reaction of most of the creationist community, simply avoid making an issue of it?


The Status of Science Today


          It is clear from the above that prior to 1980 there was no significant opposition among secular scientists against the geocentric paradigm.  At that time, opposition arose almost exclusively from Christians in academic positions.  The testimony of the non-Christian physicists is clear.  There is neither proof for heliocentrism nor for geocentricity; nor is there proof against either.  The introductory textbooks lie when they claim such proof.  And when creationists succumb to that simplistic lie, they demonstrate to the world’s physicists that the latter are justified in dismissing creationists as inferior scientists, let alone whether they can be counted as scientists at all. 

          Today the scientific climate is radically different.  Much of this is in reaction to the successes and threats of the creationist movements led by the Institute for Creation Research and the Creation Research Society which were popularized by the late Walter Lang’s Bible-Science Association.  By 1976 the American Humanist Association was so upset by the creationists’ success that it devoted an entire issue of The Humanist to the creation-evolution debate.  (Humanism is a godless religion originating within the political arm of the Roman Catholic Church during the Middle Ages.) 

          In the magazine, several authors suggested two strategies to combat creationism.  Both involved ridiculing creationists by charging them with hypocrisy for not believing two “scriptural” models.  The first strategy was to demand that creationists must believe in a flat earth because the Bible teaches a flat earth.   The second was similar, viz. to demand that creationists must also accept the geocentric universe because the Bible presents an immovable earth.  The latter could also exploit the popular myth that Galileo was tortured and imprisoned for his stance for the Copernican universe. 

          Both strategies are ethically flawed.  The first strategy is an out-right lie, for it is easy to show that the Holy Bible does not teach a flat earth.[7]  The second strategy is not a lie but relies on the blind acceptance of a globally accepted myth that geocentricity has been scientifically disproved.  In the second strategy, the creationists are guilty as charged, though they deny it.  Lest the humanist think he has the upper hand, his own hypocrisy is exposed first by his blatant denial of all the evidence against evolution to the point of insisting that no contrary evidence be allowed by law, and second, by his turning a blind eye to the fact that the entire modern evolutionist movement is founded on a lie.[8]   Phyllis Schlafly put this distinctly one time with these words:


          A Chinese scholar observed, “In China we can criticize Darwin, but not the government.  In America you can criticize the government, but not Darwin.” 

          Censorship of criticism always invites fraud.  Evolution has suffered more embarrassments than any other “scientific” theory.  The Piltdown man was a lie taught to schoolchildren for decades, even featured in the John Scopes Monkey trial textbook.  Only five years ago a dinosaur-bird fossil hoax was presented as true on the glossy pages of National Geographic.  If Darwinists want to teach that whales, which are mammals, evolved from black bears swimming with their mouths open, we should be entitled to criticize that.  Yet school libraries have refused to accept books critical of evolution, even when written by college professors.


Thus the strategies have their flaws.  One is a lie, and the other reveals the hypocrisy of both sides of the creation/evolution debate.

          The strategies have been used from time to time and it is revealing to see how and when they have been used.  The flat earth strategy is by far the more commonly used of the two.  In 1984 the National Science Foundation (NSF) put an ancient flat earth map on their back cover of a glossy booklet designed to fool the reader into believing that the evidence against a special creation is as strong as the evidence against the flat earth.  The magazine was full of religious bias and strong on gloss, but it was crucially short on logic and totally devoid of proof.  The geocentric strategy has been used a few times but never in its effective form.  Instead of pointing out the hypocrisy of creationists in taking the Bible literally in Genesis 1 but not in Ecclesiastes 1:5 and Isaiah 38, the Galileo strategy is used which has some emotional appeal but totally contradicts the historical record.  Since neither strategy has been shown to be effective against anyone but atheists, neither strategy is used in formal publications where readers are more likely to check the material presented.  Charlatans like Ed Babinski, who prefer web sites over publications, delight in the two Humanist proposals since they appeal to emotionally driven people, not to the rational.  Emotionally driven people and their money are easily separated.  At the root of the strategies we find the love of money (I Timothy 6:10).  The humanists’ strategies expose  today’s science as a political tool, having no use for truth.   

 Geocentricity Today


          As the creation/evolution debate heats up, is opposition to geocentricity also heating up? 

          Not much has changed insofar as the geocentric front is concerned.  The opposition of physicists and astronomers has settled at its worst point insofar as physics is concerned.  Physicists know it, though few admit it, but the General Theory of Relativity (GTR) was invented to explain away certain embarrassing experimental results that appeared to prove the geocentric universe.  GTR does so by introducing an elliptical coordinate transformation on moving coordinate systems which makes every point in the universe look as if it is in the center of the universe.  Thus the worst they can say is that geocentrists misrepresent Relativity when they use it to claim that the geocentric model is a viable model of reality.  Of course, according to the GTR, it is.  Modern physicists will allow that geocentricity is one possible model, but that it in no way is the correct one.  That is, of course, a matter of opinion.  Modern astronomers and physicists do not believe that there is a third heaven beyond the firmament.  Without the third heaven, they are correct about the nature of GTR, but given a third heaven beyond the edge of the firmament, the abode of the God of creation and the Author of the Scripture, the geocentric model is more than likely.  The former is what the writers of the letters to The Brahenian Debater believed.  So, in effect, nothing has changed since 1975 insofar as their position on the geocentric universe is concerned.

          The observant reader may remark that there is a difference in the attitude on geocentricity as exhibited by the writers of the letters to The Brahenian Debater versus the claim expressed above that geocentricity is wrong in claiming to be “the” model and using GTR to support that claim.  That is true, and it is not hard to understand. 

          The Defenders of the Geocentric Universe (DOTGU), who published The Brahenian Debater, were hippies and freaks.  They advocated the notion that the universe is a giant vortex and had a view of nature that is close to Zen Buddhism.  That atheistic religion has a certain appeal to today’s secular scientists.  On the other hand, geocentricity is, by definition, a scriptural discipline, willing to accept the results of the sciences as long as those results and theories do no violence to Scripture.  In effect, the claims and theories of geocentricity are subject to the teachings of Scripture.[9]   

          And that brings us to modern Christianity and its reaction to geocentricity.  There the situation has changed.  Christian resistance to a scripturally compatible model of creation has increased.  We wrote earlier of the opposition of George Mulfinger to geocentricity.  Mulfinger wrote that circa 1980.  By 1985 Bernard (Bernie) Northrup, a Wickliffe translator, after a superficial examination of geocentricity and emotionally upset by this author’s persistence in his faith in the A.V., declared geocentricity a heresy.  People like Robert Kofahl, chemist, and the late Henry Morris, would get visibly upset if asked about geocentricity after their speeches.  By 1992 an old Bible-Science group in Anaheim, California, declared geocentricity an “end-time heresy.”  Any person who professed geocentricity was ousted from the group.  Likewise, the longtime head of the Flat Earth Society, the late Charles Johnson, excommunicated any member of the Society who would join The Tychonian Society, the premier geocentric organization in the Americas, if not the world.[10]  It was clear that geocentrists were the least of all those who professed faith in the inerrancy and preservation of the scriptures. 

          As a rule, among Christians as well as non-Christians, the deeper a man’s understanding of relativity, mechanics, celestial dynamics, and cosmology, the less critical that man is of geocentricity.  The less a man understands about the physical sciences, the more critical he will be.  Thus Dr. Russell Humphreys, an astrophysicist who believes that the center of the universe is located at the center of the Milky Way, is careful in his criticism of geocentricity while Dr. Danny Faulkner, an astronomer, insists that Galileo’s telescope disproved the geocentric universe once and for all.  His crowning proof that geocentricity is wrong is that geocentricity is associated with “King James only” types, though he knows that only holds for a few geocentrists.  Both men reject geocentricity but Humphreys has used relativity in his research, Faulkner has written about relativity but generally writes about planetary and stellar astronomy for which one normally does not need relativity. 




          We have documented the arguments by physicists for and against geocentricity.  We found that secular physicists are more open to the geocentric model of the universe and will even defend it if it is presented in a secular or Zen way.  If framed in a Christian perspective, opposition is greater but still limited.  Insofar as the Christian world is concerned, opposition to geocentricity is stronger and usually more vehement for any given level of education.  Again, opposition is more careful on the more talented physicists and astronomers than among the less talented. 

          One may ask why the nature of the opposition to geocentricity is so.  On the secular side, the fact that Zen Buddhist models are more readily acceptable, even though obviously contrary to evidence, than are Christian models probably stems from the episteme of modern science. 

          For the last 170 years the episteme—the driving presuppositions and foundations that decide what is true and what is false—has been directed to eliminating God from his creation.  Buddhism has no god or gods and so is a religion to be preferred by atheists and agnostics even if its science borders on nonsense.  Christianity, with its reasonable God (Isaiah 1:18), is to be rejected at all cost. 

          When it comes to creationists, they all were trained under the same episteme.  The implementation of that episteme is subtle.  There is usually no direct confrontation with Christianity, at least, there was little in the past here in America, so most students are not aware of it.  The history of science is thus presented that the Christian is made to feel shame.  The case of Galileo is a prime example of this.  The Catholic Church set him up for life, giving him a pension and a villa.  Galileo paid back the church by insulting the Pope.  Even at that, he was reprimanded and released to his villa and pension.  He was not tortured, not humiliated.  But one has to read dry biographies to learn that.  One rarely hears it in a classroom.  So when a scientist becomes a creationist the hostility begins and the brush and pot of tar are brought out.  For most that is enough.  In such circumstances it is easiest to accept the acceptable version of reality and not investigate any deeper.  But a Christian has a conscience so that when confronted with geocentricity his conscience is pricked and he reacts, either emotionally or intellectually, against the man and the idea that held the pricker. 


[1] This article is an expanded and updated version of one originally printed in The Bulletin of the Tychonian Society, no. 54, p. 24, Fall 1990.  

[2] The last two sentences in this paragraph are assumptions on the part of the writer of this letter.  The laws are the same; it is only the frame of reference that is different.  Ed. 

[3] Obukhov, Yu. N., 1992.  “Rotation in Cosmology,” General Relativity and Gravitation, 24(2):121-128.  Page numbers of the references are listed after the respective quotes. 

[4] That is, using Mach’s Principle, as explained by Long above.  The reader will note in what Mulfinger says later in the same paragraph that Mulfinger does not understand Mach’s Principle. Because it is commonly assumed that the universe can be ignored in heliocentric physics, Mulfinger forgets to consider it when its presence cannot be ignored.  Ed. 

[5] This is a serious blunder on Mulfinger’s part.  He fails to see that the geostationary satellite keeps the same distance from the axis of rotation of the universe (of the earth in the heliocentric view) whereas the Coriolis force, Mulfinger’s “sideways force,” exists only if the distance to the axis of rotation changes.  This was freshman-level college physics back then, and Mulfinger, who taught physics at BJU, fails to see it.  Ed. 

[6] Bouw, G. D., 1990.  “A Response to De Young’s Ex Nihilo Article,” Bulletin of the Tychonian Society, no. 53, p. 35. 

[7] Bouw, G. D., 1988.  “The Round-earth Bible,” Bulletin of the Tychonian Society, no. 46, p. 35. 

[8] Bouw, G. D., 1998.  “A Brief Introduction to the History of Evolution,” B. A., 8(85):9. 

[9] Geocentrism is not the same as geocentricity.  Geocentrism is a pagan concept and is subject to the rules of philosophy, scholastic opinions, and the traditions of men.  In other words, geocentrism is the humanist version of geocentricity.  That is what it was before the days of Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo.  True, these men had contemporaries who were willing to adjust their cosmology to conform to the Holy Bible, but most were as the forenamed, willing rather to conform the Bible to the opinions and incomplete theories of that day’s modern science.  Modern geocentricity was born with Tycho Brahe’s model of the universe.  Prior to Tycho man was unable to discern between geocentricity and geocentrism because experiments and observations were not accurate enough to tell them apart. 

[10] The Tychonian Society was renamed The Association for Biblical Astronomy in 1991 when its scope was broadened and its focus changed from philosophy and history to science with a biblical emphasis.