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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Bruno Future

posted by on June 24 at 12:42 PM

On seeing this bit of silliness (silly in both the lost and current sense), I thought of…
AniJesusWorldStarsExc.gif …my hero (and father of Spinozism) Giordano Bruno. On February 17, 1600, the Catholic church burnt the philosopher’s naked body to nothing for believing what we now know to be true (planets are all over the universe) and what will eventually be known to be true (life as we understand it is on some of these planets). We must never forget that until 1997, the only planets in our universe were those in our solar system.

As Socrates is the martyr of the ancient world, and Jesus the martyr of the middle world, Bruno will be the martyr of the worlds to come.

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I just learned a cool fact from Charles.

Posted by The CHZA | June 24, 2008 1:12 PM

Ya think?

Posted by Spoogie | June 24, 2008 1:19 PM

What am I, chopped liver?

Posted by Galileo | June 24, 2008 1:34 PM

Hey, Chaz, why isn't the explosion coming out of Jesus's bald spot blinking like the rest of the stars?

Posted by DaiBando | June 24, 2008 1:34 PM

I can't stop watching it.

Posted by Gloria | June 24, 2008 1:34 PM

We must never forget that until 1997, the only planets in our universe were those in our solar system.

You mean the only planets WE'D OBSERVED, don't you?

All the extra-solar planets we've "discovered" since 1997 didn't just magically appear out of nothingness, Chaz, any more than Columbus "discovered" America; they were there the whole time.

It was only the self-delusion of a few religious nutcases, along with the limitations of our technology, that allowed anyone to deny the reality of their existence.

Posted by COMTE | June 24, 2008 1:48 PM


Posted by Kirby Lives | June 24, 2008 1:49 PM

This is a bit more like it:

Posted by umvue | June 24, 2008 2:19 PM

That Jesus pic is good, but I prefer my own.

Thank you.

Posted by Matt Fuckin' Hickey | June 24, 2008 2:45 PM

This is a good Mudede post.

Posted by dall | June 24, 2008 2:57 PM

COMTE, you have to have realized at this point that Chaz believes perception of surroundings is the reality of our surroundings even to the point that undiscovered things don't actually exist until we discover them.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | June 24, 2008 4:08 PM

Yes, very Kantian, that perception; he probably also believes that trees falling in forests don't make noise if no one is around to hear them.

Posted by COMTE | June 24, 2008 4:17 PM

The picture can't be right: no self-respecting Jesus(TM) would go near anything but a flat Earth.

Posted by LT L | June 24, 2008 4:47 PM

Charles- great post. One comment, though: while it's very likely that we will find life on other planets, *intelligent* life may in fact be exceedingly rare.

The sun and the earth have been around for ~4.5by. The sun is gradually getting hotter, and many scientists believe that in 200 to 400my the sun will be too hot to support life on Earth. So we are literally arriving at the 11th hour. In addition, we are lucky enough to have continents and strong tides, which give organisms a mechanism for colonizing those continents. It's hard to imagine starfaring cultures emerging directly from the oceans- you have no higher order energy sources because you don't have rapid oxidation- though of course a low-tech dolphin-like society is entirely possible.

Looming over all, of course, is the "L" in Drake's equation- the length of time any civilization exists before going extinct or reverting to a low-tech existence. One of the reasons I really, really would love to have scientists detect extra-terrestrial intelligence in my lifetime is that it would prove the "L" doesn't necessarily have to be short.

In the mean time, we must act as if we are the only intelligent life in the galaxy, and nurture the candle of civilization as we take our first tentative steps out into the cosmos. Or as Tsiolkovsky famously put it, ""The Earth is the cradle of humanity, but mankind cannot stay in the cradle forever."

Posted by Big Sven | June 25, 2008 12:10 AM

Charles, tu me fait fondre.

Posted by SwissMiss | June 25, 2008 3:16 AM

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