GALILEO: THE ILLUMINATION OF SCIENCE
The Illuminati of today
Are not those of the past,
For they have mutated,
Some even picking up on notions
That others falsely ascribed to them.
Back then they were scientists.
The Church and its scripture
Is basically immutable,
Still according to the myths of old;
That is, the idea of Jehovah told
Wiped out the numerous Gods of old
And became the new—
The one and only, too.
Religion may not be burning scientists
At the stake anymore, but if one thinks
They’ve released their reign over science,
One must ask why half the schools in the U.S.
Are not allowed to teach evolution,
Why the U.S. Christian Coalition
Is the most influential lobby
Against scientific progress in the world…
As for the Illuminati of old,
The obliteration of Catholicism
Was their central covenant.
The brotherhood held that
The superstitious dogma
Spewed forth by the church
Was mankind’s greatest enemy.
They feared that if religion continued
To promote pious myth as absolute fact,
Scientific progress would halt,
And mankind would be doomed
To an ignorant future
Of senseless holy wars.
And, I might add to the above,
Much like we see today.
So, Bush killed stem cell research
And went to war against Iraq
After consulting with a ‘Higher Father’;
Holy wars now being everywhere, since
How could the other religions be so wrong!
Those trying to hold a monopoly on truth
Cannot help but to label the contrary as evil,
And, thus, act accordingly.
So, we do have to worry, still,
When the Church wants to be
The sole interpreter of the ‘truth’.
Flawed and arbitrary concepts of good and truth
Only cause the contrary to be labeled as evil.
Ah, thought Galileo,
As he wandered past the deserted
And flower-grown ruins of Rome, one night,
This looks to be the same now as it will and was
A thousand years before and after me.
Would that there could be a day
When science was free,
When the once great Roman glory
Would pale beside that brightest light of day!
Galileo looked about and around and behind;
No one was following him to his ultra secret lair,
Where other scientists would join him again
On this starry night, safe therein to congregate
And discuss the topics forbidden by the Vatican.
(To this day no one has found Galileo’s lair,
Called The Church of Illumination.
I am obtaining all this information about Galileo
From his little known ‘lost’ diary.
I even have an unpublished book of the Holy Bible
And a few of Leonardo’s ‘missing’ diaries,
But, those are other stories.)
…go to Rome, which is the sepulchre,
Oh, not of him, but of our joy: ‘tis nought
That ages, empires and religions there
Lie buried in the ravage they have wrought;
For such as he can lend,–they borrow not
Glory from those who made the world their prey;
And he is gathered to the kings of thought
Who waged contention with their time’s decay,
And of the past are all that cannot pass away.
Galileo noted the ancient sculptures
Still standing against mouldering time,
Knowing that the new scientists arriving,
If they were worthily smart enough,
Would have to use the clues provided
As the way to the secret meeting place,
For there was no map made and never would be.
As the word of this
Scientific brotherhood began to spread,
Scientists would travel thousands of miles
But upon the slim hope of chancing a glance
Through Galileo’s fine telescope
And discussing the master’s many ideas.
Go thou to Rome,–at once the Paradise,
The grave, the city, and the wilderness;
And where its wrecks
Like shattered mountains rise,
And flowering weeds, and fragrant copses dress
The bones of Desolation’s nakedness
Pass, till the spirit of the spot shall lead
Thy footsteps to a slope of green access
Where, like an infant’s smile, over the dead
A light of laughing flowers
Along the grass is spread;
As Galileo wandered among the ruins
Made one with Nature in their decay,
Or gazed on the Praxitelean shapes
That thronged the Capitol,
And the palaces of Rome,
His minding soul imbibed all the forms,
This loveliness becoming a portion of himself,
As well as its science, even right here,
Within the realm of the Pope’s Holiness
That shadowed him—
Much as the darkness of night
Condemned the day.
And gray walls moulder round,
On which dull Time
Feeds, like slow fire upon a hoary brand;
And one keen pyramid with wedge sublime,
Pavilioning the dust of him who planned
This refuge for his memory, doth stand
Like flame transformed to marble; and beneath,
A field is spread, on which a newer band
Have pitched in Heaven’s smile
Their camp of death,
Welcoming him we lose
With scarce extinguished breath.
Many had been burned before, thought Galileo,
So ‘tis a difficult path to follow,
Yet the truth calls me forward…
And so he had published
The ‘Starry Messenger’.
Later on, Galileo had argued
That the Bible had to be interpreted
In the light of what science had shown to be true.
Galileo had several opponents
And they made sure that a copy of
The ‘Letter to Castelli’
Was sent to the Inquisition in Rome.
In 1616 Galileo wrote
The ‘Letter to the Grand Duchess’
Which vigorously attacked the followers of Aristotle.
In this work, which he addressed
To the Grand Duchess Christina of Lorraine,
He argued strongly for a non-literal interpretation
Of Holy Scripture when the literal interpretation
Would contradict facts about the physical world
Proved by mathematical science.
… Galileo walked on slowly,
For his health had become poor,
And noted the setting moon—
The sky would be wonderfully dark.
He would soon be found guilty and condemned,
But he knew none of that this night.
The eventual ‘Father of Science’
Again sat with the scientific Illuminati of his time,
The discussions as free and glorious as ever…
He was later put under house arrest
In his home in Florence,
Having by then nearly gone blind,
But the starry memories of the Milky Way,
The moons of Jupiter and more
Remained in a mind still free—
That which could never be taken away by ‘Dogma’.
His body was concealed
And only placed in a fine tomb
In the church in 1737 by the civil authorities,
Against the wishes of many in the Church.
On 31 October 1992,
350 years after Galileo’s death,
Pope John Paul II gave an address
On behalf of the Catholic Church
In which he admitted that
Errors had been made
By the theological advisors
In the case of Galileo.
He declared the Galileo case closed,
But he did not admit that the Church was wrong
To convict Galileo on a charge of heresy
Because of his belief that the Earth
Rotates round the sun.
The Torch Passes Its Light
His eyes were so weak
“That he could no longer see the sky.”
A young Illuminatus embarked
On a long pilgrimage,
“A sojourn to Galileo’s delightful villa at Arcetri,
Just beyond the walls of Florence.
“There it was that I found and visited
The famous Galileo grown old,
A prisoner to the Inquisition,
For thinking in Astronomy otherwise
Than the Franciscan and Dominican licensers.
“I was his last disciple, as you say
I went to him, at seventeen years of age,
And offered him my hands and eyes to use.”
Galileo recalls the momentous occasion
(‘‘That day of days’’):
When, quietly as a messenger from heaven,
Moving unseen, through his own purer realm,
Among the shadows of our mortal world,
A young man, with a strange light on his face
Knocked at the door of my house.
His name was John Milton.
Milton at the gate: Friend! let me pass.
Dominican: Whither? To whom?
Milton: Into the prison; to Galileo Galilei.
To this, the Dominican guard protests that,
Where Galileo is being held, there are no prisons,
Only confinements of sorts
For those guilty of “heretical pravity”
And “other less atrocious crimes”.
Not to be taken in by such rhetoric,
Milton stands his ground and demands
(on divine authority)
That the gates that confine the great astronomer
Be opened at once.
Responding to the demand,
The Dominican guard
Can only admire the young man
Who confronts him.
To himself the guard exclaims:
“What sweetness! what authority!
What a form! what an attitude! what a voice!”
After which he acknowledges
That his “sight staggers; the walls shake;
He must be—do angels ever come hither?”
…Plots had been perhaps laid against Milton
As one who had ‘seen’ and ‘heard’
Matters that were best left untold.
In Galileo, ‘frail and old,’ Milton had ‘seen’
One of those near blind illustrious
Of whom he had so often dreamt,
And of whom he was to be himself another.
O, dark, dark, dark, amid the blaze of noon,
Some thought that
Milton’s Lucifer (Latin for ‘light bringer’),
Came off much better in ‘Paradise Lost’
Than did God Himself.
Lieber in der Hölle regieren als im Himmel dienen.
[Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heaven.]
‘Twas here, his final resting place,
In a church…
At last enshrined
As the Father of Science.
Embellished, as the Master in stone,
He’s ever looking up
Whence forth came the light
From the starry skies.
The Fanciful View From Today and a Review
Back when religion persecuted science,
The Illuminati became a secret organization
Taking refuge from the scourge of the Church.
The Path of Illumination
In 1600 Rome, the Baroque theatre
Of political intrigues and inquisition trials,
One of the most influential secret societies
In history was born: The Illuminati.
Gian Lorenzo Bernini and Galileo Galilei,
The twin heads of the society,
Scattered throughout the Eternal City
Clues and enigmas which, once solved,
Would lead Illuminati adepts to a hidden lair.
It was thought that the rumored ambigram
For ‘Illuminati’ could never be found,
It reading the same upside down.
There were Four Altars of Science,
Representing the four elements
Of earth, air, fire and water,
And a mysterious text from John Milton,
They being the key clues that, once decoded,
Would lead on the Path of Illumination.
“Behold this droplet of anti-world,
My anti-matter that LHC created,
Enough material to see.”
“My God, a visible amount!”
“See, here it is, suspended
In a vacuum in this tube,
For even the air would ignite it.”
“Quick, send it away,
Get rid of it.”
“No, for I have discovered Creation.”
If Galileo had noted that Mars
Increased and diminished in size during its orbit,
Then this could have been a good clue,
Although perhaps not a proof,
That the planets orbited the sun.
The Church wished him to just say
That he only had a hypothesis, not a truth.
(Parallax measurements were not yet known.)
The real concern of the Earth
Not being the center of all
Was that perhaps Hell was not to be found
Within the bowels of
The no longer so important Earth,
As well as the concentric crystalline spheres
Surrounding it not being so,
Although this notion was really
Only proposed by Dante.
And, too, for some reason,
The notion of the universe being infinite,
As perhaps then
There would have been no room for God.
It was also a time of challenge
From the Protestant reformation
And thus the necessary
Galileo was in the right mind
At the wrong time.
One could say that Galileo
Should probably have known about
The sensitivities of the Church,
And probably did,
But perhaps felt safe
In his association with Pope Urban;
However, it was also that
The Pope had to perform his job.
The last straw that broke this friendship
Was when Galileo portrayed the God argument
Through the mouth of ‘Simplicio’ (the simpleton),
Even presenting it much
As the Pope would have to present it
And actually did present it to Galileo
Once upon a time.
It was just that Galileo had come upon
A great secret of the universe
And so, like anyone,
Could hardly contain himself.
He performed quite a balancing act,
Even stating, perhaps as a deflection,
That his argument was with Ptolomy,
Not the Church.