Barry Sears wrote:After thousands of posts you have expressed your opinion and understanding with clarity, meaning and respect. Not a word of frustration, impatience or disrespect.
I don't think I could claim to have never
shown any frustration, impatience or disrespect, but thanks anyway!
At this point of time I wish to express how ancient traditional beliefs also have a larger than believed scientific input and require recognition. To bind with ancient knowledge carried forward over thousands of years and to balance this with the recent explosion of contemporary scientific knowledge requires an open mind.
I agree it's always good to have an open mind but I also think it's good to be clear as to what one wants to achieve when considering the pros and cons of the various thoughts and worldviews that have been expressed by various people over the millennia. In other words, I like to take a kind of utilitarian view of these things; a practical view. What are my goals (I ask myself)? And what use
are these thoughts and worldviews in achieving these goals?
I think often our goal is to find a worldview, or a system of beliefs, that resonates with something in us; that "strikes a chord"; that "rings true". I think it's interesting that there are several forms of this musical/resonance metaphor in our language. I think it reflects our desire to feel connected to the rest of the universe in some way.
Different people attempt to achieve that connection in different ways. Some people attempt to do it by trying to find underlying patterns in the observed behaviour of various things, like planets for example, and using those patterns to try to predict unobserved behaviour.
You are perhaps more in-tune with the mathematical equations than I, but you seem to express these as evidence or fact.
You use this word "fact" a lot. I prefer not to use it much and I don't see mathematical equations per se
as evidence. Instead, I'd put it like this:
"Evidence" means the things that people observe, and sometimes measure, directly or indirectly, using their senses. For example, if somebody looks through a telescope and observes the planet Saturn moving in a particular way, then this constitutes evidence that there exists a planet that we call Saturn and that it is currently moving in a particular way.
When we make these observations of various objects moving in various ways, we usually find that there are patterns in these movements and other behaviours. Using the language of mathematics, we can describe those patterns. We can hypothesize that they will continue to follow the same pattern and then look to see if they do. If they do, then we can propose that they follow these patterns even when we're not looking. We can propose that they followed similar patterns a long time ago when we hadn't yet looked at them. We can say to ourselves: "If they did do that, what observations could I make to test this proposition?"
This is how science works.
An example of one of these patterns is Newton's theory of Universal Gravitation. It's a pattern that can be described by a pretty small, simple bit of mathematics. It simply states that there is a force between every object and every other object that is proportional to their masses multiplied together and which gets smaller if they're further apart. It is proposed that, if no other objects get in the way, these objects accelerate towards each other in a way that is directly proportional to this force, and that this acceleration (change in velocity) can be observed.
All observed objects' movements seem to follow this pattern. So, until an observation is made to refute it, it seems reasonable to give it the status of a universal law - i.e. to assume that as-yet-unobserved objects will follow it and to assume that objects in the past followed it. If we do this, and we use this simple bit of maths, applied over and over again, to a simulated system of objects we can successfully model the observed behaviour of the solar system to a very high degree of accuracy. We can then use this same bit of maths to model the formation of the solar system from lots of mutually gravitating particles.
This is why I think there is evidence that the solar system formed by the condensation of a cloud of dust and gas into an accretion disc, as I described earlier. It fits an established pattern of behaviour. It is not certain. Nothing is. There is no certainty that any of the patterns we see in Nature will continue when we haven't yet observed them to do so. There is no certainty that the Earth will keep turning and that the Sun will therefore rise tomorrow as it did yesterday. But, as a general rule, we tend to think that the more these patterns continue, the more likely they are to continue doing so. We all think this. It's how we all make sense of the world, whether or not we consider ourselves to be "doing science".
To believe that the Earth is slowing in it's rotation at a rate of 2m/s per hundred years and has been doing so for 500 million years is not a fact.
That's correct. A belief is not a fact. It is a belief. If it is believed, then that belief is based on observations and patterns as described above.
Scientific data also suggests otherwise (I'm confused as to what you mean when you say "constant over millions of years")
The part in brackets above is slightly confusing. I assume you're quoting me and then answering that quote.
To believe the Earth is moving away from the sun at 15 cm per year, is not a fact. It is a mathematical equations and theory, but other options can also be explained and supported.
I think it would help if you sorted out your terminology. The belief that the Earth's orbit is getting bigger over millions of years is not a mathematical equation. See description above.
Open minded I am most interested if other forms of evidence exist.
Good. So long as you are clear as to what constitutes evidence.
Global warming is still a possible result of planetary motion, moving towards the heat source.
As I said in an earlier post, the term "global warming" is generally used to refer to the warming of the globe that has happened over the past 100 years or so. 100 years is almost nothing as a proportion of the total amount of time for which the Earth has existed. There is, essentially, zero probability that this warming has been caused by the size of the Earth's orbit shrinking. It's possible, in the same sense that it is possible that the Moon is made from cheese. But, in that same sense, it is not probable.
Remember: The fact that the Earth's orbit is elliptical means that every time it goes around the Sun the Earth's distance from the Sun varies by billions of metres. For the Earth's orbit to have shrunk by enough to make a difference to the climate on a timescale of 100 years would require it to be shrinking by a gigantic, unmistakable amount which would be easily and undisbutably measurable. It would mean that the before a few thousand years ago the Earth must have been too cold to sustain life. Evidence does not support this. Unless it suddenly started to move towards the Sun 100 years ago. That also seems improbable.