Galileo and the Tension Between Science & Religion

Even as s a devout Catholic, Galileo was seen as someone at odds with the Catholic Church. His goal as a man of science was not to challenge the Church but simply attempt to change how Catholicism interpreted phenomena in the world. Galileo’s struggle of being a deeply religious man, while also being devoted to empirical reasoning and science, positions him as an individual who sought to find a happy balance between the two. Currently, the division between science and religion is quite clear. During Galileo’s time, the two were very much married to each other. Today we see science and religion as two different things, the argument of evolution being a topic of debate between the sides. Ultimately their goal is the same, the attempt to explain the unexplainable, where they both seek a higher knowledge.

Galileo’s commitment to his ideas is admirable as his time was filled with fear of heresy and opposing the Catholic Church. His support of heliocentrism (the idea that the planets revolve around the Sun), caused his persecution and questioning during the Inquisition. His life is an example of how belief and evidence are rarely in a clear balance.

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