We explore the modern revival of the Flat Earth Movement and the questions and theories they present about the shape of the earth. We also review the globe earth model and consider the possibility it may be partially or completely incorrect.
We acknowledge and respect the valid scientific predictive model based on the assumption that the earth is a globe that has been constructed by some of the most intelligent and thoughtful people over many years.
The globe earth model is a brilliant idea. It predicts quite accurately our observations. It is something intelligent and thoughtful scientific people can believe in and use to comprehend and understand the movements of the heavenly bodies we observe in the night sky.
We also acknowledge that the globe earth conception is a relatively new idea and it is possible it may not be completely correct or could even be completely wrong.
Traditionally most cultures accepted the earth as it appears to us, as flat with the stars and planets rotating above us attached to some sort of giant wheel. The common thread was a stationary earth in the center of the universe with everything rotating around it.
Basically there are two possibilities. One is a rotating earth, and the other is a stationary earth with all the luminaries we see in the sky rotating around the earth. From our position, within the system, the relative motion is the same. So from within the system we can not determine if we are stationary and everything is moving around us or if the things we see in the sky are stationery and we are rotating.
The only way we could resolve this conclusively would be to get far away enough form our solar system so we could look back, from outside the system, and see what is actually happening.
There has always been some resistance to the globe earth model. However, during the 1960’s when NASA sent the Apollo missions to the moon and provided us with photographs of the ‘blue marble’, the beautiful earth globe spinning in space, that was considered by most as proof that the earth is actually a globe spinning in space. Most believed man had finally got high enough in the sky to send back real photographs of earth spinning in space and the issue was finally settled.
More recently, however, discrepancies have surfaced in regards to NASA and the Apollo manned moon missions causing many to question if we actually sent men to the moon. Also NASA has admitted some of their recent photographs of the earth from space are creations of Photoshop produced by graphic artists combining imagery from many sources, not actual photographs.
Because of these clouds of doubt around everything NASA says many believe some of NASA’s claims may be false or mistaken. This doubt in the proclamations of NASA, NASA’s inability to prove their claims and their inability to send men to the moon now, almost fifty years later, has allowed a renaissance of the Flat Earth Movement.
In contrast to the globe earth model, which is backed by a solid and valid scientific predictive model which works quite well, the Flat Earth Movement has no working flat earth model. Flat earthers have nothing to explain what we see the luminaries in the sky doing. They are unable to, based on the premise that the earth is flat, produce a model that will predict the occurrence of day and night as we actually experience it in the different parts of the planet. They can not explain why, on a flat earth, the polestar is not visible from the Southern Hemisphere. There are so many inconsistencies. Almost nothing works properly in their models if one seriously tests them with our actual observations. They have a widely accepted flat earth map which is obviously and provably incorrect.
The flat earth people are not scientists. And they have no scientifically valid model or theory. They go on their feelings and instincts that the earth is flat and stationary. And they accept the traditional religious and cultural understandings and the ideas of the historical flat earth movement.
Even though the flat earthers do not have a valid working scientific model they do raise some interesting points that, at least on the surface, question the validity of globe earth model.
Of course scientists accept their understanding is incomplete and will acknowledge there are aspects they do not completely understand. In science everything is open to be challenged and anything that increases our understanding or that works better than our current idea is accepted and scientific models are constantly evolving with old incorrect ideas being replaced with new, hopefully, more correct ideas.
But for the flat earth people simply challenging small points in the globe earth model is not very convincing if they can’t produce a working model based their assumption of a flat earth. So unless they can present a working valid scientific predictive model they can’t expect the scientific community to take them very seriously.
If the flat earthers could produce a valid scientific model that actually worked based on their premise scientists would consider it, even if just for entertainment, from a theoretical point of view.
So at FlatEarthFacts.com we will investigate both the Globe Earth and Flat Earth models without any prejudice in an attempt to understand the actual shape and situation of the earth.
There is every chance the current theories of science could be incorrect, either completely or in some aspects. So it is possible that the globe earth model is not correct however, at the moment, it is the only valid scientific model we have.
Astronomy — An Imprecise Science
Astronomy is a very imprecise science. We don’t have much information about the things we observe moving in the sky. We only have a two dimensional view with little perception of depth and a very limited ability to measure actual distances and sizes.
Everything is relative. To us the sun and moon appear to be equal in size, however the astronomers inform us the sun is gigantic and 93 million miles away while the moon is much smaller, a quarter the size of the earth, and much closer, about a quarter of a million miles away. So they tell us these relative sizes and distances produce the illusion that the moon and sun are the same size when we look at them.
Also, to us, the sun and the moon appear to be doing exactly the same thing in the sky. The sun and moon rise and set with all the other stars and planets and they both have similar paths through the signs of the zodiac, however the sun takes a year to make it’s journey through all the signs of the zodiac while the moon moves much faster, making its way through all the signs in just 28 days.
So although to us the sun and moon seem to be doing the same thing in the sky, except the moon does it about thirteen times faster, the astronomers say the sun and moon are situated completely differently. They have supposed that the sun is in the center of our solar system with all the planets, including earth, rotating around the sun. The moon, they tell us, rotates around the earth. This is not the obvious conclusion one would come to by looking at the sky. From looking into the sky there is no indication that the sun and moon are doing anything different. They both appear to be doing the same thing, except the moon does it faster than the sun.
Astronomers may be Wrong
In really we can not tell much about what the sun, moon, stars and planets are doing, how far away they are and what sizes they are by looking at the sky. And neither can the astronomers.
So with this realization we begin to ask the questions, “Could it be that the astronomers have made mistakes?”, “Is it possible that some of the things we have been taught from childhood to be absolute facts are, in reality, just theories?” And a thoughtful person has to come to the conclusion that yes, practically everything we are taught about the universe around us by the scientists and the astronomers are unverifiable theories and some of these theories may be incorrect. Therefore it is possible that some fundamental principles we have all come to accept as absolute facts are, in reality, theories, and some of them may be incorrect.
Any scientist will accept what we know today is imperfect and incomplete and may be incorrect. The history of science is a history of scientists being wrong and replacing old incorrect theories with new and, hopefully, more correct theories. This is the basis of science, questioning what we currently believe, disproving it and replacing the incorrect old theories with better new theories.
The scientific method is to develop a theory, an idea, a speculation about how something may work, and then to test that theory to see if the predictions of the theory accurately match our observations of the real system. The theory is considered good if it accurately predicts what we observe the system doing. And if a new theory does a better job of predicting what we observe scientists will discard the old theory and accept the new one.
Globe Earth is a Theory
Flat earthers present the idea the earth is a globe as a theory. You may be shocked. “How can they say that the globe earth is a theory!” And that was my initial reaction also. “We know the earth is a globe.” “What about all the photos of the earth from space?”
NASA’s Photos of Earth from Space?
When the flat earth people research photos of earth from space surprisingly they find very few photos of earth from space. Amazingly during all those Apollo moon missions they only took a few photos of the earth. The principal photo is the famous ‘blue marble’ we have all seen millions of times. NASA have also more recently published two or three other photos of earth from space, however they admit these are creations of Photoshop, based on satellite photographs, they are compositions, not single photographs. And recently NASA using NOAA’s geostationary satellites have produced a website giving an “earth from space photograph” about every fifteen minutes, which also may not be an actual single photograph, it may be data from many different instruments combined with the help of a supercomputer mapped onto the familiar ‘blue marble’ we are used to seeing. Currently they are unable to give us a live feed. But as their supercomputers and programming improves they will be able to give us a live feed of their computer simulation.
A problem we are facing now is that with NASA’s history of presenting simulations as reality to the public combined with great advances in computer generated graphics it is hard to know if what we are being presented is ‘real’ or just a computer generated simulation.
Globe Earth Maybe Just a Good Theory
Flat earthers conclude there is no proof that the earth is a globe. It is a theory. In reality, however, the globe earth theory is a good scientific theory. It is a predictive model. It has been engineered backwards, started with observing the sky and imaging a system that would produce what we see happening in the sky. There have been different models over the years, some totally rejected and others refined to produce what we have today, the globe earth model. This is a real scientific theory, a good predictive model, which does, for the most part, predict what we see happening in the sky. But there is no guarantee the mechanical system that produces the manifestations we see in the sky is identical to or even similar to the system imagined by the scientists who conceived the globe earth theory. The actual system may be completely different.
Are we really sure of the Shape of the Earth?
There is a historical basis in many cultures and religious for accepting the earth as flat and stationary. And, to our senses, the earth does appear to be a flat and stationary plane from our perspective. We can not measure any curvature, it does not appear to be a globe to our senses.
The conception of a globe tilting and spinning and rotating around the sun which is rotating around the center of the galaxy with the whole galaxy speeding through space is a relatively new conception. And it is hard to believe that we could be simultaneously rotating in many different directions and speeding through space at such astronomical speeds without being able to feel or measure any movement at all. That would seem to invalidate all the laws of physics. We can not detect any movement with the most accurate scientific instruments, we can not see any indication we are moving in space by looking into the sky. To our senses and to our scientific instruments we appear to be stationary. And if we are stationary then the things we see moving in the sky must be actually moving around us.
This is a relative movement. We see the sun rising and setting every day, so the sun is certainly moving in relation to the earth. So that movement could be caused by the sun being relatively stationary and the earth rotating. On the other hand we would get the same effect if the earth was stationary and the sun [and all stars, planets, etc also] were moving around the earth. It is a relative movement so from the earth we can not tell if it is the earth rotating or everything else rotating around the earth. The only way to actually tell what is really rotating would be to get far enough away, totally outside the solar system, and look back from outside the system. From within the system we have no way of telling what is actually rotating.
Globe Earth is Good Science — Flat Earth is Bad Science
As we have discussed, the globe earth model is a good scientific predictive model which does predict most of the things we see happening around us. It is ‘believable’ in the sense that it is a logical description that makes sense of our observations. On the other hand the Flat Earth believers do not have any accepted and agreed model. They have a belief that the earth is flat, but no scientific predictive model explaing what we observe happening in the sky and around us. So the flat earthers are not scientific people, they do not require a logical explanation to support their belief system. They just believe the earth is flat.
The mission of FlatEarthFacts.com is to expose the nonsense and craziness being spread by the modern Flat Earth Movement and at the same time question the shape of the earth. We are open to the possibility of the earth not being a globe. The idea of the earth being a globe is convincing and we have been taught this from birth but it is possible that our currently accepted ideas of the earth are not completely correct. And we have to be prepared to question our current conceptions.
The way science works is there has to be a valid predictive model. You can not present a theory without a valid predictive model. And scientists will accept the best predictive model. Currently, as far as the shape of the earth is concerned, there is only one working predictive model, the globe earth model. Flat earth people only believe the earth is flat, among themselves they do not agree on the details, they have many different views, all equally impossible and invalid and inconsistent with the most simple observations we can make in the sky and around us.
So we will be doing two things on this website:
- Debunking the bogus nonsense ideas being propagated by the modern flat earth movement as well as acknowledging the relevant and interesting questions and problems they point out in the globe earth model.
- Questioning the shape of the earth from a scientific perspective and attempting to form a valid predictive model, at least as good as the globe earth model, proposing that the earth is not a globe.
If we can achieve this, and if we can present a valid scientific predictive model that works just as well as the globe earth model, in which the earth is not a globe, then it will have to be considered by scientists on its own merit. And if we can produce a predictive model that works better in explaining the things we see happening in the sky and around us than the globe earth model then honest scientists will be compelled to accept our model in place of the globe earth model. That is the way science works. However, at this point in time, we are not sure if this is possible. The earth may well be a globe. That is what it appears to be to us at the moment. But at least theoretically we need to be prepared to question our beliefs.