ID the Future Intelligent Design, Evolution, and Science Podcast

Giordano Bruno: A Martyr, Yes, But Not for Science

Michael Newton Keas
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On this episode of ID the Future, Andrew McDiarmid continues his conversation with historian of science Michael Keas about Keas’ new ISI book Unbelievable: 7 Myths About the History and Future of Science and Religion. In chapter 4 of the work Keas explodes the myth that Giordano Bruno was a martyr for science, as science popularizers such as Neil DeGrasse Tyson make him out to be. 

Bruno was indeed burned at the stake in 1600 for disagreeing with the Church — which Keas heartily agrees was a bad move on the Church’s part. But Bruno was executed not for his view that we live in a vast universe with vast numbers of planets. Rather, he was burned for his religious view that an infinite God had to make the universe that way — and that everyone’s soul “transmigrates” to other planets after death, rather than meeting a final judgment. Tune into learn more from Keas about this and other details about the Bruno myth, and the true history it obscures.

Michael Newton Keas

Senior Fellow, Center for Science and Culture
After earning a Ph.D. in the history of science from the University of Oklahoma, Mike Keas won research grants from such organizations as the National Science Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies. He experienced some of the last historic moments behind the Berlin Wall as a Fulbright scholar in East Germany. Keas serves as lecturer in the history and philosophy of science at Biola University and on the board of directors of Ratio Christi, an alliance of apologetics clubs on college campuses. He has written numerous articles, including “Systematizing the Theoretical Virtues” in the top-tier philosophy journal Synthese. This essay analyzes twelve traits of reputable theories, and has generated dialogue across many fields. With a quarter-century of experience teaching science and its history to college students, Keas is qualified to lay out the facts to show how far the conventional wisdom about science and religion departs from reality. He has done so in the ISI book Unbelievable: 7 Myths about the History and Future of Science and Religion.