How we got from myth to science

This is a story that’s always fascinated me, but I’ve only found it in pieces. I set the time stamp to Aquinas, who believed in the global flood. You can back up to get more geology if you want. He moves on to Galileo and his thoughts on the “book of nature”, then to how geologists continued to try to prove Noah’s flood, but in failing, ended up creating scientific methods. Early scientists had to work with the Catholics, because they had the money. That slowly eroded as secular universities rose and the discoveries could not be argued.

At around 42 minutes or so, he starts to summarize, if your time is more precious than mine.

he goes on to look into how the young earth creationism returned. Even at the turn of the last century, as The Fundamentals were being laid out, the young earth ideas were purged from most religion. They came back in 1961, at a time when many questions were stilled unanswered. Sound familiar?

There’s a funny quote from him about the scientific community couldn’t pull of the type of multi-generational conspiracy that YEC’s talk about, around 50 minutes.

At 57, he explains what a scientific theory is. The YECs found the questions, and filled them in with Biblically based easy answers, but scientific theories were starting to gel to really answer those questions, he says, the characteristic of a really good theory is “if you put something together, based on a prediction, then someone else (sees it and adds other things that are also explained by the theory and the data), that’s the hallmark of a good theory. The hallmark of a bad theory is if you have to keep invoking miracles to explain away the observations that don’t coincide with your theory.

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To comment on the global flood, The interesting part about that is the record in the bible of the size of the Ark 30 - 50 - 300 cubits.
Why this size? after 8 year of research of this subject it is very obvious that this size related to the size of the Pyramids, The moon cycles, The Earths year, and so many other things it can not be ignored to something of Truth. //example 356.25 days in the year // 36525 times 2 = 73050 now 36525150 times 2 = 7, 30, 50 300 That is one of thousands of connections of this type. So simple but so complex at the same time. You should see what the real Pyramid layout looks like. That would blow you away.

Thanks, Tom

The simple conclusion must be, How did the People from long ago to get from knowing everything about how everything works, to be what we call Science to not knowing how anything works. and filling in the blanks with stories that we now call Myths. it is backward somewhat, People went to being very enlightened. to story tellers. and it is still happening today. real Science is based on Theory that is to say ( stories are still the truth today ) So someday people will look back and say how did people get from myth to using theories.


No. You are backwards

This proves the point of Theory being the human story.
there is not proof that in am backward but you have told the story believing it to be true.
That is enough to present the points above, without knowing all- myth, story, Theory and the rest is what humans do.
it is very good you believe it is true, You are now, Master of your own Universe.

The pyramids are especially famous for the use of “Pi” (3.14159265359), an irrational complex number. How did the Egyptian know of this number?

The short answer is; “They didn’t”.

Pi was naturally incorporated in the measurement of pyramids because they used a marked wheel to measure exact distances, later known as a trundle or surveyor’s wheel.

Due to the mathematical nature of natural laws many objects and mathematics have been used since the beginning of chemistry, biochemistry, and living organisms without knowing how and why they worked so well.

Trees , flowers and leaves are fractal objects. The Fibonacci sequence is inherent in natural exponential functions. Predators use triangulation to measure distance and angles of intercept fleeing prey. A spider web is a marvel of civil engineering. A honeycomb is the best mathematical use of limited space.

All laws of nature are of a mathematical nature and all patterns in nature are guided by mathematical symmetries and equations.

It is only when tool making became important that different measuring devices were designed and their use described .

2.6 million years ago
The earliest stone toolmaking developed by at least 2.6 million years ago . The Early Stone Age began with the most basic stone implements made by early humans. Feb 3, 2022

Olorgesailie, Kenya: 990,000 years ago

During a dry period in East Africa, a group of Homo erectus lived by making and using tools and by working together in social groups. Explore the interactive to find out how they survived.

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All interesting. however
It seem the Egyptians did know about pi. and then somehow it was discovered by Archimedes some 4000 or more years later. interesting.
lost and found lost and found,
The point being. myths, story telling, not knowing all the real truth, as long as everyone is on the same page. Ants, bugs, bacteria, humans. what is the difference? It seems there is no difference.

End of story telling thanks Tom

No, the Egyptians never knew anything about Pi. They didn’t need to know.
You missed the point that using a wheel ( of any size) for accurately measuring distances does not require knowledge of Pi. Their standard measurement was the Cubit (length of the forearm) which is about .54 meter.
So they made a wheel with a measured circumference of .54 meter and had a single mark. that measured a Cubit with every revolution.
Doesn’t really matter as long as all measurements are based on the same exact length.

Seems you answer your own questions.

Bacteria and Ants don’t have mythology. but you are correct, it doesn’t matter. You can never escape the mathematical essence of natural laws.

What is interesting is there is more than one flood story, such as the Babylonian flood story. Each culture has their own and BTW, they weren’t all written around the same time.

What? They didn’t know how everything about how everything works.

Theory in science doesn’t mean hypothesis.

That is the perfect example of reasoning based on a false premise.

People from long ago knew that some things worked in a specific way, but they did not know how and why things worked in a specific way. They attributed all the “apparent miracles” to the work of gods and that is how the gods responsible for natural phenomena were born and worshipped or feared.

Religion provided an umbrella for the formation of cooperative behaviors as evidenced in mass ritual. This social cooperation led to greater stability and productivity of small separated tribes and proved effective for a long time due to ignorance of how nature becomes spontaneously expressed, instead of created by higher powers.

For the good of the group

But not everyone agrees that religious thinking is just a byproduct of evolution — in other words, something that came about as a result of nonreligious, cognitive faculties. Some scientists see religion as more of an adaptation — a trait that stuck around because the people who possessed it were better able to survive and pass on their genes.

Robin Dunbar is an evolutionary psychologist and anthropologist at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom whose work focuses mostly on the behavior of primates, including nonhuman primates like baboons. Dunbar thinks religion may have evolved as what he calls a “group-level adaptation.” Religion is a “kind of glue that holds society together,” Dunbar wrote in “How Many Friends Does One Person Need?: Dunbar’s Number and Other Evolutionary Quirks” (Harvard University Press, 2010).

Humans may have developed religion as a way to promote cooperation in social groups, Dunbar said. He noted that primates tend to live in groups because doing so benefits them in certain ways. For instance, hunting in groups is more effective than hunting alone. But living in groups also has drawbacks. Namely, some individuals take advantage of the system. Dunbar calls these people “freeriders.”

“Freeriding is disruptive because it loads the costs of the social contract onto some individuals, while others get away with paying significantly less,” Dunbar wrote in a New Scientist article, “The Origin of Religion as a Small-Scale Phenomenon.” As a result, those who have been exploited become less willing to support the social contract. In the absence of sufficient benefit to outweigh these costs, individuals will leave in order to be in smaller groups that incur fewer costs."

But if the group can figure out a way to get everyone to behave in an unselfish way, individual members of the group are less likely to storm off, and the group is more likely to remain cohesive.

Religion may have naturally sprung up from this need to keep everybody on the same page, Dunbar said. Humans’ predisposition to attribute intention to just about everything (e.g., volcanic eruptions, lunar eclipses, thunderstorms) isn’t necessarily the reason religion came about, but it helps to explain why religions typically involve supernatural elements that describe such phenomena.

For millennia that false assumption was satisfactory for all intents and purposes, with
a gradual advancement in scientific inquiry.

History of Science

The earliest roots of science can be traced to Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia in around 3000 to 1200 BCE.[2][3] Their contributions to mathematics, astronomy, and medicine entered and shaped Greek natural philosophy of classical antiquity, whereby formal attempts were made to provide explanations of events in the physical world based on natural causes.[2][3] After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, knowledge of Greek conceptions of the world deteriorated in Latin-speaking Western Europe during the early centuries (400 to 1000 CE) of the Middle Ages,[4] but continued to thrive in the Greek-speaking Eastern Roman (or Byzantine) Empire. Aided by translations of Greek texts, the Hellenistic worldview was preserved and absorbed into the Arabic-speaking Muslim world during the Islamic Golden Age.[5] The recovery and assimilation of Greek works and Islamic inquiries into Western Europe from the 10th to 13th century revived the learning of natural philosophy in the West.[4][6]

Why Was 900 Years of European History Called ‘the Dark Ages’?

The ‘Dark Ages’ were between the 5th and 14th centuries, lasting 900 years. The timeline falls between the fall of the Roman Empire and the Renaissance. It has been called the ‘Dark Ages’ because many suggest that this period saw little scientific and cultural advancement. However, the term doesn’t stand up to much scrutiny – and many medieval historians have dismissed it.

Why is it called the Dark Ages?

Francesco Petrarca (known as Petrarch) was the first person to coin the term ‘Dark Ages’. He was an Italian scholar of the 14th century. He called it the ‘Dark Ages’ as he was dismayed at the lack of good literature at that time.

After Petrarch’s disparagement of the ‘dark age’ of literature, other thinkers of the time expanded this term to encompass this perceived dearth of culture in general across Europe between 500 to 1400. These dates are under constant scrutiny by historians as there is a degree of overlap in dates, cultural and regional variations and many other factors. The time is often referred to with terms like the Middle-Ages or Feudal Period (another term that is now contentious amongst medievalists).

Later on, as more evidence came to light after the 18th century, scholars started to restrict the term ‘Dark Ages’ to the period between the 5th and 10th centuries. This period came to be referred to as the Early Middle Ages.

Age of Exploration and Discovery

The era known as the Age of Exploration, sometimes called the Age of Discovery, officially began in the early 15th century and lasted through the 17th century. The period is characterized as a time when Europeans began exploring the world by sea in search of new trading routes, wealth, and knowledge. The impact of the Age of Exploration would permanently alter the world and transform geography into the modern science it is today.

Impact of the Age of Exploration

  • Explorers learned more about areas such as Africa and the Americas and brought that knowledge back to Europe.
  • Massive wealth accrued to European colonizers due to trade in goods, spices, and precious metals.
  • Methods of navigation and mapping improved, switching from traditional portolan charts to the world’s first nautical maps.
  • New food, plants, and animals were exchanged between the colonies and Europe.
  • Indigenous people were decimated by Europeans, from a combined impact of disease, overwork, and massacres.
  • The workforce needed to support the massive plantations in the New World, led to the trade of enslaved people , which lasted for 300 years and had an enormous impact on Africa.
  • The impact persists to this day , with many of the world’s former colonies still considered the “developing” world, while colonizers are the First World countries, holding a majority of the world’s wealth and annual income.

Age of Enlightenment

The Age of Enlightenment (also known as the Age of Reason or simply the Enlightenment)[note 2] was an intellectual and philosophical movement that dominated Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries with global influences and effects.[2][3] The Enlightenment included a range of ideas centered on the value of human happiness, the pursuit of knowledge obtained by means of reason and the evidence of the senses, and ideals such as liberty, progress, toleration, fraternity, constitutional government, and separation of church and state.[4][5]

The Enlightenment has its roots in a European intellectual and scholarly movement known as Renaissance humanism and was also preceded by the Scientific Revolution and the work of Francis Bacon, among others. Some date the beginning of the Enlightenment back to the publication of René Descartes’ Discourse on the Method in 1637, featuring his famous dictum, Cogito, ergo sum (“I think, therefore I am”). Others cite the publication of Isaac Newton’s Principia Mathematica (1687) as the culmination of the Scientific Revolution and the beginning of the Enlightenment. European historians traditionally date its beginning with the death of Louis XIV of France in 1715 and its end with the 1789 outbreak of the French Revolution. Many historians now date the end of the Enlightenment as the start of the 19th century, with the latest proposed year being the death of Immanuel Kant in 1804.

The invention of the microscope by Anton Leeuwenhoek opened up a whole new world that no one knew anything about.

Invention of the microscope

Leeuwenhoek is universally acknowledged as the father of microbiology. He discovered both protists and bacteria [1]. More than being the first to see this unimagined world of ‘animalcules’, he was the first even to think of looking—certainly, the first with the power to see.

Figure - PMC)) Leeuwenhoek was a pioneer, a scientist of the highest calibre, yet his reputation suffered at the hands of those who envied his fame or scorned his unschooled origins, as well as through his own mistrustful secrecy of his methods, which opened a world that others could not comprehend. The verification of this new world by the natural philosophers of the nascent Royal Society laid out the ground rules that still delineate science today, but the freshness and wonder, the sheer thrill of Leeuwenhoek’s discoveries, transmit directly down the centuries to biologists today. Microbiologists and phylogeneticists continue to argue about the nature of Leeuwenhoek’s little animals, if in more elaborate terms. Only now are we beginning to find answers—and surprisingly uncertain answers—to the questions that drove Leeuwenhoek: where did this multitude of tiny ‘animals’ come from, why such variety in size and behaviour; how to distinguish and classify them?

And that is how we got from myth to science.