For over a thousand years (approximately 500 – 1500 CE) Europe produced no scientific accomplishments, and European society remained stuck in a creative haze premised upon the literal acceptance of the theology of the Roman Catholic Church, and its dictates regarding the nature of reality. This religious yoke pulled all creative trends back in upon themselves so that the status quo (of Church domination) was retained and European society remained controlled by the Roman Catholic Church. After 1500 CE, a breakaway faction of the Catholic Church became the Protestant Church – an off-shoot that rejected the divine authority of the Pope! From 500 – 1900 CE – the Christian Church in Europe murdered around 10 million in its quest to retain its religious hegemony. Those apologists for religious ignorance that contest this figure only have to look at the murderous Crusades, (a Catholic attempt to gain political control of the Middle East), which killed hundreds of thousands of innocent Muslims, and the genocide of the Cathars in the 13th century CE, who used to live in Southern France. This group believed in rebirth and their approach toward Christianity was very ‘Asian’ in many respects. Whilst glorifying in their destruction, the Catholic Church records speak of at least 5 million Cathars put to the sword! Like Islamo-fascism today, the agency of mindlessly ‘killing’ is elevated to the status of religious activity practiced by the truly devout! Estimates for the murder of women for practicing Midwifery, owning a black cat or healing a wound or curing a headache are often downplayed to a mere 50,000 Europe-wide! After breaking with the Catholic Church and founding the Church of England in the 16th century CE, King Henry the VIII – who had dissolved the monasteries and abolished the old feudal order – had 70,000 vagabonds (former hereditary soldiers supported by the lord they fought for) – publicly hanged as a warning against unemployment in a transitioning society where individuals had to find ‘paid’ employment in a country where the welfare facility offered by the Church had been destroyed along with the monasteries. These destructive acts by the Catholic and Protestant Churches are often acknowledged even by bourgeois academics, although the implications such activities suggest are playdown or ignored. Between 1922 – 1945 – the Roman Catholic Church openly supported Italian fascism, Japanese imperialism, and German Nazism – and participated in the murder of millions of Jews during the Hitlerite Holocaust. Not one Pope or Catholic priest was ever arrested, investigated or tried for these crimes.
Modern science began with the renaissance in the 14th century CE, traversed through the Enlightenment of the 17th century CE, and culminated in the Industrial Revolution (18th CE) and beyond! This development was essentially a re-discovery of the use of logic and reason and the scientific method developed by the ancient Greeks. This method set religion to one side (effectively ‘rejecting’ divine intervention), and concentrated upon the observation and measurement of physical processes, working from the premise that genuine results could be predicted, verified and repeated without the need to pray for assistance from an ‘unseen’ god. The Greeks, of course, just like the Europeans who would follow them, made many mistakes and initiated a number of false starts. This is to be expected as scientific thought was in its infancy and first principles had yet to be established. However, no matter how many errors were made (or are still made), bourgeois (capitalist) society is never criticised or held responsible for these mistakes (which are viewed as normal). These errors of assumption, area of investigation, direction of exploration or misreading of results is never blamed on the idea that a capitalist society exists to facilitate the brutal and ruthless exploitation of the working-class by the bourgeoisie (who own the means of production). The history of the development within bourgeois society is littered with the corpses of thousands of failed experiments, false assumptions and misreading of data!
One book that amply demonstrates the scientific quest from religious ignorance to scientific understanding is entitled ‘Measuring Eternity – The Search for the Beginning of Time’, written by the British author named Martin Gorst (b. 1960). This book was first published in 2001 and examines the scientific quest for the a) beginning of the universe, and b) the age of the universe. The author was 31 years old when the USSR collapsed in 1991, and would have spent the first 30 years of his life living in a political environment dictated by US Cold War disinformation. Still, it is curious that whilst writing in 2001, he is still prone to repeating this ridiculous rewriting of history and not possess the intelligence to see through its own inherent contradiction. It is as if he is writing in the 1950s and is obliged by his publishers to add the usual derogatory ‘anti-Soviet’ clauses to prevent anyone in the West learning about the true (and progressive) nature of the USSR, or think he is a Communist-sympathizer! Modern science, following the ancient Greek format, ‘rejects’ all religious input and is strictly ‘materialist’ in nature. Every great discover that has reduced suffering, saved lives or made life more enjoyable has come through the agency of modern science (including medicine and healthcare), and has nothing to do with religion. The book of Martin Gorst carefully rejects all religious input, whilst carefully navigating the choppy waters of early science. Yes – he suggests that an early date for the age of the earth is six thousand years old, and according to James Ussher (who supposedly ‘added’ up all the years in the Bible) it was created by god on October 22, at 6pm in 4004 BCE. Of course, the author does not hold bourgeois (capitalist) society ‘guilty’ of producing this utterly stupid interpretation of reality but suggests it is all the fun of the fayre! He then leaves religion behind and painstakingly picks his way through the development of modern science in Europe in relation to measuring the age of existence. Things progress very slowly, literally inch by bloody inch, as theories are put forward, assumed right and then finally proved utterly wrong. The development of genuine knowledge progressed very slowly, and was established ‘drop by precious drop’.
It is interesting to observe that whilst writing a sophisticated book about science, Martin Gorst reveals that he is truly a bourgeois idiot! Not only does he admit that Soviet science provided (in one way or another) direct and important insights and progression and nature of the universe (Alexander Friedrich, for example, in the mid-1920s whilst Joseph Stalin was in power, mathematically proved that the universe was expanding), but then rather stupidly reveals his own lack of understanding by including two paragraphs of utter ahistorical US anti-Intellectualism:
In 1936, the Communist Party of the Soviet Union brought in the new Constitution of the USSR – one of the greatest documents of human freedom ever developed in any country! Gorst appears ignorant to the reality that just like the US Constitution, the USSR separated Church from State, and the Classroom from the Church. Gorst also does not know that freedom to worship was guaranteed under Soviet law (as a private matter of personal choice). It was a criminal offence to interfere with, or hinder another person’s worship in any way! The USSR never oppressed religion in any way, as Gorst asserts. Gorst has obviously never watched the video of Muhammed Ali – the famous boxer – returning from the USSR in 1978 and explaining how there was no racism in the USSR and complete freedom of worship! From 1936 onwards, the Soviet State moved against the supporters of the traitor Leon Trotsky, arresting those caught planning pro-fascist, pro-Western and pro-capitalist uprisings. These people were tried, found guilty of political crimes and executed. The numbers were small, perhaps a couple of hundred arrested and less executed. Leon Trotsky was outraged to see his secretly built-up power-base in the USSR exposed and destroyed by loyal citizens. Stalin did not personally do this – as Gorst mistakenly claims – but was made aware of what was happening by concerned citizens and officials, etc. In retaliation, Trotsky (in 1938) publically called upon all his followers (which included George Orwell) to openly assist the forces of international fascism (and the colluding Catholic Church) in any future attack upon the USSR, and for people within the USSR to rise-up and over-throw the Soviet State using violence and terrorism! This is what Martin Gorst is supporting by making the false statements he does. Furthermore, Gorst omits entirely WWII, and fails to explain that not only was the USSR a loyal ally of the UK during WWII, but following the Nazi German invasion of the USSR, the Soviet Union lost between 27-40 million men, women and children to the barbarous actions of the Hitlerites! Again, Gorst is supporting this mass murder by printing the lies he does. And yet despite all this devastation inflicted upon the USSR, its scientists still managed to put the first man-made object into orbit in 1957. Soviet science was exactly the materialist science followed by the capitalist countries, and like the science in the capitalist countries, it rejected all religious input. The difference is that where science I n the capitalist West is use to primarily benefit the middle-classes, science in the USSR is directed to serving the interests of the working-class, and this is what Martin Gorst does like, to the extent that he is willing to print lies and fabricate history! The reality is that when science is directed toward working-class needs (as in Communist China today), it far out-performs its capitalist counter-part (as Soviet science did) – and leaves the bourgeoisie far behind!