Saturday, November 17, 2012

Earth as the Center of the Universe

Everyone knows about the Copernican Revolution, whereby in the early 15th century the astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus proposed that the Earth goes round the sun, rather than the other way around. This upset the ancient belief that the Earth was the center of the universe. The sun became the center of our solar system and the Earth simply one of its many satellites in a much vaster vision of space.

Yet Meher Baba said that there is a certain sense in which the Earth is Creation's center. Baba says there are millions of planets with life in the Universe and of these many have human life. All life in these worlds is evolving. But Earth is the center of Creation in as much as it is the Earth to which all souls must eventually migrate to begin the inward journey of the spiritual path toward God-realization, the destiny of all souls in Creation.
It is only . . . on our earth [that] a human being can realize God, owing to several reasons, the chief of which are:

(1) Our earth is nearest to the Creator-Point;

(2) Our earth and our earth alone is directly connected with mental and subtle worlds;

(3) It is only on our earth that it is possible for human beings to possess intellect and love - head and heart - in equal proportions.
(Meher Baba, The Awakener Magazine, Volume 15, p. 22)

Of course Baba does not say that the Earth is the physical center of the universe.
"In Infinity you cannot have a point as center, otherwise it's not Infinity."  (Meher Baba, The Awakener Magazine, Volume 9, p. 28)
It is its spiritual center in the sense of being the destination of all souls in Creation and thus the direction they are moving through their long sequence of evolutionary forms and incarnations on other worlds.

It has occurred to me that it is possible that the real ancient meaning of the belief that the Earth was the center of the universe, prior even to Aristotle, was meant in this more spiritual sense. And that it was only with the onset of the more materialistic outlook of reality begun in ancient Greece and furthered in the Renaissance that this ancient belief was misunderstood to be literal? It is possible that Aristotle, who placed Earth in the Center of his model of the Universe, was the first to misinterpret this ancient view, passed down to him, as a literal fact about physical space.

It is possible that a more ancient time had far less concern for such a material modeling of reality reality,  preferring to model spiritual reality instead, and thus the mistake of misunderstanding them has been our own.

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