There has been a historical debate on geocentric and heliocentric models about the earth orbiting the sun or the presumption that the sun orbits the earth. The raging debate has been the center of discussion among scholars and other religious institutions who elude to provide an evidenced based approach regarding the arguments put forth for evaluation. In concise terms, geocentric notion comes up with a belief that assumes the sun, all stars, and the planets t to be revolving or orbiting around the earth. Additionally, it is imperative to note that geocentric model was the point of reference for the universe during the ancient times up to until the sixteenth and seventieth centuries when heliocentric model started to take root. In the middle ages, the geocentric model became the most accepted cosmological model especially for the Islamic world, which had dedicated astronomers who sort an explanation regarding the works of Ptolemy (Heimpel, M.H., and M.E. Evans, Pg. 129)
Heliocentric model brought a more elaborate argument with new evidence based on the innovation of a telescope, which monitored the movements of the sun and the earth. In light of that, many great philosophers agreed on the significance of the explanation put forward by the heliocentric model that assumed the earth to be revolving whereas the sun remained steady (Vogel, Pg. 121). Similarly, religious institutions had a tradition of agreeing with the geocentric model since it anchored well with biblical literature.
The geocentric model was a very crucial standpoint in the western world specifically during antiquity, renaissance, and middle ages. According to the ancient Greeks, the earth did not move around the sun since the stars could not shift their positions in one year to another. The failure by the said Greeks to observe the movement of the stars further supported the assumptions of the geocentric model. In efforts to counter the notions of the ancient Greeks, some scholars argued that the movements of the stars could not be seen with naked eyes since the distance between the earth and the stars was too big. As such, the Greeks had to dismiss the criticism levelled against them by simply asserting the lack of evidence in approximation of the distance between the earth and the stars. In their argument, they claimed that the distance to the fixed stars is seven hundred times more than the distance to Saturn if there was any possibility of the earth orbiting the sun.
The support of the geocentric model was because of the cosmological principles contained in its claims coupled with theories that appeared to depict the sun to be orbiting around the earth. The arguments enclosed in most of the scholarly literature confirm the geocentric fact that if the earth moved then there could be observable change in regarding the positioning of the stars and the stellar parallax, that is, the constellations of the position of the fixed stars. Moreover, the consistency contained in the luminosity of Venus as being in equivalent distance to the earth offered support for the geocentric model. Nonetheless, a later explanation gave a contrasting account that depicted planet Venus to be compensating because of its increase in size (Carman, Christián, and José Díez, Pg. 25).
Besides that, the Copernican theory by Galileo Galilei claimed the earth orbited around the sun. The theory received major support from medieval scholars who relentlessly researched on the possibility of the movement of the earth. Accordingly, the book authored by Galileo in the sixteenth century did not resonate well with the Catholic Church, which dismissed the notions of the book in entirety (Carman, Christián, and José Díez, Pg. 27). Similarly, another argument of the geocentric model is that the sun moved around the earth given that the earth does not appear to be spinning. Therefore, it is evident that the only viable option is that the earth orbits around the sun.
On top of that, geocentric supporters argue that the pictures taken from the outer space showing the movement of the earth are merely because of the relative movement of the cameras but not the entire movement of the earth. Additionally, the geocentric model accounts for the relative phases of Mercury and Venus coupled with explanations of the retrograde movement of the planet Mars by referring to the significance of the models that explain the relative movements of other plants around the sun. Besides that, the geocentric model states that the geometric configuration regarding the solar system and any form of kinetic description of the solar system is an explanation that anchors well with the assumptions that describe the system as a coordinate with the earth taking the zero point (Ramberg, Pg. 30).
Nonetheless, there is inconsistency contained in the claims of the geocentric model in light of the movement of sun relative to steadiness of the earth while at the same time depicting other planets to be revolving around the sun. The solar system offers a concrete perspective on the sun being at the center of the system. Therefore, any argument suggesting the sun to be orbiting around the earth whereas other planets orbit around the sun does not hold any ground.
Carman, Christián, and José Díez. “Did Ptolemy Make Novel Predictions? Launching Ptolemaic
Astronomy Into The Scientific Realism Debate.” Studies In History & Philosophy Of
Science Part A 52.(2015): 20-34.
Heimpel, M.H., and M.E. Evans. “Testing The Geomagnetic Dipole And Reversing Dynamo
Models Over Earth’S Cooling History.” Physics Of The Earth & Planetary Interiors
Ramberg, Peter J. “Popularizing Astronomy In The German Free Religious Movement, 1851–
1852.” Journal For The History Of Astronomy 47.1 (2016): 30.
Vogel, Manuel. “The Formation of the Solar System: Theories Old and New , by Michael
Woolfson: Scope: monograph, Level: general readership.” Contemporary Physics