As we know, Giordano Bruno was handed over to Rome’s secular authorities by the Roman Catholic Church, to be burned to death, mainly because of the revolutionary nature of his cosmological theories. The suggested story given by the Inquisition was that the sentence handed down was due to his theological heresy, but this is doubtful. The Church wanted to quash the Brunian movement because they knew how devastating Bruno’s ideas were to the edifice of the Church. Eventually, they led to a scientific revolution anyway.
Rome wanted no part of any new revelations that would throw doubt on the doctrinal decisions they had made since the inception of the Church. If Bruno could show that Church authorities were in error in their cosmology, the entire structure of Christianity may collapse. So, they silenced Bruno and continued to keep the masses in the dark.
The cosmological ideas that Bruno had published up until that time were, in a word, revolutionary. He went much further than Copernicus, who merely stated that the Sun was the center of the universe, not the Earth. Bruno totally jettisoned the idea of a center altogether! Imagine how different an idea that would be to a culture that had, for sixteen hundred years, believed that the Earth had been chosen by God to be the central location of His Grand Drama, and hence the center of the universe.
The system of Copernicus was an advance on the Ptolemaic system, but it
was still, nevertheless, a closed and very finite system. He still retained aspects of the Ptolemaic cosmology, having merely switched the the Earth for the Sun. Of course, the Church wanted none of it, except to
retain the Ptolemaic system. They reasoned that, if Christ was born on
the earth, it must be the center of the universe.
Bruno posited that the universe is infinite, with many stars and many
planets orbiting them. There is no chosen planet anywhere.
I would like to think of the Brunian Revolution as a prelude to a new kind of thinking that works for both the Macrocosm and the Microcosm. It is not a strange thing that ideas form threads on multiple levels of Reality. As we have learned from our Hermetic studies, as above, so below; as below, so above.
Let’s use the Law of Correspondence to think about this in terms of the human Soul. We know that Soul is a universe in microcosm. Soul is composed of many personalities, gods, stars, planets, etc. Thanks to Jung, we call these archetypes. There are many people who still do not realize that a revolution has taken place in the Psyche. For a long time, Western culture has looked to Ego as the center of the Microcosmic universe. We never realized, until the last one hundred years or so, that Ego is merely one archetype among many. When we think of ourselves, we usually think of Ego, but that is not the case at all. Just as the material universe is composed of infinite stars and planets, so is each human Soul. There is no center to us; we are multi-faceted and all personalities are equal.
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