This is an open question directed to all Flat Earth Theorists, but I'm especially interested to see the responses of active debate participants like Tom Bishop or Pete Svarrior. It's okay if you don't want to answer, I'm not prying. However, if you are comfortable with sharing, what got you interested in Flat Earth Theory as a potentially true scenario. Was anyone not taught RE theory?
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Offline timterroo

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2020, 05:17:20 PM »
This is an open question directed to all Flat Earth Theorists, but I'm especially interested to see the responses of active debate participants like Tom Bishop or Pete Svarrior. It's okay if you don't want to answer, I'm not prying. However, if you are comfortable with sharing, what got you interested in Flat Earth Theory as a potentially true scenario. Was anyone not taught RE theory?

What interested me was not so much FET as a "potentially true scenario". What interested me was that if you put aside photography/videography, and try to prove the earth is round - it becomes a daunting task. What we've been taught our whole lives as "truths" are hardly provable. The more you discuss it, the more apparent this becomes.
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2020, 06:37:42 PM »
The reason why people have a had time proving RE on their own is because they are trying to prove ancient arguments which were based on observation and assumption and little else.

The Enlightenment and the birth of the Scientific Method occurred because the people of the past did not really experiment much and just observed and assumed things, and built models on fallible human logic. The lesson learned was that truth must be demonstrated through experimentation, and anything less is a pseudoscience. If you go into astronomy with this mindset, you can see that much of astronomy and astrophysics has always been a theoretical fantasy of the mind, an observational science, which does not follow the Scientific Method, and is nothing like other fields which are based on experimentation.

Another telling trait is that if you look closely, much of the 'phenomena' cited for Round Earth Theory are actually of an inconsistent nature, as documented in the FE Wiki. An experiment or observation with inconsistency would be instantly rejected in a field like Chemistry, since you don't know what is causing the inconsistency, but is given a pass in RE science. Accepting these experiments is a sign of desperation - that they have nothing else to rely on.

This is a civilization desperately trying to justify its world view. If you can see this then it is easy to see that an alternative model is likely true.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2020, 06:54:21 PM by Tom Bishop »
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Offline TomInAustin

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2020, 06:52:36 PM »
The reason why people have a had time proving RE on their own is because they are trying to prove ancient arguments which were based on observation and assumption and little else.

The Enlightenment and the birth of the Scientific Method occurred because the people of the past did not really experiment much and just observed and assumed things, and built models on fallible human logic. The lesson learned was that truth must be demonstrated through experimentation, and anything less is a pseudoscience. If you go into astronomy with this mindset, you can see that much of astronomy and astrophysics has always been a theoretical fantasy of the mind, an observational science, which does not follow the Scientific Method, and is nothing like other fields which are based on experimentation.

Another telling trait is that if you look closely, much of the 'phenomena' cited for Round Earth Theory are actually of an inconsistent nature, as documented in the FE Wiki. An experiment or observation with inconsistency would be instantly rejected in a field like Chemistry, since you don't know what is causing the inconsistency, but is given a pass in RE science. Accepting these experiments is a sign of desperation - that they have nothing else to rely on.

These are acts of desperation by a civilization desperately trying to justify its world view. If you can see this then it is easy to see that an alternative model is likely true.


All of that might have had a chance if not for the abundance of evidence in RE
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2020, 07:08:46 PM »
All of that might have had a chance if not for the abundance of evidence in RE

The evidence is insufficient. I doubt that you can cite something that is not an observation built upon an assumption, or is not an experiment that is inconsistent.

The father of RET, Aristotle, had an abundance of evidence for his theory of spontaneous generation too. Repeated observations of flies originating from rotting meat. Frogs and newts which seemed to come from the mud. Multiple people in different parts of the country who reported the same thing. Despite this abundance of evidence spontaneous generation was later found to be fallacious, however. The theories of spontaneous generation were believed up until the mid 1800's, even after Francesco Redi's landmark meat-in-a-jar experiments in the 1600's. It only took about two thousand years to figure out that one out. 

Observe and Interpret = Bad science. Aristotle and his following were seriously bad scientists. The worst. Yet his 'proofs' of RE are still cited today as practically its main evidence.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2020, 07:33:21 PM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

Offline ChrisTP

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2020, 09:56:56 PM »
Quote
Yet his 'proofs' of RE are still cited today as practically its main evidence.
Maybe he was wrong about things unrelated to earth, but Samuel Rowbotham was wrong about things unrelated to earth too and you still cite him today. It's really quite disingenuous of you to be using that as a reason not to trust someone about something they could be right about, don't you think? eric dubay is wrong about a lot of things, he makes a lot of assumptions too and argues for flat earth with those assumptions, so with the same kind of logic, I guess we can just write off the possibility that he's actually right about the shape of the earth. You, Tom, are wrong about a lot of things, I guess you're not to be trusted either about the earths shape. Strange that you would use arguments that can easily be used against you.  ???

Everyone is wrong about things at some point, that's how you learn. You cannot discredit someone entirely just because they were incorrect about an unrelated thing.
Tom is wrong most of the time. Hardly big news, don't you think?

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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2020, 09:58:35 PM »
Quote
Yet his 'proofs' of RE are still cited today as practically its main evidence.
Maybe he was wrong about things unrelated to earth, but Samuel Rowbotham was wrong about things unrelated to earth too and you still cite him today. It's really quite disingenuous of you to be using that as a reason not to trust someone about something they could be right about, don't you think? eric dubay is wrong about a lot of things, he makes a lot of assumptions too and argues for flat earth with those assumptions, so with the same kind of logic, I guess we can just write off the possibility that he's actually right about the shape of the earth. You, Tom, are wrong about a lot of things, I guess you're not to be trusted either about the earths shape. Strange that you would use arguments that can easily be used against you.  ???

Everyone is wrong about things at some point, that's how you learn. You cannot discredit someone entirely just because they were incorrect about an unrelated thing.

Aristotle's proofs are still widely used and cited. Any criticism of Aristotle is a criticism of the currently cited evidence for a globe. Its evidence comes from observational proofs of 300 B.C. Search for how we know the Earth is round and we get endless references to Aristotile's pseudoscience. Criticizing Aristotle's practices is a criticism of observation based 'science' which observes and interprets without experimentation. Aristotle did no experimentation, and neither did anyone else who cites his observational proofs.

"Verified and repeated evidence" means nothing, as evidenced by Aristotile's utterly wrong spontaneous generation theory which was based on observation and human logic. This was not only his theory, but the theory of many scientists for two thousand years to come. A fallacious foundation by an unsatisfactory scientist founder and figurehead reflects on science as a whole. This science couldn't figure out that things don't spontaneously generate into existence, yet you think that its luminaries could decipher the nature of the Earth and solar system.

Applied further, did Copernicus demonstrate experimentally that the Earth was in motion around the Sun, or was that decided through 'logic'? Same problem, different name.

Unlike Aristotle and Copernicus, Rowbotham did actually perform some experiments. His experiments are performed on light, with multiple control points along the path of the experiment, to show that water does not bend according to round world theory over a length of six miles. Aristotle, nor his Greek contemporaries, nor Copernicus, nor many generations of astronomers which followed, did anything like that. There are no controlled probes of nature. They operated through logic and assumption rather than experimentation, like much of astronomy today. Those commonly cited proofs for a round earth are all observations of a few things with Aristotelian conclusions. They are all a part of the same fallacy.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 05:18:16 AM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2020, 10:22:07 AM »
This is an open question directed to all Flat Earth Theorists, but I'm especially interested to see the responses of active debate participants like Tom Bishop or Pete Svarrior. It's okay if you don't want to answer, I'm not prying. However, if you are comfortable with sharing, what got you interested in Flat Earth Theory as a potentially true scenario.
I have seen nothing but a flat earth in all my life, so the longer I thought about it, the more convinced Ihave become.
Was anyone not taught RE theory?
All my life.
I didn't say (conversion of) thermal energy wasn't involved at all.
A rocket does not create thrust by converting thermal energy.

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Offline TrueRoundEarther

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2020, 02:48:26 AM »
I have seen nothing but a flat earth in all my life, so the longer I thought about it, the more convinced Ihave become.
Was anyone not taught RE theory?
All my life.

Just curious and a bit off topic, where were you raised? Normally schools and other educational institutions provide the fact that the Earth is round? Were you homeschooled because if that were the case, you would have been likely influenced by someone who believes the Earth is flat?
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Offline GreatATuin

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2020, 07:48:08 AM »

Another telling trait is that if you look closely, much of the 'phenomena' cited for Round Earth Theory are actually of an inconsistent nature, as documented in the FE Wiki.


But if you look even closer, absolutely none of these "inconsistencies" really are inconsistent. Things can be counter-intuitive, or hard to understand, like the apparent "Moon tilt illusion" or the n-body problem.

Which means it's much easier to dismiss them as "inconsistent" or "not working" than to properly understand and explain them.

What interested me was not so much FET as a "potentially true scenario". What interested me was that if you put aside photography/videography, and try to prove the earth is round - it becomes a daunting task. What we've been taught our whole lives as "truths" are hardly provable. The more you discuss it, the more apparent this becomes.

It's almost a tautology: if you put aside the best proofs, it becomes harder to prove something :). But, yes, it's much less obvious than you'd think, that's also what interested me.
Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

you guys just read what you want to read

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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2020, 06:31:44 PM »
Quote
But if you look even closer, absolutely none of these "inconsistencies" really are inconsistent. Things can be counter-intuitive, or hard to understand, like the apparent "Moon tilt illusion" or the n-body problem.

Those subjects are more about things which do not work, rather than things which are inconsistent, and off topic to what I am referencing. However, from what I've seen of you on that subject are claims that the three body problem works to describe celestial systems, citing yourself as your source, in contradiction to NOVA and physicists who directly state that the problem does not work. You also claim that the Moon Tilt Illusion works without really addressing any of the criticisms against it.

In order to contradict those physicists on the three body problem, you would need to construct your own collection of sources by physicists, showing that the celestial systems can be fully described with the three body problem. It should be possible to find direct statements and abundant sources if there are actually working solutions. The bar to contradict the three body problem page is set much higher than your personal objection when it cites a dozen physicists who say the same thing.

Your objection is basically "yeah, I know he said that it doesn't work and only symmetrical configurations exist, and approximations are needed.... but then in this other paragraph he says the orbital calculations are accurate" and when we look at that further in a thread, the source really saying the approximations are accurate; the approximations which treat a three body problem as a series of two body problems and ignores the concept of three bodies. You provide a continual series of inferences stemming from your own opinion, rather than providing the opinions of physicists who state directly that the three body problem works to simulate our celestial systems.

As far as inconsistency goes:

Foucault Pendulum
Michelson Gale Pearson Experiment
Coriolis Effect Experiments
Cavendish Experiment
Sinking Ship Effect
Contradictions between Michelson-Morley and Sagnac/Wang experiments

All of these are documented as inconsistent in the FE Wiki. I have yet to see evidence that those things are, in fact, consistent.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2020, 09:06:24 PM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2020, 10:24:56 AM »
I have seen nothing but a flat earth in all my life, so the longer I thought about it, the more convinced Ihave become.
Was anyone not taught RE theory?
All my life.

Just curious and a bit off topic, where were you raised?
US
Normally schools and other educational institutions provide the fact that the Earth is round?
Yes.
Were you homeschooled because if that were the case, you would have been likely influenced by someone who believes the Earth is flat?
Not home schooled.
I didn't say (conversion of) thermal energy wasn't involved at all.
A rocket does not create thrust by converting thermal energy.

Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2020, 05:32:49 PM »
Unlike Aristotle and Copernicus, Rowbotham did actually perform some experiments. His experiments are performed on light, with multiple control points along the path of the experiment, to show that water does not bend according to round world theory over a length of six miles. Aristotle, nor his Greek contemporaries, nor Copernicus, nor many generations of astronomers which followed, did anything like that. There are no controlled probes of nature. They operated through logic and assumption rather than experimentation, like much of astronomy today. Those commonly cited proofs for a round earth are all observations of a few things with Aristotelian conclusions. They are all a part of the same fallacy.

Rowbotham's experiments are cited a lot by Flat Earth Theorists. However, I find it interesting that refraction, and the ability of light to bend are completely ignored in these experiments. Whenever an observation of the curvature of the earth is brought up (say a ship disappearing over the horizon like here: https://forum.tfes.org/index.php?topic=16513.0), refraction is quite often used as a foil. For once, I actually read the Wiki Page on the Bedford Canal experiment- if refraction is introduced, the veracity of the experiment is called into doubt. I know that it says that refraction would have to be immense to correct for a flat earth, but if refraction allows a ship to appear to be partially under the horizon, then surely it would have at least shown some difference in the flag heights, right? But the Bedford level experiment states that the flags appeared to be "absolutely horizontal" for 6 miles. Inconsistent observations seem to apply to both camps. I'd also like to point out that the Eight Inches Per Mile Squared observation is only an approximation, and a poor one at that. It's not representational of Round Earth Theory. This article does a beautiful job of explaining: https://flatearth.ws/8-inches-per-mile

I'd like to see a properly documented Bedford Level Experiment done, any suggestions?
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #13 on: June 23, 2020, 01:02:35 AM »
Rowbotham's experiments are cited a lot by Flat Earth Theorists. However, I find it interesting that refraction, and the ability of light to bend are completely ignored in these experiments.

It's not flawed and they don't ignore the possibility refraction. The first experiment was a two point experiment with a boat which is visible for further than should be seen and then the following experiments then up the ante with multiple control points along the observation path.

From Experiment Two of Earth Not a Globe we read:

Quote
    “ Along the edge of the water, in the same canal, six flags were placed, one statute mile from each other, and so arranged that the top of each flag was 5 feet above the surface. Close to the last flag in the series a longer staff was fixed, bearing a flag 3 feet square, and the top of which was 8 feet above the surface of the water--the bottom being in a line with the tops of the other and intervening flags, as shown in the following diagram, Fig, 4. ”
           
    “ On looking with a good telescope over and along the flags, from A to B, the line of sight fell on the lower part of the larger flag at B. The altitude of the point B above the water at D was 5 feet, and the altitude of the telescope at A above the water at C was 5 feet; and each intervening flag had the same altitude. Hence the surface of the water C, D, was equidistant from the line of sight A, B; and as A B was a right line, C, D, being parallel, was also a right line; or, in other words, the surface of the water, C, D, was for six miles absolutely horizontal.
    If the earth is a globe, the series of flags in the last experiment would have had the form and produced the results represented in the diagram, Fig. 5. The water curvating from ”
           
    “ C to D, each flag would have been a given amount below the line A, B. The first and second flags would have determined the direction of the line of sight from A to B, and the third flag would have been 8 inches below the second; the fourth flag, 32 inches; the fifth, 6 feet; the sixth, 10 feet 8 inches; and the seventh, 16 feet 8 inches; but the top of the last and largest flag, being 3 feet higher than the smaller ones, would have been 13 feet 8 inches below the line of sight at the point B. ”

If the earth were a globe it is quite the coincidence that the flags all experienced the Flat Earth refraction effect, one by one, all the way down to the end, which projected each flag into the air at the exact height they needed to be at in order to make things look flat in accordance with the distance looked across and the height of the observer. Each flag drops a unique distance as the Earth drops.

Rowbotham is well aware of the "it was refraction" argument, and his experiment is designed to test the refraction of light rays on the flags of constant height against the taller flag at the end. The observation is artificially manipulated—controlled—to separate one explanation from another, in the effort to more truthfully determine a cause of an observation. There are multiple control points in this experiment. Each point is a test in the experiment. Incredible refraction coincidences would need to occur to account for them. The top of the first flag would have to have been projected 8 inches into the air, the second flag 32 inches, the third flag 6 feet, the fourth flag 10 feet, the fifth flag 16 feet, and the sixth flag 24 feet into the air (earth drop), when the later flags should be below the horizon.

Similar experiments like Experiment Two above have been conducted.

Frozen Lake Proves Flat Earth - Runtime: 3m23s
Hernando County Waterways - Runtime: 2m34s

The answer to these is "a coincidence did it."
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

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Offline timterroo

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2020, 04:06:51 AM »

Similar experiments like Experiment Two above have been conducted.

Frozen Lake Proves Flat Earth - Runtime: 3m23s
Hernando County Waterways - Runtime: 2m34s

The answer to these is "a coincidence did it."

Thanks for sharing these, I’m pretty intrigued by the frozen lake video. I am honestly baffled for the time being, since I believe the earth to be round.

I think the experiment needs to be done with lasers instead of beacons. This would rule out the possibility of light refraction or reflection.
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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #15 on: June 24, 2020, 04:33:39 PM »

Similar experiments like Experiment Two above have been conducted.

Frozen Lake Proves Flat Earth - Runtime: 3m23s
Hernando County Waterways - Runtime: 2m34s

The answer to these is "a coincidence did it."

Thanks for sharing these, I’m pretty intrigued by the frozen lake video. I am honestly baffled for the time being, since I believe the earth to be round.

I think the experiment needs to be done with lasers instead of beacons. This would rule out the possibility of light refraction or reflection.
You can tell that the light is being refracted by the fact that the more distant lights flicker on and off (when the actual lights are steady).
That shows that the light is intermittently blocked by something. My contention is the something is the curve of the earth but at times refraction allows those lights to be seen, just not consistently. On a FE why would the light source ever be blocked?
If you are making your claim without evidence then we can discard it without evidence.

Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

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Offline timterroo

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #16 on: June 24, 2020, 04:37:51 PM »

Similar experiments like Experiment Two above have been conducted.

Frozen Lake Proves Flat Earth - Runtime: 3m23s
Hernando County Waterways - Runtime: 2m34s

The answer to these is "a coincidence did it."

Thanks for sharing these, I’m pretty intrigued by the frozen lake video. I am honestly baffled for the time being, since I believe the earth to be round.

I think the experiment needs to be done with lasers instead of beacons. This would rule out the possibility of light refraction or reflection.
You can tell that the light is being refracted by the fact that the more distant lights flicker on and off (when the actual lights are steady).
That shows that the light is intermittently blocked by something. My contention is the something is the curve of the earth but at times refraction allows those lights to be seen, just not consistently. On a FE why would the light source ever be blocked?

That caught my attention too - the lights appearing to blink. It is tough to rule out atmospheric conditions as well, but my thinking is that because the curve on RE would be so shallow, and the surface is white, the light from the beacons is actually reflecting on the surface of the ice/snow, allowing the viewer to see the light. Similar to how if you take a flashlight and shine it at a shallow angle against a shiny surface, the light will reflect across that surface.

What makes beacons actually appear horizontal with each other is the fact that the beacons stop reflecting against the snow right around the horizon.
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #17 on: June 24, 2020, 04:45:34 PM »
If blinking = refraction, then why does the light only blink when the camera was at 5 inches above the surface and not at 12 inches and other higher elevations where refraction would also need to occur? The blinking stops at slightly higher elevations. The other elevations seem to discount that.

Nonetheless, even if there was refraction present, that still would not explain the inherent coincidence.
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Offline timterroo

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Re: What pushed you in the direction of belief in Flat Earth Theory?
« Reply #18 on: June 24, 2020, 05:08:57 PM »
If blinking = refraction, then why does the light only blink when the camera was at 5 inches above the surface and not at 12 inches and other higher elevations where refraction would also need to occur? The blinking stops at slightly higher elevations. The other elevations seem to discount that.

Nonetheless, even if there was refraction present, that still would not explain the inherent coincidence.

This is why the experiment needs to be done with lasers. If I was certain that there is no bending happening (by using lasers), I could be convinced it is actually flat.
"noche te ipsum"

"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough."  - Albert Einstein