The Idea that the Earth is Flat has become extremely popular in recent years. However, despite the fact that many believe Flat Earthism is a modern and recent phenomenon, the truth is that it has been around for many decades.
Supporters of this idea claim that all satellite images of the earth provided by various space agencies are nothing more than Computer Generated Images.
And despite the fact that for time immemorial has science proven the Earth is not flat, supporters of this theory claim it is a massive lie.
At the beginning of classical antiquity, there were authors who argued that the Earth was flat and others that it was spherical.
Among the Greek philosophers, Thales of Miletus held the idea of a flat Earth. For his part, Anaximander believed that the Earth was a short cylinder with a flat, circular surface.
It is a common belief that the first person to have defended the idea of a spherical Earth was Pythagoras (6th century BC), but that idea contradicts the fact that most of the Pythagorean pre-Socratic philosophers considered the Earth to be flat.
In his work De Caelo, Aristotle (4th century BC) gave a reasoned explanation of why the Earth is a sphere and cited a value for its circumference that is correct within a factor of two.
In the third century BC., Eratosthenes gave a correct estimate of its circumference.
In the time of Pliny the Elder, in the first century, most Western scholars accepted that the Earth was spherical in shape.
More or less by then, Claudius Ptolemy derived his maps from a curved globe and developed the system of latitude, longitude, and climates.
His writings became the basis of European astronomy during the Middle Ages, although late antiquity and the Late Middle Ages saw occasional arguments in favor of a flat Earth.
But as you can see, discussion and debate whether or not the earth is flat have existed a long time.
You’d think that today, with all satellite images, maps, and videos from space, people would understand that Earth is, in fact, a spheroid, and not a flat disc-shaped object in space.
And as Flat Earhtism has gained popularity in recent years, it’s not that surprising to find that there are documents on the internet in favor of this idea.
Nonetheless, I still found it very surprising when I found a document titled ‘The Flat Earth Bible‘ while going through some posts on Scribd.
The document is described the following way: “An interpretation of Biblical Cosmology and a critique of Christian Fundamentalism. Why the Bible is not the Word of God. This Presentation reviews the Biblical evidence that the authors of the Old Testament thought that the Earth was Flat. The verses examined describe the Earth as a Flat Circular Disc sitting in a Cosmic Ocean on top of a mountain like pillars, just like in Mesopotamian Cosmology.”
Viewed nearly 5,000 times on Scribd, the document cites religious texts and early literature as to why the Earth is flat;
Proverbs 8: 27 The Ancient of Days 1
“When he established the Heavens, I was there, when he drew a circle on the face of the deep, “ RSV
“When he prepared the Heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth” KJV
“I was there when he set the sky in place when he stretched the horizon across the ocean” GNB
“When he fixed Heaven’s firm, I was there, when he drew a circle on the surface of the deep” JB
“’When he prepared the Heavens, I was there; when he decreed a circle upon the face of the watery deep” NWT
The Flat Earth Bible discusses the Shape of the universe as well:
Isaiah 40:22: Shape of the Universe
“It is he who sits above the circle of the Earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the Heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to dwell in. — RSV & KJV
It was made by the one who sits on his throne above the Earth and beyond the Sky; the people below look as tiny as ants. He stretched out the sky like a curtain, like a tent in which to live.” —GNB
“He who sits enthroned above the circle of the Earth, the inhabitants of which are like grasshoppers, stretches out the Heavens like a cloth, spreads them out like a tent to live in.”—JB
“There is One who is dwelling above the circle of the Earth, the dwellers in which are as grasshoppers, the One who is stretching out the Heavens just as a fine gauze, who spreads them out like a tent in which to dwell” —NWT
While it is not an official document in any way, and it’s basically a compilation of ancient writings put together into a powerpoint presentation, the document does show how modern society is divided when it comes to the shape of the earth, and how despite having evidence supporting the contrary, people refuse to give up in their beliefs, despite the fact that they are wrong.
As I have explained in this article, the first man to suggest the Earth was a sphere—to put the term to paper—was no other than the Great Aristotle, one of the greatest Greek scholars, a polymath with extensive knowledge in politics, poetry, theater, music, natural sciences, and philosophy.
Aristotle, however, was also a great astronomer. Aristotle wrote in 350BCE in the treatise “On the Heavens,” Book II, Chapter 14:
“Again, our observations of the stars make it evident, not only that the Earth is circular, but also that it is a circle of no great size. For quite a small change of position to south or north causes a manifest alteration of the horizon.”
“Indeed, there are some stars seen in Egypt and in the neighborhood of Cyprus which are not seen in the northerly regions; and stars, which in the north are never beyond the range of observation, in those regions rise and set. All of which goes to show not only that the earth is circular in shape, but also that it is a sphere of no great size.”
However, However, it was Eratosthenes who ‘nailed down’ the concept of a spherical Earth, and who managed to prove it more than 2,000 years ago.