Welcome to “The Principle” blog!
Since our film has probably already locked up the award for “Most Reviewed Film By Those Who Never Bothered To Watch It First’, we thought it would be appropriate to begin this blog with an actual review from someone who has! Many thanks to Archbishop MacClanahan for his contribution!
IF YOU ARE HAVING TROUBLE VIEWING THE ABOVE GRAPHIC, HERE IS THE FULL LETTER:
After viewing the film I am shocked concerning all of the conflict recently surrounding it, as I believe it was very balanced in presenting the options of various individuals.
There seems to be something quite volatile about this question of the Copernican Principle which, on first examination, seems inexplicable.
Why should a film examining the question of our place in the cosmos have sparked so much turmoil, four hundred years after the trial of Galileo? It appeared to me that the true heart of the controversy surrounding “The Principle” is as much a philosophical and theological issue as a scientific one. In examining the various cosmological views of the universe in their historical and scientific contexts one cannot but be faced with the question of our significance in the order of things. Are we “insignificant” and less than a mere particle of space dust in the vastness of the cosmos, or do we hold a unique and special place in the order of all that exists? If our world is insignificant, then are we as persons even less significant? Is there a Creator or not? And if there is a Creator, then is there a destiny and purpose for not only our world but for each of us as individuals?
It seems that these questions still touch quite a sensitive nerve, and I am happy to recommend and endorse this challenging film. I found it to be a fascinating survey of the history of this foundational idea of our modern world, as well as a valuable aid in understanding the remarkable new observations of our cosmos on its largest observable scales; observations which raise the possibility that Copernicus may, indeed, be “coming back to haunt us”.
Archbishop Russell McClanahan
Province of St. Peter
The Communion of Evangelical Episcopal Churches