So today, I released a book. It’s called “Galaxy Brainset: How To Be Like Me, An Intellectual” It is about my journey through internet sub-cultures and the Western Canon over the past few years and summarizes all of the important lessons I’ve learned along the way and distills them down into their core.
I’m really happy with how the book turned out, but I have to say the artwork in particular, both on the front and back cover, as well as in the book, really makes an impact.
If you’d like to buy the book on Kindle, you can buy it on Amazon through this link:
I really think it works better as a paperback. I put my time into making the paperback look and feel right as I was writing. The footnotes are easier, and the chapter headings and font are really nice. Plus, you get the, in my opinion, even better artwork on the back cover.
You can pick up the paperback at this link:
If you need a little extra convincing, here is the first chapter, for your perusal:
Chapter 1: The Shape of the Earth
“I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams.”—William Shakespeare Hamlet, II.ii
One of those things that crops up over and over again in online communities is the actual shape of the Earth. There is, of course, the normie1 answer —the world is a sphere. This answer is a simplified form of the scientific consensus, but most people generally believe it; not because of any evidence they have observed and deduced, but because they accept other people’s assertions. This is key: most people get their ideas about the world by believing in what other people tell them, not what they have determined through their own logic and reason. If you actually try and understand everything with only logic, reason, and your own observations, you end up like Descartes, explaining planetary motion through giant vortices. So not only does following pure logic, reason and observation take a long time, you’ll probably end up with the wrong answer anyways. Better to accept the conclusions of others and update your beliefs if you run into contrary evidence.
When you first start out thinking about the shape of the Earth, you may ask yourself: “why does it matter?”and “why do spherecucks2 get so mad when you question their theory?”Both of these questions are a bit perplexing. At first glance, the shape of the world seems like it would be an important piece of information. But then, when was the last time you said: “I better be careful, the world is round and that influences my decision?”. Unless you’re dealing with traveling long distances, it is really not an important piece of information.
But yet, many people treat disagreement, sincere or otherwise, about the shape of the world as an attack on the very foundations of their understanding of the world. How can something that is so irrelevant to the day to day decisions of ordinary people be so maddening?
The shape of the Earth matters because it is a fundamental fact about the world we find ourselves living in temporarily that cannot be ascertained through mere observation. Determining the shape of the Earth requires deductive reasoning and confidence in the ability for humans to uncover facts that are not readily apparent.
The reason that spherecucks get so upset when you question their theory is precisely because belief in their theory is reliant on trust in other sources. A typical spherecuck has never had an experience which definitively tells them the Earth is a particular shape. They have to rely on the authority of other sources. The source of all they know and understand about the world comes from what people say in books, on the pictures other people have taken, and on the words coming out of the box in their living room.
That these sources could be mistaken or falsified en masse doesn’t just strike at a particular theory about the shape of the world, it strikes at the very foundations of truth in the modern world. Truth is no longer what you see and experience yourself, but what you experience through the virtual world of media. In fact, what you see and experience yourself is supposed to be discounted and ignored as anecdotal, biased and insufficient. We are no longer supposed to understand the world through our own senses and reason, but through knowledge received via technology.
Now that we have understood the importance and the relevance of the shape of the Earth, I can tell you how people have cut apart the dominant theory. They will tell you that there are many hypotheses floating around on the shape of the Earth and that this is a question people have been searching for an answer to for as long as people have sought to understand things outside of their immediate experience. Also, different cultures have had different opinions on the shape of the Earth, based on their own methods of deduction, and to deny indigenous peoples the benefit of the doubt is the act of a scientific colonizer.
A major weakness of the spherical earth theory is that the layman’s explanation, “the world is round”or “the world is a sphere”, is actually not the precise scientific word for the shape of the Earth. The correct term is: an “oblate spheroid”. This common generalization and simplification shows that the average person doesn’t care about precise language or describing things thoroughly —they just want an explanation that is reasonable enough to accept.
In a similar vein, a sphere is a Euclidean solid defined as having all points on its surface equidistant from the center of the sphere. This is not the case with the Earth. Mountains and valleys, hills and the seas are clearly different distances from a hypothetical center of the Earth. That means the Earth cannot be a sphere, by definition. I don’t really think that type of argument convinces anyone, but it is a way to score points in debate team.
The thing that is truly difficult with the oblate spheroid hypothesis is its physical implications. The story goes that the Earth is, more or less, a large sphere spinning at ridiculous speeds and traversing the cosmos at even faster speeds. They also say that the Earth spins at such a high speed, it literally squishes a six-thousand yottagram ball[sic] 4 of iron, oxygen, silicon and magnesium by 13 miles against the force of “gravity”5. This physical description seems to contradict our day-to-day experience and is a really important piece in questioning the theory as a whole.
Furthermore, the average believer in the oblate spheroid hypothesis does not know how to go about confirming the theory, and even fewer have actually ever done so themselves.
If you look back in history, you will find that the oblate spheroid hypothesis got its start with the Ancient Greeks. The Greeks were, of course, very smart, for their era. However, we need to recognize that all of their other scientific theories have been debunked, and that the oblate spheroid hypothesis somehow managed to escape relatively unscathed.
However, I say relatively unscathed because the theory has changed over time. As instruments improved, measurements for the shape of the Earth changed, and hypotheses were updated to change the Earth from a sphere to an oblate spheroid. The oblate spheroid hypothesis is merely a successor to a theory that no longer held up under measurement, which is, in fact, very similar to how Ptolemaic epicycles6 were introduced into geocentric solar system models.
Another key point in the long history of spherical Earth theories is that the underlying reasoning behind the choice of sphere has changed over time. For a long time, the reason the Earth was a sphere was left to the will of the divine creator of the heavens and the Earth. However, as the age of science and reason was ushered in, the spherical Earth hypothesis was modified to fit these new paradigms. The theory of universal gravitation implied that large bodies such at the Earth should tend towards being spherical as the result of the agglomeration of small bodies attracted to each other as a function of mass and distance. These scientific predictions, along with observational evidence, is the foundation for this theory’s acceptance by the scientific community at large.
Now that we have looked at the sources of doubt on a widely accepted theory, we will take a look at some of the alternative theories floating around on the internet and try to understand the evidence in their favor. One of the big mistakes people make is they think the alternative to a spherical Earth must be some sort of thin plane floating through the cosmos. Serious thinkers on these questions don’t actually push this idea. As is all too common, people create an understanding of something they don’t know very well through second-hand sources, often hostile ones, and get a very distorted view of what people are actually arguing.
Another reason people think the only alternative to a sphere must be a thin plane is because when you look outside, the world seems, on average, pretty flatish. There’s no reason to think that the Earth has a particular curve to it or anything like that in your day-to-day experience. That the Earth as a thin plane on top of which your whole experience takes place just makes intuitive sense. In fact, even if this were the case, it would not change the lives of 99% of people. Not only that, but if the thin plane hypothesis were true, the awesome interior album cover design by Roger Dean for the Yes album, Close to the Edge would be based in reality.
Although, as we have said, serious commentators dismiss the idea of a thin plane, there are plenty of other hypotheses out there. Many, more sophisticated theories have been developed over the years which maintain the flat world, but account for many of the observations people have made over the years that they believe lends support to the spherical Earth hypothesis. After all, the spherical hypothesis was modified in light of evidence, why not the planar hypothesis?
The modification to the planar hypothesis, the radial sinusoid, is not so readily dismissed. The radial sinusoid modifies the intuitive flat plane to account for observations various researchers have observed, much like the archaic spherical hypothesis was modified into the oblate spheroid theory. Rather than assume that the Earth is a sphere, it can be just as easily supposed that the Earth, on a large scale, has a gentle slope to it which slows and then reverses direction at the equator, rather than the southern hemisphere being physically underneath the northern hemisphere. In this case, the lines of longitude would emanate from a central north pole. Along each line of longitude, from the North Pole to the circle defining the South Pole, there would be a sinusoidal variation in the average height of the Earth relative to a flat base.
This modification to the intuitive thin plane hypothesis accounts for the ship-on-the-horizon effect so often put forward by oblate spheroid proponents as evidence in its favor. This effect is widely known and cited, but few people have ever actually observed the effect themselves and speak only from parroting the litanies they have been programmed to repeat. The radial sinusoid theory holds up very well under the sorts of scrutiny even a determined layman could hope to accomplish.
Another intriguing idea I have seen bandied about is the “Hollow Earth” theory. There are some theories that say that while the world is “round”, there is a hollow interior to the earth. In this case our world, the outer world, functions much like the oblate spheroid theory projects, but the hollow interior is a key difference.
The conjecture is that there is a second world on the inside of our own, with its own strange properties, life, geography, etc. that is loosely tied to our own. In this case, the crust of the Earth is the primary solid component, with a second surface on the inside of the Earth. In order to balance out the density and gravity issues with a hollow Earth, there is a small star at the center of the hollow Earth. Not only does this provide gravitational attraction to both the interior and exterior surfaces, it provides light to the interior Earth. There are all sorts of interesting details that proponents of this theory like to include on how everything we can observe from the surface works out easily with the hollow earth model, they even manage to explain seismic wave action and other such phenomenon.
If the hollow Earth theory is true, there are likely creatures of various sorts living on the opposing side of the shell. Life initially formed on one side or the other and somehow made it through to the other side or the other and somehow made it through to the other side via some sort of portal or subterranean cave. The life that developed on the interior of the Earth’s crust, while sharing a common genesis with life on the outer crust, is of a completely different sort and would only be described as monstrosities by people who saw them. This is a possible explanation for many monster sightings, that they are in fact creatures from the Earth’s interior who accidentally made it to the other side. Any people living on the other side probably see animals like the elephant the way we see dragons.
An alternative theory is that we are on the ones on the inside of the Earth, and the Sun, the Moon and stars are simply part of the interior of a massive sphere. In this case, the Earth would have to be absolutely massive, with the surface of the Earth as we know it just a small component of a wider interior shell. This portends not just the existence of an exterior, but also many other parallel Earths in various sections of the sphere’s interior. These worlds are left floating around with only occasional interaction with each other. Again, this could be the source of monster sightings and other things like it.
As I said in the beginning of this chapter, there are theories from indigenous people about the shape of the Earth that have quite a bit of appeal. Social justice types are happy to point out that the dominant theories for shape of the world were created white men operating in fundamentally European paradigms of understanding the world. These social justice types say that people pushing these particular paradigms of understanding7 as the only acceptable ways of uncovering the shape of the Earth are promoting a system of oppression. This approach may not win many friends, but it certainly scares some people into allowing theories that would otherwise be dismissed into being considered and treated as valid, no matter how ridiculous the theory may seem.
One such indigenous theory states the Earth is fixed to the back of a giant space-faring creature, perhaps a turtle, tortoise, terrapin or other testudine. The turtle carries us on his/ her/ its back through the cosmos, keeping us safe from the dangers lurking across the cosmos.
In addition to the extra weight given to this theory because of its non-European origins, this theory also happens to take away the necessity of dark matter through the mass of the heretofore unobserved turtle. Obviously, the giant turtle would have to be much larger than the Earth to perform this task. The giant turtle theory also provides a notion of comfort, because there is a gigantic cosmic being carrying us on its back, and Atlas was never too keen on his task.
Now that you’ve been exposed to various theories about the shape of the Earth, you may ask yourself: “Which one should I believe in?”. The answer is of course, that you should believe whatever you think best explains the world around you. If you seek a higher truth than that, go out and do some experiments. Become like a man of classical Greece, full of questions about the universe and eager to find answers by whatever means are available. Don’t settle for believing something as important as the shape of the Earth because someone told you what to think, go and find out yourself. Accepting the world as it is presented to you is a fool’s errand and will inevitably lead to you being duped. 8
1-normal, well-adjusted person
2-People who are indignant or combative towards someone who disagrees with the oblate spheroid hypothesis for the Earth
3-This type of phrasing is commonly used in order to avoid treating an idea like it should be assumed to be true
4-Tactical usage of [sic] in text is a great way to establish yourself as a superior commentator to your implied opposition.
5-Weaponized quotation marks are a great tool that “journalists” and internet scholars use to discredit an idea or label
6-Sub-orbits added to the motion of planets in the geocentric system to explain the observed retrograde motion of planets.
7-Reason, scientific evidence, etc
8-Aside: while we are on the topic of the shape of the Earth, I would be remiss to neglect the important subject of geography in the post-modern era. If there’s one thing I hear about constantly on the internet, it is the term “social constructs”. I have come to learn that geographical features: the Rocky Mountains, the Sahara Desert, the Amazon Rainforest, the Pacific Ocean, etc. are defined by humans, not by nature, and are therefore fundamentally social constructs. After all, who is to say exactly where the Sahara Desert ends and adjacent geographical regions begin? How do we determine when one has crossed from the Pacific Ocean into the Atlantic, Indian, Southern or Arctic Oceans? These dividing lines are all determined by people and societies, almost exclusively white males. Just like gender and race, the Pacific Ocean is a social construct, so don’t let some map drawn by dead white men tell you where it begins and ends.