Flat Earth Questions and Answers
Note: This is from the flat earth booklet called THE EARTH that was published in the beginning of the 20th Century. All writing is kept in the style of how it was then.
1 If, according to your theory, all the countries of the world are up on the top surface of a disc-like body, will you explain why they do not get their daylight simultaneously? Because it appears to me that the sun, from its great height, must shine upon the whole of the disc from sunrise to sunset.
The questioner assumes that the sun is a body much larger than the earth, located far away in space. Whereas as a matter of fact the sun is neither large enough nor high enough to shine over all the earth, but only over about half of it at once, the atmosphere deflecting the sun’s rays from the earth when they all very obliquely, so that darkness follows in those arts until the sun comes round again and is nearer. The sun’s light does not travel in straight lines, but converges we believe, and by the reflectivity of the whole bulk of its rays in circles the earth.
The cause of the refraction is attributable to the rays passing through media of varying density in the atmosphere.
2 Everybody knows that the sun’s direct contact with the earth never extends beyond the tropics, and als that it rises in the east and sets in the west; will you explain your theory of the earth’s motions as a disc, to bear out these facts s completely as the old theory does?
The sun’s direct Zenith never extends beyond the tropics, but it never gets in “direct contact with the earth.” While the evidence of our senses is opposed to the assumption that we are living on a whirling globe composed of land and water, we have also the evidence contained in the Scriptures, wherein we may learn, regarding the earth, that God “hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.” – Ps. xxiv. 2. Also in 2 Pet. iii. 5, it is stated that “by the Word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water.” Therefore, while the earth may have fluctuation it cannot move from its location; it is “founded upon the seas,” and so far as progression is concerned it is motionless. But the progression of the sun is a daily visible reality, its motion being in a spiral orbit, the limit of its circuit being with the ice boundary. The sun is never directly above any part of the earth north of the tropic of Cancer, nor south of the tropic of Capricorn. The first part of the question is recognized in the statement that there are two small circles of a “celestial sphere” (so-called) situated each side of the equator, at a distance of 23 deg. 23 min., and parallel to its greatest distance N or S: if the sun be observed from any latitude a few degrees N of a circle of the tropic of Cancer for any period, it will be seen to describe an arc of a circle. “The sun also rise and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose.” To us the sun rises in the esat and sets in the west – the reason being that it is the daily path of the sun so far as we in this part of the world are concerned.
3 This question has been raised: Can a river run uphill? Scientific survey has always shewn a fall in the bad of a river from its source to its estuary. The geographical term of “Water shed” goes to show that any river or set of rivers is conducted to the sea by the natural fall in the land that forms the water shed and when it has suited the requirements of man to interfere with a river’s course as laid down by nature, they have had to resort to mechanical aid in the shape of locks and weirs. Will you give your fullest explanation of the point you raise here?
Water cannot run uphill, though appearances occasionally caused by local surrounding might lead to a different deduction. The direction in which water naturally flows implies that there is some amount of declination in the direction which the water takes; but this is not a proof of the rotundity of the earth, but quite the contrary. In many instances the slope is almost imperceptible; e.g., for a thousand miles flows the great Nile toward the sea, and falls but a foot. Again, admitting that water flows to where there is a lower plane, yet the rivers are practically level – so level that they disprove a spherical earth.
To the Editor. – I enclose a cutting from Daily News, June 15, and shall be glad to know how it is possible to have four months night and four months sunshine in the south polar regions on a flat earth where the sun ought to set and rise every day. – B.O.J.
Ans. – The fat that water is level proves the earth is flat, and the fact that the midnight sun has been seen in southern latitudes proves that it is “possible” for the sun to appear there and give a long day, as it does in the North. Both facts must be believed as all “facts” ought to be believed. We cannot say the sun “ought” to rise and set in any particular way over the different parts of the plane earth.
“The sun knoweth his going down” according to the Psalmist and it is not for us to say that it “ought” to do otherwise than it does. As for the explanation of this phenomenon we must be content to wait for further light upon the subject. But whether we can explain the phenomenon or not of the southern midnight sun, of one fact we feel quite sure, namely, that water is level, and the Bible account of Creation is true, and the earth therefore is a plane.
ED. of The Earth.
Note: In the following article, no diagram was provided in which the article was referring to.
Why is it the sun is not visible all the night, especially as its light is so much greater than the stars?
Ans. To F.W.C. – Let N S represent the north star, and A where the north star was seen? By whom? It is said the north star cannot be seen beyond the Equator. The pages should be given in the 100 Proofs and “Parallax’s” book, as this would save time.
Your diagram seems to be taken from “Parallax’s” book. It was evidently intended to show how day and night occur and recur on a plane earth, not how much daylight could possibly exist in any given place at one and the same time.
The sun does not radiate with equal force, or rather to equal distance, in every direction. It is important to notice this. The sun’s light evidently travels further east and west than it does north and south. That is it travels further along the great circular course, moving round the earth than it does across. This should meet your difficulty.
Light and heat radiate equally in all directions when the sun is on the outer circle as it is on December 21st. It is known that the light gradually diminishes until at, or about, 20 degrees from the Northern Centre it shades almost imperceptibly into twilight and darkness. If then we take from this position to the Arctic Circle it describes the whole extent of sun, or daylight, at a given moment on the shortest day. On June 21st the sun, by gradually contracting its path, has arrived at the inner circle; then the same length of radius will produce the circle which represents the extent of daylight on the longest day. On the shortest day the light terminates at the Arctic Circle, leaving all beyond in darkness – and, as the sun moves forward, the edge of the circle of light continues during the whole of its course to fall short at a certain point; hence, although it is daylight over the rest of the habitable earth some time during the 24 hours, the centre, N, is left in continual darkness; but when, in six months afterwards, the sun is on the inner circle (the tropic of Cancer) the light extends beyond the Arctic Circle, and, as it moves in its course, the centre (N) is continually illuminated.
The motion of the sun is visible reality, which is entirely verified by the Scriptures. And if it be observed a few degrees north of the line called the Tropic of Cancer, and for any period before or after the time of touching or pass the meridian, it will be seen to describe a circle.
Mr. C. asks: “Why is it the sun is not visible all the night, especially as its light is so much greater than the stars?” The latter assertion we doubt, nevertheless this is a very fair question; but it has been answered more than once in The Earth. Capitan Parry and several of his officers when near the Arctic Circle, repeatedly saw, for 24 hours together, the sun describing a circle, and Mr. Campbell, United States Minister to Norway, with a party of gentlemen, went far enough north to see the sun at midnight, and they “slid into another day” without losing sight of the sun for 21 hours. The position of the Tropic of Cancer is 23 ½ degrees N. of the Equator, which is the highest north declination the sun attains on or about our Midsummer Day. The midnight sun is characteristic of the North, and this could not be if the earth were a globe.
The question might be asked, “How is it that the earth is not illuminated all over its surface if the sun is several hundred miles above it?” In order to answer this question the globularists have hypothecated the earth to be a whirling globe, and the sun to be an immense body located millions of miles away; but we reply: 1) if no atmosphere existed, and, if the sun were large enough, its light
would diffuse over the whole earth at once, and alternations of light and darkness could not exist; 2) as the earth is covered with an atmosphere, of many miles in depth, the density of which gradually increases downwards to the surface, all the rays of light, except those which are vertical, as they enter the upper stratum of air being diverted in their course of diffusion by refraction, are bent. But refraction, much like x in algebra, is an unknown quantity; in other words, conditions vary; but, supposing no difference exists in the conditions of the atmosphere from two points of observation, then refraction may be allowed for upon a mean computation, bearing in mind tha it only exists when the line of sight passes from one medium into another of different density – so where the same medium differs at the point of observation and the point observed.
We take it that the sun is a small body compared with the earth, and that its light cannot reach over more than one half of the earth at one time, consequently, as the sun moves, so night succeeds day; but there is a difference in north and the south. The North Pole star is the centre of a number of constellations which move over the earth in a circular direction, always being visible in England during their 24 hour revolution from and within the Equator, and it is a notable fact that the North polar star and the northern constellations can be seen from every meridian simultaneously. In the South, however, from the equator neither the so-called South Pole star nor the constellation of the Southern Cross can, we are informed, be seen simultaneously from every meridian.
From a letter which I received from Mr. Ernest Cooke, Government Astronomer, Perth, W.A., that gentleman states that: “In Perth three stars of the Southern Cross never set, the fourth goes just below the southern horizon for a short time each day; but in Adelaide and Melbourne it never sets.” Of course the fact that Perth is situated at a greater distance from the South than the two last named places fully accounts for this. For as we approach the southern regions the more southerly stars are visible which were not visible in more northerly positions, because human vision has its limits.