Exactly how is the teaching of whether the earth revolves around the sun or vise versa a means of holding power over the affairs of men? It was not only the church that held Ptolemy's view in Galileo's day, but science in general. Galileo was scorned by both sacred and secular parties. He didn't help his cause in presenting himself as an acerbic know-it-all.
Mind naming one?
I just finished going thru this with the last bizarre historical revisionist on this thread--the church was treatened because of a very ornate cosmology it had tied to the bible, and really staked quite a lot of stock in, in their presentation of theology to the largely illiterate masses of Europe, which you can sort of get a picture of if you pick up Dante's Inferno and check out the illustration either at the back or the front--when most of your flock is illiterate, you put a lot of emphasis on illustrations--and that is exactly what the church did. This picture puts the earth at the center focus of the universe, and, therefore, of special concern to God. If the earth isn't the center of the universe, than possibly humans aren't the center of God's concerns, and possibly God's spokesmen here on earth aren't actually all the important in the overall working of human affairs.
It was not only the church that held Ptolemy's view in Galileo's day, but science in general. Galileo was scorned by both sacred and secular parties. He didn't help his cause in presenting himself as an acerbic know-it-all.
Good grief, another one.
What is this, abysmal historical ignorance week?
Galileo was not "scorned by both sacred and secular parties", he was very highly regarded in his day, not least by the Pope himself. Where do you get this stuff? He was brought to trial by the inquisition precisely because he wasn't as you've characterized him, and because his book on the subject was selling like hotcakes on a greased griddle in a Europe thick with reformation sentiment and newly awakening scientific interest that made people like Newton and Galileo celebrities.
For two people to come up with this loopy take on history in the same thread suggests to me that there is a creationist ammo site somewhere that's got a recent bee in it's bonnet about Galileo--c'mon, fess up.