On any given subject in the world of science, there are opposing points of view. For example, some physicists contend that light consists of waves. Other physicists say, no, you’re incorrect. Light consists of particles. Quantum physicists say you’re both wrong because it’s both.
We could cite numerous examples where two or more scientific theories are at odds with each other, but yet where all of them are considered to be within the bounds of scientific orthodoxy by the majority of scientists.
Conversely, there were men like Nikola Tesla, John Keely and Viktor Schauberger whose ideas (for example, ideas such as what we now call Zero Point Energy) were so threatening to the mainstream scientific community of their day that these men were labeled as charlatans, fakes, frauds and worse.
They were not welcome—or at least not for very long—in the scientific circles of their day. They were outcasts. The denizens of scientific orthodoxy excluded these geniuses from the circle of scientific acceptability.
In short, these gentle giants were scientific heretics. Since their mainstream opponents could not understand nor could they refute the science of Tesla, Keely and Schauberger, the so-called heretics were often harassed, frequently threatened, and occasionally even physically beaten.
Their sources of financing were withdrawn. They were ridiculed, and when that treatment proved ineffective, they were eventually ignored. Such is often the fate of the pioneer and the proclaimer of truth—especially when it threatens to overturn orthodoxy. Because when orthodoxy is overturned, those currently occupying the pinnacle of orthodoxy lose their wealth, power and prestige.
The same pattern is found in the world of politics. In America, there are acceptable differences of opinion in the political realm. But these differences are bounded by the parties known as Democrats and Republicans.
We find the same pattern in the realm of medicine. There are powerful interests who control what is acceptable and what is not. Although alternative medicine has been making inroads over the past several decades, the medical-pharmaceutical powers-that-be still attempt to stifle the health “heretics” by labeling them as quacks, charlatans, frauds, snake oil salesmen, etc.
In many areas of life, we could remark on the same phenomenon. Whatever the field of endeavor, there are powers-that-be who continually strive to maintain their power and position by controlling what is acceptable disagreement and what is not. That which is deemed acceptable is within the circle of orthodoxy. What is not is heresy.
The origin of the word “orthodox” is from the Greek words which meant “right opinion” and “right thinking.” It is interesting to note that orthodox is defined in the Webster’s 1828 dictionary as “sound in the christian faith; believing the genuine doctrines taught in the Scriptures; opposed to heretical.” (Emphasis mine.) Would you agree that by “genuine doctrines” Webster meant true doctrines?
Notice how the meaning has changed as this same word is defined in my 1977 Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary. Nowadays, orthodox means “1. conforming to established doctrine, esp in religion.”
We notice …