February the 17th 1600 was the date when a philosopher/mathematician called Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake by the Catholic Church.
The reason for his execution was "heresy" as usual. His ideas and teachings threatened the "christian faith", so the church simply killed him. Problem solved.
But what I found interesting here, is that he believed in the existence of extraterrestial life: " His cosmological theories went beyond the Copernican model in proposing that the Sun was essentially a star, and moreover, that the universe contained an infinite number of inhabited worlds populated by other intelligent beings. "
This was also one of the reasons why he was executed, because "claiming the existence of a plurality of worlds and their eternity" was one of the many charges made against him.
So believing that other worlds existed in addition to the one where we live could get you killed back in the 600'ties. Why is that, one might wonder? Well, the Bible says that God made only one world, and not more. So believing otherwise was a heresy.
Because the church of course feared, that should it be proven that "other worlds" existed beyond Earth, then that might mean that maybe some other God made them, and not their God, and then the church would lose it's credibility. Or maybe there was no God at all, but instead just a scientific process of some kind, which made it all...So better just kill the man, and hope that everyone forgets what he just said, eh?
But it seems that eventually the "heretic ideas" won, because today we have scientific proof that other worlds exist. And that Sun is a star. And that the Earth travels around the Sun, and not vice versa. And many other things.
But what makes this story so important, is that the Catholic church was a leading authority of the whole humanity back then. Although it's influence was mostly restricted to Europe. But still, it was one of the most powerful organizations on Earth back then. And it continues to be just that even today.
But if you take a look at how the Catholic Church "led" humanity, you'll soon notice that they tried to hinder the progress of humanity, instead of advancing it. They wanted us all to be obedient "believers", and nothing more. Science was in many cases a threat to them and their religion, as was free speech, free art, and all other "free things" in general.
Because Christianity isn't a religion of freedom or knowledge. Instead it's a religion of mental slavery and stupidity. The Genesis story tells it all: Adam and Eve weren't supposed to eat from the "tree of knowledge" located in front of them. And when they did, God punished them. The message? You should be stupid, and stay that way. That is the FIRST TEACHING given to us in the Bible. So no wonder that the vast majority of western people are stupid; Christianity is our number one religion. Yes, still it is, even after all these years.
How is it possible that a "donk religion" like this can survive in the year 2012? The Bible promotes human sacrifice, and says that gays should be killed. Why don't we ban this book? The legal reasons to do this already are there...But of course, God wouldn't like it if we banned his "holy book", would he? And that is the reason why almost nobody demands it to be banned: We are afraid of God's punishment.
Because if we dared to ban the Bible, then we would be sent to hell, just like all Dungeons & Dragons players.