One of the most common alleged proofs quoted for the spherical Earth theory is the Eratosthenes sticks and shadows experiment. Many people may remember NASA spokesman Carl Sagan presenting this experiment by using a map of Egypt with two obelisks attached and showing their resulting shadows. The story goes that around 250 B.C. a Greek mathematician and philosopher named Eratosthenes noted that at noon during the Summer Solstice in Syene, the Sun cast no shadow and the rays could reach straight to the bottom of his well, yet meanwhile in Alexandria a vertically standing metal rod cast a significant shadow. Eratosthenes, Carl Sagan, and other globe proponents reason that this result is impossible on a flat Earth. To quote Carl Sagan, “If at a certain moment each stick casts no shadow at all, that is perfectly easy to understand provided the Earth is flat. If the shadow at Syene is a certain length, and the shadow at Alexandria is the same length, that also makes sense on a flat Earth. But how could it be, Eratosthenes asked, that at the same instant there was no shadow at Syene and a very substantial shadow at Alexandria? The only answer (he claimed) was that the surface of the Earth is curved.” After reaching this conclusion, Eratosthenes then famously factored the length of the two shadows with his assumed distance to the Sun and recorded a measurement of the globe Earth’s circumference close to what heliocentrist astronomers still use today.
The fact of the matter is, however, that Eratosthenes, Sagan, and others are simply incorrect in their assumption that this would only be possible on a curved Earth. In reality, the exact same results occur on a flat Earth with a local Sun. Eratosthenes’ calculations were made assuming the Sun to be millions of miles away so that its rays would fall perfectly parallel even in points as divergent as Syene and Alexandria. Anyone familiar with the phenomenon known as crepuscular rays, however, knows full well that the Sun’s rays simply do NOT fall perfectly parallel, especially at such distant points, rendering the entire argument moot. Furthermore, using sextants and plane trigonometry, by measuring the Sun’s angle at two points on Earth simultaneously and factoring their distance from each other, the Pythagorean theorum reveals that the Sun is NOT millions of miles away, but instead less than a few thousand. High altitude balloon footage has also filmed lighting hot-spots on clouds further proving the Sun to be local and acting as a spotlight. Therefore if globe believers wish to be honest, they must admit it is their faulty assumption that only a distant Sun with parallel rays could produce such results which has led to their faulty conclusion of a curved Earth, because Flat Earthers have always maintained that the Sun was local, and the very existence of crepuscular rays render the entire experiment invalid.
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