more from Isaac Newton

Single Idea 12178

[catalogued under 26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 8. Scientific Essentialism / e. Anti scientific essentialism]

Full Idea

That gravity should be innate, inherent and essential to matter to me so great an absurdity that I believe no man who has in philosophical matters a competent faculty of thinking can ever fall into it.

Gist of Idea

That gravity should be innate and essential to matter is absurd


Isaac Newton (Letters to Bentley [1692], 1693.02.25)

Book Reference

Newton,Isaac: 'Philosophical Writings' [CUP 2004], p.102

A Reaction

He is replying to some sermons, and he pays vague lip service to a possible divine force. Nevertheless, this is thoroughgoing anti-essentialism, and he talks of external 'laws' in the next sentence. Newton still sought the cause of gravity.

Related Idea

Idea 13198 Gravity is within matter because of its structure, and it can be explained. [Leibniz]