Bentley's paradox is a cosmological paradox pointing to a problem occurring when Newton's theory of the gravitation is applied to cosmology: "According to Newton, each star in the universe ought to be attracted towards every other star. They should not remain motionless, at a constant distance from each other, but should all fall together to some central point. Newton admitted as much in a letter to Richard Bentley, a leading Cambridge philosopher of the time. The solution for this paradox is that, all the stars are not influenced by one gravitational force but there are many forces acting on the body, hence, forcing it to be either temporarily stationary, or to undergo very slight motion. The theory of Big Crunch suggests a similar thing, that the Universe will collapse by a bang at a point where all matter meets."
References and notes
- "This Month in Physics History - Einstein's Biggest Blunder", APS News, Vol. 14, Nr. 7, July 2005, online
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