Chapter

The Law of Inertia

Colin McGinn

in Basic Structures of Reality

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199841103
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919529 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199841103.003.0006
The Law of Inertia

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This chapter analyzes the law of inertia. The law of inertia says that if it were not for outside influence everything would be immortal—not just uniform motion in a straight line but every other property of things. It is never internal to any attribute that it should spontaneously cease to be instantiated. All change of properties is imposed from outside those properties. Complete isolation would thus ensure universal perseverance, if only it were possible. The law of inertia, when generalized, asserts a fundamental permanence at the core of things. Eternity is written into every fact.

Keywords: law of inertia; physics; Newton; motion

Chapter.  7165 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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