law of contiguity

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action at a distance

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646—1716) German rationalist philosopher, mathematician, and logician

René Descartes (1596—1650) French philosopher, mathematician



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In Leibniz, the principle that there are no discontinuous changes in nature: ‘natura non facit saltum’, nature makes no leaps. Leibniz was able to use the principle to criticize the mechanical system of Descartes, which would imply such leaps in some circumstances, and to criticize contemporary atomism, which implied discontinuous changes of density at the edge of an atom. See also action at a distance.

Subjects: Philosophy.

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