Four letters ... to doctor Bentley, containing some arguments in proof of a deity [in reply to inquiries made by him before publishing the last two lectures of A confutation of atheism].
abfurd accurately poiſed afcend afcribe Anſwer aſcend attracting becauſe BENTLEY bumble Servant Cauſe Center central Body Comets concentrick Orbs confequence Confideration confidering Infinites Counſel defcend Degrees of Motion Deity Diſtances Diſturbance diurnal Rotations divine Arm divine Power effential and inherent elſe evenly fpread throughout fame Power fecond feem feveral Orbs fiderable finite firft firſt fit to compoſe fome fometimes fpeak fpherical fuch fupernatural Power fuppofing gravitating Power Hypotheſis infinite Number infinite Space Infinites are equal innate Gravity Jupiter juſt Quantity know no Reaſon leſs Letter Maffes Mafs Maſs Matter evenly ſpread muſt natural Caufe NEWTON Orb of Venus Orbis Magnus Palace at Worceſter Paralogiſm Particle Planets Plato Pofition prefent preſent primary Planets Quantity of Matter Query reft repreſented reſt Reſtriction revolve ſaid Saturn ſeems Senſe ſeveral ſhould ſome ſpeak properly Sun and Planets ſwift Syſtem theſe Things thoſe tranfverfe Impulſe underſtand unleſs Velocities Vortices whole Space
Page 22 - You sometimes speak of gravity as essential and inherent to matter. Pray do not ascribe that notion to me, for the cause of gravity is what I do not pretend to know, and therefore would take more time to consider of it.
Page 28 - ... a vacuum, without the mediation of anything else, by and through which their action and force may be conveyed from one to another, is 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. Gravity must be caused by an agent acting constantly according to certain laws ; but whether this agent be material or immaterial, I have left to the consideration of my readers" (3d letter to Bentley, 5th February 1692-93).
Page 3 - WHEN I wrote my treatise about our system, I had an eye upon such principles as might work with considering men for the belief of a Deity ; and nothing can rejoice me more than to find it useful for that purpose.
Page 12 - I see nothing extraordinary in the inclination of the earth's axis for proving a Deity, unless you will urge it as a contrivance for winter and summer, and for making the earth habitable towards the poles ; and that the diurnal rotations of the sun and planets, as they could hardly arise from any cause purely mechanical, so by being determined all the same way with the annual and menstrual...
Page 5 - ... were an opaque body like the planets or the planets lucid bodies like the sun, how he alone should be changed into a shining body whilst all they continue opaque, or all they be changed into opaque ones whilst he remains unchanged, I do not think explicable by mere natural causes, but am forced to ascribe it to the counsel and contrivance of a voluntary Agent.
Page 4 - As to your first query, it seems to me that if the matter of our sun and planets and all the matter of the universe were evenly scattered throughout all the heavens, and every particle had an innate gravity towards all the rest, and the whole space throughout which this matter was scattered was but finite, the matter on the outside of this space would by its gravity tend towards all the matter on the inside...
Page 11 - Flamsteed, and had they been placed much nearer to the sun and to one another, they would by the same powers have caused a considerable disturbance in the whole system.
Page 10 - But when I consider that our earth is much more heated in its bowels below the upper crust by subterraneous fermentations of mineral bodies than by the sun...
Page 16 - And much harder is it to suppose all the particles in an infinite space should be so accurately poised one among another, as to stand still in a perfect equilibrium. For I reckon this as hard as to make not one needle only, but an infinite number of them, so many as there are particles in an.