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Gravity: A Great Friend or an Implacable Enemy?

Updated on February 6, 2015

Can't understand it, never mind photograph it.

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Einstein.  He struggled to understand all of the forces of the universe in his Unified Field theory.  But he couldn't bring it all together before his death.  Looks like his barnet has escaped!Ready to help or pounceWhen fire is the enemyNow, where is that ol' Earth?
Einstein.  He struggled to understand all of the forces of the universe in his Unified Field theory.  But he couldn't bring it all together before his death.  Looks like his barnet has escaped!
Einstein. He struggled to understand all of the forces of the universe in his Unified Field theory. But he couldn't bring it all together before his death. Looks like his barnet has escaped!
Ready to help or pounce
Ready to help or pounce
When fire is the enemy
When fire is the enemy
Now, where is that ol' Earth?
Now, where is that ol' Earth?

As much a part of our lives as our very being. But what would life have been like without the "weak force?"

There are many things in our lives that can take on the mantle of friend or foe, depending on how we use them, find them, or get in their way at the wrong time.

We can all thing of a hundred examples: fire is the one most often quoted; it can burn and kill you, or it can warm you, even saving your life and cooking your food, and more. Water may be another, you - and every living thing on the planet - cannot exist long without it, yet it can change into the worst kind of destructive monster: floods, tsunamis, even used as a torture in "waterboarding."

Some may say this also applies to the opposite, if you like. Poets and kings have all described and many been destroyed by love in its many forms, but it is also the most exciting and rewarding emotion man can ever have. (OK, same sex too...sigh).

The list goes on, but how many have added the subject of today's article, Gravity?

Well, look at the phenomena which no one really understands or can explain. Einstein tried and largely failed, along with many more. Gravity remains an enigma, but it is surely a friend whose laws (whatever they really are) we have had to adjust to. Our very evolution: the shape we are, the weight and how our organs are constructed, all depend on this constant, silent force - with us for all our lives and for the life of our world.

So gravity is a friend, but only because it has imposed its force upon us and created our dependence; now, we cannot exist on Earth without it keeping our feet on the ground, so to speak - and actually.

Assuming we would all be the same size and shape if gravity didn't exist - we wouldn't of course - imagine how life would be if we weren't held in place in this cosmic prison. We could fly like the birds, for example; like superman, we could leap over the highest building, well, actually we could leap, but we wouldn't come down the other side without some man-made assistance. Like spacemen, we would need small rockets to bring us back down. And careful how you control that speed, too! Great for suicides, they could just jump and not come back, expiring somewhere among the thunderheads as the oxygen ran out.

There would be accidental deaths by the thousands - millions - war would consist of finding brilliant ways to sabotage the enemy's safety systems sending the battalions off to the stars, flags waving and trumpets sounding...

It would be good to go without the "weak force" in other ways, too. We wouldn't drop things on our toes...but throwing something away - into the garbage bucket for example, would also set up a counter-force impelling us out the kitchen window. Help! we would shout to an anchored neighbor weeding his garden, "I don't have my returners on!" And he would quickly call the "sky guards" who would shoot up and stop you drifting through the universe for all time.

All sorts of inventions would be common to compensate for the lack of gravity (asuming this happened after we had evolved). Metal sheets might be imbedded in the earth and we, as well as animals, would have magnets on our feet. Commonest would be tethers of a length we needed to keep us a described distance from terra firma. You would have the "designer tether company," the "ultra strong item in suede effect," or the "transparent model," let your friends think you're living dangerously.

We might still have aircraft but no landing strips would be needed, just a small jet that blows us upwards like a Harrier Jet. Or for the young and adventurous, a small "tow plane" behind which float a chattering bunch of excited passengers, taking the open air journey to wherever. Employees with plastic "doggie poop" bags could collect the clouds of urine and poop floating behind the passengers.

Careful with that skeet gun! Yes, you could still shoot skeet or pigeons, even miles away, but the bullets would go up...and up...and up, maybe taking out a couple of those chattering passengers or even ending up killing an astronaut in the space station. The "skymen" would be the people most at home in a gravity free world. Little Green Men in faraway universes might one day complain, "Take cover, guys, it's another shower of bullets from those idiots in the Milky Way!"

One good thing, the old adage that "something that goes up must come down would no longer be true," In fact, it would now read, "something that goes up never returns without help."

The truth is, of course, we would not have evolved anything like we are today in a gravity free world. If we happened at all, we might well be microscopic as other laws govern the very small which would stay on the ground due to surface tension of a sort, or sucker feet, etc.. We could also be very large, but diaphonous in form, like huge dragonflies for example. As long as we had an atmosphere, birds and this type of Homo sapien could stay or go and would not be helpless, without a force holding them to the planet's surface.

In truth, all of the above cannot be either friend nor enemy unless we so allow them to. We know how to manage fire and (mostly) water; love? Heck, who needs it, too much of a risk. And Gravity, well, we only know life with it: its benefits and its nuisance value. We couldn't play the sports we love without it restraining the ball to taking a parabolic curve after we gave it energy with a kick or a throw, or a racquet and bat.

But we could all conquer Everest with little difficulty - but then, why would anyone want to? rather like reading silly articles like this!

And before some wise-farce lectures me: yes, the very fabric of the earth would probably fly apart without gravity, making all I have said here a nonsense...again!

Love you all...Diogenes.


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    • QudsiaP1 profile image

      QudsiaP1 2 years ago

      Very well written Bob. This article takes me back to my first day in Physics class where the teacher told me that without gravity and friction walking would be impossible.

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 2 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Hi sweetie:

      It was one of my silly articles and hardly deserving of scientific analysis by such as your good self.

      I'm OK, thanks, dreading the day of course!

      Found what I want, but she won't leave Brad for me!

      R x

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 2 years ago from North Texas

      You need to read my article on whether or not science can prove God exists and the little extra "There is no such thing as gravity." Yes Einstein included the lack of gravity in his Theory of Relativity which is now widely accepted in the science world. I included a video which explains what keeps us from floating away instead of gravity, and I think it's pretty easy to understand.

      But you have a very entertaining article here. Enjoyed the read. Do hope you are well and that you have determined what you want and found it too. ;)

      CC xx

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 3 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Thanks Star...don't forget to comment after you become a famous author! Bob

    • Austinstar profile image

      Lela 3 years ago from Somewhere in the universe

      Hahaha! Gravity is so much fun. They are still looking for those "gravity waves" that may or may not act like light waves. Who knows. I used to wonder, "who cares?". But with this hub, I see the possibility of controlling gravity after all. Too funny.

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 3 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Thanks Tilly: I see you have been busy, too, I have to try to find time to read all the hubs I get, Thanks for kind remarks Bob

    • diogenes profile image

      diogenes 3 years ago from UK and Mexico

      Ha Mike...yes I thought of a few more aspects, too, the possibilities are endless, could make a book out of it. Bob

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 3 years ago from New York

      Imagine your body flying against your will! What a concept Bob. Guess we don't give much thought to gravity but you've made some interesting (and funny) points. I wonder if all neighbors would call the sky patrol or just be glad you're floating away?

      Fun to read along with thoughts to ponder.

      Voted up, funny, and interesting.

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 3 years ago

      Bob, you present us with an interesting concept with this hub. I can visualize endless possibilities if we had the ability to control gravity.

      First would be government control of the gravity machines that would be treated like a public utility and taxed accordingly.

      Next would be companies springing to life who produced gravity boots and clothing accessories. They would become huge Corporations that would eventually be put out of business by manufacturers in China.

      Airlines would go out of business because people could fly most anywhere they wanted to go on anti-gravity days without the need for the giant flying cattle cars we now use.

      We would be able to force people to stay up with current events by publishing the "anti-gravity" days in the papers and on the news. Those who paid no attention would find themselves frozen in outer space. That might help some with population control and keeping the human species mentally strong.

      The possibilities are endless. Thanks for sharing this brain stimulating concept with all of us.


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