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27. Natural Reality / A. Physics / 1. Matter / c. Atoms

[the lowest level of matter is indivisible parts]

34 ideas
The void is not required for change, because a plenum can alter in quality [Aristotle on Melissus]
Experiences are merely convention; only atoms and the void are real [Democritus]
When atoms touch, why don't they coalesce, like water drops? [Aristotle on Democritus]
'Full' and 'Void' secularised Parmenides's Being and Not-being [Heisenberg on Democritus]
Movement is impossible in a void, because nothing can decide the direction of movement [Aristotle on Democritus]
Atomists say there are only three differences - in shape, arrangement and position [Aristotle on Democritus]
Because appearance is infinitely varied, atomists assume infinitely many shapes of atom [Aristotle on Democritus]
There must be atoms, to avoid the absurdity of infinite division down to nothing [Aristotle on Democritus]
If a cone is horizontally sliced the surfaces can't be equal, so it goes up in steps [Democritus]
We must consider the four basic shapes as too small to see, only becoming visible in large numbers [Plato]
Wood is potentially divided through and through, so what is there in the wood besides the division? [Aristotle]
If a body is endlessly divided, is it reduced to nothing - then reassembled from nothing? [Aristotle]
Bodies are endlessly divisible [Aristotle]
There exists an infinity of each shape of atom, but the number of shapes is beyond our knowledge [Epicurus]
Atoms just have shape, size and weight; colour results from their arrangement [Epicurus]
There cannot be unlimited division, because it would reduce things to non-existence [Epicurus]
Everything is created and fed by nature from atoms, and they return to atoms in death [Lucretius]
If an object is infinitely subdivisible, it will be the same as the whole universe [Lucretius]
In downward motion, atoms occasionally swerve slightly for no reason [Lucretius]
If only atoms exist, how do qualities arise when the atoms come together? [Plutarch]
If only atoms are real and the rest is convention, we wouldn't bother to avoid pain [Diogenes of Oen.]
Atoms are not points, but hard indivisible things, which no force in nature can divide [Gassendi]
How do mere atoms produce qualities like colour, flavour and odour? [Gassendi]
The corpuscles just have shape, size and motion, which explains things without 'sympathies' or 'forces' [Alexander,P on Boyle]
There are atoms of substance, but no atoms of bulk or extension [Leibniz]
I think the corpuscular theory, rather than forms or qualities, best explains particular phenomena [Leibniz]
Atomism is irrational because it suggests that two atoms can be indistinguishable [Leibniz]
Things are infinitely subdivisible and contain new worlds, which atoms would make impossible [Leibniz]
The only simple things are monads, with no parts or extension [Leibniz]
Leibniz rejected atoms, because they must be elastic, and hence have parts [Garber on Leibniz]
Microscopes and the continuum suggest that matter is endlessly divisible [Leibniz]
Epicurean atoms are distinguished by their extreme hardness [Garber]
The 17th century reintroduced atoms as mathematical modes of Euclidean space [Rowlands]
Atomists say causation is mechanical collisions, and all true qualities are microscopic [Pasnau]