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Unread 02-13-2010, 02:35 PM   #3
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 684
the dominant gravitational body in the solar system is the sun. thats for sure.

but the whole chiddush of relativity is that the entire question is meaningless.

however the math works out much more nicely if you use the sun as your starting point, but thats just math. Thats because the sun is the gravitationaly (and therefore respective of motion) dominant body in our solar system.

I think this is basicaly why the rambam said "don't get to married to this interpretation, it isn't exact". his point was more to point out that the starts are not deities and move according to preset orbits. For that his description is still a better way of describing the apperant motions of the planets than a heliocentric patern. most people who grow up hearing about the helio-centric solarsystem have trouble wraping their minds around the concept of a retrograde loop, which is probably what led the ancients to decide to worship the planets. Esentialy his point is, this is all explainable, predictable, and intelligeable. Movealong people, nothing to see.

I had a program that would let you set gravitational bodies in motion around each other, and it was facinating to decide to pin the smallest body in the system and let all the others move around it, cause they move in such bizzare motions, much like rambam describes.
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