Particle & Void

Per Newton’s Definition I:

DEFINITION I: The quantity of matter is the measure of the same, arising from its density and bulk conjunctly.

Thus air of a double density, in a double space, is quadruple in quantity; in a triple space, sextuple in quantity. The same thing is to be understood of snow, and fine dust or powders, that are condensed by compression or liquefaction and of all bodies that are by any causes whatever differently condensed. I have no regard in this place to a medium, if any such there is, that freely pervades the interstices between the parts of bodies. It is this quantity that I mean hereafter everywhere under the name of body or mass. And the same is known by the weight of each body; for it is proportional to the weight, as I have found by experiments on pendulums, very accurately made, which shall be shewn hereafter.

The quantity of matter depends on how densely its particles are packed in a volume of space. We think of particle as a body of solid matter that is shaped like a ball. According to Wikipedia:

“A particle is a small localized object to which can be ascribed several physical or chemical properties such as volume, density or mass.”

On atomic scale, the nucleus of an atom is a particle; and the rest of atom is void. On a cosmic scale, a celestial body is a particle, and the empty space is void. The void separates the particles, and exists in the interstices of matter. The void is continuous.

Void is defined as the region, which is void of matter. Other than that, void may consist of substance that is not matter A physical substance would be anything that is felt physically. A substance is characterized by force.

The essential characteristic of substance is force. When there is force, there is also substance.


The Atomic Particle & Void

In his paper on Electrical Conduction & Nature of Matter Faraday explains that the property of electrical conductivity requires that atoms be in contact with each other. Therefore, the atomic void that separates the material nuclei must contain the characteristic of force. This indicates the presence of substance in the atomic void. There is no empty space in the atom.

In gases the atoms touch each other just as truly as in solids. In this respect the atoms of water touch each other whether that substance be in the form of ice, water or steam; no mere intervening space is present. Doubtless the centres of force vary in their distance one from another, but that which is truly the matter of one atom touches the matter of its neighbours.

To Faraday, the nuclei were the centers of the force that filled the void of the atom.

Hence matter will be continuous throughout, and in considering a mass of it we have not to suppose a distinction between its atoms and any intervening space. The powers around the centres give these centres the properties of atoms of matter; and these powers again, when many centres by their conjoint forces are grouped into a mass, give to every part of that mass the properties of matter. In such a view all the contradiction resulting from the consideration of electric insulation and conduction disappears.

Matter is substance concentrated in the nucleus, which then spreads out as the void. There is no such thing as empty space.

According to Faraday, the atomic void represents a substance of electromagnetic nature.

An atom consists of a force field that is converging toward the center while increasing in frequency. It gets extremely compacted at the center where it appear as mass of the nucleus. This electromagnetic force is a substance, and it needs to be recognized as such.


The Cosmic Particle & Void

Substance in the cosmic void takes the form of radiation. In his paper on Thoughts on Ray Vibrations, Faraday proposes that the vibrations, by which radiant phenomena is recognized, may simply occur in the lines of force that fill the void.

The view which I am so bold to put forth considers, therefore, radiation as a kind of species of vibration in the lines of force which are known to connect particles and also masses of matter together. It endeavors to dismiss the aether, but not the vibration. The kind of vibration which, I believe, can alone account for the wonderful, varied, and beautiful phaenomena of polarization, is not the same as that which occurs on the surface of disturbed water, or the waves of sound in gases or liquids, for the vibrations in these cases are direct, or to and from the centre of action, whereas the former are lateral. It seems to me, that the resultant of two or more lines of force is in an apt condition for that action which may be considered as equivalent to a lateral vibration; whereas a uniform medium, like the aether, does not appear apt, or more apt than air or water.

This is a bold view put forth by Faraday. It dismisses aether of 19th century physicist but not vibration. These vibrations are direct or to and fro from the centers of action and not lateral like those on the surface of disturbed water, or the waves of sound in gases or liquids. The vibrations visualized by Faraday affected the very substance of space as they propagated through it. 

According to Faraday, the cosmic void represents substance of radiative nature.

Again, radiation is a substance, and it needs to be recognized as such.


The Substance of Particle and Void

In 1675, Newton first introduced his opinions regarding aether as follows:

A most subtle spirit which pervades all bodies by the force and action of which spirit the particles of bodies mutually attract one another, at near distances, and cohere, if contiguous;  and electric bodies operate at greater distances, as well repelling as attracting the neighbouring corpuscles; and light is emitted, reflected, refracted, inflected and heats bodies; and all sensation is excited, and the members of animal bodies move at the command of the will, namely, by the vibrations of this spirit, mutually propagated along the solid filaments of the nerves, from the outward organs of sense to the brain, and from the brain into the muscles.

Newton’s idea of aether and immovable space came about as a projection from the background of fixed stars, which he saw as relatively at rest,

Newton saw space to be filled with aetherial substance that was uniform and immovable.

The stars, however, appear to be fixed because of their immense distance and very large inertia. For aether to be immovable it must have infinite inertia. Faraday rejected the idea of aether and proposed radiation, defined by lines of force, to be the substance of space.

Faraday saw space to be filled with radiation that was varied and highly movable.



Faraday’s observations are amply proven by later discoveries. There is substance existing in the void in the form of electromagnetic force and radiation. Thus there is division of substance into matter and radiation.

There is no complete void.


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