Isaac Newton is credited with explaining the mechanism of universal motion. Although constructed in the 1600s, his theories on gravity would become the foundation for the modern world view of the universe. These theories demonstrated the manner in which the various components of the universe related to one another as a result of the force of natural attraction, a relationship described in a mathematical formula which can be restated to contend that "the gravitational attraction of two bodies is equal to the product of their mass divided by the square of the distance between them". Newton's life and work are, in fact, among the most interesting in history.
Newton's discoveries are even more fascinating in the context of the period in which they were made. Numerous scientific and technological advancements which were made in this time period had tremendous impact not only on the people of that time period but all the way up to the present. From Copernicus to Voltaire, the greatest minds of all time became occupied with the refinement of scientific knowledge and even the scientific method itself. .
Newton's discoveries interrelated, in fact, with many others of this time period. The first radical departure of science from the tried and true norms of the period preceding the Renaissance was the findings of Copernicus. Copernicus, to the consternation of the Church in particular, asserted that it was the sun around which our planet revolved, not the sun around the earth as was held by the Church . Copernicus" revelations would be so astonishing that even he himself would be unwilling to publish them until practically his dying day knowing that the uproar they would create would shake the foundations of the church and the foundations of Aristotelian mechanics which held most of the beliefs of the sixteenth century in place . With the advent of the Copernican theory that the sun, not the Earth, was the center of the universe people were torn from their Middle Age intellectual darkness and placed under the glaring lights of reality.