Gravity, action and an equal and opposite reaction

Main Question or Discussion Point

hi all
for whatever reason in the last 5 years I've become fasinated with math I have
absolutely no formal training at all I am teaching myself algebra at the moment and
hope I can progress eventually into physics

Now for my question (no laughing please)

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction

if this law is true and gravity is the action
what is the opposite reaction I'm not thinking
like drop a ball and it bounces back up, but that
were in orbit around the sun because of gravational pull
what is the opposite reaction that stops us from being
pulled all the to the sun

no laughing

thanks

lneilson

Answers and Replies

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Well in fact, as ridiculous and beautiful as it sounds, the earth pulls ever so slightly back on the sun and even your body pulls back on the earth. Given the huge mass differences however, it goes for the most part unnoticed.

I may have misunderstood the last part of your question, but I believe you asked what keeps us from being pulled into the sun. The earth is moving at a certain speed around the sun. Think of the earth as "falling around" the sun, such that by the time the earth would have been pulled directly and landed on the surface of the sun, it has moved enough forward to avoid contact. This is what gives the effect of circular orbit.