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I have never felt comfortable about trying to explain gravitational attraction to children by using heavy balls running around elastic rubber sheets. After all, it is using gravity to explain gravity. It would be so much better to explain it more like it really is, thanks to that originally astounding concept of Albert Einstein. i.e. that increasing gravity causes time to increasingly lengthen. So when an observer watches say a spaceship being attracted straight to a planet, then snapshots of the scene will show that at a given second its speed of travel must be less than it will be in the next second because the next second will be longer and therefore the distance travelled during that second will be greater. Thus the effect of gravitational acceleration is explained. When it comes to the observer seeing a spaceship being deviated by the gravitation from a planet on say its lefthand side, then time is slowing more on the left side of the ship than on the right and consequently the ship will be constantly trying to travel faster on the its left side and therefore the whole ship will bend to the left and it will swing around the planet anti-clockwise to the observer.