Why don’t we feel the Earth’s motion?

          Till a few hundred years ago, it was believed that the Earth is the centre of the universe and that the Sun, the Moon and the stars revolve around it. This fact was based on the observation that the Earth is stationary while the position of stars is changing. In 1545, a Polish astronomer Copernicus suggested that the Earth revolves round the Sun. It was proved that it revolves round the Sun and completes one revolution in 365 days. This period is called a year. Secondly, it also rotates on its own axis and takes 24 hours to complete one rotation.

          Naturally the question arises: if the Earth moves, why don’t we feel its motion? The answer is: because of gravity, all the things situated on the Earth including the atmosphere move with the Earth and hence we can’t feel it is moving. You can understand this in a different way. If you rotate a football with an ant on it, the ant will not feel that the ball is rotating. Exactly like the ant on the football, we are situated on the surface of the Earth and we don’t feel the movement of the Earth. 

          The biggest proof of the Earth’s motion is the change in seasons. Seasons occur due to the Earth’s motion round the Sun as well as due to its rotating on its own axis. Day and night are caused by the Earth’s motion on its axis. The portion of the Earth which faces the sun experiences day while the remaining portion has night. If the Earth did not rotate on its axis, the part of the Earth facing the sun would always have had day while the rest would have had night for ever. The Earth’s axis makes an angle of 23° with the vertical. As such each pole faces the sun continuously for six months and for the next six months, it does not. This explains the six monthly duration of day and night on the poles. All these observations confirm the motion of the Earth round the Sun as well as on its own axis.