Gravitational Field Lines


How can a mass itself gives out fields, and has field lines from other mass going into its core? Or are there any external agents which induce a mass's fields?


There are several ways to think about the gravitational interaction between two objects. One, as you suggest is to imagine a field emanating from each object which has an effect on the other object. To help visualize this business, we picture "field lines" or "lines of force" connecting the two bodies. One of the problems with this way of thinking about gravitation is the difficulty you have already experienced in picturing how these lines are produced and how they bring about the gravitational interaction. The lines are a hypothetical construct to help us visualize the situation, not necessarily having any physical reality themselves.

I find it more convenient to imagine that a gravitational field is simply a condition of space, brought about by the presence of matter in that space. Then other matter sharing that neighborhood in space is effected by this condition. For more detail on these ideas look at

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