Section 12 - Stimulus, Sensorial Exertion, and Fibrous Contractionby@erasmusdarwin
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Section 12 - Stimulus, Sensorial Exertion, and Fibrous Contraction

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If two particles of iron lie near each other without motion, and afterwards approach each other; it is reasonable to conclude that something besides the iron particles is the cause of their approximation; this invisible something is termed magnetism. In the same manner, if the particles, which compose an animal muscle, do not touch each other in the relaxed state of the muscle, and are brought into contact during the contraction of the muscle, it is reasonable to conclude, that some other agent is the cause of this new approximation. For nothing can act, where it does not exist; for to act includes to exist; and therefore the particles of the muscular fibre (which in its state of relaxation are supposed not to touch) cannot affect each other without the influence of some intermediate agent; this agent is here termed the spirit of animation, or sensorial power, but may with equal propriety be termed the power, which causes contraction; or may be called by any other name, which the reader may choose to affix to it.

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