# Newton and mass

Is it more correct to say that a dog wags its tail, or that the tail wags the dog?

Common thinking is that the larger mass influences or moves the smaller one. But if Newton is right, then it is also true that the tail is wagging the dog, because for each and every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

In conclusion, a dilemma arises: should we indeed think of dogs as wagging their tails, as we have it in ordinary parlance? I leave you with a quote:

"The point of philosophy is to start with something so simple as not to seem worth stating, and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will believe it." - Bertrand Russell

• "Does this universal gravitational constant make me look fat?" May 11 at 2:20
• There was a similar ancient question about a flag fluttering in winds. Some say it's flag which is moving, while others say it's wind which is moving... May 11 at 2:46
• Let \$p\$ be that the dog wags. Let \$q\$ be the dog has a tail. Let \$r\$ be that the tail has a dog. \$p\$ implies \$r\$ but also \$q\$ implies \$r\$. Interesting...Let \$F\$ be that the dog has a field's medal. None of these imply \$F\$. May 11 at 2:50
• The wailing originates in the nervous system of the dog, so definitely even in free fall the dog is wailing its tail, not the other way around. May 11 at 11:07