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The notions of absolute space and time plus that of material point are the cornerstones of Newtonian dynamics. The entire science of mechanics (be it the mechanics of celestial bodies of Laplace, the mechanics of rigid bodies of Euler, the mechanics of incompressible liquids of Helmholtz, or the mechanics of solid continuum of Cauchy) is based on those three fundamental notions. The complete description of material point is rendered by specifying one scalar quantity (its mass) and one vector quantity (its translational velocity). I believe that the conception of material point based on such a definition has a fatal drawback which, in the final analysis, is responsible for the failure of all attempts (including that of Maxwell) to offer a successful mechanical model for treating electromagnetic phenomena.What exactly is the problem with the existing definition of material point that renders it impotent for dealing with phenomena where rotational motion in a continuous medium of substance plays dominating role (like the phenomenon of turbulence of which magnetic action is but one manifestation)? The answer induced by the question itself is a simple one: the definition of material point has nothing to say about the rotational mode of motion. But, strangely enough, Newtonian mechanics, built on the notion of material point capable of translational motion only, deals quite successfully with some phenomena where the rotational motion is manifest - spinning and rotating tops and gyroscopes. How is that possible?
The definition and understanding of viscosity as a mechanical property measure requires it to be defined in terms of rotation of "viscous" media, not in terms of slipping parallel surfaces or Hookes springs stretched in parallel.
While continuous media seem to be unphysical, it is really atomic corpuscles in a vacuum which are a unphysical construct. All we can “sensibly" say is that density variation is ubiquitous and fractal, and any apparent distance between dense regions has never proved to be empty of everything!
... we can assert by reason of the relativistic equations of gravitation that there must be a departure from Euclidean relations, with spaces of cosmic order of magnitude, if there exists a positive mean density, no matter how small, of the matter in the universe. In this case the universe must of necessity be spatially unbounded and of finite magnitude, its magnitude being determined by the value of that mean density.
If Le Sage's theory [of gravitation], or anything of a similar nature, be at all a representation of the mechanism of gravitation, a fatal blow is dealt to the notion of tranquil form of power we have called potential energy. Not that there will cease to be a profound difference in kind between it and ordinary kinetic energy; but that BOTH will be henceforth to be regarded as kinetic. What we now call kinetic energy is that of visible motions, also of motions of the smaller parts of bodies, and of the luminiferous ether, etc., each of these being more refined, as it were, than the preceding. But if Le Sage's theory be true, potential energy of gravitation is a kinetic form still further refined than any of these. And the conservation of energy may perhaps once more be completely and accurately expressed as the conservation of vis viva, though the term will of course have then a meaning incomparably more extensive than its original one.The Unseen Universe by B. Stewart and P.G. Tait, pp. 110-111.