By William K. Vogeler
The Big Bang shook Newton's Apple from the tree.
When the first particles of matter combined in the cataclysmic release of energy called the Big Bang , the early universe expanded outward in a symphony of motion that affects all things. In the beginning, matter rolled forward into atoms, gaining mass and complexity as diverse as galaxies, stars, planets --- and apples.
Like an expanding balloon, this evolving matter pushed out against the Fabric of Space  and created the boundaries of existence. The universe was curved on the outside edges, but also inside pockets of four-dimensional space as exploding matter replicated in smaller versions of the Big Bang.
These swirling, spinning galaxies, solar systems and planets carried with them the inertia of creation, manifest in the force of gravity. In the mix of matter curving and bending space, gravity  is manifest as weight when matter slows down due to resistance in space.
It is like a man descending in an elevator. He pushes a button and begins moving, but he senses gravity only as the elevator slows him down. Likewise, the Big Bang set all matter in motion but gravity becomes apparent only as something slows the matter down. We call this effect weight.
On the cosmic scale, this dynamic explains the apparent acceleration of the expanding universe . Matter on the fringes of the universe appears to be accelerating, but it is due to the diminishing resistance of the Fabric of Space. Space is wearing thin there, so matter is accelerating and gravity is disappearing.
On the galactic scale, this phenomenon may be evident in black holes . This dense matter has effectively torn through the Fabric of Space, drawing all matter in the galaxy towards the singularity and out of existence. It is funneling somewhere beyond gravity, space and time.
On the solar system scale, stars curve space and draw planets toward them. But each planet moves around the star, balanced on the bends of space created by a parent galaxy.
And on the planetary scale, objects on the surface of a planet are also moving from the force of the Big Bang. They appear to be moving toward the planet as they fall, but they are actually caught in the turbulence of curved space as all matter continues on its path in the expanding universe.
In all cases, gravity is the apparent effect of matter launched at the creation of the universe. So the Big Bang, in effect, is knocking apples off the trees.
Copyright 2007 (C) William K. Vogeler
Published with permission in Amateur Astronomy Magazine, July 2007