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The doubt arises from my understanding of Newton's second law. First I though it was just the definition of force but it actually states the relation between force, acceleration and mass (which can be verified empirically).

So, the next question was what exactly is the definition of force? I am not satisfied to just call it a push or pull. Further, could we have developed our physics without having developed the concept of force and instead representing it in terms of other fundamental quantities?

Like, I believe conservation of energy principle can be use to arrive at the same result of newton's second law without having to go through the concept of force. So, in that sense, is Newton's second law redundant?

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    $\begingroup$ Force is the time derivative of the well defined "momentum". $\endgroup$ – FGSUZ Jul 17 '18 at 18:10
  • $\begingroup$ but that is given by the second law. You imply then that newton's second law is the definition of force. $\endgroup$ – horaceZettai Jul 17 '18 at 18:20
  • $\begingroup$ Possible duplicates: physics.stackexchange.com/q/70186/2451 and links therein. $\endgroup$ – Qmechanic Jul 17 '18 at 18:34
  • $\begingroup$ No, that's not true. Newton's second law is a particular case of that, when $m$ is a constant. $\endgroup$ – FGSUZ Jul 17 '18 at 18:35