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The "life" question


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#1    lowbro

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:48 AM

Hello everyone on UM!

Haven't posted in sooo long so I'll start a topic that has plagued my mind for too long..

I just wonder how life starts? What is its role? How come Earth has, what we think, such diverse life?

As far as I know, the Miller - Urey experiment (http://en.wikipedia....Urey_experiment) answers only part of the question? Yes we can re - create conditions of early Earth and re - create basic building blocks of life (amino - acids) but we still can't create something inorganic into an organism even with a single cell?

I think maybe when we figure that out we could have a better understanding of where we fit in the grand scheme of planets, solar systems, galaxies etc

A good read is the Gaia hypothesis by James Lovelock (http://en.wikipedia....Gaia_hypothesis)
Basically says that organisms interact with inorganic systems to become a self - regulating "entity" and each system relies on each other.

Maybe the universe can't survive without life? Or it can only manage life in one section per galaxy?
Nothing is more complicated than the universe as far as we know and its complexity is only matched by the curiosity of the human race and its role and purpose..

Just some thoughts. Hope its not too philosophical and more like topic that opens your mind to how life and extraterrestrial life might be connected?


#2    sickpuppy

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:19 AM

i think you're on the right track with all this, especially where you're talking about a better understanding of where we fit in the grand scheme of planets, solar systems, galaxies etc.. i think you've answered half your question here already re: Basically says that organisms interact with inorganic systems to become a self - regulating "entity" and each system relies on each other. though i have to ask you; what is your definition of an inorganic system?

i think you're on the right track where you're linking this 'extra-terrestrial' phenom into the equation.. but i would ask if you think they are entirely physical in their nature?

where among all this do you place something such as a 'soul' (the non physical aspect)

My contribution is deciding how giant mutant space goats travel in space.
Newton's Second Law: For every action there is a equal and opposite reaction. They fart themselves around.

#3    psyche101

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:41 AM

Have you had a look at the Panspermia hypothesis by any chance, if so, what do you think of it?

Things are what they are. - Me Reality can't be debunked. That's the beauty of it. - Capeo 'If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.' - Sir Isaac Newton. "Let me repeat the lesson learned from the Sturrock scientific review panel: Pack up your old data and forget it. Ufology needs new data, new cases, new rigorous and scientific methodologies if it hopes ever to get out of its pit." Ed Stewart. Youtube is the last refuge of the ignorant and is more often used for disinformation than genuine research.  There is a REASON for PEER REVIEW... - Chrlzs. Nothing is inexplicable, just unexplained. - Sir Wearer of Hats.


#4    lowbro

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:48 AM

Quote

though i have to ask you; what is your definition of an inorganic system?

Like the water cycle, carbonate cycle for example

Yeah i kinda asked alot of questions, but the main one was really how does life just begin? and if it does, whats its purpose?

Quote

but i would ask if you think they are entirely physical in their nature?

Physical as in they consist of elements like us? Or are they some form of energy that has no particular elements?

I must say that the "soul" aspect isn't something I factor in. Mainly because this topic is mainly for how life in the universe may start or if it has a purpose?
I urge you to read the Gaia hypothesis with an open mind.. it definitely asks some good questions but I don't think it ANSWERS anything particular and with concrete evidence. Thats why its a hypothesis hahah

I also think that what we think of "matter" seems to constantly evolve and as we break apart the atom,electrons, sub - atomic particles etc we seem to get more and more confused about whats things are made of?


#5    lowbro

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:52 AM

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Have you had a look at the Panspermia hypothesis by any chance, if so, what do you think of it?

I have read bits and pieces of Panspermia and seen documentaries and its entirely possible but where did that life originate and begin?

The concept of something always being there seems to be so far fetched because we always think there's a beginning for everything?


#6    zaqwsx

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 03:17 PM

View Postlowbro, on 20 February 2013 - 07:48 AM, said:

Hello everyone on UM!

Haven't posted in sooo long so I'll start a topic that has plagued my mind for too long..

I just wonder how life starts? What is its role? How come Earth has, what we think, such diverse life?

As far as I know, the Miller - Urey experiment (http://en.wikipedia....Urey_experiment) answers only part of the question? Yes we can re - create conditions of early Earth and re - create basic building blocks of life (amino - acids) but we still can't create something inorganic into an organism even with a single cell?

I think maybe when we figure that out we could have a better understanding of where we fit in the grand scheme of planets, solar systems, galaxies etc

A good read is the Gaia hypothesis by James Lovelock (http://en.wikipedia....Gaia_hypothesis)
Basically says that organisms interact with inorganic systems to become a self - regulating "entity" and each system relies on each other.

Maybe the universe can't survive without life? Or it can only manage life in one section per galaxy?
Nothing is more complicated than the universe as far as we know and its complexity is only matched by the curiosity of the human race and its role and purpose..

Just some thoughts. Hope its not too philosophical and more like topic that opens your mind to how life and extraterrestrial life might be connected?



"I just wonder how life starts? What is its role? How come Earth has, what we think, such diverse life?"
Basic concepts to ponder:
- A crucial step to define and determine life is to first remove all separations in all aspects of human beings' as much as possible. Such separation for example is of science and spirituality. As far as I know, science appeared to determine, identify, explain, research, compare, and so forth anything what spirituality vaguely defines and recognizes. The simplest case was how spirituality/religion claimed that earth is the center of the universe and the solar system, which however later science proved not so. On the other hand, science too is never a certain and perfect basis for every explanation. a simple question it probably can never answer is simply "how the heck everything began? how?", in which case spirituality answers God, Allah, etc and so forth.
this competition surely would never end so let's leave them and for a few minutes, focus with each others' personal thoughts with recognition and due respect.

Life as what majority of earth population sees it, is only the material, earth-bound life. Meaning the life from conception til death bound in a physical or material body. Truthfully, this material life is based on 5 senses which are sight, hearing, taste and so on and with this we can correlate this material life with science which bases all its explanations and conclusions through what it sees, observes, hears, touched, and whatever and calls its findings as the evidences, and as a rule, anything which doesn't correspond with 5-senses-based evidence simply falls in rack of theories or thrashed out.

Another life or rather another side of life is spiritual being. Definitely, no tenured scientific community nor expert individuals would go into public and announce the existence of spirits or higher selves or anything that cannot be presented with hard core scientific evidences. In the first place, how can one present such evidence to scientists when the thing itself cannot be seen, heard or touched other than the person itself? Really, explaining spiritual being is more difficult because my words only pertain with my thoughts and feelings thus, experience itself and something that cannot be called as evidence that's why the next words probably silly to some but if in some ways it fits in your life puzzles, then we're on the same page. -- the material body is embodied by one spirit-form only in the 21st day of conception whereby in a literal way, it gives life to the forming physical body and initiates the heart to beat which obviously starts from that instant until the physical body reaches death in whatever cause. this spirit form comes from a spiritual realm, the beyond or whatever that is called where all spirit-forms in an inhabited planet (?) stays while not in a material body.

The goal of material life is to experience and to learn and acquire all necessary basic values. Values such as peace, freedom, harmony, and (a kind of love unknown to almost all earthhumans for earthhuman himself have confused, misinterpreted, and disillusioned himself of temporary kicks or jumps of feelings) which unfortunately, for him is the literal meaning love, but in reality, only a self-made and self-induced illusion and confusion. Apparently, our planet is inhabited of primitive, barbaric, war-mongering, and completely unrecognizable human beings. Ask anyone right now to define war, hate, anger, envy, jealousy, and dishonesty and you definitely won't even be surprised that "Hey, anyone knows that!". Now go to a public place, a mall or a restaurant and ask someone to define as simple as love they you'll find yourself "Uh, so love comes in a right time, at the right moment, etc. it's self-defined, something felt like butterflies in your stomach, it is something which everyone desires, it is something what one search for." Too silly. a single word with countless meaning? or simply no one really knows what's this one 4 letter word really means?

To further explain the misery and terrifying situation of earthhumans will be too long but to correlate with life, it can be said that every new born human needs to deal with earth's situation whether he like it or not and stand on negative and positive grounds. Apparently, it is each individual's free will to take firm stance on either side as well as to endure and take responsibility of all consequences to his decisions. To summarize, the role of material life and all its experiences and values learned is for the spirit's evolution which in its own course needs further to evolve towards oneness.

"How come Earth has, what we think, such diverse life?"
unfortunately, you have a too broad kind of question which stems aspects of earth human races origins, flora and fauna, and microscopic life forms, chemistry, etc. but as a basic concept, here's the following which in my case, i have no scientific evidence or such. -- every galaxy, every system, every planet has its own course of evolution. remember that our galaxy alone has billions of stars and these stars multiplied by average number of planets per system and with enormous number of planets in our galaxy alone, our scientists deliberately and literally foolishly tells the public that extraterrestrial intelligent life is good as less than 0.001%? I'm really dumbfounded how they made that calculation.
Anyways, amino acid is still the first necessary ingredient. as someone explained, a decay of something organic leads to new compounds of amino acids and thus eventually, flora flourished, and further decay and new compound and decay and new compound at last formed the fauna whereby mammals and eventually humans emerged who later were mixed with migrated non-terrestrial human races and which presently persisted and observed in the diversity of earth human races and colors as well as genetic differences.


#7    scowl

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 04:56 PM

View Postzaqwsx, on 20 February 2013 - 03:17 PM, said:

How come Earth has, what we think, such diverse life?"
unfortunately, you have a too broad kind of question which stems aspects of earth human races origins, flora and fauna, and microscopic life forms, chemistry, etc. but as a basic concept, here's the following which in my case, i have no scientific evidence or such. -- every galaxy, every system, every planet has its own course of evolution. remember that our galaxy alone has billions of stars and these stars multiplied by average number of planets per system and with enormous number of planets in our galaxy alone, our scientists deliberately and literally foolishly tells the public that extraterrestrial intelligent life is good as less than 0.001%? I'm really dumbfounded how they made that calculation.

Especially since it's based on absolutely no data whatsoever. It may be better than that. It may be much worse than that. There is no way to make this calculation without multiplying guesses. No one knows.

Quote

Anyways, amino acid is still the first necessary ingredient. as someone explained, a decay of something organic leads to new compounds of amino acids and thus eventually, flora flourished, and further decay and new compound and decay and new compound at last formed the fauna whereby mammals and eventually humans emerged who later were mixed with migrated non-terrestrial human races and which presently persisted and observed in the diversity of earth human races and colors as well as genetic differences.

Actually you need reproduction. Amino acids will only sit there and do nothing that we associate with life.


#8    bison

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 05:13 PM

We know of several intermediate forms, that seem to lie in a grey area between non-living and living matter. These provide a sense  of how life might have crossed over from the former to the latter. Viruses seem the closest to life as we understand it. They act in many ways like living things, but have no genetic material of their own. They must rely on the genetic material of a living thing to reproduce. Scientists have created artificial cells, which use DNA from already living things to function. These are essentially crude manmade viruses.
Nano-particles, sometimes called nano-bacteria, are generally thought to be non-living, though this is not wholly settled. They appear to combine mineral crystals and proteins, and grow as crystals into shapes at least resembling unusually small bacteria.
We also see lifelike behavior in proteins alone, in the case of prions. These can multiply themselves in a host body. The most well-known of these causes CJD or 'mad cow' disease.
Non-living matter clearly seems to have the capacity to assume more and more complex and life-like forms. At some point it presumably hit upon a self -reproducing molecule, possibly a simpler precursor of ribonucleic acid. Building on this, RNA itself could have been formed. A further development might eventually have produced DNA as we know it today, and hence life, as we currently define it.

Edited by bison, 20 February 2013 - 05:18 PM.


#9    scowl

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 08:57 PM

View Postbison, on 20 February 2013 - 05:13 PM, said:

We know of several intermediate forms, that seem to lie in a grey area between non-living and living matter. These provide a sense  of how life might have crossed over from the former to the latter. Viruses seem the closest to life as we understand it. They act in many ways like living things, but have no genetic material of their own. They must rely on the genetic material of a living thing to reproduce.

Since they're completely parasitic, they evolved after life had been created. Once you have life going, new forms of life are much easier to create.

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Nano-particles, sometimes called nano-bacteria, are generally thought to be non-living, though this is not wholly settled. They appear to combine mineral crystals and proteins, and grow as crystals into shapes at least resembling unusually small bacteria.

But they don't reproduce themselves.

Quote

We also see lifelike behavior in proteins alone, in the case of prions. These can multiply themselves in a host body. The most well-known of these causes CJD or 'mad cow' disease.

These are also parasitic and had to have evolved after life had been created.

Quote

Non-living matter clearly seems to have the capacity to assume more and more complex and life-like forms.

All the non-living matter I've seen has a habit of staying non-living.

Quote

At some point it presumably hit upon a self -reproducing molecule, possibly a simpler precursor of ribonucleic acid. Building on this, RNA itself could have been formed. A further development might eventually have produced DNA as we know it today, and hence life, as we currently define it.

But RNA is not a trivial thing that just pops up out of nowhere (as far as we know). The mystery is how much simpler molecules could have been created and started reproducing without relying on anything but what was in their lifeless environment.


#10    bison

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 09:54 PM

Any self-organizing trend in matter would tend to create more stable bases for further organization, thus even greater stability, and yet further organization, and so on. I didn't intend to suggest that known, present-day life-resembling objects are the same ones that might have given rise to life. It *is* conceivable that some of these are the evolved descendants of such objects. They could have opportunistically co-evolved to take advantage of benefits of a living host, once life appeared, becoming dependent on the host for certain functions.


#11    psyche101

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 06:17 AM

View Postlowbro, on 20 February 2013 - 08:52 AM, said:

I have read bits and pieces of Panspermia and seen documentaries and its entirely possible but where did that life originate and begin?

The concept of something always being there seems to be so far fetched because we always think there's a beginning for everything?


I agree, something had to start somewhere, life "always existing" is a bit like fire "always existing" it makes no sense. But as the entire scientific community do not have an answer, the best you could hope for here is some intelligent speculation. The building blocks for life are abundant in the Universe, but as scowl rightly pointed out, someone has to put them together, or they are just bits. Nobody knows how they do come together, if indeed that is how life starts. Perhaps even some form of "proto life" preceded what we recognise as life today, but if that is the case, we have not recognised it as such either yet, if it still exists.
As far as I know, we have no answer to your question.

Edited by psyche101, 21 February 2013 - 06:19 AM.

Things are what they are. - Me Reality can't be debunked. That's the beauty of it. - Capeo 'If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.' - Sir Isaac Newton. "Let me repeat the lesson learned from the Sturrock scientific review panel: Pack up your old data and forget it. Ufology needs new data, new cases, new rigorous and scientific methodologies if it hopes ever to get out of its pit." Ed Stewart. Youtube is the last refuge of the ignorant and is more often used for disinformation than genuine research.  There is a REASON for PEER REVIEW... - Chrlzs. Nothing is inexplicable, just unexplained. - Sir Wearer of Hats.


#12    lowbro

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:59 AM

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Life as what majority of earth population sees it, is only the material, earth-bound life. Meaning the life from conception til death bound in a physical or material body. Truthfully, this material life is based on 5 senses which are sight, hearing, taste and so on and with this we can correlate this material life with science which bases all its explanations and conclusions through what it sees, observes, hears, touched, and whatever and calls its findings as the evidences, and as a rule, anything which doesn't correspond with 5-senses-based evidence simply falls in rack of theories or thrashed out.

I like this because our 5 senses are really all we've got to work with BUT we back up observations with these senses over and over and over and over etc again..
REPEATABLITY is such a HUGE part of going from hypothesis to accepted fact.. again I stress that these facts EVOLVE and holds some of its originality

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Viruses seem the closest to life as we understand it. They act in many ways like living things, but have no genetic material of their own.

Seems they evolved in parallel with ,DNA based, organisms. Even our mitachondrial DNA is a type of bacterium. very primitive but still a lifeform unto itself.
Viruses seem to be a regulating agent aswell in one way. Though its like an "arms" race with organisms, as we become immune, viruses get stronger and harder to eliminate.


Quote

As far as I know, we have no answer to your question.

Yeah thanks psyche, I don't think in my lifetime we will find out..maybe we are not supposed to?



Even if you don't have "proof" or solid evidence. I still like to hear people's thoughts and ideas of life here on Earth and if it exists elsewhere, What/How do you think they evolved to become complex, intelligent, spiritual etc.

I studied microbial life all the way to complex vertebrates as an undergrad, but majored in environmental science mainly with water chemistry.
From what I've observed, extraterrestrial life is totally possible, but I think there could be some being, a god if you want to call it that, that has ultimate control of everything we consider "reality".

I don't think it contradicts anything in science, because we have no proof of either really....yet

But the complexity of everything ,in my feeble human mind, tells me that its not just there for no reason.

That's what I'm leaning towards.


#13    theSOURCE

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 06:54 AM

This is just a simple man's gut feeling, but I suspect that creating life isn't all that difficult. To paraphrase psyche, we don't have the answer to your question. But I have to add "yet". What's missing is either the proper sequence to the ingredients, or an as-yet undiscovered ingredient to provide the catalyst which, IMHO, does not need to be of a spiritual nature.

I think it will be a sad day when science does discover how to create life. There are so many people in the world now that don't value life as it is without science having the ability to seed an entire suitable planet with custom made lifeforms.





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