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In The Beginning There Was Metabolism, And Metabolism Said Let There Be Life

Discussion in 'Scientific Studies' started by haidut, Aug 2, 2017.

  1. haidut

    haidut Member

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    I posted a thread long time ago about how the emergence of life was unavoidable given the basic physical laws of our Universe.
    https://raypeatforum.com/community/threads/the-emergence-of-life-was-virtualy-guaranteed.3071/

    The same author (England) has since conducted a number of simulations and experiments and has further solidified his conclusion that the emergence of ever more complex structure and living organisms is driven by increasingly complex and active metabolism. In this new study, England claims that complex structure increase their energy consumption from the environment over time and that allows them to form so-called "far from equillibrium systems" (i.e. in apparent opposition of what the law of entropy dictates). In a sense, the environment presents a challenge that matter meets by forming into ever more complex structure with greater heat-dissipating (metabolic) potential. In other words, as the article itself says, function (metabolism) builds form (structure), which allows even more intense function to occur.
    As a side note, the 800-pound gorilla in the room is that apparently living forms are not closed systems (as Ray has said so many times) - i.e they actively absorb energy from the environment that does not seem to decrease over time and as long as they do that the entropy of the living system decreases. If there are no closed systems when it comes to life, where is the evidence that the Universe itself is a closed system?
    Ilya Prigogine, whom Peat often quotes, published very similar ideas in the 1960s but at the time they were not taken seriously as they seemed to come into contradiction with Darwinian evolution. Tesla also wrote that life is an electromagnetic (metabolic) system destined to become ever more complex and extract more energy from the environment. Even now, with England's publications, there seems to be opposition and disagreement whether his ideas explain the origins of life. I think the main reason for that disagreement is that physicists still have trouble understanding how something structured came out of "nothing" (the (false) vacuum of space). In addition, most physicists and biologists will have very hard time letting go of the Second Law of Thermodynamics. This despite the fact that so far we have seen no evidence that it applies to anything other than artificial systems created in the lab and kept isolated with tremendous effort/cost. So, maybe a revolution in physics and correction of wrong ideas that have ruled the discipline for more than 100 years would be needed before progress in biology and medicine is made. Maybe Mr. England will be that catalyst of change...
    @Such_Saturation @Drareg @nikolabeacon @pimpnamedraypeat

    https://journals.aps.org/prx/pdf/10.1103/PhysRevX.6.021036
    Controversial New Theory Suggests Life Wasn't a Fluke of Biology—It Was Physics

    "...The biophysicist Jeremy England made waves in 2013 with a new theory that cast the origin of life as an inevitable outcome of thermodynamics. His equations suggested that under certain conditions, groups of atoms will naturally restructure themselves so as to burn more and more energy, facilitating the incessant dispersal of energy and the rise of “entropy” or disorder in the universe. England said this restructuring effect, which he calls dissipation-driven adaptation, fosters the growth of complex structures, including living things. The existence of life is no mystery or lucky break, he told Quanta in 2014, but rather follows from general physical principles and “should be as unsurprising as rocks rolling downhill."

    "...But for some initial settings, the chemical reaction network in the simulation goes in a wildly different direction: In these cases, it evolves to fixed points far from equilibrium, where it vigorously cycles through reactions by harvesting the maximum energy possible from the environment. These cases “might be recognized as examples of apparent fine-tuning” between the system and its environment, Horowitz and England write, in which the system finds “rare states of extremal thermodynamic forcing.”"

    "...It’s not easy for a group of atoms to unlock and burn chemical energy. To perform this function, the atoms must be arranged in a highly unusual form. According to England, the very existence of a form-function relationship “implies that there’s a challenge presented by the environment that we see the structure of the system as meeting.” But how and why do atoms acquire the particular form and function of a bacterium, with its optimal configuration for consuming chemical energy? England hypothesizes that it’s a natural outcome of thermodynamics in far-from-equilibrium systems. The Nobel-Prize-winning physical chemist Ilya Prigogine pursued similar ideas in the 1960s, but his methods were limited."

    "...Coffee cools down because nothing is heating it up, but England’s calculations suggested that groups of atoms that are driven by external energy sources can behave differently: They tend to start tapping into those energy sources, aligning and rearranging so as to better absorb the energy and dissipate it as heat. He further showed that this statistical tendency to dissipate energy might foster self-replication. (As he explained it in 2014, “A great way of dissipating more is to make more copies of yourself.”) England sees life, and its extraordinary confluence of form and function, as the ultimate outcome of dissipation-driven adaptation and self-replication."

    "...Sarpeshkar seemed to see dissipation-driven adaptation as the opening act of life’s origin story. “What Jeremy is showing is that as long as you can harvest energy from your environment, order will spontaneously arise and self-tune,” he said. Living things have gone on to do a lot more than England and Horowitz’s chemical reaction network does, he noted. “But this is about how did life first arise, perhaps—how do you get order from nothing.”"
     
  2. lisaferraro

    lisaferraro Member

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    OH, this is fantastic.
     
  3. Buteyko teacher

    Buteyko teacher Member

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    In the beginning there was carbon dioxide....
     
  4. Xisca

    Xisca Member

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    Yes!
    Very funny, and even more when I saw your name!
    Harvest energy AND use it! Eat, and trust the spontaneity?
    No challenge, no function, no form. (I imply graduations in the "no") Like the new sport with thumbs obviously challenges the way some people hold their head!
    Copy, replication.... This becomes VEEEEry interresting!
    Lots of energy, lots of libido... -> self-replication!
    But also the self-replication of the cells we NEED.It makes me think about bones getting stronger when they are used. And evolution increasing what is needed in a species.

    It looks as if happens the same at differents levels: evolution during centuries, or personal evolution during a life time. Only blind persons can develop so well the tact to read Brailles. Only your traumas give you some specific abilities, as adaptations, as a spontaneous order.

    Cancer?
    That's a big self-replication isn't it?
    If this dissipate energy in such a way, then it is the consequence of an adaptation as well, and Hammer might be right. What Haidut posted made me think right away that illness and inflammation is HEAT. Also heat is a big concept I think in TCM? Illness is about some blockage in the dissipation of energy. Maybe when it has been blocked we should take time when we make it flow again...
     
  5. pimpnamedraypeat

    pimpnamedraypeat Member

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    I dislike the term order iyt of chaos. How is this a case of order arising out of chaos? The order was already there in the very fabric of the universe.

    Aren't the laws of physics that lead to what Egland is discussing proof of an ordered universe?

    While I agree this is interesting and is probably responsible for life arising on other planets, I do not believe this to be the origin of life on earth. I believe terrestrial life was seeded, whether accidentally or purposefully.
     
  6. Queequeg

    Queequeg Member

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    I just wanted to clarify that the author is not saying that living systems violate the second law of thermodynamics as the second law only applies to closed systems. As you state, living organisms are open to the environment where they take in useful energy to do work. They thereby lower their internal entropy at the expense of their surroundings. The universe however is very different than a living system. It is the entirety of every existing system so by definition it must be a closed system; there is nothing else outside of it. Here the Second Law applies and entropy is always increasing.
     
  7. Queequeg

    Queequeg Member

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    I agree with the first part. I think the author is saying that the laws of the universe are so precisely tuned to make the appearance of life inevitable. I tend to believe that a higher power was responsible. The odds of these perfectly synchronized laws that allow for an ordered universe to somehow occur on their own by random chance is highly unlikely.

    Saying that we were seeded only pushes the problem of the origin of life out further to how did the seeders get created.
     
  8. pimpnamedraypeat

    pimpnamedraypeat Member

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    Yes I know. The reason I think we were seeded is because of the copious amount of evidence of extraterrestrial influence in our ancient past , and because of things like the Cambrian explosion.

    Maybe life came here on a stray meteorite, or it was sent on a seed ship by an alien race that was trying to escape a dying planet. Who really knows.

    As far as the universe goes there's no way it randomly sprung into being. There is a god with a capital G.
     
  9. x-ray peat

    x-ray peat Member

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    There is definitely a lot of archaeological evidence for some advance civilizations including aircraft etc but the ET theory has a lot of problems with it. 1) The nearest solar system is over 4 light years away so unless star trek was onto something with warp drive getting here would take a very long time. Also there is the issue with the Van Allen radiation belt around earth. I dont think anything can survive getting through that including astronauts lol. Also TPTB are pushing that story of aliens pretty heavily. I think it is just disinfo.
     
  10. Queequeg

    Queequeg Member

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    I don't know about the seeding but I think there is a lot of good reasons to think life exists on other planets. The whole point of the article was to show that life spontaneously evolves into more and more complex forms due to the fundamental laws of physics. Why wouldn't that happen elsewhere.
     
  11. Travis

    Travis Member

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  12. JKerx

    JKerx Member

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    Honestly, I really don't think science has conquered some of the most challenging questions in metaphysics. I think John Lennox's response to the core of Stephen Hawking's argument in The Grand Design is also sufficient in refuting the notion that something can come out of nothing, which I think you suggest when you say that "the emergence of life was unavoidable given the basic physical laws of our Universe." Let me know if I'm misunderstanding you, but I think you're saying that because there are laws in physics, life is necessarily a result of those laws--i.e. the laws are the "spontaneous" cause of life. You could rephrase this by saying that, "because there are laws of physics in the universe, life can, and will, create itself from nothing," which is an altered version (altered appropriately for the sake of our discussion) of Hawking's assertion in The Grand Design that "because there is a law of gravity, the universe can, and will, create itself from nothing. Lennox responds to Hawking in pointing out the fact that asserting that there is a law of gravity is in fact an assertion of existence. If Hawking's statement in this book is true, then the same can be said about other physical laws in the universe, including the ones in which life is bound or made possible. On the first level, Lennox demonstrates that such reasoning is illogical when he asks the question, "because there is something (the laws of physics, which Hawking and you assert are causes)--that is, an assertion of existence--the universe will create itself out of nothing? Lennox explains all this in a manner much more eloquently than myself in this video at this section: . Hopefully we can avoid an ad hominem discussion about Lennox's body rather than one about his reasoning...it's a loss for anyone who cannot concentrate on reasoning because they focus only on physical appearance, but I certainly do it all to often.
     
  13. JKerx

    JKerx Member

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    The video was supposed to start at 16:09. so if you're not interested in seeing the introduction and want to see the point Lennox is making, jump to 16:09.
     
  14. JKerx

    JKerx Member

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    In other words, the cause of life is both something and nothing? That's absurd.
     
  15. James ardagna

    James ardagna Member

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    From this can we assume that it is inevitable that life will form on other planets, albeit at different rates due to planetary variations in available energy and resources?
     
  16. Travis

    Travis Member

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    You know, there was a person who found very convincing evidence of bacterial forms in meteorites. Let me see if I can find it...[searching]...

    Couldn't find the one that I had read, but here is a different one:
    Martins, Zita, et al. "Extraterrestrial nucleobases in the Murchison meteorite." Earth and planetary science Letters 270.1 (2008): 130-136.

    So this seems like a common finding now.

    Some biochemists try to explain life formation from a "primordial soup," but it actually looks like they no longer have to. However, someone now needs to explain how these were formed on other planets (impossible).

    What is interesting about the extraterrestrial DNA bases is that they have a different carbon isotope ratio. These things are like 30% carbon-13. This is unusual, as the prevalence on earth is about 1%. But I am open to the possibility that the impact had something to do with this.

    This meteorite impacted in 1969.
     
  17. Queequeg

    Queequeg Member

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    Interesting video but I think Hawkings' statement "because there is a law of gravity, the universe can, and will, create itself from nothing" takes the argument made by the article in the OP to a whole other level. There is a big difference between saying that the laws of physics created the Universe from nothing and saying that the laws of physics organized the existing matter and energy into the Universe we know today.
     
  18. tara

    tara Member

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    I've not read/listened to any of the links above, just this thread itself.
    But that's not how I read it. I read it as saying that because of the particular laws of physics, life would be created by the combination of the laws of physics and the available energy and matter. That's not something from nothing.

    +1
     
  19. pimpnamedraypeat

    pimpnamedraypeat Member

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    Radiation and distance would pose no barrier to a significantly advanced intelligence.

    Also Sirius is Sols binary star and it comes very close during the perihelion.

    there's no reason for the ET i am talking about to have come from another solar system. There is evidence for a missing planet in our solar system that may or may not have been destroyed in a star wars style space battle. There's also evidence that mars was nuked.

    This is not as crazy as it sounds on initial hearing once you accept the fact that humans beings with at least modern levels of intelligence have been around for millions of years and that advanced civilizations have existed much prior to ours only to be destroyed by world wide cataclysms.

    There are unbelievable levels of deception going on in terms of our history, to the point where any discussion of the truth, free from qualifiers and explanations, sounds like crazy talk.
     
  20. pimpnamedraypeat

    pimpnamedraypeat Member

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    I didn't watch the video but I know what you're talking about. That's an utterly ridiculous statement he made. I think the reason he's still pushed is because it is so hard to call him out due to his condition.

    I'm convinced hawking and other popular scientists are part of a project to convince the intellectually curious that we are just the result spontaneous happenstance, be it the big bang or evolution.
     
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