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  1. #1 Curious as to why ...... 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
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    Life isn't a law of physics? There are predictable patterns in the universe, are there not? Isn't Life a consequence of physics? Do the laws of physics fall under some other description that doesn't allow for life to be included?

    Even if Earth contains the only life forms in the entire universe, it still happened. I'm only asking because the most amazing thing for me is DNA, and although I don't truly understand it, I'm still amazed that particles and forces can put this stuff together as well as everything else biological. Does Life fall into the category of inevitability, as in there was no way where it couldn't happen?


    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
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    My predisposition is to assume that life is part of the basic structure of the universe.

    The contrary position would be for it to be some kind of an exception.

    If the question is asked "are there any other natural developments that have or may occur that are as impressive as the formation of life but qualitatively different, what might be the answer?


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    Biology and chemistry are based on the laws of physics. How biological molecules and life evolved is obviously very complicated and scientists have a lot of work to do to fill in the gaps in the knowledge.
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mathman View Post
    Biology and chemistry are based on the laws of physics. How biological molecules and life evolved is obviously very complicated and scientists have a lot of work to do to fill in the gaps in the knowledge.
    Is it correct to assume all life forms within the universe should have something similar or comparable to DNA? If that were true then would biological life be following a law? If it isn't true and life takes some other exotic form(s) we know nothing of then should we assume that life is a law of the universe?
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
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    Quote Originally Posted by zinjanthropos View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mathman View Post
    Biology and chemistry are based on the laws of physics. How biological molecules and life evolved is obviously very complicated and scientists have a lot of work to do to fill in the gaps in the knowledge.
    Is it correct to assume all life forms within the universe should have something similar or comparable to DNA? If that were true then would biological life be following a law? If it isn't true and life takes some other exotic form(s) we know nothing of then should we assume that life is a law of the universe?
    What do you mean by a "law of the universe"?

    What other life forms would be like is purely hypothetical. The only characteristic I might assume is the ability to reproduce, but that is just a guess.
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    Life as a law of physics might not be so far fetched. There's a small group working on that very concept being led by Jeromy England--the basic idea is life is an inevitable consequence of thermodynamics. One of his recent papers http://www.englandlab.com/uploads/7/...013jcpsrep.pdf
    If you have an hour here's a lecture by him on the idea. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e91D5UAz-f4

    If he and his compatriots turn out to be right--it will probably become as important to explaining abiogenesis as evolution is to explain the incredible diversity of life we see on Earth. Once consequence of Jeromy England's idea is life or evidence of past life should be pretty common in the Universe.
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Life as a law of physics might not be so far fetched. There's a small group working on that very concept being led by Jeromy England--the basic idea is life is an inevitable consequence of thermodynamics. One of his recent papers http://www.englandlab.com/uploads/7/...013jcpsrep.pdf
    If you have an hour here's a lecture by him on the idea. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e91D5UAz-f4

    If he and his compatriots turn out to be right--it will probably become as important to explaining abiogenesis as evolution is to explain the incredible diversity of life we see on Earth. Once consequence of Jeromy England's idea is life or evidence of past life should be pretty common in the Universe.
    Watched the vid. Although much is over my head, especially when trying to absorb everything in what amounted to a quick hour, it is interesting to see/hear how a physicists approaches the subject of life. I think one of the reasons why Life may not be thought of as a law of physics is because one uses physics to describe it. Jeromy appears to be on the right track with his ideas re adaptation not being a result of Darwinian (natural) selection (I hope I understood that correctly).

    Sometimes I wonder if it's better to think of Life like we do time by forming some kind of mental picture or concept, taking and combining all of Life's known aspects? I see time used by physicists in their equations so perhaps Life has some measurable quality(ies) too. Life measures on the high scale of my Weird Shit-o-meter.
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
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