The Origin of Life on Earth: Our Role in the Universe
“An honest man, armed with all the knowledge available to us now, could only state that in some sense, the origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going.”
Lately, my mind has been plagued with thoughts of goals. What do I want out of life? Similarly, what do others want out of their lives? Aaah, a grand dilemma. For all of the good things our highly-evolved brains bring us, introspection is the most magnificent. We are able to view the inner-workings of our mind on a separate mental plane, while observing, calculating, and altering our behavior to match what is most suitable with the environment. Yes, that was a mouthful. Or a mindful. Whichever.
Our selected-for ability of introspection leads me to wonder, what are the main goals of the human species, or possibly any species? After all, we are all made of the same stuff.....lovely DNA.
(Don't fret. I don't plan on smothering you with the details our genetic coding, in this writing, at least.) Let's stick to the goals of the human race. Off the top of my head:
Reproduction - sex....sex...sex. Why? It helps us to carry on the family name, or more specifically the existence of humans for generations to come. All animals partake in this. Why do you think it feels so delightful? C'mon.
Advancement - We want to achieve rapid biological and technological advancement. Explore the Universe. Prove to ourselves that other life exists. We are lonely and terrified of being the only ones in this dark place. We are pansies.
Finding our Origin - We have an increasing desire to know how the hell we got here. We know we are made of DNA, but where did it come from? The instructions to make DNA are on DNA. It is self-replicating, in a sense. Where did the first DNA molecule come from? It's the old "chicken and egg" debate.
Now, I have covered #1 and #2 previously. Number one and Number two. Let's jump to the glorious #3 just because it's Thursday morning and the topic is super duper.
Finding our Origin
The truth is, nobody knows for a fact and without a doubt how we got here or what the point of it all is. It is the greatest mystery of all. Any ideas on the subject are mere speculation, wishful dreams, or an episode of educated pondering. Don't let those last few sentences plunge you into aggravation and dismay. Fix a pot of coffee and let's discuss it. Why can't we healthily speak on the most popular theories of our adventure on Earth? We are spinning on a giant rock, painted in a lovely hue of blue. Hue of blue.....nice. I'm going to dive right into my top 3, because leading up to it any longer poses a threat to my imagination.
You have most likely been subjected to the “primordial soup” theory that is thought to explain the origin of life on Earth. Once upon a time, there were pools and lakes and maybe oceans of water that were full of minerals and salts and rich in complex chemicals. These items were swimming around, being sassy and all of that noise, when lightning came along. This electric ignition led to an interaction between the mineral and chemicals, which gave rise to life (amino acids).
In the Miller-Urey Experiment, this was actually re-created in a laboratory setting and amino acids were formed. Pretty sweet, huh? Yet, can we assume that the Earth just came with this basic chemicals, forming luscious soup? Was there a special on Planets that came with this extra “life” package? Probably not, and these chemicals just don’t exist by themselves. Especially when Earth’s surface looked like a personality straight out of Mean Girls. It wasn’t fetch, at all.
Abiogenesis accounts for this issue. It reveals that life may been produced from non-living matter. Is this plausible? We have no clue how DNA arrived and began creating organisms, so we would normally credit it to some form of “creator.” Abiogenesis claims that there is no need for a creator. Inanimate objects and the perfect conditions are all that is necessary to produce the vastness of evolutionary life.
The theory of panspermia is one of my favorites to think about a rainy day. Let’s jump back to the issue of DNA. Somewhere along the line, this molecule began obtaining information. Isn’t that strange? It began absorbing and obtaining vast amounts of information. This information would eventually help it to build all of the organisms we see today. The question is, how did DNA and RNA arrive on Earth? We know it is highly unlikely to have been produced from the materials present 4 billion years ago, although not impossible.
Panspermia, meaning “seeds everywhere,” can solve this issue. There are many forms, but I will only refer to my favorite, directed panspermia. This phenomenon states that the seeds of life (DNA) were intentionally spread throughout the galaxy, or throughout various galaxies, in hopes of continuity of a species. Does this seem outrageous to you? It shouldn’t. Realistically, the Universe has been around for about 14 billion years. Primitive humans have been around for a little over 2 million years.
If we refer to the Cosmic Calendar, the history of the Universe condensed to a one year span, all of human life has only existed for the last hour and a half of the cosmic calendar. Does that blow your mind?!?
Primitive humans have been around for 1.5 hours out of
365 days x 24 hours = 8760 hours
Modern day humans have been around for about 6 minutes out of 8760 hours on the Cosmic Calendar.
To assume that some other species could not have existed somewhere in the Universe in the last 14 billion years is rubbish. So why would they seed the galaxy with their DNA?
Well, if the human race was on the brink of extinction, wouldn’t you expect us to launch our basic building blocks (DNA) into space, in hopes of human life sprouting elsewhere? I would.
Maxim Makukov believes he has located a pattern/signal in our DNA proving this to be have happened. Check it out here.
A Divine Creation
Lastly, we arrive at the most popular theory. The theory of infinite power and much mystery. This theory consists of a creator of the Universe and all of its counterparts. This creator is known as God, and simply always was in existence. PERIOD. God is omnipotent, having unlimited power, and is able to do anything at any moment. In most theories, humans are directly linked to this creator through the power of consciousness, or their inner mind. Unlike the theory of Panspermia (panspermia leaves room for the following sentences, actually) and Abiogenesis, in this one humans have a specific purpose. Our purpose in life, with some belief specialization exceptions, is to treat all living things, especially other humans, with dignity, love, and honor.
Additionally, we are to strive to become aware of the creator who designed up from the ground up, and thank this divine being for “breathing life” into living things. This theory is similar to abiogenesis, in that the creation of life arose from the dirt of the Earth, with the exception being that God played a part in putting the pieces together. From this viewpoint, humans have an incentive to do the tasks required of them (treating others well, thanking the creator). This incentive will arrive at the time our physical bodies perish. Depending on how well we completed our tasks, the time after death will either be spent in a joyous, euphoric place, or on the contrary, in agony.
Whoa, let’s end this. My fingers are out of breath.
I hope I have succeeded in giving your something to remain curious about. Do you have any comments, speculations, or alternate theories of our cause and reason for existence? Do you wish to shun one of these theories? Got an article or topic you would like to write about?
GO FOR IT. Write them in the comment box, or send us an e-mail. I would be more than happy to acquire your opinion in my neural connections. For abiogenesispanspermiaandheaven’s sake, I am just as lost and curious as you are.
"All I say to people is: 'Just keep an open mind and let us proceed according to genuine scientific evidence."