Thoughts and scribblings of an overactive mind.

Self Awareness

Andrew said something that really made me think the other night. We were talking about how the world began (as you do) – and whether God did it or did it just happen blahdey blahdey blah. Oh, and just so you know our angles before I continue – I believe in God and Andrew, broadly speaking, doesn’t. Anyway, we were talking about this and Andrew just happened to say that from nothing, from there being no life at all, somehow some cells came together and progressed until it eventually became a creature that was aware of itself – aware of it’s life, of it’s existance. And I just thought, that’s amazing isn’t it? From nothing, from literally just dust and stars and rocks and whatever else – from that emptiness there has grown sentient beings which can now look up at the stars and talk about them. All of human history, all of the history before humans, all of it – it all comes from nothing.

Now whether you believe God did it or whether you believe it just happened – to an extent that’s largely beside the point. I personally believe it’s just too wonderful to have just happened (how do you get biological life from dust and rocks and gas?) But either way you look at it – it’s a miracle isn’t it? When you think about it? Life is a miracle. And I don’t mean in that maternity/giving birth/one born every minute/call the midwife kind of way – that’s all a bit trite for my taste. I just mean life in general, life as a concept. The fact that we are self aware beings, that we have this self awareness that having come from nothing we can now actually use our minds to look back and ponder that nothingness from which we came – that’s amazing.

I feel like I want to quote Ian Malcolm from Jurassic Park here, but I’m not quite sure it fits – it just feels like it should. Ah, what the hell – it’s Thursday, and I’m alive! – “Life, er, er, Life will, er, Life will find a way.”

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3 responses

  1. It is amazing regardless of how it came about, but there’s no argument put forth that it “just happened” – and of course, wrapping our head around how it came to be does apply to the big bang theory and God in equal measure, because we’re always left with ‘how did the very start happen?’ i.e. how did God there then? Andrew isn’t right that cells just came together from no life. There would have been bacteria, and scientists have demonstrated in laboratories the evolution of bacteria, removing essential components key to its survival and watched it adapt to cope without them. In real terms, this bacteria would have evolved over time until it became a more complex being. If you trace life on earth back it all goes back to the same origin, but as it evolved it did so in different ways, thus creating offshoots and different species.

    I think the best book i’ve read on this is Dawkins’ The Greatest Show on Earth. Unlike his previous books this one explains in extremely informative details all the scientific conquests and discoveries of natural history that show where the non-religious view of creation comes from, and it is a fascinating read, giving real world examples of modern evolution in ways that we would never think of. I think you’ll like it.

    January 19, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    • Would there have been bacteria prior to the formation of the earth? I mean that bacteria must have come from somewhere? This whole thing is fascinating but it makes my head hurt lol.

      January 19, 2012 at 2:58 pm

  2. Ah well the formation itself i have no idea on, i was talking specifically about the creation of life on earth

    January 19, 2012 at 2:59 pm

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