The origin of "life" on earth

General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
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Supramundane
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Supramundane » Wed May 30, 2018 3:44 am

emptiness is not a process, however. it is the nature of all things.

entropy is a process.

and so entropy and emptiness are not equivalent.

even though entropy may be thought of as 'harmonization' rather than 'heat death', entropy is usually viewed as a negative.

if everything is leading to heat death and dissolution, what part does life have to play? as a silent witness?

[Asimov wrote a great short story explaining entropy and the birth and death of the universe (https://www.physics.princeton.edu/ph115/LQ.pdf). humanity successfully uses all its ingenuity and powers to fight entropy to avoid ultimate dissolution and the end of the universe]

if everything is Sunyata, and the universe is heading toward heat death and 100 percent entropy, if the Arrow of Time invariably goes toward death, what part does life play at all in the universe???

this is a purely rhetorical question since no one can answer it. Buddhism offers us an unwavering and unflinching search for the Truth. but that Truth may not be what we want to hear.

Sādhaka
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Sādhaka » Wed May 30, 2018 4:50 am

Supramundane wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 3:44 am
Buddhism offers us an unwavering and unflinching search for the Truth. but that Truth may not be what we want to hear.

The kalpa-ending conflagration isn’t such a bad thing considering that it is said that all beings will be reborn in the upper two form realms when it happens.

Of course since everything is impermanent, when the next kalpa begins, most beings will cycle through samsara all over again.

But who doesn’t want to hear the Truth, that is the Third Noble Truth.

I suppose it is the First and Second Noble Truths that may be hard to swallow for many, and sometimes the Fourth.
“...we should try to acquire clairvoyance. Without it, we are like a baby bird whose wings are undeveloped and has not yet grown feathers and remains stuck in its nest, unable to fly. Without clairvoyance, we cannot work for other sentient beings.” — Khunu Lama
“Just as a bird can not fly without both wings,
The welfare of others cannot be accomplished without the higher faculties of perception,
So diligently strive for your own wellbeing, whilst mentally considering the welfare of others.” — Longchenpa

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Supramundane
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Supramundane » Wed May 30, 2018 5:07 am

it is not just the FNT that may be hard to accept.

it is mostly the unsaid that is hard to accept: no soul, no heaven, no personal father looking out for you.

You are in an inscrutable universe with no certainty except what you can discern with the puny faculties you have. If a bacterium in a petri dish were to be placed in a factory or mall and then become sentient, would it ever be able to glean the purpose of existence? or ever comprehend its surroundings?
by the same token, it is questionable if we will every find a 'Theory of Everything'.

Buddhism goes into our mind to find the answer. its search for the truth is unflinching, but in doing so it jettisons faith-based notions that give us comfort. in the end we are left with little to console us except the pursuit itself of Ultimate Knowledge and Ultimate Truth. a candle in a demon-filled night.

Sādhaka
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Sādhaka » Wed May 30, 2018 5:25 am

Well there is heaven(s) in Buddhist teaching, albeit impermanent ones. Anyhow, an literally-omnipotent creator-demiurge ‘father’ who sits back and watches beings suffer without directly-intervening, is not very comforting.

Of course the materialist “atheist”, carvaka or charvaka, or lokayata version of “cessation of suffering” (annihilation after physical death) belief is technically an cessation of suffering, if it were actually true.... But you have most likely heard of Pascal’s wager. Now apply it to rebirth, instead of “god”, and it would be a wager worth considering.
Last edited by Sādhaka on Wed May 30, 2018 6:05 am, edited 2 times in total.
“...we should try to acquire clairvoyance. Without it, we are like a baby bird whose wings are undeveloped and has not yet grown feathers and remains stuck in its nest, unable to fly. Without clairvoyance, we cannot work for other sentient beings.” — Khunu Lama
“Just as a bird can not fly without both wings,
The welfare of others cannot be accomplished without the higher faculties of perception,
So diligently strive for your own wellbeing, whilst mentally considering the welfare of others.” — Longchenpa

Sādhaka
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Sādhaka » Wed May 30, 2018 5:36 am

Supramundane wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 5:07 am
If a bacterium in a petri dish were to be placed in a factory or mall and then become sentient, would it ever be able to glean the purpose of existence? or ever comprehend its surroundings?

Precious Human Rebirth.

We’re not necessarily the weak little bacterium in an cruel cold random-chance universe that neil degrasse tyson and bill nye the science guy say we are.

An supposed “all-loving send you to eternal-hell for not believing in me “omnipotent” personal creator god” may not have ‘created the universe’; but this does not mean that there is not a sure path to the cessation of suffering & rebirth.
“...we should try to acquire clairvoyance. Without it, we are like a baby bird whose wings are undeveloped and has not yet grown feathers and remains stuck in its nest, unable to fly. Without clairvoyance, we cannot work for other sentient beings.” — Khunu Lama
“Just as a bird can not fly without both wings,
The welfare of others cannot be accomplished without the higher faculties of perception,
So diligently strive for your own wellbeing, whilst mentally considering the welfare of others.” — Longchenpa

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Supramundane
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Supramundane » Wed May 30, 2018 6:22 am

well said

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tomschwarz
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by tomschwarz » Tue Jun 19, 2018 10:09 pm

Wayfarer wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 11:59 pm
tomschwarz wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 9:01 pm
Wayfarer wrote:
Sat May 26, 2018 1:27 am
His essay Darwinism Applied to Man, ends with this paragraph:

In this thread was the phrase "kick the can down the road". ...that applies here. One key point in this thread is the relationship of mind and life as we know it. Empathy (aspect of groser level of mind/conciousness) could certainly evolve based on survival of the fittest. See evolutionary psychology.

.....then.... the real questions
1) what was the process of the origin of the first life on earth (e.g. it was a seed from space, the seed was water, water is itself alive. Etc....)
2) is the mind's origin, death, rebirth (it and its bardos) fundamentally seperated/ something other than life itself?

1 - water space seed, 2 - no
?
Well - they're scientific questions. Buddhism side-steps the issue in the sense that it regards questions about the origin of life, or the origin of the world, as being 'undetermined questions' - you can speculate about them forever, and still not get any closer to 'laying down the burden of self'. That is the meaning of the 'poisoned arrow sutta'. (See Cula-Malunkyovada Sutta.)

The Biblical religions start with an account of creation - 'in the beginning, God created the Earth'. The whole narrative sequence develops from that beginning, so if you discredit the beginning - so it is said - then the whole tapestry begins to unravel. But Buddhism doesn't start with 'in the beginning God created the earth'. Buddhism starts with the truth of dukkha and 'the cause of dukkha'. And this isn't really dependent on the narrative sequence that is laid out in the Bible or anything else. In Mahayana, as I understand it, there is the acceptance that life develops on many other worlds ('life-bearing orbs') - but beings everywhere suffer from the same causes, and are released from suffering by the understanding the Buddha teaches. So it is really not all that important to Buddhism, 'how it all began', so much as 'the cause and ending of suffering'.
My best guess is that good science and good Buddhism will continue to support and strengtgen each other. Look at quantum mechanics/qbits. ...his holiness the dalai lama was listening to a lecture on the same and his face looked like he saw god )))). Then his response was "wonderful". He saves that for the best of the best )))).

What Buddism really is, in its soul ))), is not "Buddhism" or the four noble truths or Sidartha Gautama. Those are all very recent, compounded, terrestrial, passing, soon to be forgotten things. What Buddism really is at its heart and which will always arise is simply logic, much like science, but with a focus on sentient beings and the nature of the mind/senses/happiness/existence. That will probably always exist in the universe and will be called many different things.

With that said, a scientific discovery around the origin of life on earth, such as prooving one of the theories here would do tremendous good to promote selflessness and the inspiration of dependent origination/emptiness in all earth humans om ara baza nadi!

Then about "heat death" and the "bacteria in the factory", my two cents, focus on the later.... heat death is a kindergarten idea based on extraordinary naivete. Lets start with "n" big bangs and begginingless time. From there lets accept that there is no universe (expanding or contracting) rather an infinite number of "universe" bubbles expanding and contracting. That is a good starting point for big stuff. Then we should put our attention on quantum mechanichs (small stuff). Back to contemporary Buddhism, both of these lines of thinking will do wonders for the cessation of mind suffering.
i dedicate this post to your happiness, the causes of your happiness, the absence of your suffering the causes of the absence of your suffering that we may not have too much attachment nor aversion. SAMAYAMANUPALAYA

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Alex123
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Alex123 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:47 pm

Supramundane wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 6:29 am
option (2) is that there is and has only ever been ONE life form on earth, and that is the simply reason why it cannot be created in a lab.
Maybe our technology is not yet that good (and might never be) to create life in a lab. Or that when scientist create abiogenesis, it may require millions or even a billion of years to evolve on its own.
Even the water melting from the snow-capped peaks can find its way to the ocean"

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Alex123
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Alex123 » Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:49 pm

Supramundane wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 3:44 am
if everything is leading to heat death and dissolution, what part does life have to play? as a silent witness?
...
if everything is Sunyata, and the universe is heading toward heat death and 100 percent entropy, if the Arrow of Time invariably goes toward death, what part does life play at all in the universe???
Why does life has to have any final purpose or play any part?
Even the water melting from the snow-capped peaks can find its way to the ocean"

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Supramundane
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Supramundane » Sun Jul 01, 2018 4:00 am

Alex123 wrote:
Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:47 pm
Supramundane wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 6:29 am
option (2) is that there is and has only ever been ONE life form on earth, and that is the simply reason why it cannot be created in a lab.
Maybe our technology is not yet that good (and might never be) to create life in a lab. Or that when scientist create abiogenesis, it may require millions or even a billion of years to evolve on its own.
my feeling is hat the Ocean is an intermediate form of life. water itself is like a living thing given the trillions and trillions of reactions that go on between water molecules. the Ocean is not aware but it is alive in some sense of the word. all life springs from there. when the Ocean dies so shall we, as we soon may find out.

this cannot be re-created in a lab.

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Supramundane
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Re: The origin of "life" on earth

Post by Supramundane » Sun Jul 01, 2018 4:03 am

Alex123 wrote:
Sat Jun 30, 2018 5:49 pm
Supramundane wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 3:44 am
if everything is leading to heat death and dissolution, what part does life have to play? as a silent witness?
...
if everything is Sunyata, and the universe is heading toward heat death and 100 percent entropy, if the Arrow of Time invariably goes toward death, what part does life play at all in the universe???
Why does life has to have any final purpose or play any part?
we all wrack our brains over this question. i believe buddhism is the answer: life is a search for the Truth. we are a corpus of information, the evolution of life on earth is ingrained in our bodies in our DNA our sinews our very fiber.

we are the Universe waking up?

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