Now You Know What I Think

9. June 2010 11:37
by nickolay_kolev

Why do we exist?

9. June 2010 11:37 by nickolay_kolev | 6 Comments

I guess many people ask themselves why life exists and what is the purpose or the idea of life in the first place. I ask myself this very often and I think I found an interesting way to look at the problem and I will try to answer it from a different perspective. This of course will be a mechanical explanation, as anything else in our society.

Some people try to find the reason for their lives and don’t question the existence of life as phenomena at all. Others are trying to outsmart the problem by changing the question, like for example “What is my reason to life”. It is not a bad question and changes the perspective quite a bit and in the right direction too, I think, but still it is just a way for an individual to find one’s reason for existence. ...

I haven’t found a good question or explanation about why does life exists. But I think I have an idea why intelligence exists when life exists. I also think as a result of my attempt to answer this question, it is actually required for intelligence to exist on a planet that has life. One may say that life exists to breed intelligence. 

Nature in general doesn’t care much about life in the sense that for it an individual life has no purpose, meaning or value. In fact nature is quite prodigal. It relies on big numbers, try and error methods and time. All species that live today are descendants of some random mutation happened long time ago in a strain of species that most likely no longer exist. And to get to the today’s form and abilities, millions and millions of individual instances of these species had to live and die.

In fact it is not even necessary to look into such big time span, because this waste is all around us and it happens every day. For example, fish releases millions of fertilized eggs in a spawning season. The hope is that few will survive and continue the strain.

Plants use the same strategy. They release a lot of spores or seeds with hope that some of them will find good or better soil, will survive, grow and will mix with the new gene pool, which might lead to improved spices or a new mutation.

From nature’s perspective an individual live form has no meaning or point to exists, it is the potential of that single life form to change and evolve that matters.

What living organisms do for the planet’s surface is they give the matter the ability to move. Stones, sand and water in lakes can’t escape the geographic restrictions and the chemical elements in them will be stuck to stay unchanged forever, if not for the living organisms. Life provides the capability for matter be moved and mixed. This way it can change or in other words – evolve.

Everything is fine on planet level. The surface is changing, thanks to the living organisms, chemical structure is constantly evolving and regenerating and so on.

But why restrict this to a single planet? Why not allow for planets to “mix”?

Well, the enormous distances between planets present a serious problem for this mix to happen. Between planets, between star systems, between galaxies. The only way for 2 planets or extraterrestrial objects in general to mix is to collide. Which happens, but takes time and some amount of good luck (well, depends on the point of view of course, because I am sure collisions are not always necessarily seens as a good thing).

The problem with collisions is that they don’t scale very well. They require certain events to happen and for the participating parts to be present at that exact point of the space-time continuum. The event of collision is restrained seriously by location. It will not be possible for example for an asteroid from the Andromeda galaxy to collide with an asteroid in our Solar System at least for the next 3 billion years.

It is a lot of time. Can you imagine where humans will be, from evolution point of view, after 3 billion years? In fact we this planet can start again from scratch and have species evolve to an intelligent life again, before this collision happens (assuming 3.8 billion years is correct estimation when the life started in the Earth).

Going back to the collisions and the low probability with which they occur, it is obvious that nature will try to find another, more reliable way to evolve. It needs to provide better and guaranteed way to mix and evolve, because an evolution based on occasional collision will in fact restrict the evolution so much to make it almost impossible.

One last thing to add to this evolution problem is the galaxies red shift phenomenon. This will in effect stop the evolution of matter, because it means that the space increases and this will make the odds even worse for the matter to collide.

So, the only solution and alternative for matter to evolve (exchange chemical elements, structures, move and participate in physical and chemical events) is to develop some sort of a life form that will be able to “escape” the gravity restrictions of the planet and move to other planets. It is necessary for this life form to have some sort of intelligence as well (in our human terms and understanding of intelligence), so it could escape the time and space restrictions and speed up the process of (matter) evolution.

There you have it. We, as intelligent spices, exist on this planet and were created by this planet for the benefit of the matter and to provide it with better chances to evolve. This also means that if there is life, intelligence must also exist.

Now, what is the purpose and why matter needs to evolve – I don’t have the slightest idea (yet). 

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