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Life, Death and Cosmic Conditions

Updated on December 27, 2013
The tree of life (and death) aka, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the center of many mythologies. It symbolizes many things, but above all, it symbolizes the cosmos and its dominance over life and death.
The tree of life (and death) aka, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the center of many mythologies. It symbolizes many things, but above all, it symbolizes the cosmos and its dominance over life and death. | Source

Physical eternal life in the cosmos may well be impossible

We are all under the sentence of death in a cosmic death row. There is no escape. It is the cosmic order, and it will stand inviolate. The wish for eternal life is opposed by a formidable phalanx of opposing realities. The real truth is that wishes for an eternal life is a pipe dream, condemned forever to be a metaphor of the cosmos alone. The fabric of the cosmos is so structured as to contain the cycle of life and death. Humanity may desire eternal life, but that idea presupposes an ideal cosmos, and we do not live in anything but the real cosmos, which is fraught with imminent peril.

Imagine for a moment that humanity actually did achieve eternal life. This would do nothing to resolve the threats that come from all sides. Further, the fact that life is so short, each generation is condemned to relearn the lessons of the former. Yet, the dynamic cosmos guarantees that everyone's experience will differ from all others. What one person learns does not necessarily apply for another or even the same individual later on. The fact of death limits the scope of experience anyone can take in. We are thus condemned to ignorance for the most part. As a species, we have forgotten more than a single generation of ancestors has learned in totality. Many of the records contained in the world are inaccessible to us and even when they are available, we often misunderstand what is being stated. This has to do with our own point of view that often obscures the original meaning. Consider for a moment, the array of circumstances that we cannot as yet deal with.

  • Dramatic changes in the Earth's climate causing floods, famines, global freezing.

  • Huge volcanic explosions darkening the sky and massive earthquakes obliterating civilization.

  • Great floods triggered from at least four known causes such as impact, landslide, earthquake/volcanism and great storms.

  • Evolution of pathogens as yet unknown, new diseases, chemicals.

  • Changes in the sun like sunspot cycles, coronal mass ejections leading to electromagnetic pulse.

  • Impacts from asteroids and comets, explosions of large bolides.

  • Supernova in our own stellar "back yard" such as the possible detonation of Sirius A.

  • Merging neutron stars or black holes, even if thousands of light years far off.

  • Gamma ray burst events from the neutron stars, black holes, super novae and galactic cores.

  • Super powerful magnetic events from afar such as from magnetars.

  • Quantum events like the spontaneous birth of particle pairs from the Plank false vacuum state.

  • Obscuration of the sun by interstellar dust, which exists in plenitude in the galaxy.

  • The incursion into the solar system by a high-speed rogue planet, known to exist in numbers far greater than the stars.

  • The dark side of our own technology, nuclear bombs, chemicals, pollution, planned obsolescence, breakdowns.

  • Human propensity toward hatred, rivalry, competition, torture, murder and oppression of others by any and all means including the greatest of all stupidities; war.

  • Degenerative conditions of body and mind leading to continual suffering; the human plunge into chaos.

  • Our inability and unwillingness to feed shelter and support one another, despite available resources and particularly when things are unavailable.

  • The alteration and destruction of the environment through our own actions that appears to operate in an unstoppable feedback process.

  • The tendency towards hierarchy, class development and division within the human species.

  • Human tendency to ignore the warnings of others and our elders who had experiences, dismissing this as mythological superstition.

  • The human tendency to deception and the use of the fear of the unknown to frighten others into submission and control, chiefly through religions.

  • The viewing and treating others with contempt.

  • The dark sides of science, like eugenics, electronic mind manipulation, biological population control, etc. that takes us backward.

  • Peer pressure that causes large numbers to fall in line behind Hitlers, Stalins and the Mao Tse Tungs of the world who march humanity toward genocide.

  • The illusion of greatness, importance and being in control even in the face of reality and disaster.

  • The problem of continued reproduction in the face of no death.

The above is a kind of a formidable "devils itinerary" of threats that we must overcome if humanity is to achieve a stable condition that would allow a quality eternal life. Eternal life under the foregoing conditions is little more than the curse of hell. As we stand now, we have little advantage over the insects that we crush under our feet or poison with toxic chemicals. We are subject to the same evolution of all processes on Earth, the solar system and universe at large. We are also subject to our own flaws and ignorance.

Our precarious existence is mediated by a world that appears benign for the most part. This is the basis of our illusory condition, as we appear to be living in a period of relative quietude. But this calm is deceptive. As of 2009, there has been a noticeable sharp increase in earthquakes and volcanic activity. Things can change in an instant. More often, violence is the norm. Within the context of world mythological writing are descriptions of overwhelming events that plunge humanity and civilizations into ruin, chaos and mass death. God it appears is capricious and implacable. But, God and gods aside, the natural order of things is sufficient to explain why life had to evolve the way that it has become. The complex life cycle of many species goes between the multicellier and the microscopic. This includes the human life cycle. All living things are temporary structures, best suited to an often violent and changing cosmos. Events of the cosmos have literally shaped life to this type of expression. The information contained in DNA is more permanent, though this is also evolving and changing. That is mediated in part by quantum events. In a violent cosmos, the tiny seed is more resilient and adaptable than the giant creatures that have populated many epochs and are now mostly extinct. Some microbes on the other hand, are still present after 3.5 billion years on Earth, even through repeated world shattering catastrophes. The only thing it seems that a microbe cannot survive is a sterilization event, such as what occurred when a Mars sized object struck the primordial Earth and created the moon.

Supernova cannot even be accurately predicted and one may have already detonated near our solar system

Life is a phenomenon that exists in a state far from equilibrium due to the existence of an energy gradient. For the most part, the sun provides the gradient. The sun is not a steady and reliable partner in the Earth's cosmic dance around it. We are beginning to appreciate that, especially when a major solar storm plunges our technology into disarray and confusion. What we see writ small in the sun today will not remain that way indefinitely. The sun will exhaust its supply of fuel and will begin a series of coronal mass ejections that will make the current ones seem piddly in comparison.

The sun is not the only thing to be of concern. We have already tasted of the kinds of disruption that volcanoes and impact events can provide. Great volcanic explosions have challenged the survival of the human species twice within the last 74,000 years, once bringing us to the brink of extinction and once ending great civilizations. In modern times, exploding bolides have almost taken us across the threshold of an all out thermonuclear war. On a few occasions, this has been within seconds before the explosions were recognized as something other than hostile nuclear assaults. Since the days of watching and waiting for nuclear assaults, over 250 multi kilo-tonne events have been witnessed by NORAD over its practicing life. This has averaged out to an event once a fortnight to the extent of observation thus far. Some day, a bolide will explode over a large city bringing ruin. This event could trigger a nuclear response against a perceived enemy attack. On June 30th at 7:17 am local time in 1908 over remote Tungeska, Siberia, an explosion occurred that is typical of a small bolide detonating in the air with nuclear bomb like appearance and results, minus the radiation. A similar event occurred over Rio Curuoza in the Amazon basin at 8:04 Am, August 13th, 1930. Thousands witnessed a large fireball and near miss over the Grand Tetons in August of 1972. New Zealand residents witnessed and filmed an exploding bolide in 1999. These are the small events. Science has uncovered a 26 to 30 million-year extinction cycle that has a cause as yet unknown, though theories abound. One day, a celestial object will impact with grave consequences.

The creation of the moon has already been mentioned. There now exists some proof or rogue planets in profusion. Many with the mass of 8 to 80 Jupiter’s have been detected in the Orion nebula, and they are not associated with stars. In other words, they are adrift in space, orbiting nothing more than the galactic center with hundreds of billions of stars. Following the fractal inverse power to size distribution law tells us that there are trillions of these bodies. They are currently identified as "brown dwarfs"; the so-called failed stars because they are larger than Jupiter, but not massive enough to start a fusion cycle. They have free methane and lithium in their chemical makeup, something that cannot exist in an active star. There are of course, many more bodies less than 8 Jupiter masses that cannot even be detected. There is little doubt that some are within one light year of the solar system. One of them may be the so-called Nemesis "star" that triggers periodic extinctions on Earth. So far, nothing like this has been detected at the extreme edges of the solar system. The chief difficulty is that these objects are dark, especially if they are as old or older than our solar system. They would now be close to absolute zero in temperature and would only betray their presence with a gravitational signature and the perturbations that would cause in the Oort cloud. They or it would likely be so far off, that there is negligible effect on Neptune and Uranus in the current epoch. From the perspective of a rogue ice giant at the edge of the Oort cloud, Neptune and the Sun would appear like one gravitational source. On an elliptical orbit, one of these rogues would periodically disturb the Oort cloud, launching a plague of giant comets into the inner solar system.This may be one of the possible scenarios for quasi-periodic extinction events. At this time, we do not know for certain, and even if we did, we have no way to prevent or control such events. There has been a couple of discoveries of Kuiper belt objects on extremely elliptical orbits lending support to the idea. The first of these discoveries was named Sedna.

Such events of course, trigger waves of impacts and evidence suggests that impacts do occur in bursts, such as those of 360, 300, 250, 120, 100 and 65 million years ago. There may be other bursts, but most impacts occur in the oceans, so the direct evidence there has been weathered into oblivion. Impacts of course create fires, tsunamis, complete alteration of the climate and other effects detrimental to life. We know that impacts are a fact of life as this was demonstrated in July of 1994 with the impact of the 22 pieces of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 into Jupiter over a one week period. It was this event more than any other that turned scientific attention to the possibility that impacts can occur on Earth. The other clue was the crater-pockmarked face of the moon continually staring us in the face in our own cosmic back yard. Until the Apollo missions to the moon confirmed the impact nature of these features, the prevailing view was of volcanism. Even if it was volcanism, that would have been destructive enough as evidence of super volcanoes can attest in Earth's own history. At least some volcanic activity can occur due to impacts. Here again, humanity is powerless to do anything but watch in horror.

Events well beyond the solar system also can have a profound effect. These we are absolutely powerless to deal with. Eta Carinae, a super massive star is threatening to nova and this huge star at 8,000 light years off would threaten life on Earth if it exploded. Currently it is brightening and having a mass ejection on the order of a few solar masses. It is a fast living super massive star of 100 solar masses, right on the extreme edge of stardom and it may have already gone nova. We just haven't seen it yet due to the limit of the speed of light. Merging neutron stars or black holes would be just as devastating, even from far greater distances than Eta Carinae. It is thought that merging black holes are the stuff of quasars, the brightest and most violent objects of the cosmos. There is absolutely nothing we can do about any of these, even supposing the greatest of sci-fi technology.

At the heart of everything is the quantum. Out of this is born the spontaneous birth of particle pairs. These particle pairs are what are behind the so-called Hawking radiation near the event horizons of all black holes. This radiation is not limited to black holes by any means. Particle pairs are born everywhere in the cosmos, including inside each and every one of us. The antiparticle can wipe out any particle within the body and the free particle ends up as a free radical, doing more damage. An antiparticle could interfere with the chromosomes, altering our genes, perhaps even fatally. There is nothing that can be done to stop the birth of particle pairs from the Plank quantum false vacuum state. With the continued creation of these particle pairs, we all eventually become overwhelmed, bodies slowly submitting to chaos, born of the quantum. However, under the right conditions, we can encourage their birth. Herein may lay a key to many future possibilities, like the controlled creation of antimatter.

Our own nature stands in the way of eternal life. Our propensity to battle one another and to jockey for control of each other stands in the way of life itself. We have to face the fact that people just do not get along for a host of reasons and this expresses itself in a wide variety of ways. History is a bloodstained path of bone crushing oppression since the dawn of recording it. Civilizations often are little more than excuses for engineering savagery and unprecedented brutality just so the few can live resplendent lives at the cost of the many. This brings us to an interesting point. If eternal life is achieved, clearly it will not be for the masses, but only a select few who will live like gods while the rest live like domesticated animals to be dealt with as seen fit. Millions are slaughtered in this war and that one for the sake of profit. If that doesn't control the population, then there is disease and engineered famine. This one stumbling block within our own camp is a definite barrier to eternal life on Earth. It is the stuff of legend and myth with gods battling one another, wasting the Earth in their bid to kill each other.

If we are to attain eternal life, there is a lot to overcome simultaneously or beforehand if that life is to be one without threat. Even if one achieves this feat, the life can come to an end by a stray bullet or starvation induced by a natural or engineered famine. Then there is that annoying last item on the "devil's itinerary" above. If humanity achieves eternal life, we will soon outstrip the planet's carrying capacity due to reproduction, breeding more eternally living people. Otherwise, we are forced into the choice as to who warrants eternal life and who does not. Under the present circumstance, what it takes to qualify for the golden ring of everlasting life is wealth in abundance, and no other prerequisite. This wealth all too often, has come through legalized or not so legal theft on a massive scale. Thus, the ones who qualify for eternal life in this scheme are not the best humanity has produced, at least according to our own varying opinions as to what constitutes greatness. We as a species are still very much under evolution and totally dependent upon the intimate cosmos of which we are part of the fabric. The likelihood of ever achieving everlasting life is remote in the extreme given the overwhelming extent of the opposing forces. It would be easier to navigate across the breadth of the cosmos in a rowboat.

The challenges without eternal life are formidable enough to overcome. We are as young children at the oceans edge that have just begun to scan the surface to the visible horizon. The view is both beautiful beyond words and terrifying to the essence of our conscious being. As yet, we are as helpless as babes, totally dependent upon the seeming whims of the cosmos.

There are many troublesome volcanoes on earth, some of which are going off right now


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    • Utkarsh raj profile image

      Bon Leofon 5 years ago from Jamshedpur India

      Nicely written to depict the eternal truth which is now mainly connived,,,,,,,,,

    • profile image

      markbennis 5 years ago

      I have to say in all honestly this has to be the best hub I have ever had the privalege to read, just awesome!

    • syzygyastro profile image

      William J. Prest 5 years ago from Vancouver, Canada

      Thank you both! This is very encouraging.

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