Could physics (specifically quantum mechanics), be the groom to biology(specifically molecular genetics), as its bride? The concept of marrying the two seems counterintutive, and therefore anathema to most scientists/empiricists. Physicist Jim Al-Khalili and biologist Johnjoe McFadden( colleagues at the University of Surrey) don't think so. They are in the cusp of a scientific frontier where no humans has gone before.
The concept that quantum mechanics (i.e. dealing with behavior of particles in the sub-atomic realm), might affect the molecular structure of the DNA, and therefore give some insight into the origins of genetic mutations, (which over the centuries have given rise to the variety of species in the biological sphere), is stunning to say the least, considering that quantum effects supposedly holds sawy only on the smallest scales and can not govern large biological molecules like the DNA.
A far fetch thought for now....could this new scientific frontier lead to the unpeeling of the mysteries of life, and existence to the extent that it could lead us to think of the existence a creative planner?
The central dogma of the Theory of Evolution, as formulated by Charles Darwin, was that mutations create the genetic variety needed for species to evolve, and that ALL MUTATIONS SHOULD HAPPEN AT RANDOM ie no single type of mutation should occur more often than another, no matter what the environmental conditions are operative at the time of mutation. Certain mutations may prove useful, but the environmental conditions themselves SHOULD NOT play a role in the rate of any particular genetic mutation. Researchers however, have found a case that defied standard evolutionary theory, wherein on one of the experimental models, the lack of oxygen in the experiment's environment appeared to be triggering one type of mutation over others. Thus suggesting that evolutionary mutation(s) are NOT RANDOM but have some design incentive on it.
We know that DNA does not always "copy" correctly and can be a cause of mutation.
Is it from quantum behavior of subatomic particles? An electron that suddenly disappears and a chemical bond doesn't happen? A change in the nucleus, again changing bonding properties of that atom? An interesting idea, I think, and worth pursuing.
My interpretation of the current scientific knowledge re: quantum biology indicates that there are several areas of applicability of whatever positive outcomes of the research that are now going on in various labs, mostly in the UK. The most intriguing of which is as mentioned in my OP the role of quantum mechanics in the non-random channeling/tunneling of the hydrogen atom (the hydrogen atom being the connecting link between the pair of molecules in the DNA helix) that occurs when certain environmental stressors are applied to the DNA molecule. Another potential area of investigation is the question of why plants are so efficient in transforming sunlight into energy via the process of photosynthesis...an efficiency rate that is unmatched anywhere in nature. The possibility that quantum mechanics is responsible for this super-efficiency could be so fascinatingly l productive that then could lead to better man-made machines that could produce energy from sunlight as efficiently as plants do.
Truly a fascinating prospect. What is equally fascinating to me is how anyone could even entertain the idea that such complex processes, which we seek to understand, duplicate and exploit because they exceed the efficiencies of all our collective efforts heretofore, could have come about without design. There is no genuine reason to think so and mathematically it is a ridiculous premise. You can't add enough zeros to the number of years you imagine it would take for that to be the case to make it feasible, since each bit would be time sensitive within the shelf life of the components.
Similarly fascinating to me is how anyone can declare that because they do not understand a process it means a god did it.
If it is mathematically so ridiculous as to be unable to add enough zeros, I would be very interested in seeing that mathematical treatise. The only ones I've ever seen are like yours; a simple claim with no proof or derivation involved. Can you point us to the study where the statement is actually developed beyond a simple claim?
As was revealed in some of the experiments now being done by the empiricists at Surrey University (and other labs as well), evolutionary mutations are NOT RANDOM at all as was predicted by Darwin's theory, but are significantly impacted by environmental stressors, one mutation developing more frequently than other mutations, depending upon what those environmental stressors are i.e temperature variability, oxygen desirability, substrate availability etc. IF NOT RANDON, then one is led to conclude that a significant amount of intelligent planning/designing is involved in evolutionary mutations.
"significantly impacted by environmental stressors" means an intelligence was changing the environment (weather, perhaps)? An interesting conclusion; can you develop it a bit further?
Maybe prove that an intelligence sent the dinosaur killer asteroid or made volcanoes erupt? Made a massive sunspot perhaps? Changed the geology through plate tectonics making the Sahara or the Andes?
How do you suddenly go from "environmental changes" to "environmental changes caused by design of an intelligence"?
You are of course infering the theory that the Big Bang was just a RANDOM event, a chemical reaction ( the interaction of hydrogen and helium) unprovoked, and therefore uncaused. A random event that led to all the random events that has since occured in the cosmos including the formation and evolutionary development of sentient and intelligent beings on a small "blue-dot" of a planet called earth.
From my own perspective, it made more logical sense, that the Big Bang was NOT RANDOM, in the same way that the creation of you and I were not RANDOM events.
No, I'm not referring to any possible cause of the Big Bang. We don't even know if there was a cause, let alone what it might have been, so there is nothing to be gained by proposing possibilities we cannot check.
I am talking about the environmental changes that result in non-random changes in DNA - the same thing you mentioned. Or did you mean to say that the big bang was the start of evolutionary changes on earth 10 billion years later? That it inevitably led to "temperature variability, oxygen desirability, substrate availability etc." changes that produce non-random mutations in that one might (might!) be more common than another given a specific environmental change?
"...we don't even know if there was a cause..." is a statement so fallaciously illogical when it is applied to such a huge cosmological event as the Big Bang. The general consensus among the people in the know, is that The Big Bang did happen and was a NON-RANDOM event, and therefore was caused by something or someone. Gravity or God / Non-sentience or Sentience ? Personally I chose God/Sentience.
I'm sorry, but the "general consensus" includes millions of people that have zero knowledge of physics or cosmology, instead taking their "knowledge" from tales of ancient barbarians and declaring a sentience for no more reason than they like the idea. Now if you only include those that have spent the necessary time to understand what we know of those subjects you will in no way find a general consensus that it was done by an intelligent entity in another universe.
And no, gravity is not among the possibilities; with no mass in existence there was no gravity.
"...among the people in the know..." basically refer to people who have close to intimate understanding of physics and cosmology, not the general population, whom you derisively labeled barbarians. I did not in anyway suggest that those "people in the know" has proposed consensually that the Big Bang was "done by an intelligent entity" but that it was a "caused event", meaning NOT random.
I am extrapolating logically that since it was a caused event, and NOT random, that the cause has intelligent design in its purview.
The reference to gravity was in keeping with what Stephen Hawking has proposed... that the universe was created by a God, albeit an impersonal one ie GRAVITY.
If your comment was about only those educated in the subject then it is patently false as there is not consensus at all among those people that there was a cause. In addition you made it very clear that if it was non-random then the inescapable conclusion is an intelligent entity; a god. A god that Hawking has denied was necessary for the big bang and that no one has seen fit to correct outside of those that take belief as knowledge. It would seem that both your statement and the "logic" used are incorrect.
Be a little more careful in your reading, please; the reference to barbarians was phrased as "ancient" barbarians, which they certainly were, and not the the modern populace (although some of them are still barbarians today).
You do not have to build a consensus among knowledgeable folks re: that the Big Bang had a cause.... logic alone will tell you that in fact there was a cause. You do not need empirical evidece for what caused the Big Bang. The main fact that it happened and that the universe( at least the one that we know of... our universe) exist because of the Big Bang, then that Big Bang was also caused by something or more specifically by SOMEONE. Which give credence to the idea that the universe is not eternal, because it had a beginning and will have an end.
"...unpeeling of the mysteries of life, and existence to the extent that it could lead us to think of the existence a creative planner?"
Just call it God. What could it hurt?
There is no way for us to know anything about the spiritual aspect of life if we do not use intuition.
So, if one is not interested in developing one's sixth sense, one will never comprehend the whole story.
Meanwhile, (I think) it is permissable to surmise.
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