Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Origin Of Life On Earth (Dinosaur Home Post # 2)

Aside from Cryptozoology, most members focus on credible and relevant topics to Paleontology like the one I will be discussing right now: The Origin Of Life On Earth. No introduction should be needed as how this relates to the field of Paleontology and, thus, make it onto my blog and Dinosaur Home, for that matter. The only differences is that I will not recite the first chapter of Genesis from the Bible as that would be pointless and does nothing more than tell the myth and give no scientific explanation. That's not what I'm about. I want to explain how life came to be on this once inhospitable world, talking about what we DO know versus what we don't. Let's take a look some 2-3 billion years where the Earth was chaotic giant rock in orbit in a very young Solar System.

According to the Bible, God created the heavens and the Earth, then He separated the sky from the waters, and created light. Then He created all the marine life at the same time and the birds in the sky and then on land created all land fauna of the Quaternary period with Adam and Eve as the first humans. Now, we know this to be incorrect on many accounts. First of all the Earth is about 4.6 billion years old and the fossil record is proof of the fact of Natural Selection in stone. Need I go on? Now, not to deprive God of His credit and glory as He is reading over my shoulder as I type this, He did create the Universe and life on Earth, just not in the way described in the Bible and Torah (the Jewish/Hebrew's Sacred Text that shares the same Old Testament with the Christians) .

Now here's the Scientific story! We know that the fossil record has a great deal of gaps as to the fact that because of the composition of organisms during the Pre-Cambrian, they don't fossilize particuarly well so our knowledge of life that far back is a bit hazy, but it becomes clearer as more paleontological finds and biochemical experiments are done to see exactly the sort of processes God used to create the first molecules of life and even the first cells. We may even figure out how much of that first evolution and creation was God or independent of him. That's what we don't know. As well as exactly how those bio-molecules arranged themselves to form the basic polymers, sugars, lipids, carbohydrates, etc.

Despite our lack of knowledge of the beginning of life during the Pre-Cambrian, there have been many theories suggested as to those molecules even came about on the Earth. Some believe (as well as several members of that site, Dinosaur Home, which ironically isn't just about Dinosaurs) that the molecules and "ingredients" were "delivered" during the many asteroid impacts as Earth's atmosphere was very thin. Other theories include the bio-molecules being "stirred" up by an active "proto-atmosphere" into a primordial "soup" which is supposed to somehow fit together and make up the first prokaryotic cells. But how are the molecules supposed to fit together? My answer, again, is God. God is behind most of the seemingly coincidental events in life. Sure, sometimes those "coincidents" are just that, coincidents (sp?) . So, the only explanation for the seemingly impossible aspects as the bio-molecules "randomly" into the polymers that make up the basics of life. And, recently, there have been findings of primitive organisms beneath the Earth's surface (specifically Archae-Bacteria) , leading to the possibility that Life actually began beneath the Earth's surface and worked it's way to the surface where it remained for the last 3 billion years.

Now you, readers, know what we DO know about the Origin of Life versus what we Don't. This is, perhaps, one of the greatest mysteries of the Universe. However, the anwser is up to you, readers, I ask you: What do you think the answer is? Is it God or something else, you tell me.

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