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Old 8th-December-2016, 08:36 AM   #1
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Default what is the definition life

Before the arrive of modern science, people says life is soul and energy

Now modern science refutes the idea of soul and energy, and replace it with DNA and biochemistry, it can be said that Life is DNA.


But I find that an overgeneralization.

So there is a piece of DNA, and you can call it life? A piece of DNA exist in hair , but it is as dead as anything.

Some say life is cell, so what makes cell different from dead matter.

Other people say life is chemistry. So what makes a chemical reaction in a flask different from a life chemical reaction?



So what is life in your view.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 08:45 AM   #2
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Default Re: what is the definition life

You could easily term life as being the point where organic matter develops the ability o self replicate. And that's fine for simple life. We could go into bio-chemical energies and what not. But what you're talking about, I tend to think of as an emergence property of a system of such incredible complexity that, when you take a step back and look at the big picture, is more than the sum of its parts. Our brains are said to be the most complex arrangement of matter known to man; and a computer with as much computational power would be massive. Our DNA is far more densely packed than even our most compacted storage devices. When you look at something that incredible as a whole in such a small space; how could it not appear to anything short of miraculous?
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Old 8th-December-2016, 08:48 AM   #3
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Default Re: what is the definition life

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You could easily term life as being the point where organic matter develops the ability o self replicate. And that's fine for simple life. We could go into bio-chemical energies and what not. But what you're talking about, I tend to think of as an emergence property of a system of such incredible complexity that, when you take a step back and look at the big picture, is more than the sum of its parts. Our brains are said to be the most complex arrangement of matter known to man; and a computer with as much computational power would be massive. Our DNA is far more densely packed than even our most compacted storage devices. When you look at something that incredible as a whole in such a small space; how could it not appear to anything short of miraculous?
could be. But what i really want to know is what makes life (even in simple forms) different from dead matter.

the past theorists say dead matter has no soul, while life has. But soul hypothesis has been disproven, and what replace it is still not adequate to explain the process of life.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 09:43 AM   #4
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Default Re: what is the definition life

The definition of life differs according to the individual. As for me, I don't have a clear definition. There's only something vague and intangible in my mind. If anyone were to ask me to explain, I'd be rendered helpless. However, it doesn't quite matter to me. As least I know that there is something there (in my mind/life). In the past, I was crazy about trying to define life and all the things around and about me. I realize that once I let go, I come to discover things that I already knew, but somehow momentarily forget over the years. Life may be pointless, but maybe what matters is if the pointlessness was worth it. I don't love life, neither do I abhor it. But everyday is different to me even if I adhere to the same routine. My thoughts are different and that's what matters (at least to me). I thought that it'd be obvious that every day is different, but the sheer number of friends complaining about the mundanity of their lives and wishing for something different tells me otherwise. I think it's up to you to make your days different even if you repeat the exact same actions. I think I may have deviated too far from your question. I'm not sure if what I'm saying makes sense as the lack of food is inhibiting my ability to form coherent thoughts. Anyway, all these are just my opinions stemmed from my experiences and thoughts.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 09:48 AM   #5
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Default Re: what is the definition life

I haven't looked in to this very deeply (no surprises there ) but I was under the assumption that 'life' was a concept applied to entities which are mobile and have some level of consciousness, or at least reasonable cognition.

In other words, bio-materials which is/are animated.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 09:54 AM   #6
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Self sustaining chemical reaction.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 10:10 AM   #7
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Default Re: what is the definition life

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Self sustaining chemical reaction.
That could work.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 11:08 AM   #8
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Intredasting

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Old 8th-December-2016, 11:21 AM   #9
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Default Re: what is the definition life

In my opinion it's sentience/sapience (though the exact level which is required is in question). This is regardless of if you are a robot, ghost, human or any other form of sentience capable existence that can be imagined.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 12:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: what is the definition life

I don't wanna be an asshole but ima be a asshole

life
līf/
noun
1.
the condition that distinguishes animals and plants from inorganic matter, including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity, and continual change preceding death.
"the origins of life"
synonyms: existence, being, living, animation; More
2.
the existence of an individual human being or animal.
"a disaster that claimed the lives of 266 Americans"
synonyms: person, human being, individual, soul
"more than 1,500 lives were lost in the accident"
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Old 8th-December-2016, 01:00 PM   #11
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Quote:
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I don't wanna be an asshole but ima be a asshole

life
līf/
noun
1.
the condition that distinguishes animals and plants from inorganic matter, including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity, and continual change preceding death.
"the origins of life"
synonyms: existence, being, living, animation; More
2.
the existence of an individual human being or animal.
"a disaster that claimed the lives of 266 Americans"
synonyms: person, human being, individual, soul
"more than 1,500 lives were lost in the accident"
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Someone had to.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 05:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: what is the definition life

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That could work.
'cept we get old and eventually die. And kids don't count because they aren't you.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 05:19 PM   #13
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Apart from the default definition, I'd say it depends on what you want to accomplish by defining it. It's not like the nature of things change according to how we define it. Our perception, yes, but what it is, no
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Old 8th-December-2016, 07:08 PM   #14
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Default Re: what is the definition life

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'cept we get old and eventually die. And kids don't count because they aren't you.
But you get to impart any wisdom you've picked up over the years. So they are (in part) the product of the lessons you teach them. That's how the human race learns each generation. Hopefully. That's how it should work, anyway.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 08:02 PM   #15
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Default Re: what is the definition life

I don't really find the definition useful in a molecular biology textbook, which gives the central dogma:

DNA--> RNA--> protein

is that really all it is?
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Old 8th-December-2016, 08:38 PM   #16
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Default Re: what is the definition life

My take:

"Self-propagating order".

Are objects in a cellular automaton like 'game of life' alive in this sense? I would say they can be technically alive within the framework of the rules inposed, but not for us outside observers living in a universe without these rules, so it depends on your perspective.

The universe we live in obeys the laws of physics instead of arbitrary evolution rules imposed by man, so things we should consider as truly alive in our universe also only need these laws of physics to be considered 'self-propagating'.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 10:00 PM   #17
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Default Re: what is the definition life

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Originally Posted by Rixus View Post
But you get to impart any wisdom you've picked up over the years. So they are (in part) the product of the lessons you teach them. That's how the human race learns each generation. Hopefully. That's how it should work, anyway.
heh...you can certainly try. doesn't always happen or work out that way.

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I don't really find the definition useful in a molecular biology textbook, which gives the central dogma:

DNA--> RNA--> protein

is that really all it is?
not for you, no
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Old 8th-December-2016, 10:01 PM   #18
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heh...you can certainly try. doesn't always happen or work out that way.
No it doesn't. But I can try. I can try and do better than mine did at it - and that would still be an improvement.
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Old 8th-December-2016, 11:38 PM   #19
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Default Re: what is the definition life

I would see life less in terms of its biological definition and more in terms of what it is like to be alive. It is to have a mind, to have a body, and for that body to do things in a way which the mind is comprehending. Though, I guess that would mean that we are dead when we are asleep.
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Old 9th-December-2016, 05:22 AM   #20
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Default Re: what is the definition life

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Though, I guess that would mean that we are dead when we are asleep.

Artsu, by your definition we would not be dead when we are asleep. The mind is still active while asleep and when in REM sleep, it's actually highly active. We are just not conscious during sleep most of the time.
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Old 11th-December-2016, 05:49 AM   #21
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Default Re: what is the definition life

its probably genetic motion, but I am not sur
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Old 11th-December-2016, 03:53 PM   #22
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Life is a bunch of things which are similar to each other.
Definition is not a "real" thing, it is just a label we give to things, taking to world and simplifying it to a chart.When you stick to definition you get absurd things such as saying that virus is not a living thing.By new evidence the definition can change, alien life might be different in unexpected ways, does it have to be made of DNA like material?what if it like ours computers?
There are not true definitions of words because the brain does not work like that, it works by putting similar things to the same category/word, like a Hash function.
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Old 21st-May-2017, 04:21 AM   #23
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Default Re: what is the definition life

to a reductional point of view, life is just a chemical equation.

current science can reduce a human to an equation in chemistry.

or is there something more, like a chemical equation with a soul.
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Old 21st-May-2017, 04:54 AM   #24
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Something that can sustain itself or reproduce. That's what I think I read in some book a while ago, but I forget.
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Old 21st-May-2017, 02:54 PM   #25
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Quote:
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Life is a bunch of things which are similar to each other.
Definition is not a "real" thing, it is just a label we give to things, taking to world and simplifying it to a chart.When you stick to definition you get absurd things such as saying that virus is not a living thing.By new evidence the definition can change, alien life might be different in unexpected ways, does it have to be made of DNA like material?what if it like ours computers?
There are not true definitions of words because the brain does not work like that, it works by putting similar things to the same category/word, like a Hash function.
Why is saying a virus is not alive absurd
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Old 21st-May-2017, 06:14 PM   #26
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Default Re: what is the definition life

Because it is so much similar to a living thing, that calling a virus "it " make no sense, no point what so ever putting it other group.
If it look like a duck , behave like a duck, then we should call him a duck, and if our dictionary definition say a duck must have yellow color to be a duck then the definition is bad because it include unnecessary attribute for a duck to be a duck.A good definition is also including black swan cases(you think all swan are white then you see a black one)
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Old 21st-May-2017, 08:28 PM   #27
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Default Re: what is the definition life

i think a virus, as well as dna, reminds us that all life is assembled from mechanical shit. by this i do not mean to imply that life does not exist. i agree that life refers to the magnificence of unfolding mechanics, and therefore to a virus - in so far my understanding of viruses is even correct - there is some debate over that. i also think that unfolding mechanics are a synonym of intelligence and that therefore the whole cosmos is both alive and intelligent. its a form of reductionism, or a similar logical fallacy, an incoherency, to say otherwise. drawing these arbitrary boundaries, when is operating complexity brilliant enough to be intelligent, when is life sensible enough to be alive, etc - weird shit.
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