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Physics, Earth & Space Icon Physics, Earth & Space

Tornadoes, Ice, and Cells: The Challenge from Thermodynamics to Origin-of-Life Scenarios


On a new episode of ID the Future, physicist and Center for Science & Culture research coordinator Brian Miller talks with host Sarah Chaffee about the thermodynamics of the origin of life. Dr. Miller has been unfolding a four-part series on the subject here at Evolution News, concluding on Monday. (See here, here, and here.)

Explaining why materialist theories of origins hit a wall when examining the physics of abiogenesis. Dr. Miller discusses the difference between systems such tornadoes, ice, and living cells. Learn more about equilibrium, self-organization, and how the cell defies natural tendencies towards high entropy and low energy.

Listen to the podcast here, or download it here.

As Dr. Miller concludes, referring to the origin of the genetic code and the information it bears at the heart of the cell:

The encoding and the decoding and the information had to be there all at once, which means it had to preexist the existence of the cell, because it had to exist before it was embodied in physical reality. But the only place that information in a code can exist outside of physical reality is in a mind, and that points very clearly to intelligent design.

Second only to cosmic fine-tuning, this would seem to be the most fundamental challenge to materialism there could be. With no original life, without the guidance and intervention of a designing agent, obviously Darwinian evolution is absolutely nothing even to begin to work with. This is a subject on which materialists are largely silent, and with good reason.

Photo credit: Visit Greenland from Nuuk, Greenland (Blue ice in South Greenland) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.