Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet...

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Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet...

Postby scientificphilosophe on August 19th, 2018, 12:42 am 

The very idea that raw chemicals should have any awareness is ridiculous, and yet scientific research has shown that the behaviour of such chemicals within living cells achieves things which would seem to require a crude form of awareness which would go beyond simple chemical feedback loops and switches.

In generic terms, a variety of available processes within living cells seem to ‘appreciate an issue’ rather than simply reacting to a chemical encounter, and they then seem to clarify circumstances and seek options, before choosing a solution. The logic of what is happening is simple for us to understand with our brains – but these are processes without any access to a brain or any equivalent computer. The active elements are just molecules.

Biochemistry text books (such as Alberts) confirm the nature of what is observed. Indeed, in the book ‘Our Existence Part 2 : the Nature and Origin of Life, Mind, and Soul’ (by C.Finipolscie), the author lists 20 ‘dynamic arrangements’ like this which fall outside the normal pre-determined ‘structural arrangements’ of cell reproduction and metabolism.

To explain this a little more, the author categorizes the ‘structural arrangements’ as the established chemical structures, flows, and sequences which arise from the formation of a cell, (including DNA and enzymes etc); whereas the ‘dynamic circumstances’ which arise ‘in the moment’ reflect breakdowns in the process/structures or things which cannot follow any pre-determined code from DNA etc.

2 key examples presented by Finipolscie also stand out for me – ‘Homologous Recombination’; and the routing of vesicles to targeted end destinations.

In the first example, a double break in a strand of DNA (completely severing the strand), presents a logical dilemma for the chemicals which repair DNA 10,000 times a day – because the repair isn’t a simple rebuild from the elements that remain in tact. A complete severing of the strand could mean that a whole section of genetic code might be missing between the dangling ends of DNA that remain. That missing section could be big, small, or zero in length. Chemicals are observed to first seek out a potential template which could tell them whether there is a gap; then try to align what remains from the DNA with that template (and these things do not necessarily sit perfectly next to each other); determine that there is a gap and then rebuild any missing elements.

Chemicals should either ignore each other or just immediately react when they come into contact – they shouldn’t rationalise – and yet Homologous Recombination is observed to occur.

The second striking example (at least for me) is that molecules with 2 legs which walk around cells (known as motor proteins) can pull cargo containers to a correct end destination across an ever changing network of roads. This requires the specific cargo or end destination for that container pod/‘vessicle’ to be identified from a myriad of options; then the physical location across the cell has to be determined; and then a complex route must be planned/followed across the road network – by sterile chemicals with no access to a brain or data store.

So if the behaviour is science fact, and chemicals do not think or have a brain/programmable computer, how do we explain these things? Could there be a source of crude awareness that these things are tapping into – even if it seems such a bizarre possibility?
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby BadgerJelly on August 19th, 2018, 2:49 am 

Human descriptions of chemical processes are made in order to relate to layman comprehension. Molecules don’t “walk” because they have no legs, they don’t carry cargo because they have no arms, and simply because stuff goes where it needs to go is due to probability that has culminated in swirling patterns in the basic “pattern” of the universe; we call it entropy. What cells appear to do in our tiny instant of existence is hold the pattern of entropy at bay - but we’re only talking “appearence” not actuality.

I find making claims of different sorts of consciousness is to claim something is not conscious. By saying “different consciousness” (which many fall into the trap of doing) is in no way any different from saying “non-conscious.” We can of course suggest that rocks are conscious, but in a different way - I am not into panpsycism myself yet I do appreciate that it serves a useful purpose as a way to explore peculiar ideas and perspectives (it usually ends in circular arguments though or the birth of some strange cult.)
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby scientificphilosophe on August 19th, 2018, 12:59 pm 

Walking molecules are a proven fact in biochemistry - they are called motor proteins - look them up!

I didn't use the word 'carry' and it is absolutely true that motor proteins attach to and drag cargo.
So the point is valid and proven - these molecules go directly to a correct destination where each type of cargo can be used by the cell.

It is not random behaviour - read the text books.

As yet there is zero explanation for this behaviour by chemical means - and it is clear that an objective is being pursued. I am happy to consider alternate programming options, but don't deny what it there.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby BadgerJelly on August 23rd, 2018, 10:38 am 

I don’t neec to look it up. I know what you’re referring to. They don’t “walk”.

The term used I believe is “saltation” which describes the transport mechanism of intracellular chemicals. Don’t confuse descriptions of phenomenon with reality. We don’t really understand much at a base level when it comes to the ins and outs of the universe. The scientific approach steers away from assuming some hidden conscious power as an explanation.

Remember people used to say it was impossible for bees to fly, yet they flew regardless. We didn’t assume there was some conscious manipulation of the air by the bee though. People simply assumed our understanding of aerodynamics on such a level was insufficient - which it was.

Stop talking bs about “proven facts” when you’re using descriptions of phenomenon. If you cannot, or will not, see your error then so be it. You’re not likely to get far on this forum thinking a layman’s explanation/analogy is hard science. Mohammed Ali was neither a butterfly nor a bee, but he had the right to suggest he “danced” and “stung” like them; metaphorically speaking not as a proven fact (get it?)
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby scientificphilosophe on August 25th, 2018, 7:35 am 

For those who want to look up the sources, the text book whose facts are not in dispute, is

"The Molecular Biology of the Cell - 6th edition" by Alberts et al. ISBN 978 0 8153 4432 2

This is a tome which goes on for some 1400 A4 pages and is well written but quite technical to read. Others will find it much easier to read the other book I mentioned, "Our Existence Part 2", which lists a lot of relevant facts much more succinctly.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby scientificphilosophe on August 25th, 2018, 7:53 am 

BadgerJelly

I don't see how you can justify your comments when the text books and web-sites actually refer to legs and walking.

Motor proteins have two stick-lick protrusions which alternately move one ahead of the other, to propel the entity forward. By any normal description, they are legs, even if you may not like the implication of calling them legs and try to invent some other description to avoid the main point - they look like and operate like legs!

Your analogy is also wrong. Nobody ever denied that bees could fly. The question was why?

The point we are debating here is that real science has identified a number of undeniable functions that exhibit control without any known means by which to apply it. There are no known 'switch mechanisms' that can deliver the level of sophistication that is being observed, and no brain or DNA that could act as a source of control for these actions.

There is no denying that something may be found later, but there has been a lot of searching already and if it exists seems increasingly likely to be found in the subtle properties of atoms rather than normal chemical interactions - because anything so prevalent would have been spotted by now.

A means of control is necessary - but what, given the level of apparent sophistication being displayed by these chemicals?
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby bangstrom on October 25th, 2018, 1:17 am 

scientificphilosophe » August 18th, 2018, 11:42 pm wrote:The very idea that raw chemicals should have any awareness is ridiculous, and yet scientific research has shown that the behaviour of such chemicals within living cells achieves things which would seem to require a crude form of awareness which would go beyond simple chemical feedback loops and switches.


Rupert Sheldrake claims there is a “crude form of awareness” exhibited by simple chemicals even outside of living cells. He did an extensive historical study of the crystallization and melting points of newly synthesized chemicals not known to exist in the natural world and found that newly synthesized chemicals are often extremely difficult to crystallize but, once crystallized for the first time in one laboratory, they are almost simultaneously able to be crystallized in other laboratories around the world even in the absence of any form of communication among the laboratories. And if the new found crystal is crystallized in large batches, various laboratories working with the same chemical report that the melting point of the crystal drops over time and it can drop by several degrees C from the original determinations.

http://www.stealthskater.com/Documents/ ... ess_32.pdf :
And the biologist Rupert Sheldrake has injected new principles in the old idea of
morphogenetic fields to incorporate teleology, non-locality, and downward causation. His morphogenetic fields are purposive and non-local. They are not material. They are capable of downward causation in matter through a new principle called "morphic resonance". According to Sheldrake, as soon as a new form comes about, it sets up its own field which is continually reinforced with its ongoing replication, thus explaining the memory exhibited in morphogenesis. However, there is the question of the source of the morphogenetic fields that resonate with matter ---an implicit dualism.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby scientificphilosophe on November 5th, 2018, 4:47 pm 

Hi Bangstrom

I hadn't heard of these findings before.
Can you give me more references to chase up the base evidence?

I like Sheldrake's open mind even if I'm not persuaded by some of his explanatory theories.
Even some of his evidence has been strongly challenged by others in the past, so he needs to be treated with caution - but there is no doubt that some of his base facts are correct.

In the examples that I quoted above, and in the post I made on the Biochemistry forum, the facts are not in dispute, just the manner in which they can be explained.

I would be really interested to see if Sheldrake's base evidence here is strongly or weakly supportive of the theme.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby wolfhnd on November 5th, 2018, 6:01 pm 

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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby bangstrom on November 6th, 2018, 12:57 am 

scientificphilosophe » November 5th, 2018, 3:47 pm wrote:
Can you give me more references to chase up the base evidence?


My main source was Sheldrake’s book “Morphic Resonance” the revised and expanded edition of “A New Science of Life” The part about crystallization can be found on pages 70 to 80 and the part of melting points are on 200 to 208. I noticed an error in my previous comment where I said melting points of newly synthesized chemicals drop over time. I should have said they raise over time. One explanation for the rise in melting points could be due to a greater degree of purity so the purity of the original test crystals is a major unknown.

I am not so much convinced of the correctness of Sheldrake’s works by his writings as by my own experiences and crude experiments and outside readings. He appears to be saying things that so many people already know.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby wolfhnd on November 6th, 2018, 9:42 am 

The theory that everything in the universe is somehow connected seems plausible. That such an interconnection is manifested directly at the macro level seems highly implausible. I have settled on the idea that physical reality is information not stuff or as Dave puts it we live in a mathematical universe. The logic however seems very rigid. Perhaps someday we will be able to reprogram reality but not any time soon. That said in a way life is a way of reprogramming "dead" matter.

I don't have a problem with wild theories I just have more interesting things to do.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby -1- on November 9th, 2018, 4:43 pm 

scientificphilosophe » August 19th, 2018, 12:42 am wrote:The second striking example (at least for me) is that molecules with 2 legs which walk around cells (known as motor proteins) can pull cargo containers to a correct end destination across an ever changing network of roads. This requires the specific cargo or end destination for that container pod/‘vessicle’ to be identified from a myriad of options; then the physical location across the cell has to be determined; and then a complex route must be planned/followed across the road network – by sterile chemicals with no access to a brain or data store.


This is no miracle and no consciousness or consciousness-requiring decision making is in process.

The "carrier" does not select an intricate route; it moves about randomly, and when it finds its target, it delivers the "cargo".

The "cargo" and the "target" are coded to react only with each other in the very manner that they do. The "carrier" is not walking, it is transported by internal flow of the cellular and inter-cellular fluids. There is a science describing such movement.
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Re: Sterile chemicals having awareness! Ridiculous! And yet.

Postby -1- on November 9th, 2018, 4:52 pm 

scientificphilosophe » August 19th, 2018, 12:42 am wrote:In the first example, a double break in a strand of DNA (completely severing the strand), presents a logical dilemma for the chemicals which repair DNA 10,000 times a day – because the repair isn’t a simple rebuild from the elements that remain in tact. A complete severing of the strand could mean that a whole section of genetic code might be missing between the dangling ends of DNA that remain. That missing section could be big, small, or zero in length. Chemicals are observed to first seek out a potential template which could tell them whether there is a gap; then try to align what remains from the DNA with that template (and these things do not necessarily sit perfectly next to each other); determine that there is a gap and then rebuild any missing elements.

Chemicals should either ignore each other or just immediately react when they come into contact – they shouldn’t rationalise – and yet Homologous Recombination is observed to occur.


Homologous Recombination is not a result of rationalization by DNA repair molecules. At least the evidence does not necessitate the presence of rationalization.

What happens is that the DNA repair molecules match to their own DNA all the DNA they come across. If they come across a mutant (non-compliant) DNA, they will recombine the elements in it to make it the same as the DNA they, the repair molecules, carry.

If they come across a broken DNA, the repair molecules can identify the segment by matching it to their pattern DNA. If the repair molecule finds more than one broken DNA, it will match the fragments to their exact location on its pattern. If all broken segments are collected, then they simply fit the puzzle, and the DNA once broken gets mended.
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