Materialism is the philosophy that natural processes are adequate to explain everything we observe all around us. This would include origin of the various life-forms we see. This philosophy has governed scientific discussion since the days of Thomas Huxley in the late 1800s. However, it was only assumed, not proven or even demonstrated to be adequate. Hence, scientific investigation has been restricted to discussion from an unproven philosophical perspective for the past 150 years.
However, unless the following assertions are falsified, it would appear that science actually provides basis for rejecting materialism. In other words, scientific observation is able to show us why natural processes are inadequate to account for what we see. The following list applies to abiogenesis. However, that in itself should be adequate to make the case. If the following observations are valid, then materialism is a dead philosophy. It may be something philosophers like to discuss, but has no relevance to the interpretation of scientific data.
- Every experimentally tested step of abiogenesis has failed to provide products usable as feedstock in a subsequent step. Instead of steps flowing smoothly from one into the next, each new step becomes a new dead-end, one that natural processes would never have opportunity to reach. Randomization is the underlying root of these failures. There is no known natural mechanism to work around the problems associated with randomness, whether they concern free-energy machines or abiogenesis. Long periods of time do not convert naturally appearing chemicals into living cells; they convert them into more and more random chemicals that are further and further removed from life. Natural principles appear to thwart the origin of life life before it gets past the first step.
- A living cell is an information-driven machine. Using computer design and fabrication as a working model, the only known method of providing for this class of machine is to start with a predefined specification and then fabricate a mechanism in accordance with it. This leads to a living Creator God as the originator of life.
- There is no means to debug an almost working cell. The problems facing computer debug are similar to those facing abiogenesis. Solving these problems with computers requires trained engineers having specifications and specialized equipment in order to uncover a problem. Multiple problems compound the difficulty. Since none of this would be available in a materialistic, pre-life setting, a cell would need to make its first appearance in fully functioning form without requiring any initial debug.
- Virchow’s aphorism and dynamic self-organization have a combined impact of requiring a miraculous origin of the first cell. It needs to appear in a matter of minutes in fully formed working status. Observed natural processes are incapable of doing this.
Until and unless the above observations are falsified, it would appear that materialism is a dead philosophy. This thread is an opportunity for those disagreeing with this conclusion to explain their basis.