161 – On Life …

Excerpt from a book I wrote and am currently editing:

Life is chaotic, destructive, cruel, and, at times, seems purposeless and without meaning. But Life is also incredibly beautiful, creative, full of determination, and purpose. We are intensely interdependent and relatively pre-determined complements of Life’s evolutionary processes, and as such, we are Life itself. But Life is neither exclusive to our planet nor something of which man is the zenith. Life is manifested in the dynamism of atoms, in the self-replication of cells, in the self-regulation of our planet, in the self-generated magnificence of our galaxy, in the infinite creativity of our Universe. Life, in all its manifestations, is the universal urge to survive, the innate need to bond, the insatiable drive to self-generate, the inherent promise of a process brimming with possibilities. Life is the spark ignited when fundamental complements (mass and energy) find the promise of continuity in self-reflective steps of equilibrium. Full of tenacity and possibility, Life contains a degree of freedom to change the course of its own evolution, and under the power of immutable laws and the pressures of environmental demands, it is this degree of freedom that encourages the infinite creativity in adaptation we witness not only in us but in all of Nature; it is this degree of freedom that can give a single action the power to transcend into the future; it is this degree of freedom that in the manifestation of a human being has given Life the capacity to look at itself and wonder.

And, when measured against the significance of our actions and the repercussion of our accomplishments, it is what we do with Life that ultimately determines the magnitude of our transcendence. The names of Jesus and Aristotle and Hitler and Gandhi and Einstein and Darwin, to name a few, come to mind; the repercussions of their ideas, the reach of their visions, the significance of their actions, transformed the reach of human knowledge, creativity, destructiveness, activism, understanding, into the heights that continue to reverberate among us today challenging the course we are taking with our lives.

Isn’t it amazing that Life manifests in us and all around us … stumbling, ingenious, urgent, insatiable, promising … and yet we have no idea what it is?

Would it not be a challenge worthy of our advanced intelligence to strive to understand the Force that, out of two microscopic cells, creates in us a form of Life aware of its own awareness?

Revised December 2020   

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