8. Life

Note: This is part of a book release! Check it out.

So we don’t know how life actually started.  That part is at least as weird as how the universe started.  But somehow this quest of order continued with the rise of tiny molecules.

One Wednesday, about 4 billion years ago, a molecule named Adenine hooked up with its crush Thymine (juicy Jr. High gossip[1]) — and Cytosine and Guanine swiped left for each other.   Empowered by Daddy Sun, little molecules were born, and love ran free.

Then the pairs found each other and decided to double date.  Ok, it was more like polyamory.  I know this part is gross, but somehow they all eventually ended up in a big molecule orgy and made lots of molecule babies. We don’t (want to) know the details, but this whole thing combined and ordered itself into a self-copying, self-replicating machine called RNA.  

Please tell your mind is blown.

Consider the following:

These molecules were us.  Long before we were animals or even bacteria, we were combining energy and resources in apparent pursuit of order/power.   

And we found this recipe for how to get our precious power.  It goes like this:

POWER RECIPE (makes 1 dozen)             

Begin with starter batch of order. That’s me.  So begin with me.  

-Add 1 tsp of resource mass. (Steal ready-made resources from other ordered thing if possible.)

-Add 1 tsp of Energy. 

Digest.

There we were, little molecules pushing our way up the evolutionary Power Mountain, and push we did, powered by earth’s molecular food and the sun’s energy.  

Molecules bonding and surviving to create copies of themselves became more complex each generation.  Soon, there were trillions of pairs of pairs of pairs bonding with other elements and making more selves. 

After a long uphill climb–

Nature finally presented us with this:

Take a bow, you glorious wonder.

A cell. It was the original self-replicating computer chip that programmed all of life, built on the magnificent order of things below.  The first cells were probably something like cyanobacteria. There she stands, this reproductive mother.  The Queen of order, 3 billion years ago.

The jewel of her heart was DNA, the engine of life.  For simplicity’s sake, lets do this:

I can’t believe I just wasted 20 pages for this triangle.

All of life, bound up and intricately balanced in a blissful state of homeostasis.


[1] So the back story is, Adenine first fell in love with another dude named Uracil, had babies we call RNA.  Then, she ditched him for this newer hotter guy named Thymine.

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