By Bruce Adams
I can not think of a word that could be more ambiguous than the word life.
The following is from Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia. Life is a characteristic that distinguishes objects that have signaling and self-sustaining processes (i.e., living organisms) from those that do not.
Looking back through history it can be observed that there has always been some who had a curiosity about the nature and meaning of life.
Aristotle for example, was one of the first ancient writers to approach the subject of life in a scientific way. As far back as 322 BC, he theorized that all things are a combination of matter and form.
According to him, all things in the material universe have both matter and form. The form of a living thing is its soul (Greek psyche, Latin anima). He theorized that there are three kinds of souls: the “vegetative soul” of plants, which causes them to grow and decay and nourish themselves, but does not cause motion and sensation; the “animal soul” which causes animals to move and feel; and the rational soul which is the source of consciousness and reasoning. Aristotle believed consciousness and reasoning is found only in man. He also believed each higher soul has all the attributes of the lower one.
When I see how Aristotle described life in various forms I found it interesting that from his observation, only man was/is capable of consciousness and reasoning. I believe that leads to a question that is worthy of consideration.
In a previous blog (CREATION: THE OVERVIEW), I said, Life (the creator of that which is), could be described as infinite consciousness expressing and exploring itself throughout the dimensions of time and space. Further, in Prophet or Madman, I said God is consciousness and we as soul are units of consciousness within a part of that consciousness.
Looking once again to how Aristotle described the soul of a vegetable, (the “vegetative soul” of plants, which causes them to grow and decay and nourish themselves) I would ask those who say there is no God or God is dead, how could a plant nourish itself if there didn’t exist some kind of consciousness that directed it?
I remember taking a guided nature tour once where I heard something that caused me to look at plants in a way I had not previously seen them. Walking along a path through the woods we stopped at a tree that had been cut down. The guide started to explain that much can be learned about the life of the tree through studying its rings. He then went on to talk about how the width of the rings indicated whether the years had moderate or mild temperatures. While all that was fascinating, what really hit me was when he said that from the rings it could be seen that the tree had reacted to a fungal attack.
Some may argue that the plant was simple operating on instinct(An inborn pattern of behavior that is characteristic of a species and is often a response to specific environmental stimuli), but if there is no consciousness present or no communication between consciousnesses, how is reaction between various parts of life possible in the first place? Perhaps there really is some truth to the tenet “We live breath and have our being in the body of God.”
Regardless of your path or what religion you practice, if you wish to awaken yourself and live awakened in this world you may find yourself reinterpreting your view of reality itself!
More to come…
Love and Light,
Prophet or Madman