As the French singer Serge Gainsbourg once said: “Man created God. The inverse remains to be proven…” Men invented religion to explain the unexplainable, namely the existence of life on this planet. One God, several Gods… Science tells us that life on Earth began with biology about 3.5 billion years ago when non-living organic compounds gave rise to microbial organisms through a process called abiogenesis. The scientific consensus seems to be that the precursor molecules necessary for this process originated outside of the Earth.
People looking for the existence of God may ask what is God?, what is its power? where is God? how does it manifest itself? I don’t know the answers to these questions, and I do not believe the ones regularly found in religious writings, except perhaps a symbolic interpretation of the creation presented in Genesis.
To me, the mystery of God lies in the nature of life, and what enables life to live. Three concepts (there may be more) are to me at the heart of this Godly mystery: The first one is reproduction. Each individual organism exists as the result of reproduction, whether sexual or asexual. It is the nature of the reproductive process and the intelligence contained in each organism that enables every living thing to make a copy or likeness of itself, and thereby provide for the continued existence of its species. I am an engineer, and I can’t help but think in terms of processes and information, but the idea that any organism would have the knowledge and the wherewithal to carry out a process of reproduction within its species is mind-blowing…
The second concept is that of healing. Most living organisms are able to sense when they are hurt or attacked and are able to react with a plan to heal themselves. Again, the fact that organisms are able to diagnose themselves (to some degree) and implement a healing mechanism (that may or may not be successful) is also mind-blowing. Finally, the concept of adaptation is part of the miracle of life. As organisms compete for resources and reproduce, life has given them the process of adaptation by which they evolve over time and stay alive.
These three intrinsic processes are to me at the heart of the mystery of life. Is life all about trial and error? I don’t think so. Where did the knowledge and the ability to sustain life in this vast, dark and cold universe come from?