Biological Features of Astrophysical Phenomena : Ted and Chandra Debate

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  William E. (Bill) Smith 4 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #1698

    Dear Ted et al

    I agree 100% but in addressing an audience of astronomers, like John, I tend underplay the strength of our case, and concentrate on 100% consistency of biology with astronomical data. The reason is the astronomers tend to feign ignorance of the strength of the biological argument and vice versa, biologists say they know nothing of the strength of the astronomical arguments. It will change – but perhaps needs an earthquake or a devastating pandemic. Meanwhile, I tend to be grateful for small mercies.

    Way back in 1982 after we had assessed the importance of Dayal’s data Hoyle and I wrote as follows in our book Space Travellers – the Bringers of Life:

    “Some biologists have probably found themselves in opposition to our arguments for the proprietory reason that its seemed as if an attempt were being made to swallow up biology into astronomy. Their ranks may now be joined by those astronomers who see from these last developments that a more realistic threat is to swallow up astronomy into biology.”

    Best

    Chandra

    Prof. Chandra Wickramasinghe

  • #1700

    Dear Chandra:

    It is now a classical political “horns of a dilemma” – or a type of armed stand off. To be scientific we have to chose. So as in a Paradigm Shift a choice must be made – do we go with the Biological evidence? Or do we go with the natural skepticism of an Astrophysicist?

    I think the answer is obvious – we are way beyond Astrophysical skepticism. So for this to move forward the limitations of main stream Physics now need to be recognised – from Quantum Mechanics right through to the out of sight Multiverse theories. The discipline of Physics must now be humble and admit “ We do not know” and defer to the biologists for the correct interpretation of the data.

    The extraordinary set of biological facts are speaking for themselves:
    • Eukaryotic fossils in meteorites > 4.5 billion years old
    • Interstellar dust Infra red extinction spectrum = infra red extinction spectrum of freeze dried E. coli (this is the most incredible scientific result I have ever seen)
    • Bacteria in the cosmic dust on the external surface of the International Space Station
    • Tardigrades

    I have not added a list of other data, including space hardy biological data, Mars data, nor the Octopus RNA editing data, because I do not need to – four , quite unrelated, data sets are enough for biological significance. ( Statistical significance does not enter the picture). The traditional Astrophysicist ( e.g. Lattanzio, Loeb, Westall etc., etc) needs to provide a convincing explanation of these data sets that avoids Panspermia.

    This has been a useful interchange as it has sharpened the alternatives between Biology and Physics as the dominant Scientific paradigm – because that is what it has now boiled down to.

    Ted
    ……………
    Edward J Steele PhD

  • #1701

    Dear Ted et al

    Again this quote from H-W: Space Travellers, the Bringers of Life is pertinent to our discussion:

    “It is interest that issues that would influence the well-being of life on a cosmic scale turn out to involve problems which have been under active consideration in astronomy for more than a generation, and for which no satisfactory non-biological solutions have been found. These issues involve the star formation process and its relation to the interstellar grains. The unresolved issues are as follows:

    What decides the rate at which stars form from the interstellar gas?
    When they are formed what decides the mass distribution of stars?
    What decides the rotations of the stars, and whether they are formed with planetary systems?
    What decides how star formation is correlated throughout a whole galaxy, leading to the production of both grains and stars on a far-flung basis, often with the appearance of a new set of spiral arms for a galaxy?

    The answers to these questions are almost certainly connected with the existence of a magnetic field everywhere throughout our galaxy. But the nature and origin of the galactic magnetic field is a further unresolved problem, and so the additional question must be added:

    How did the magnetic field of our galaxy come into being?

    This further question has proved so baffling that many astronomers have given up hope of answering it, by claiming the magnetic field to be truly primordial…..”

    All the best

    Chandra

    Prof. Chandra Wickramasinghe

  • #1702

    Dear Chandra, coauthors and colleagues :

    As a biologist I view and understand the Interstellar Dust clouds ( massive irregular objects 10 to 100s of light years across) through the prism of understanding generated by your books and that iconic paper showing the infrared extinction of the signal from the galactic centre = same extinction spectrum ( same wavelength range) free dried E. coli in the lab F. Hoyle, N. C. Wickramasinghe, S. Al Mufti, A. H. Olavesen, D. T. Wickramasinghe (1982) published evidence

    This image is lasered into my thinking.

    So when I look at these cosmic dust clouds I look at them in the way you, Fred , Dayal and Sherwin do – as massive living cosmic objects, “Life Clouds”. So as accretion occurs around a gravitational ‘seed clump” of this living dust ( it probably expanded to those massive dimensions by explosive exponential growth under favourable cosmic conditions) it eventually accretes to a massive object and a physical Star is born from life-stuff, with its accretion disk of the planets , moons, meteorites and comets (just as you describe in Life Cloud).

    Now traditional Astrophysics has difficulty with this Cosmic Life story because the implications are just too immense – it does not smell like Physics, it smells like Biology. I am pleased you have listed below all the unanswered questions and anomalies in Astrophysics – a biologist cannot do that as we do not have the “physical” knowledge. But we can affirm the biological model – as it is Biology writ large.

    This is why will have ongoing rolling problems within Physics – those with a biological bent will get it straight away – but a scientist reared in the rarified atmosphere of mathematical physics, astrophysics and quantum mechanics will consider it , not real science, and simply deride it the way some are doing so now.

    And it is this “Arrogance of Classical Physics” which is a big part of the problem now as this all gathers pace – and which the Paradigm Shift to a Cosmic Biology is fully exposing.

    By pointing this out bluntly of course it appears I am not taking part in civilised debate. I admit I call a spade-a-spade. I abhor all forms of political correctness and timidity in science and society – further, I do not publish politically correct scientific trivia, of the type that is appearing all the times nowadays in the main spin journals Nature and Science.

    And that is why I have thrown myself into the battle over this big paper we have just published – and why I keep stressing the key facts which any classical Physicist or Astrophysicist must confront, if they are calling themselves scientists .

    “We now have a set of extraordinary facts to explain. The usual skeptical response in these situations is that “Extraordinary Explanations require Extraordinary Evidence’. The situation now is the reverse. Extraordinary, and multifactorial evidence exists now on Earth and its immediate environs. So now we must provide an “Extraordinary” explanation that fits all these facts and makes sense of them – this has been the aim of Science since time immemorial.

    Four extraordinary set of biological facts are speaking for themselves:
    • Eukaryotic fossils in meteorites > 4.5 billion years old ( e.g. Murchison)
    • Interstellar dust Infra red extinction spectrum = infra red extinction spectrum of freeze dried E. coli (this is the most incredible scientific result I have ever seen)
    • Bacteria in the cosmic dust on the external surface of the International Space Station
    • Tardigrades

    I have not added a list of other data, including space hardy biological data, Mars data, nor the Octopus RNA editing data, because I do not need to – four , quite unrelated, data sets are enough for biological significance. ( Statistical significance does not enter the picture). The traditional Astrophysicist now needs to provide a convincing explanation of these data sets that avoids Panspermia.”

    Best and thanks

    Ted

    ……………
    Edward J Steele PhD

  • #1703

    Dear Chandra, coauthors and colleagues :

    As a biologist I view and understand the Interstellar Dust clouds ( massive irregular objects 10 to 100s of light years across) through the prism of understanding generated by your books and that iconic paper showing the infrared extinction of the signal from the galactic centre = same extinction spectrum ( same wavelength range) free dried E. coli in the lab F. Hoyle, N. C. Wickramasinghe, S. Al Mufti, A. H. Olavesen, D. T. Wickramasinghe (1982) published evidence

    This image is lasered into my thinking.

    So when I look at these cosmic dust clouds I look at them in the way you, Fred , Dayal and Sherwin do – as massive living cosmic objects, “Life Clouds”. So as accretion occurs around a gravitational ‘seed clump” of this living dust ( it probably expanded to those massive dimensions by explosive exponential growth under favourable cosmic conditions) it eventually accretes to a massive object and a physical Star is born from life-stuff, with its accretion disk of the planets , moons, meteorites and comets (just as you describe in Life Cloud).

    Now traditional Astrophysics has difficulty with this Cosmic Life story because the implications are just too immense – it does not smell like Physics, it smells like Biology. I am pleased you have listed below all the unanswered questions and anomalies in Astrophysics – a biologist cannot do that as we do not have the “physical” knowledge. But we can affirm the biological model – as it is Biology writ large.

    This is why will have ongoing rolling problems within Physics – those with a biological bent will get it straight away – but a scientist reared in the rarified atmosphere of mathematical physics, astrophysics and quantum mechanics will consider it , not real science, and simply deride it the way some are doing so now.

    And it is this “Arrogance of Classical Physics” which is a big part of the problem now as this all gathers pace – and which the Paradigm Shift to a Cosmic Biology is fully exposing.

    By pointing this out bluntly of course it appears I am not taking part in civilised debate. I admit I call a spade-a-spade. I abhor all forms of political correctness and timidity in science and society – further, I do not publish politically correct scientific trivia, of the type that is appearing all the times nowadays in the main spin journals Nature and Science.

    And that is why I have thrown myself into the battle over this big paper we have just published – and why I keep stressing the key facts which any classical Physicist or Astrophysicist must confront, if they are calling themselves scientists .

    “We now have a set of extraordinary facts to explain. The usual skeptical response in these situations is that “Extraordinary Explanations require Extraordinary Evidence’. The situation now is the reverse. Extraordinary, and multifactorial evidence exists now on Earth and its immediate environs. So now we must provide an “Extraordinary” explanation that fits all these facts and makes sense of them – this has been the aim of Science since time immemorial.

    Four extraordinary set of biological facts are speaking for themselves:
    • Eukaryotic fossils in meteorites > 4.5 billion years old ( e.g. Murchison)
    • Interstellar dust Infra red extinction spectrum = infra red extinction spectrum of freeze dried E. coli (this is the most incredible scientific result I have ever seen)
    • Bacteria in the cosmic dust on the external surface of the International Space Station
    • Tardigrades

    I have not added a list of other data, including space hardy biological data, Mars data, nor the Octopus RNA editing data, because I do not need to – four , quite unrelated, data sets are enough for biological significance. ( Statistical significance does not enter the picture). The traditional Astrophysicist now needs to provide a convincing explanation of these data sets that avoids Panspermia.”

    Best and thanks

    Ted

    ……………
    Edward J Steele PhD

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