Life and Entropy

Does Life violate Entropy (gradual decline into disorder)? “No”, say the supporters of Darwinism, “non-equilibrium open systems weakly driven by external energy sources can see localized drops in entropy”. We’re told that “Snowflakes, sand dunes and turbulent vortices all … are strikingly patterned structures that emerge in many-particle systems driven by some dissipative process.” Of course, one’s prior commitments to Darwinism make such arguments necessary and convincing to the believers but to skeptics they fall short.

Indeed, we do observe localized and temporary patterns in systems with increasing entropy such as the short lived patterns made by milk in a cup of coffee. But unless very specific external action continues to be applied to maintain those patterns, they soon disappear like in sand dunes exposed to shifting winds. The patterns therefore do no “arise”, but are created by an external force.

Organisms do conform to the law of Entropy quite easily: they decay as soon as they die. In addition, as observed by Erwin Schrödinger, “the increase in entropy from turning our low-entropy food into our high-entropy waste is greater than the local decrease in entropy from making the well-ordered structures within our bodies”. Nothing special so far – a refrigerator does the same: creates a zone of low-entropy while the entropy of the whole system increases and for as long as it’s fed energy.

What seems to violate the Entropy principle is the idea that life arose from nonlife by itself and without external input. As shown above, snowflakes, sand dunes and turbulent vortices are all subject to external forces. As far as we know, refrigerators and all other machines do not arise spontaneously either, but instead are created by humans. Sure, randomness can theoretically account for any bizarre occurrences including a refrigerator, a watch (Paley) or a 747 (Fred Hoyle), but no such event was ever observed. Some try to theoretically break down the complex system into a combination of simpler components with higher probability of occurrence, but this breakdown does absolutely nothing for the complex system as the probabilities of all subsystem have to be multiplied to get back to the complex final assembly.

If “Natural selection favors some assemblages over others” as another Darwinist defense claims, then we’re all in agreement that an external force is needed (call it Nature, God, the Universe, etc.) to make Life compatible with Entropy.

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