What is life?

The definition or understanding of life is one norm that has got interesting variable answers in branches of chemistry, biology and genetics.It is living organisms that have life. The answer given by each of the different branches will greatly vary. Life is something that it complex and highly organized. Something that has life has the ability to take in energy from energy and transform its growth and production. Life is reproductive, that is, to multiply. Christopher Chyba in an article ‘Origins of Life and Evaluation of the Biosphere,’argues that trying to define life would be a mistake. He depicted that definitions are aimed to tell meaning of words and not the nature of the world. As such, defining life entails the nature and not the meaning.

Various theories exist that try to derive the origin of ‘life’ and what may be the real meaning of life. A good example is the Freeman Dyson’s double origin theory which states that an initial protein produced an RNA world as a by-product due to an increased sophisticated process of metabolism. The RNA started out as an obligatory parasite of the protein world and eventually produced the cooperative schema and hence resulted to the life that exist today.

Chemistry expertsprofound that life evolved from reactions that include hydrogen sulfide, hydrogen cyanide and ultraviolet light as the constituents of life. They refer to the meteorites as to have used ingredients whose reactions with nitrogen produced lots of hydrogen cyanide and the dissolving in water came into contact with hydrogen sulfide and exposure with sunlight.Other researchers laid out that a combination of sugars and amino acids are the building factors of the component life.

It has been noted that life arises severally from non-living materials and could occur elsewhere than in earth such as extraterrestrial life. Various remarkable biochemical and microbiological similarities revealed by life on earth hence a common origin despite all the varying morphological diversity.



Mader, S., and Michael W. (2016). Human Biology. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Higher Education.