Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Coloratura, Aug 20, 2009.
Admittedly, your method makes much more sense than my hare-brained idea
And there's the added advantage that you don't have to muck about with all that chemistry stuff of actually building the molecules you need to grow out of simpler molecules and elements -they are already there if you ingest something that has done all the hard work for you. Ideally the human body is the best food for an organism like the human body -it contains all the vitamins and minerals and whatnot -in the right proportions even
That is only assuming you are eating a perfectly healthy human. Most humans don't eat anywhere near the proper amounts of nutrients.
Hence the "ideally"
I like your way of thinking. The next question, of course, is: where shall we have lunch?
Those words and that avatar... they tend to have a creepifying effect.
Living organisms gather energy within themselves in the form of biomass. At some point they realised they could steal these large reserves of energy from others, instead of slowly building up their own from sunlight and thermal vents.
This created a food chain, which prompted the evolution of larger and more capable creatures.
That is the sound of inevitability.
Because existing life contains the proteins and nutrients that other life needs in nice, neat packages. You've evolved this way because it is more efficient for your body to consume these elements already manufactured rather than needing to manufacture them yourself. Lower life forms (such as bacteria) can consume the raw elements (rocks, dirt) and create biological elements that they can use. However, being simpler, they don't need to produce as many.
More complex life forms need a lot more chemicals, organic compounds that just don't exist in nature. They need to either manufacture from raw Earth materials or obtain them from life forms that already created them. It's easier to just eat another form of life to get them.
Perhaps what J. Allen is wondering is why we adopted the model of carbon-based biology as a way to derive our energy, and why not, for example, use some other metabolic pathway we haven't discovered yet that uses a different form of (dare I say) alien energy, e.g. inorganic compounds, or adopted the parasitic way of life, etc.
There may be other forms of life out there that exists in a way we cannot comprehend.
^^ He asked why we ate plants and animals. I answered!
As for other, alien, types of biology, sure, I'm sure it's out there. Probably things we can't even imagine.
He seems to be looking for the existential why, not the scientific why. So, I'll say because the universe is a nasty and cruel place where eating each other makes perfect sense.
To add some more completely random facts to the thread. All living things are made up of four types of molecules: proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. I guess the easiest way to replenish them is to ingest other substances made out of the same thing. The human brain needs energy to run properly. The only things it can use for enrgy are glucose and alcohol which are carbohydrates or fats which are lipids.
Perhaps that's what he's asking. But, there is no other, deeper reason for it other than it works out the best given the physical laws of the universe!
I thought the question was really: why did organisms evolve to a point that they needed other organisms to live? Why didn't we continue to evolve needing nothing other than sunlight?
^ Yeah, it's the scientific why, which has been answered quite well.
Although, now you do bring up an excellent question, Zion.
"Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with their surrounding environment, but you humans do not. You move to another area, and you multiply, and you multiply, until every natural resource is consumed. The only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus."
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