Evidence of God
(said in the deep, echoing, booming male voice of God from the movies)
I am technology. #blog by Trey Warme | Charlotte, NC
Hello, readers enticed into reading this post from the click-bait seducing title! You: “Did he say evidence of God? Hopefully, this is not another figurine image on a piece of toast.” Googling the term “evidence of god” returns 134 million results. Wow, that’s an awful lot of web pages by people who either think they have proof for the existence of God or want to know if there really is any actual evidence of God. This post is the latter. Is there indisputable evidence for the existence of a non-local consciousness? Specifically, this post explores if the intelligent design of water in its perfect relation to supporting life can provide some proof of a divinely inspired Universe? Disclaimer: I don’t know anything to help you make that decision. Ha, but I’ll try not to disappoint.
Our story begins, in a not so distant galaxy, in a time not so long ago, known as here now, where a long-fought war for control of information raged between two powerful forces known as science and the church. Science contended only what could be proven by scientific method and replicated in a controlled environment actually exists. Outspoken advocates of the church in major religions supporting various theories of creationism have long-sought irrefutable, definitive, beyond a shadow of a doubt, sure thing evidence that you can you can bet your bottom dollar and take to the bank, that is so positively conclusive it could hold up in a court of law, in order to win the “evidence of God argument” with darn tootin evidence to crush the opposing views of evolution theorists and serving them God exists proof that they can put in their pipe and smoke it, plus allowing the church to finally shut those pesky Darwinists the hell up once and for all with a resounding, “I told you so.” Whoa, hey, whoa, easy now, calm down religious folk. We’re just having a friendly conversation here and just getting started. Ha, yes, I may know a few “it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that Jesus swing” Christian cult members, and could have also possibly been briefly exposed to a couple of hellfire and brimstone religion thumper’s rhetoric while I simultaneously plotted my quickest exit. Ha, how could you tell? Truth be told, I’ve also met some loving, happy, peaceful practitioners of varied spiritual walks living rich, meaningful lives from their personal relationships with their perceived idea of a God, Universal Spirit, or whatever they want to call it, that works for them.
Common proof I remember from childhood given in support of evidence of God oftentimes simply begged the question, going something along the lines of, Abednego: “I’m telling you, God must exist.” Glinda, the good witch of the South: “How do you know?” Abednego: “Well, because the Bible tells me so.” Glinda: “Why should I believe the Bible?” Abednego: “Because the Bible is the inerrant word of God.” Glinda, still unconvinced, shakes her head in disbelief. Begging the question is a rhetorical fallacy in which the same unverifiable claim that a conclusion is true is also used as the evidence to prove the truth of the claim. It’s basically arguing in circles. Another example of begging the question is, Hiring Manager: “Do you have another reference?” Job Applicant: “Sure, Mike will give me a good reference.” Hiring Manager: “Okay, but how do I know Mike is trustworthy?” Job Applicant: “Oh, I can vouch for Mike. He’s trustworthy.” Hiring Manager: <scratches head> Eh, I digress. Anyways, you get the point.
To preface, I realize Trey Warme, who has zero authority on the existence of a higher power in anyone else’s personal quest for meaning in their life, is not going to sway anyone’s opinion on the matter with this amateur blog post with a few cleverly placed nouns, verbs, and adjectives. You: “Ain’t that the truth. Who’s this Trey Warme anyway?” (LinkedIn | resume | bio) There is probably never going to be a universally satisfactory to everybody answer to the question of, “is there evidence of God, or is there a Creator?” My intent with this musing I share with you now is a playful examination of whether scientifically accepted properties of water can perhaps help prove the possibility of life being more than just a swimming pool full of a bunch of perfect combinations of blind chance and coincidences, and perhaps there may just be a divine order to things. You: “Now wait just a second, did you say using the science of water?” Why, yes I did. Initially, the unusual properties of water as it changes into its solid form of ice first got me started pondering about just how perfectly water is designed to sustain life. Since then, a few other properties of water have also piqued my curiosity about its perfection for sustaining life too. Is water just a combination of perfect accidents or could it be a cosmic coincidence? You: “Hmm.. I don’t know, Trey. Enough already. Get to the point, son!” Please allow me to elaborate.
Water, the essence of all life as we know it
Let’s begin with science. For starters, it is a rather universally accepted scientific theory that water is essential for life, the essence of all life as we know it. Look it up, if you don’t believe me. Googling (grammar note: Google is so ingrained in modern culture that the word “googling” is understood as a contemporary substitution for the term “Internet searching”; and this is an example of verbing, basically the inverse of a gerund – lesson over. you’re welcome!) the term “water essential for life” just now returned 250 million results with everyone from NASA along with numerous university and private research organizations, to health organizations and even news outlets chiming in why. One of NASA’s guiding policies in the search for life is to “follow the water.” NASA reports, Ball, author of Life’s Matrix: A Biography of Water, says, “… liquid water is essential for the kind of delicate chemistry that makes life possible. Liquid water is a universal solvent, a mediator of life’s chemical reactions, and it has a structure unlike that of any other liquid.” Ball continues with, “Water is so far the only common liquid we know that is capable of this.”
The basic reason why water is so essential for life is it is the carrier solvent needed to transport many necessary nutrients to cells and to carry away excess nutrients along with the waste products created during the metabolic processes occurring in the body. In fact, water is so abundant and plays such a large role in life that 70% of the earth is ocean water, our bodies are approximately 50-65% water, and babies are approximately 75% water at birth. Water is a simple molecule, made up of just two hydrogen and one oxygen atom. Okay, all science so far. No real leaps of faith required.
Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft, and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another paradox: what is soft is strong. – Lao Tzu
What makes water the perfect “universal solvent” for all life to carry essential molecules to cells is its ability in a liquid state to dissolve many other particles. This ability of a water molecule to disassociate, or pull apart, particles of a compound so well is because of the polarities of the oxygen and hydrogen atoms. The slightly positively charged hydrogen atoms attract the negative particles of a compound, while the slightly negatively charged oxygen atoms attract the positive particles of the compound. Oxygen atoms have high electronegativity, meaning they have a greater pull on electrons than atoms with low electronegativity. In a bond, this leads to an unequal sharing of electrons between atoms where the electrons are pulled by the atom with higher electronegativity: oxygen is a buff weight-lifter strong atom puller! Liquid water molecules are an asymmetrical pyramid shaped polar molecule with a negatively charged oxygen atom at the point end of the pyramid between two positively charged hydrogen atoms at the base end of the pyramid. As a polar molecule, water has a net dipole, meaning the charges do not cancel each other out and the H2O molecule has both partial positive and partial negative charges, resulting from the asymmetrically arranged opposing charges of the polar bonds. In sum, what all this chemistry mumbo-jumbo means is due to the polar charge of water molecules, other polar molecules needed by the body are able to be electrically disassembled by water’s atoms to be dissolved in water. While still pure science, water, the essential ingredient for all life has the unique qualities necessary to break down nutrients into a small enough state required for transport to cells and to carry waste out of the body. Still just science, I know, but pretty flipping amazing if you ask me! (uh.. you did ask me since you’re reading this!)
. . . gentleness is stronger than severity, water is stronger than rock, love is stronger than force. ― Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha
The Bruce Lee of liquids
Water is tough! Water can cut through a mountain. Water molecules attract one another due to their polar property; the positive hydrogen ends attract the negative oxygen ends causing water to stick together. Due to the bonding of the hydrogen atoms, water has the highest surface tension of any liquid, other than mercury. Surface tension is the ability for water to hold itself together. Surface tension is why spilled water forms pools on the counter instead of completely spreading out, why water droplets form in nature, and why a water strider can glide across the top of the water without sinking. Water has strong intermolecular interactions making it viscous. Viscosity is the property of a fluid’s resistance to flow. We normally think of fluids like honey or motor oil being viscous, however, water is more viscous than other substances with similar compositions. Water molecules are cohesive because of the molecule’s polarity, giving it strong intermolecular force between like molecules, making it able to hold itself together in a drop and why you can fill water slightly over the edge of a glass. Let’s face it, life can be tough on our bodies. Life uses the toughest liquid available and that’s water.
Other seemingly perfectly designed qualities of water for its support of life is its interaction with carbon, the other key substance of all life on earth as we know it. One of the perhaps most notable qualities of water is the rarity of finding a compound lacking carbon to be a liquid at standard room temperature and pressure. Water contains no carbon, making it extremely strange that water is liquid at room temperature. On top of that, carbon has very little reaction with water under normal circumstances and is barely dissolvable in water making it a perfect vessel in which to hold water. Carbon’s low reaction with water is the reason carbon is used in reverse osmosis filters to clean drinking water. Carbon bonds easily with other carbon atoms and because of its four valence electrons carbon also bonds with oxygen, hydrogen, and nitrogen – necessary elements for life. Life requires a diverse assortment of molecules, however, carbon is the “central building block of life”, strong, but not so strong you can’t easily completely rearrange it later. Carbon is a clear choice for this central building block of life because it is an element found in abundance on earth like water, but mostly because it makes a good backbone. Water is the perfect complementary liquid for carbon to harmoniously support life. Basically, we are carbon-based organisms full of water. Still just science, but the perhaps unrelated random conditions are beginning to stack up perfectly to create life, wouldn’t you say?
Now, for the kicker. Then, there is the unique structure changing property of water when it freezes. Still just science, but this is where it started to get me thinking about the properties of water being perhaps just too perfect to sustain life to just be a coincidence. So, physics are the law of land when it comes to the study of the behavior of matter, right? Right. Thermal expansion, within the study of thermodynamics, is the tendency of matter to change in response to variations in temperature. The tendency of matter is to generally becomes less dense as it heats up and the molecules spread further apart from as the kinetic energy of the molecules increases causing them to vibrate more and maintain greater average separation, and conversely, matter generally becomes denser as it cools and the kinetic energy of molecules decrease resulting in less vibration of the molecules and maintaining less separation between molecules resulting in the molecules packing together more closely. Water follows this same tendency of becoming denser when cooled until, here’s where it gets weird, just before reaching freezing at around 4° Celsius where it goes through what physics calls a phase transition, which is where it changes its physical properties. During the phase transition occurring just before water reaches freezing temperatures, the hydrogen bonds change from the water molecules linking to four other water molecules in a tetrahedral arrangement, picture the shape of a four plane triangular pyramid, into a six-sided open crystalline structure that, instead of becoming denser, effectively pushes the oxygen atoms and molecules further apart to make ice less dense than water in a liquid state. Say what? You read that right, yes, water changes its physical form just before freezing into ice to become less dense than water! Dude, that’s like me changing into Dwayne Johnson, The Rock, just before my date with Priyanka Chopra! Still just science, right?
Defender of life
So, what’s the big deal? Ice is less dense than water. Whatever. Why are the properties of ice so important and a perfect intelligent design for the sustainment of life, you ask? Water, by changing the form of its molecular structure while freezing makes it is less dense and it floats instead of sinks. However, you already know that from ice cubes floating in your drink and perhaps ice skating or ice fishing in the winter. In exploration of why that’s such a big deal, let’s look first at what would happen if ice did not float. Living cells are ruptured resulting in irreparable damage to the cell as water molecules expand during its phase transition at freezing. The result of this cell damage can be seen in wilted lettuce or a mushy vegetable that got too cold and froze in your refrigerator. If ice did not float, it would form at the bottom of a lake first and then freeze up killing all the entire ecosystem in the lake, well, except for a few rare organisms that can survive extreme temperatures like a couple of frogs and insects, plus the king of extreme temperatures, the tardigrade. Since ice does float, it forms on the top of the water allowing the fish and the plants below in the unfrozen water to survive. Ice also acts as a protective layer, insulating and protecting the water below from the cold conditions above. Okay let’s think about this, the structure of water for some reason changes upon freezing to transform from being the potential killer of life to becoming life’s protector from the cold. You have to admit that’s pretty incredible. Still just science, but do you think that’s just random coincidence? Or, could there just possibly be some higher intelligence involved in the design?
Okay, so let’s add up all these coincidental scientific anomalies of water. First, water, the essence of all life as we know it, is the only known substance to have the perfect design to pull apart, bond with, and to transport the particles necessary to support life to living cells and waste from the body. Second, water is the Bruce Lee tough guy of liquids with the highest surface tension of all fluids, well, other than mercury which is the complete opposite of life supporting. Third, strong bonding, viscosity, and cohesion are all pretty handy properties for a life-supporting liquid designed to be carried around by organisms in porous sacks of skin. Fourth, is water’s perfect relationship with carbon, including the facts that a) even in lacking carbon, water is still somehow amazingly a liquid at room temperature; coupled with b) we just so happen to be carbon based organisms and c) carbon’s interaction with water makes it the perfect material to hold together our sacks of water, plus carbon makes a great backbone. Fifth, what started me down this whole rabbit hole thought process and still seems to me the strongest evidence of the possibility of a higher intelligence being involved in the design of water is the fact that cooling water defies physics to change the arrangement of its physical form to become less dense right at the perfect point just before freezing, causing ice to float allowing it to insulate and protect the water below from freezing, sustaining life.
Science sure points to water being special in many ways making it ideal to sustain carbon-based organisms, all life as we know it. When you add it up, water is either a perfect storm of multiple blind chance coincidences, or there is a possibility that a divine hand had a part in the intelligent design. Water is truly amazing, either way!
So, what do you think? Coincidence? Blind chance? Evolution? Providential? Honestly, I don’t have the answer, only more questions.
A few water inspired quotes:
Like water, be gentle and strong. Be gentle enough to follow the natural paths of the earth and strong enough to rise up and reshape the world. ― Brenda Peterson
Nothing is softer or more flexible than water, yet nothing can resist it. – Lao Tzu
The one thing that a fish can never find is water; and the one thing that man can never find is God. – Eric Butterworth
Water is the driving force of all nature. – Leonardo da Vinci
No water, no life. No blue, no green. – Sylvia Earle
The cure for anything is salt water — sweat, tears, or the sea. – Karen Blixen
A river cuts through rock, not because of its power, but because of its persistence. – James N. Watkins
Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend. – Bruce Lee
The tree that is beside the running water is fresher and gives more fruit. – Saint Teresa of Avila
Pure water is the world’s first and foremost medicine. – Slovakian Proverb
A look in the mirror, conclusion
Ahhh… diversion success! Perhaps a little long – a common pattern I see in my writings where I keep adding additional interesting information, where I could perhaps benefit from learning to write more concisely sticking to the main point (in this instance, can the properties of ice help prove the existence of an intelligent designer) and then follow-up with subsequent writings containing more corresponding info to provide additional support for my original premise. Eh, live and learn. Life is practice. The umpteen papers I have to write for school are all so academic. This was fun to write! Thank you for reading! All I have to say further on the subject is: evidence of God is a personal experience; my reality may not be your reality, or any reality for that matter; believe what you want; and do the right thing, whatever that may be for you. Peace. Trey out.
Have something to say? Let’s hear it! Share your comments below.
Like what you read? Check out some of my other work on my I am technology. #blog – http://iamtechnologyblog.com and on the AgriSmart, Inc. website, a sustainable agriculture startup in public-private partnership (PPP) with the governments of the République du Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) and la province de Maï-Ndombe en République démocratique du Congo (the Mai-Ndombe Province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo) – http://agrismartinc.com/, Sustainable Development Goals: #SDG6 Clean water and sanitation – AgriSmart blog
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