last updated December 1st,
and is permanently morphing...
(9 Ik (Wind) / 0 Mak -
"The pan-spermia theory was formulated by Cyril
Ponnamperuma, who was the discoverer, along with James Watson and Francis
Crick, of DNA.
Ponnamperuma and Crick are proposing a much more radical theory than what
I put forth, at least in terms relative to biology. They are saying
that prebiotic molecules arise in the greatest numbers in deep space, not
on the surfaces of planets. The planets are only biologically important
at a late stage in the development of complex polymers and prebiotic compounds.
I'm sure you know the old adage that we each are made of stars, that the
atoms in your bodies were once cooked in the hearts of stars. This is true,
but an unremarked accompanying necessity of that fact would be that there
must, therefore, be some atoms in your body that were not cooked in the
heart of stars but were part of the planets that circled around those stars
before they exploded. It's very interesting that in a book called
_Scientific Perspectives on Extraterrestrial Communication_ by Cyril Ponnamperuma,
there is an article by R.N. Bracewell, an astrophysicist, who talks about
the logic of searches for intelligent life. He concludes that no
matter what kind of life form you are, no matter what kind of technology
you have, if you are seriously going to search space by physically sending
probes from one star to another, then the only strategy that would work
would be what is called a von
Neumann machine, meaning a machine that can reproduce itself.
Four of these machines are sent out in four opposed directions from a parent
star. At a certain distance from the parent star, each machine replicates,
machines. At double that distance, they replicate again, giving sixteen
machines, and so on. The notion is that only by this process
of replication can all bets be covered. And then what you do is send
an initial contact
message that says, 'We are searching the galaxy for intelligence by an
exhaustive means. If you read this message, please call the following,
toll-free number and we will initiate contact.' Only in this way
could you hope to have contact with all the habitable worlds in the galaxy.
This scenario makes clear that it may be very important to understand what
the message is that the mushroom
Mckenna - _Archaic