Living and Nonliving Matter Their Interaction and Cosmogonic View

The first step toward changing the world's picture, as natural scientists see it now, was the introduction of the concept of living matter by Vernadsky, and the second step was considering it as a cosmoplanetary phenomenon. Vernadsky has defined the living matter as ''the existing at present time unity of organisms with the mass, chemical composition and energy'' connected with its environment by constant processes such as breathing, feeding, and procreation, but we shall further address it sometimes as organic matter. Vernadsky has classified the dead organic matter as 'bio-generic matter', belonging to sediments, or, how one can call it 'the remnants of past biospheres'. The processes of interaction between the living (organic) and nonliving (inorganic) matter, considered as the most important initial stage of cosmoplanetary evolution, could be observed since the very first stages of planet's existence. As an example, proving Vernadsky's generalizations, the recent determination of time of the beginning of formation of primary sedimentary rocks (the Stratispehere, as Vernadsky named it) is 3.7 billions years ago, while slightly younger age (3.4-3.5 billions years ago) is determined for the formation of first organic compounds, that is, 'islands of living matter'. The origin of life on our planet is directly connected to the origin of the biosphere; and evolution, as we perceive it, always takes place inside biosphere, involving exclusively living matter. Vernadsky has expressed the fundamental importance of eternal interconnection between the living and nonliving matter, in the following very significant paragraph: ''The Earth cover, Biosphere, while fully embracing the globe, has limits that are strictly determined by the existence of living matter in it - it is populated by it. Between its inorganic 'lifeless' and living parts, inhabiting it, exists continuous exchange of matter and energy, expressed by atomic movement caused by living matter. With the time course, this exchange is expressed by constantly changing and tending to steady-state equilibrium. This equilibrium threads through the entire biosphere and this biogenic atomic flux to a large extent creates and maintains it. Hence, in this manner and during all geological epochs, Biosphere is connected with the living matter that populates it. And namely by this biogenic flux of atoms and energy, the strong planetary cosmic significance of living matter is determined.'' This view through the 'cosmic prism', so to speak, radically changes our understanding of dialectical interconnection of living and nonliving matter, which originally differ in their composition of elements. As one can add, nowadays there is certainly more data and hypotheses about the influence of solar and other cosmic radiation on the living organisms at different levels of their structural development. For example, quite a lot ofdata have been accumulated on the influence of weak electromagnetic fields on the information exchange between living cells. Cosmic rays could in certain way influence the information exchange that is conducted by means of weak electromagnetic fields between cells of a living organism, and therefore alter functioning of the multi-cell structures.

It is necessary also to say a few words here about the two main principles of interactions between living and nonliving matter that Vernadsky has formulated, namely two biogeochemical principles, that describe the nature of energy fluxes in the biosphere:

1. Geochemical biogenic energy of the biosphere tends to maximum.

2. During the evolution of species, only the organisms that increase this biogenic geochemical energy in a process of their life will survive.

Vernadsky also writes about the irreversibility of life's processes and the increase in life's free energy, expressed in dissymmetry of composition of living matter.

In connection to the first biogeochemical principle, it becomes important to mention the similar work of Russian theoretical biologist, E. Bauer, who has formulated the fundamental principle of the permanent inequilibrium of living matter and the principle of maximum effect of external work. These principles, describing the thermodynamics of evolution and organization of living matter, are called 'the law of Bauer-Vernadsky'.

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