May 2nd, 2012 • 1:51 PM
Alexander Oparin vs. Creativity

by Meghan Rouillard

Lyndon LaRouche doesn’t exaggerate when he makes the following claim about Russian reductionist biologist Alexander Oparin “a public figure who remains on record to this date, as a thoroughly wrong-headed and bitter adversary of V.I. Vernadsky”-- from his recent report Dreams of a Modern Nero :

"For a certain, true and powerful reason, one among the most relevant contributors to the cause of a commonly truthful physical science has been the master-musician Wilhelm Furtwangler’s successful treatments on the subject of the ontological distinctions which separate Classical musical composition, and many other related matters from the simple “dirt” which is expressed by the common dogma of Bertrand Russell and his dupe Oparin. Consider my remarks this far, as representing both an excellent sort of “I. Q. Test” in general, and of the principle which the practice of Furtwangler’s discoveries helps us to to be enabled to convey, still today...

For the best relevant insight into these specific matters, the influence of the work of Furtwangler is the most useful point from which to proceed. Therefore, we should examine this argument in the following terms. The most useful approach to discussion of this matter is to be located in the fact that the 1920s’ argument Russell, and the fraudulent, viciously reductionist science of Alexander Oparin respecting life, are, speaking of ontological matters, ultimately the same nonsense."

Is Oparin’s work really to be counterposed to things in the domain of human creativity, like music? Yes! Oparin bends over backwards in his 1924 book “The Origin of Life” to attack creative intention, and even specifically human creative intention. But to discard human creativity, life, and their distinct “fossils,” Oparin can only employ a kind of lazy reason, which implies that a factor of an exceedingly long amount of time, which he calls “evolution,” could somehow give comparable results. And Oparin never proves anything-- he simply bullies the reader by using the “power of suggestion,” which isn’t very powerful at all.

He says, yes, we tend to imagine highly organized states as the result of a creative act, be it a factory, or a living thing. But, we can also imagine these things “evolving” from certain random interactions of building-blocks over time. For these random interactions of elements, etc. to produce something as highly organized as life, it would have required a very long amount of time, and any product which appears to be the work of a creative act could also be produced by a non-creative process which has millions of years of chances for the building blocks to interact in the right way to produce the more highly organized thing (...right? I mean, I know I can’t prove it, but can’t you imagine that?). However, evolution, as we’ve detailed many times on this website and in many different forums, is not just an expanse of time over which random interactions occur. Time after time, the same quality of upshift follows events which we know as mass extinctions, and determines those events, an intention which can be seen across evolutionary history .

But the simple point to be made here, shown in the following quote, is that Oparin feels the need to bring the products of human activity into his arguments about life, as something which should, by analogy, also be subject to reductionism. And let’s just be thankful Oparin did not try composing music-- I don’t think he’d accomplish much based on his approach, maybe he would just wait for the notes to organize themselves?... I’ll include that passage from his book, and leave it at that for now for this guy:

“If the reader were asked to consider the probability that in the midst of inorganic matter a large factory with smoke stacks, pipes, boilers, machines, ventilators, etc. suddenly sprang into existence by some natural process, let us say a volcanic eruption, this would be taken at best for a silly joke. Yet even the simplest microorganism has a more complex structure than any factory, and therefore its fortuitous creation is very much less probable...

All these difficulties, however, disappear, if we take the standpoint that the simplest living organisms originated gradually by a long evolutionary process of organic substance and that they represent merely definite mileposts along the general historic road of evolution of matter.”

Here, Oparin acknowledges that he still cannot create such a “preconceived plan” as a factory by this means, and admits that the same challenge exists for something as complex as protoplasmic structure-- in both of these cases we seem to have something which “fulfills definite and forseen aims”. But he then counterposes this notion of intention to his idea evolution-- the higher order processes which are produced are not generative, but “become superimposed” after they come into existence:

"It is inconceivable that such a preconceived plan of protoplasmic structure could exist unless one assumes a creative divine will and plan of creation. But a definite protoplasmic organization and fitness of its inner structure to carry out definite functions could easily be formed in the course of evolution of organic matter just as highly organized animals and plants have come from the simplest things by a process of evolution. Later we shall attempt to trace this evolution and to picture the gradual formation of living things from non-living matter. In this evolution more and more complex phenomena of a higher order became superimposed upon the simplest physical and chemical processes..."

For more on the fraud of Oparin and the contrary method of Vernadsky, you can check out this report from the 2012 NASA Astrobiology Conference , as well as Lyndon LaRouche’s recent reports.

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