• Vipin
    7
    Defining Life.

    The scientist define life in terms of DNA but could not define it in its entirety. The philosophers try to define life in terms of purpose of life. I am forced to define life while commenting on the gospel of John. In my attempt to study life and define it, I understood some important concepts about the life.

    The life has three tiers: Biological life, physiological life and spiritual life. The greek philosophers have understood it and they have words for each tier and they are Bios, Psyche, Zoe. 

    Biological life means the existence of the biological body. Let us take humans as an example. The heart of our body pumps blood to all the cells of our body, life exists as long as it receives blood. Our human body has a hierarchy of life inside it. Cells have a function; when cells combine it forms tissues and tissues have its own function; Tissues combine to form organs and the organs have its own function. Organs combine to form an organ system. The Organ systems combine to form an organism. When we consider the biology of our body, the life is the existence of the body through its processes at different levels. 

    The religions attempt to define life in terms of free will. The free will is the ability to take a decision, and it is not the ability to perform the decision. The free will distinguishes living from nonliving. The living beings have abilities and nature(characteristics and traits). The free will has a relationship with the nature of the being. 

    I have found three tiers of nature of the being and they are the state of being, inner abilities and outer abilities. 
    The state of being of humans:
    being truthful
    being faithful
    being trustworthy
    being loyal
    being joyful
    being rebellious……..

    The inner abilities of humans:
    to think
    to dream
    to contemplate
    to decide
    to laugh………


    The outer abilities of humans:
    to walk
    to laugh
    to speak
    to communicate
    to eat
    to drink ……….


    The outer abilities are biological, the inner abilities are physiological and the state of being is spiritual.

    Biological life is the existence of a physical body manifested through its outer abilities.
    Physiological life is the existence of the soul manifested through its inner abilities and outer abilities.
    Spiritual life is the existence of the spirit manifested through its state of being, physiological life and biological life.


    I need to find better terms for “state of being”, “inner abilities” and “outer abilities”.

    Please review the article I have made. So, I can make it better.
  • hachit
    198
    one question because some of what you said confused me are we talking about classifying live?, what makes us human?, or what does it mean to be alive?
  • alan1000
    40
    Perhaps what your own post makes clear is that the definition of "life" is arbitrary. Is "life" defined in terms of reaction to the environment? I don't think so, because molecules which are destroyed by disinfectant are responding to their environment. Is life defined by the ability to react in some adaptive way? Possibly, but you need to develop the point.
  • Galuchat
    619
    The scientist define life in terms of DNA but could not define it in its entirety.Vipin
    Can you cite an example?

    I am forced to define life while commenting on the gospel of John. In my attempt to study life and define it, I understood some important concepts about the life.

    The life has three tiers: Biological life, physiological life and spiritual life. The greek philosophers have understood it and they have words for each tier and they are Bios, Psyche, Zoe.
    Vipin
    The concept of life found in the Gospel of John will be based on Biblical hermeneutics, and have a spiritual dimension, whereas; the concept of life found in Biology will be based on empirical investigation, and have organic dimensions.

    What is the difference between biological and physiological life? Is there such a thing as anatomical life?

    Do you mean to equate bios with Biological life, psyche with physiological life, and zoe with spiritual life?

    The religions attempt to define life in terms of free will.Vipin
    Can you cite an example?

    I need to find better terms for “state of being”, “inner abilities” and “outer abilities”.Vipin
    Spirit, mind, and body?
  • Vipin
    7
    Thanks all for the comments, it is a food for thought. More commnets are welcome.The study on life is interesting, challenging and i could not define. I am trying to find the meaning of ZOE.
  • Relativist
    737
    Amoeba have life, but I see no reason to think they have a free will.

    Are you actually seeking the definition of an individual human life (a person)?
  • Vipin
    7
    I should be able to define life of human in three parts(of body, of soul, of spirit). I am trying.
  • Relativist
    737
    I should be able to define life of human in three parts(of body, of soul, of spirit). I am trying.Vipin
    I see, you are defining it from the perspective of a theist. Personally, I don't believe there exists a soul or spirit.
  • Terrapin Station
    11.3k
    The philosophers try to define life in terms of purpose of life.Vipin

    Actually, the standard definition in philosophy--which you'll find primarily under the auspices of philosophy of biology, a subdiscipline of philosophy of science, is very similar to the standard scientific definition, which is based on phenomena such as cell division, metabolism, etc.
  • Galuchat
    619
    I see, you are defining it from the perspective of a theist. Personally, I don't believe there exists a soul or spirit.Relativist
    Why are your beliefs relevant to the task undertaken by the OP? Generally, beliefs hinder the careful exegesis of a text; like putting the cart before the horse.

    Actually, the standard definition in philosophy--which you'll find primarily under the auspices of philosophy of biology, a subdiscipline of philosophy of science, is very similar to the standard scientific definition, which is based on phenomena such as cell division, metabolism, etc.Terrapin Station
    Being standards, it shouldn't be difficult for you to provide said Philosophy of Biology and Scientific definitions of life. Also, it would be helpful if you could provide a list of texts which comprise the Canon of Biological Philosophy.
  • Terrapin Station
    11.3k


    Start with something like the Blackwell Companion if you're really interested in pursuing philosophical reading in the field:

    Blackwell Companion to the Philosophy of Biology

    Again, the definition is usually given as a cluster-property definition, where it includes things like environmental responsiveness and mobility, growth/cell division, homeostasis, metabolism, organization, reproduction and evolution.
  • Galuchat
    619

    That's what I figured. Cheers!
  • tim wood
    2.9k
    I am forced to define life while commenting on the gospel of John.Vipin
    Before worrying about how life is defined in the Gospel of John, answer the questions as to why and to what end he is defining life. His is not a scientist's adventure into discovering any sort of truth (nor is that against him, especially, because in his world there was no such thing as what we understand by a scientist).

    Rather he was about taking over, changing, establishing certain new understandings (or at least new in his usages) to the end of defending a religion.

    "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.... 1:14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us.

    The word is the Greek λογός. And until John wrote, the idea that the "word' - the λογός - could "be flesh and dwell among us" would have been both an outrage and incoherent. Until and unless you have a very good grasp of this, you will fail to understand John and their (that's right, a plural for John) purpose and what they meant.

    \
  • Vipin
    7
    Commenting on Gospel of John is a serious work. I have been doing it 1.5 years. I understood lot of concepts, theology etc. light, life etc are difficult to define. When I attempted to do it. I get deeper understanding of it. So I am still pursuing it with much prayers.
  • tim wood
    2.9k
    with much prayers.Vipin

    Prayers aren't going to do it, because you're within the thing. Put on your analyst's hat and work from there. Your purpose is to find out what is. If not that, then you're just another apologist, whether to yourself or others. And given the extant work, unless you review it for yourself, zero chance of being a good one.
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