Today in Panspermia

This paper has big "they laughed at me at the institute" energy...

Cause of Cambrian Explosion - Terrestrial or Cosmic?

In our considered view the totality of the multifactorial data and critical analyses assembled by Fred Hoyle, Chandra Wickramasinghe and their many colleagues leads to the bare minimum yet plausible scientific conclusion -- that life was seeded here on Earth by life-bearing comets as soon as conditions on Earth allowed it to flourish (at or just before 4.1 Billion years ago); and living organisms such as space-resistant and space-hardy bacteria, viruses, more complex eukaryotic cells and organisms (e.g. Tardigrades), perhaps even fertilised ova and plant seeds, may have been continuously delivered ever since to Earth helping to drive further the progress of terrestrial biological evolution. [...]

The requirement now, on the basis of orthodox abiogenic thinking, is that an essentially instantaneous transformation of non-living organic matter to bacterial life occurs, an assumption we consider strains credibility of Earth-bound abiogenesis beyond the limit. A far more plausible possibility is that fully-developed microorganisms and maybe other eukaryotic organisms arrived at the Earth via impacting comets, and these later became carbonized and trapped within condensing mineral grain conglomerates. It is now becoming amply clear that Earth-like planets and other life-friendly planetary bodies exist in their hundreds of billions and exchanges of material between them (meteorites, cometary bolides) must routinely occur.. One is thus forced in our view to conclude that the entire galaxy (and perhaps our local group of galaxies) constitutes a single connected biosphere.

Octopuses? Ancient astronauts. Or, uplifted by space viruses.

Cephalopods are also very diverse, with the behaviourally complex coleoids, (Squid, Cuttlefish and Octopus) presumably arising under a pure terrestrial evolutionary model from the more primitive nautiloids. However the genetic divergence of Octopus from its ancestral coleoid sub-class is very great [...] One plausible explanation, in our view, is that the new genes are likely new extraterrestrial imports to Earth - most plausibly as an already coherent group of functioning genes within (say) cryopreserved and matrix protected fertilized Octopus eggs.

Cholera? Ok that was really from poop. But influenza? AIDS? Death from Above. Sunspots!

In the case of Influenza the sudden appearance of multiple yet patchy location strikes (many, as indicated, before the advent of air travel) cannot be explained by simple infectious person-to-person disease models. However they are more completely understandable by multiple strikes or in-falls from space at widely disparate global locations dependent on vagaries like weather, topography and geography, and in particular the periodicity of the significant correlation with the 11 year Sun Spot flare cycle. With respect to the latter correlation "..the peaks of solar activity will be expected to assist in the descent of charged molecular aggregates (including viruses) from the stratosphere to ground level..along magnetic field lines that connect the Sun and the Earth".

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9 Responses:

  1. Flotsam says:

    My favourite Fred Hoyle quotation - "Space isn't remote at all. It's only an hour's drive away if your car could go straight upwards."

  2. ....If I google panspermia am I going to be grossed out?

    • Glaurung says:

      No, although you may be bemused at the elaborate lengths some people will go to re-create religious creation myths without saying they're doing that.

      "the theory that life on the earth originated from microorganisms or chemical precursors of life present in outer space"

  3. グレェ「grey」 says:

    I think others have posited that comets have seeded biological life throughout the cosmos, though I tend to encounter postulates about mycelia more often, that may be due to the nature of psychonauts and the things they ponder and speak about publicly?

    Space squid though? That could be directly lifted out of 翠星のガルガンティア「suisei no gargantia」(Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet). I really hope that can stay in the realms of SciFi though, I have no desire to go to war with intergalactic warp capable cuttlefish.

  4. JohnB says:

    The "essentially instantaneous" is how many million years exactly?

    I was reading just today, about how darn fast evolution can be when pushed by human pollution/climate change/industrial farming. Or consider COVID evolving almost in real time to beat our measures to slow and stop it. Even though there's no fossil record for obvious reasons we can trace evolution back to the first bacteria, archaea genetically in great detail. No need for space woo at all.

  5. Lloyd says:

    The Spocktacus in that tattoo will not "live long and prosper", because octopodes die after mating, making transmission of cultural knowledge and family values difficult. Still, that does go some way to explaining Spock's reluctance to mate and his mistrust of the opposite sex in general.

    It is Professor Inkling of the Octonauts who has the well-known catchphrase "Fascinating", and we can look to the Octonauts as a model of alien exploration directed by tentacular minds wholly alien to our own, yet cool and sympathetically kid-friendly.

  6. Carlos says:

    Am I the only one who thinks that this sounds like the output of a new, somewhat better, and slightly more insane generative network?

    It's not timecube-crazy, but it's definitely up there with manic street preacher.


  7. thielges says:

    Why attribute the global spread of influenza to comet strikes when migratory birds are a credible vector?

    These guys need to read a Richard Dawkins book or two.

    • tfb says:

      I don't know what the lifetime of virus particles in aerosols is, but the mixing time of the atmosphere is weeks, so if they can, even occasionally, live that long then that's a potential mechanism too.

      What seems most surprising about this paper is that it's published in a journal that looks reputable: I'd assumed it would be on vixra or whatever the equivalent is for its field.

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