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A depiction of abioism, from a-bio-ism, meaning disbelief in the existence of life, according to which what was formerly defined as being "alive", e.g. plants, animals, and humans, is redefined (Thims, 2015) as a movement or animation property unique to the CH+ or CHNOPS+ group of elements, when heated or powered, in so-called "habitable zone" systems or environments.

In isms, abioism (TR:50) (LH:22) (TL:72), as contrast to "bioism", is the view that "life" (bio or vita) does not exist (Thims, 2015); that there is no "bio" or "life" emergence point, in the universe, between the formation of the hydrogen atom, which by standard definition is not alive, and the human, but rather only increasing forms of powered animation.


Abioism, in short, is belief that there is NO “life / non-life” (German) or “bio / non-bio” (Greek) divide between the formation of hydrogen, which by scientific definition is not alive, and the formation of a human, which is but an atomic derivative of the latter; moreover, neither is there any sort of "emergent" bioism, i.e. life emerged at one point, or "gradual" bioism, wherein one has to concede that the hydrogen atom is "sort of alive", which is "objectionable nonsense" (Einstein, 1932).

The abioism view particularly becomes apparent when one goes searching for the purported "origin of life" in the context and continuity of the "great chain of being", "molecular evolution table", evolution timeline, or various hydrogen to human mechanism schemes, as hydrogen atoms (or subatomic particles) transform, over spacetime, into humans.

The term "abioism", in short, is the view that, from a physico-chemical point of view, there is NO magical, "emergent", or divine "dividing line" that separates the transition from "inanimate" to "animate" (see: animate things), but rather, the onset of observed "forced", "energized", or "powered" dynamical geometric movement is but a "property" of the proton-electron and photon interactions dynamics of column 14 elements of the periodic table, a "human" defined explicitly as a powered CHNOPS+20E existent.


Early views

In the 16th to 18th century, some began to question the presumed status quo and accepted definition of “life”, say as compared to nonlife; one of the earliest was Jean Fernal, who began to question Aristotle:

“The stone selenite holds the image of the moon even to her very phases. The magnet-stone points to the pole star. These are dead things, says Brutus, do living things likewise draw influences from the sky. Did not Aristotle well and truly say, and leave it written for all posterity, that: ‘Heat is the condition of life’?”
Jean Fernal (1548), On the Hidden Causes of Things

The “defunct theory of life” article summarizes the 400-year progress of this kernel of thought, from Fernal, to Charles Sherrington (1938), who improved on Fernal, up to the 20th century.

Modern views

A 2016 video[1] of Alfred Rogers, an American philosopher, speaking on his 1990s discernment that “life does not exist”, aka abioism (Thims, 2015) and how the only difference that separate things such as atoms, e.g. hydrogen, seeds, geysers, such as Old Faithful, amoeba, and humans, is "complexity".


In the 1990s, Alfred Rogers began to collect a shoebox of philosophical notes on the idea that “life does not exist”; eventually publishing the website LifeDoesNotExist.com in 2010.


In 1998 to 2004, Jonathan Dowling, while working at NASA, began to float the idea to his colleagues that, from the point of view of atoms, DNA and entropy, “there is NO line” that separates what we have been accustomed to distinguish as “living” from “nonliving”, particularly when it comes to the measured search for so-called “extraterrestrial” life; Dowling eventually published a note on this:

“When [1998-2004] I was at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, we would have endless discussions on the definition of life. What is life? The discussions were always hinged on the metaphysical and religiously infused idea that there should be a line—things on one side of the line were alive and things on the other were not. The game was to find that line. People argued and continue to argue about this endlessly. Should it reproduce, reduce the entropy of its environment, have DNA, or what? For example, viruses are infectious, reproduce, and have DNA and most vote they are alive (but some not). Prions, which cause mad cow disease, are malevolent proteins that reproduce, are infectious, but have no DNA. Most say they are not alive and say we should draw the line of life between prions and viruses. My response to these discussions was, there is no such thing as life! There are interesting chemical reactions, like Stephen Hawking, and less interesting chemical reactions, like salt crystals growing in a glass of salt water. There is no line, no ‘breath of life’ separating living from nonliving. That is a metaphysical bit of silliness. We should focus on interesting over boring chemical reactions and forget about this line that does not exist except in our own minds.”
— Jonathan Dowling (2013), (2013). Schrödinger's Killer App: Race to Build the World's First Quantum Computer (ref. #88, pgs. 429-30)


In 2005, Libb Thims made the “molecular evolution table”, shown adjacent, showing the molecular development of humans from hydrogen and subatomic particles in about 30-steps, the question of which element "rows" in this table, one is to assign as being "alive" becomes problematic?

In 2006, Thims, while getting peer-review for his drafting Human Chemistry, began to begin to tackle the problem or rather confusions surrounding the terms "life" and its purported "origin" from the point of view of chemical thermodynamics; the following is feedback on this early effort:

“I want to say how much I enjoyed reading Thims splendid discussion of Gibbs free energy. It is wonderful to see someone who is not afraid to look at the phenomena of life in a unified way.”
— John Avery (2006), Lebanese-born Danish physicist and theoretical chemist

In 2009, Thims stated directly to Georgi Gladyshev, originally as an email, then in a published JHT article, that “life” is a defunct theory, as per thermodynamics, chemistry, and physics define things.[2] This initiated a public "defunct theory of life debate", which remained "heated" for about five-years.


In 2013, Ferris Jabr, in his Scientific American blog article “Why Life Does Not Really Exist”, explained how, in reference to his cat and a K'Nex roller-coaster, that the life/non-life divide is an anthropomorphism, and that in reality, life does not exist.

The 4 Jul 2015 header column, from the atheism types by denial and belief page, showing the six main “denials” (or disbeliefs), as compared to six main “creeds” (or disbeliefs), of the top 30 atheism-inclining philosophers of all time, amid which “abioism”, as a new term, was introduced, in reference to those who “deny life” or deny that life exists.[3]


On 4 Jul 2015, Libb Thims coined the term “abioism”, simply as "disbelief in the existence of life", in the Hmolpedia "atheism types by denial and belief" page, by adding it as one of the six main atheism “disbelief” (or denial) categories, as shown adjacent.[3]


The following are related quotes:

“5,000 years ago people, e.g. Egyptians (3100BC), believed the sun was ‘alive’, now we don’t. 300 years ago people, e.g. Carl Linnaeus (1735), believed that stones are alive, now we don’t. 100 years ago people, e.g. Henry Bray (1910), used to believe the universe was ‘alive’, now we don’t. 50 years ago people, e.g. James Lovelock (1965), used to believe the earth was ‘alive’, now we don’t. 10 years ago all people used to believe they are alive, now a growing number of people, e.g. Jonathan Dowling (1998), Alfred Rogers (2010), Ferris Jabr (2013), Inderjit Singh (2014), among others, don’t. ‘What everyone believed yesterday, and you believe today, only cranks will believe tomorrow’ (Crick, 1966).”
— Libb Thims (2016), Note posted in the description section[4] of the Alfred Rogers Abioism video, Jun 23
“I have always considered thermodynamics to be the most beautiful subject that I have come across. I independently thought of an idea linking life and thermodynamics when I was going through a difficult time during my early twenties. I later discovered that Schrodinger had the same idea 60 years earlier, essentially the idea was that life evades the decay to thermodynamic equilibrium by maintaining negative entropy in an open system. Thanks to you I now understand my previous line of thinking to be flawed, and I appreciate the content you are producing on abioism.”
— Dan Pohl (2017), site message (Ѻ) to Libb Thims, Sep 11
“Kudos to Libb Thims, who I understand is the coiner of the term ‘abioism’. I haven't read any of his work yet and so cannot comment on it, but the term rocks! :)”
— Jim Crawford (2018), “Introduction” (Ѻ) to new Abioism Blog, Jun 27
“Oderberg’s idea of immanent causation is a good description of what I mean by ‘self-movement’ [see: self-motion]. If we could not privilege the imminent causes of self-movement above non-imminent ones, then we could not even say that living canines are any more alive than robotic dogs, an assumption that is taken to its logical end in the writings of those who espouse abioism (e.g. Jabr 2013) — the idea that life does not really exist. Moreover, we see how the difference between causes internal to a thing and causes external to a thing can matter apart from their necessity in a functional process. For example, we recognize that a car battery, which cannot hold a charge and is in need of a jump, is “dead” in contrast to one that can turn the starter when prompted by the ignition. While the faulty battery might be able to still complete an electrical circuit and permit the circulation of current so the driver can make a pit stop at the auto parts store, he dare not turn the engine off before he gets there, unless he wants to jump the battery again. By saying this, I do not mean to draw an analogy between human death and the death of car batteries, but to highlight an important feature of the causal story about a thing, which can in turn provide us with knowledge about the condition of a thing.”
— Adam Omelianchuk (2019), “The End of a Human Organism as a Self-Moving Whole” [5]
“I must have watched that Alfred Rogers [abioism] video (Ѻ) at least five times.”
Ram Poudel (2019), comment to Libb Thims over lunch, Chicago, summer
“Here is the thing - organisms are by definition ‘living’ things and whether viruses are alive or not is a matter of debate. What do you mean? How is this possible that we do not know if something is alive? Quite simple. Our definition of being alive is not derived from first principles. What is the conclusion from all that? That we do not really know what it means to be ‘alive’. Maybe viruses cause us so much problems because they prove that the thing that we are looking for does not exist in the first place. We assumed that the state of ‘alive’ is a given, that’s our axiom. What if it was wrong all this time? Being alive is a lie. How could we miss that? Nothing is alive. Being alive does not exist. Wait just a moment! - the crowd shouts. This is all BS. You are presenting no evidence, this is just pure speculation, totally unscientific! The angry mob would be right. This is not a scientific theory. Here is the thing - neither is the current theory of ‘alive’. No magical moment happened in evolution at which the spark of god came upon us. I exist. I feel. If I’m unlucky, one day I will stop. We are the same as everything else, just further up the scale.”
— FreakyBit (2020), “I’m Less Alive than Elon Musk” [6]

See also


  1. Rogers, Alfred. (2016). “Abioism: Life does NOT exist” (co-speakers: Libb Thims and Inderjit Singh) (YT), Human Chemistry 101, Jun 23.
  2. (a) Thims, Libb. (2009). “Letter to Georgi Gladyshev”, Jan 2. (b) Thims, Libb. (2009). “Letter: Life a Defunct Scientific Theory” (pdf), Journal of Human Thermodynamics, Vol. 5, pgs. 20-21.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Atheism types by denial and belief (WikiFoundry subdomain) – Hmolpedia 2020.
  4. Rogers, Alfred. (2016). “Abioism: Life does NOT exist” (co-speakers: Libb Thims and Inderjit Singh) (YT), Human Chemistry 101, Jun 23.
  5. (a) Oderberg, David S. (2013). “Synthetic Life and the Bruteness of Causation”; in: Aristotle on Method and Metaphysics (editor: Edward Feser) (pgs. 206-35; quote, pg. 213). Palgrave Macmillan.
    (b) Omelianchuk, Adam. (2019). “The End of a Human Organism as a Self-Moving Whole” (abs) (pdf) (pgs. 29-30), Journal of Medicine & Philosophy.
  6. FreakBit. (2020). “I’m Less Alive than Elon Musk” (Ѻ), StronglyAgainst.com, Apr 10.

Further reading

  • Anon. (2019). “I recently came across a belief called ‘abioism’ (life doesn’t really exist). What are the best arguments against it?” (Ѻ), Quora.
  • Anon. (2020). “Recently, I’ve come across a belief named ‘abioism’ in a YouTube channel which means life doesn’t exist. It made me very sad and depressed. What should I do now?” (Ѻ), Quora.

External links

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