Abiogenesis and the Scientific Method

25 Sep

After the death of Stanley Miller in 2007, the vials, holding the remains of his famous Miller-Urey experiment on the origin of life in 1953, were willed to his student and colleague, Dr. Jeffrey Bada of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego. Dr. Bada and Adam Johnson, a graduate student at Indiana University, reexamined Miller’s vials and found trace amounts of additional amino acids. The optimism resulting from the reanalysis, however, was far from realistic.

Scientific Method[1]

Miller-Urey Experiment (1953)

Bada-Johnson Experiment (2008)

1. Observe the data under consideration Observed the complexity of living species. Observed the complexity of living species.
2. Propose a hypothesis Concluded all life has a common ancestor, arising from a primordial soup. [natural cause] Concluded all life has a common ancestor, arising from a primordial soup. [natural cause]
3. Conduct an experiment to test the hypothesis. Miller-Urey experiment produces 2 different amino acids in red goo which is comprised of 85 % tar, 13% carboxylic acid (both toxic to life) and 2% amino acids. Using Miller’s vials holding the original results of his 1953 experiment, Bada reanalyzed the mixture and found 23 amino acids, 10 of which are used in life forms (20 are needed).
4. Analyze the result and determine if the hypothesis is correct or incorrect Analysis proves the hypothesis is incorrect. Life could not arise by itself. The reanalysis still shows life could not have arisen naturally. The hypothesis is incorrect.
5. If necessary, return to step #2 and begin again.
Image from Google Images

Image from Google Images

Why couldn’t life have arisen naturally, since 10 amino acids in at least trace amounts were found in the goo resulting from the experiment? There are several reasons why the optimism expressed over the results is premature, and, by the way, “the researchers have since discontinued the testing.”[2] Why would they do that, if the experiment was so promising? In any case, only trace amounts of additional amino acids were found in the goo, and over half of them were not the right kind of amines used to produce a single protein. Secondly, oxygen would destroy non-living organic molecules like those produced in the Miller-Urey laboratory. Oxygen is absolutely essential to living matter, but it destroys the “building blocks” of life faster than they can be produced. Therefore, it had been postulated that the ancient earth had an atmosphere that had no oxygen. Yet, even the most ancient rocks on the earth have oxygen in them, proving beyond doubt that our atmosphere always had a rich supply of free oxygen. Nevertheless, even if we allow this to be so, this would mean that the earth had no ozone layer filtering out damaging ultraviolet rays from the sun, which would destroy the ammonia gases necessary for amino acids to develop naturally out of a primordial soup. In other words, the naturalists are in a ‘catch-22” position. Without oxygen, the ammonia gas necessary to produce the amino acids would be destroyed by the sun’s ultraviolet rays, but if there is an abundance of oxygen, the new amino acids would be destroyed faster than they could be produced! Thus, the Miller-Urey experiment is exposed for what it truly is: a failed but intelligent work done logically under controlled conditions. How does this point to anything arising out of random chance?

[1] Compare this with “Scientific Method Steps

[2] See “The Miller-Urey Experiment” under “Recent Related Studies” conducted by Professor Jeffery Bada, found HERE.


Posted by on September 25, 2013 in naturalism, theory of evolution


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13 responses to “Abiogenesis and the Scientific Method

  1. ggladyshev

    December 10, 2013 at 09:55

    Thermodynamics of origin of life: Why is there life?

    (Why does life originate and exist now? It is the main question! How does life originate? It is the second question!)
    The transition between the animate and inanimate matter is a slow. It was predestined by the action of “thermodynamic principle of the substance stability” ( ) which describes the forward and backward linkages at the transmission of information between structural hierarchies during the chemical and biological evolution.
    See: Thermodynamics and the emergence of life.
    The phenomena of life can be explained on the basis of quasi-equilibrium hierarchical thermodynamics of dynamic systems which stands at the solid foundation of thermodynamics of JW Gibbs. Theory can be constructed without using the concept of dissipative structures of I. Prigogine and his ideas about negentropy.
    From the point of view of thermodynamics, the phenomenon of life is defined as: “Life is the process of existence of constantly renewed polyhierarchical structures during cycles of transformation of labile chemical substances in the presence of liquid water on the planet.”
    Hierarchical thermodynamics establishes a common genetic code of life in the universe
    Georgi Gladyshev
    Professor of Physical Chemistry
    P.S. Biodiversity See: Thermodynamic mechanisms of formation and evolution of living systems On the sculpting living organisms and systems

    • Eddie

      December 10, 2013 at 11:10

      The bottom line is, your theories are not subject to the scientific method. Consequently, you ask us to simply believe it all works just as you say. What is the difference between your request for belief and a religion’s request for faith?

    • ggladyshev

      December 10, 2013 at 12:29

      I believe that I use scientific method. My approvals confirmed experimentally. I understand that everyone thinks differently.
      Thank you!

    • Eddie

      December 10, 2013 at 15:25

      If you used the scientific method you would have objective proof to display. You would be famous and probably invited to appear on all sorts of TV programs throughout the world. Bottom line, you have no objective proof; it is all untested theory! Have a nice day.

    • ggladyshev

      December 11, 2013 at 03:21

      Thank you.
      You are right. However, there are reasons that hinder performances on TV. One of them is related to the popularity of other theories and errors in thermodynamics.
      Have look at please

    • Eddie

      December 11, 2013 at 07:42

      Dr. Gladyshev, I do not wish to detract in any way from the honor due your position. I don’t wish to make light of your education or the work you have tried to do in the field of science. However, I don’t believe theoretical science, as it is done today, subjects itself to the scientific method. The theory of evolution is considered **fact** by many scientists today. In fact, it is unlawful in my country to not teach evolution in a high school science class. Religious schools may teach both the evolutionary and religious point of view, but evolution must be taught.

      About 5 min. into your video Dr. Thims spoke of Nobel Prize winner, Dr. Prigogine who in 1977 presented his theory which, if I understood correctly, is opposed to yours. What I found interesting about the matter was his “theory was considered proof beyond doubt, case closed.” In other words, the scientific method was not used to determine what was true. Your work has suffered because of science not conducting itself properly and so has Christianity. Scientific theory, if popular enough, is considered proved enough for all intents and purposes–scientific method notwithstanding.

      I’m sorry for how you have been treated in the scientific community, but at the same time I am sorry too that the scientific method is not used to weed out all unproved theories as improper science, and (though you probably disagree) the theory of evolution is one of those theories that is unscientific.


      Ed Bromfield

    • ggladyshev

      December 11, 2013 at 15:11

      Dear Mr Bromfield,
      Thank you for attention.
      Georgi Gladyshev

  2. ggladyshev

    December 10, 2013 at 07:03

    The origin of life can be explained through the study of thermodynamics of universe evolution!
    Origin of life and its evolution are the result of action of laws of hierarchical thermodynamics.
    Thermodynamics investigates systems which can be characterized by state functions. The separation of biological systems into individual hierarchies of structures allows us to study the processes in them independently of the processes that take place in other hierarchical structures.

    Life as a phenomenon is a set of cyclic metabolic processes in ontogeny, phylogeny and evolution. From the perspective of the dynamics of evolutionary transformations of structure of living things life is characterized by the changing of the thermodynamic stability of supramolecular hierarchical structures. In other words, cyclic metabolic processes constantly are enriched by the addition of more stable supramolecular hierarchical structures that are adapting to the changing environment. The thermodynamic design defines adaptation of living objects.

    • Eddie

      December 10, 2013 at 08:49

      Your bottom line seems dependent upon the validity of evolution, but without any interest in proof. All your processes that you mention are dependent upon the process of evolution being factual. If it is a myth, so are your processes, for they are dependent upon its validity. The Scientific Method is supposed to weed out the theories that are not sound. For some reason–whatever reason–the theory of evolution is given special treatment. It has yet to produce any proof, using the scientific method, that it should be taken seriously by science. Nevertheless, you are welcome to your pov.

  3. lotharson

    September 25, 2013 at 08:00

    Hello Eddie,

    how on earth do you know that in one hundred years, two hundred years, three thousand years someone will come up with a plausible natural explanation for the emergence of the first self-replicating systems?

    Arguments based on ignorance are a shaky ground to base our faith on.

    Friendly greetings from continental Europe.

    Lothars Sohn – Lothar’s son

    • Eddie

      September 25, 2013 at 09:55

      Greetings once more, Lortharson. How do I know… **if** in 200 years or 3000 years? I could **what if** everything I know to be true away by embracing such an argument. No one I can think of who wants to teach others or find out knowledge for him/herself operates under such a philosophy. We find out how existing laws affect our lives and build upon this information. Only life produces life. This is an immutable law that repeats itself day by day. You can **what if** that if you wish, but you have no evidence that your **what if** would ever amount to anything concrete.

    • lotharson

      September 25, 2013 at 12:45

      This is why many scientific conclusions are very tentative and much more uncertain than the New Atheists consider them to be.

      Christian apologists should not try to play the game with weapons of their foes.

      That said certain scientific conclusions are beyond any doubt: heliocentrism and the old age of the earth belong to them for they have been confirmed by countless INDEPENDENT evidences.

      Friendly greetings from Europe.
      Lothars Sohn – Lothar’s son

    • Eddie

      September 25, 2013 at 14:24

      Exactly what proof is there for an ancient age of the earth (that would be in the billions of years, rather than thousands)?

      Christian apologists should not try to play the game with weapons of their foes.



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