Video Conversations

Episode 5 | Season 3
The Origins of Life: Do we need a new theory for how life began?

Paul Davies & Jeremy England


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The first microbial form of life arose on the earth perhaps 3.5billion years ago. But how? And why would inanimate matter go to the trouble of becoming a living, self-replicating organism with the potential to ultimately produce conscious intelligent humans able to explore their own origins? 


Two leading voices in Origins of Life research, Paul Davies and Jeremy England, discuss whether a new understanding of physics could be the key to unlocking the mystery of how life first emerged. But where does this leave the concept of God as creator? England, who is an orthodox Rabbi, and Davies, who describes himself as agnostic, talk about the implications for religious belief.

Paul Davies, physicist and director of the BEYOND Centre 

Paul Davies is Professor of physics at Arizona State University as well as the Director of BEYOND: Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science. Davies has spent a lifetime probing the big question of origins. His most book ‘The Demon in the Machine’ explores the way hidden webs of information may be solving the mystery of life.


Jeremy England, origins of life research scientist 

Jeremy England is a physicist who is currently senior director in artificial intelligence at GlaxoSmithKline and principle research scientist at Georgia Tech. England is also an ordained rabbi and brings both the Torah and science together in his book ‘Every Life is on Fire: How thermodynamics explains the origins of living things’


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