Life’s Strange Propensity Towards Life

After way too much obsessing on possible reasons as to why life has such a propensity for life, I’ve come up empty. I looked to Darwin, but all he can say is that life “sprang forth.” The fact that there are “irreducibly complex” systems such as eyesight and blood clotting, as has been suggested by Michael Behe, perplexes me further. I’ve looked through essays and books, spoke with college professors who have told me that any creature’s first instinct is self-preservation, but they give me a blank stare when I ask WHY. “Zen and the Brain” says that; “The survival functions are irresistible,” but it doesn’t say WHY they’re so irresistible.

Supposedly, survival instincts are hardwired into the deepest recesses of our brains; into the actual brain stem itself, which extends into the hypothalamus. They can often override all other functions, even when a person has fallen unconscious; the survival instinct can still save a person from imminent death.

My question is WHY does life have such a propensity towards life? WHY do non-self aware creatures go so far as to often fight to the death for the right to propagate? Write off our instinct for survival as a way for us humans to gain immortality, but what about a plant or a gazelle or a cat? If one wants to argue that it’s because “the conditions for life were there”, it still doesn’t answer the question as to WHY life has such a passion to survive, just because the conditions were there for it. I want to find some logical explanation as to WHY virtually every living species has, as its strongest desire, to live.

If there was no desire to live, then there would be no life, so doesn’t this almost have to indicate that life itself is an intelligence, an organism on a macrocosmic level, which is separate from the biochemical structures of living creatures? If these were nothing more than a series of chemical reactions driving every plant and creature, then why would they occur in the first place, why would they continue to occur, and why would so many different species have evolved and enveloped practically every corner of the entire planet?

From a fanatical skeptic: My only logical conclusion is that there is some sort of intelligence behind life itself.

I have no desire whatsoever to propagate; if we were to have a child, it would be for the experience of raising a child and not to further the species. Also, even though being in this carbon-based frame gives me all of the tangible Earthly delights that go with it, such as the ability to touch and taste and smell, I often ache to be what I was before I entered this body. If I were faced with death, I am not quite certain that I would fight it; ever since I have felt that I have touched the hand of the Divine, I miss that place that I have been to a thousand times; the place I know whenever I am not in this rickety, but deliciously enjoyable frame.

I don’t mean any of this in a depressing, clinical way, just as someone who can’t find a logical reason why even plants seem to “want” to survive, many of which have developed methods of communicating danger to other plants in their area when the need arises.

If anyone can point me to anywhere that offers possible explanations or theories about WHY life has such an intense desire for life, I am eternally curious.

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