Weakness of the Scientific Hypotheses about the Origin of Life

  • Tonći Kokić Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Split
Słowa kluczowe: origin of first life, unique event, scope of theories, self-organization principle, microreversibility, philosophy of biology


This paper makes a case for the weakness of the scientific hypotheses about the origin of first life (hereafter OoL). There is no consensus on when, where, and — most importantly — how and why life emerged on Earth. There are significant impediments to the scientific explanation of OoL, at least in relation to the accepted (meta)heuristic postulates of scientific study of OoL and (meta)theoretical postulates that hypotheses must satisfy to be recognized as true explanations and not just-so stories. Following these rules and methodologies did not help to bridge the gap between the most complex inorganic components and the simplest living entities. The main arguments for the weakness of the scientific hypotheses about OoL are: (i) there is no scientific hypothesis that successfully explains OoL, and (ii) there is an evident experimental failure of the attempts to (re)create life from inorganic components. The long-term resistance of the problem and the weakness of the hypotheses about OoL stem from the commitment to the ontology of repeated occurrences and/or from inappropriate epistemological-methodological tools used to explain the transition from inorganic to simple life forms (exclusively by means of the “language” and methodology of physical-chemical sciences). Accordingly, either the scientific study of OoL rests on a mistake or science must reduce the scope of phenomena that can be scientifically explained.

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Kokić, T. (2018). Weakness of the Scientific Hypotheses about the Origin of Life. Filozofia Nauki, 26(1), 9-21. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.14394/filnau.2018.0001