In terms of the origin of life, which fundamental desire do you think came first, that of...

Question:

In terms of the origin of life, which fundamental desire do you think came first, that of survival or reproduction? Or both at the same time?

Natural selection:

Natural selection is the process by which evolution occurs: the organisms with traits best suited to living in a given environment thrive and pass on their traits while those without such traits die off, causing the species to gradually change in characteristics over time. This process relies on organisms surviving long enough to reproduce, and so both instincts are highly important for a species to guarantee its own existence.

Answer and Explanation:

In the context of the origin of life, it would be difficult to attribute such abstract terms such as "desire to survive or reproduce" to simple organisms as such organisms function primarily based around a series of chemical reactions and do not possess the real capacity to think of such matters. However, if you were to ask what the chemistry of the first few life forms would have preferred survival or reproduction, a more interesting question arises. For natural selection to occur, which is generally taken as a criteria for whether something is living or non-living, the organism must survive until it passes on its genes. As such, it would be safe to say that the priority to survive arose first, as it would be impossible to reproduce if the organism hadn't survived in the first place.


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Abiotic Synthesis & the Origin of Life

from College Biology: Help and Review

Chapter 18 / Lesson 61
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