We will examine one of the traits more frequently suggested in order to define life: living beings are able to produce new individual organisms (offspring), either asexually from a single parent organism, or sexually from two parent organisms. We will treat life’s occurrence and reproduction in terms of algebraic topology, making clear that two of its more powerful theorems, i.e., the Borsuk-Ulam theorem and the ham sandwich theorem, are able to provide us with a mathematical definition of life, or at least one of its foremost traits. We discuss the advantages of describing life and evolution in topological terms and conclude with a novel “teleological”, but physically-framed hypothesis concerning the role of the Universe.
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[v1] 2018-10-08 05:34:46
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