Intricate mixtures and Complex compounds,
which even the greatest mind confounds,
a million billion working as one,
as one of the beings under the sun.
What am I, what is ‘I’,
or ‘I’, a human under the sky,
but what is it? What makes me?
A unique individual in a sea.
I live, but what is life?
For even if I meet my end,
my body would be rife with life,
as into compost I descend.
Back to the stone,
goes blood and bone,
entangled elements, once my “own”,
returned back to earthy loam,
For I am a legion,
of a trillion souls,
single cells, unified whole,
packed into a tiny region.
Is ‘I’ so estranged from a robot?
both are time-tied to age and rot,
incredibly complex sums of parts,
with minutely different starts.
What is it that makes me different?
Am I but a step for life’s ascent?
evolution made ‘I’, ‘I’ made it,
to deny its life, makes me hypocrite
Am I alive? but what is that?
A ball of protein, muscle and fat?
Emergent intelligence, created from turmoil,
temporarily free from the soil,
As when I die, my cells live on,
nutrients for the next born,
for in this grand cycle are we,
‘I’ is false, and right is ‘we’.
Thus we draw to the end of Poetober, and we do so with a philosophical poem about what is life.
I wrote this after trying to understand what makes me different from a sufficiently advanced robot, whether we speak of the Synths from the Fallout series, or the plethora of other humanoid robots in sci fi. Both of us would believe ourselves to be sentient, intelligent, emotional, and corporeal. I, and every lifeforms reading this post who isn’t an alien from outer space (hello), have an unbroken genetic chain leading back to the very first lifeforms in existence, and we owe our lives to each generation which produced the next. Hence, in the event that we were to create a race of sentient robots, what would deny them the same mantle of being “alive”? Muscles, motors, nerves, wires, providing they fulfill the criteria that animals do, could it be said that they are the ‘next’ step of evolution?
Well, that was but philosophy, the fact that there isn’t a concrete answer is both fascinating and torturous. Either way, have a good day, be spontaneous, be alive, and I’ll see thee next week.