Read another response by Stephen Maitzen
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My amateurish reading of popular science books tells me that it is generally thought that all life descended from one original single-celled creature. Perhaps if the conditions of the world were better ‘tuned’ for life, then I suppose life might have originated from 27 different ancestors, or from 97,583 different ancestors, or from 94,523,987 different ancestors. Perhaps if the conditions were less well ‘tuned’ for life, then life would not have arisen at all. The number one seems a rather unique number. Does the fact that all the life which exists in all the known universe seems to have arisen from one ancestor indicate the involvement of a designer (God), because of the uniqueness of the number one? Presumably if all life originated from exactly 1,000,000 ancestors, then we would smell something fishy, because of the uniqueness of this number. Similarly does the uniqueness of the number one point towards a non-naturalistic account of the origin of life? Thanks.