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 The Cross of Freedom

How We Got Here - Planet Earth

Whether or not a planet survives in a state that would be hospitable to life depends on a number of things.  The first is its stage of formation related to the stages of the star around which it revolves.

As the dust and rock particles that will form the planet begin to cluster, their surfaces contain a frost made up of frozen gases.  The clustering of the particles as the planet is formed buries these frozen gases within the mass of the planet.  As the mass of the planet is compressed, radioactivity causes it to heat and melt - volcanic activity begins.  This "meltdown" causes the frozen gases to rise to the surface of the planet as steam.  The result is the oceans and the beginnings of an atmosphere.

One of the early phases of a star is called the T-Tauri phase.  This is when a star loses a very large amount of matter in a single explosion.  This produces a solar wind strong enough to blow away the frozen gases on the dust and rock particles that would later form planets, and also the atmosphere of any planet already formed or forming.  It could also blow apart a planet that had begun to form but was not solidified enough to withstand the force of the solar wind.

The T-Tauri phase of our Sun had to occur at a precise time in the formation of our planet.  It had to be after the planet had solidified enough that the water and gases were protected, and before the volcanic outgassing that pushes these to the surface.  If this happens too early in a planet's formation, there is no water or atmosphere.  If this happens too late, whatever water and atmosphere that exists gets blown away.  The fortuitous timing of this event is the sixth phenomenon that indicates orchestration over randomness.

This may explain why Mars appears to have canals, as if there was once water there.  There may have been.  Perhaps Mars had its volcanic outgassing before our Sun's T-Tauri phase.

There are other key properties of a planet that determine whether or not it can host life.  For example:

Its size


If Earth were a different size than it is, several things would be different enough to be less conducive to life.  Gravity, for one.  Earth's gravity is within a range that works very well for life.  Too much more or less and things would be quite different.  There needs to be enough gravity to keep our atmosphere from floating off into space, but not so much that fragile forms of life could not survive.

Another factor is the size of the Earth related to the size of its molten core.  We're warmed from both above and below.  The warmth of Earth's core comes so close to the surface that at less than 1 mile down into the earth it is so hot that you'd need air conditioning to survive there.

Its composition


The Earth needed to have all the elements necessary for all the needs of whatever life was to be placed there.

Besides the quantities of water, carbon and oxygen needed for all the forms of life we see around us to exist at all, there are other elements required to maintain this life and allow it to thrive.  The elements right here on Earth have allowed us to build structures of immense complexity, on both micro and macro levels.

Its distance from the Sun

  The temperature range of liquid water (necessary for life) is less than 2 percent of the temperature range in our solar system. The Earth needs to be in a position relative to the Sun that provides this temperature range.

The difference between the apogee and perigee of its orbit


The variation in distance between the Earth and the Sun over the course of a year is only 3%, meaning that our orbit is almost circular.  Were Earth's orbit more elliptical than this, the range of temperatures we'd be subjected to would make it impossible for the Earth to support life.

Its level of protection from solar and cosmic radiation


Being close enough to the Sun to receive it's warmth also puts us where we are bombarded by solar radiation.  The oxygen released by plant life not only allows us to breathe, but also protects us from the sun.  When UV radiation strikes oxygen it forms ozone, which absorbs UV radiation but allows visible light through.  In other words, the good stuff makes it to the surface while the bad stuff is filtered out.

Cosmic radiation, which comes at us continually from elsewhere in the universe, is handled another way.  Earth has a magnetic "umbrella" provided by its magnetic field.  This magnetic field is maintained by the movement of the molten core of our planet.  However, it is believed that the Earth's molten core is not enough to have created the magnetic field, and there is no scientific explanation for how it initially came into being.

All of these things must be just right for a planet to contain life.  If any of them were missing, the possibilities for life would be vanishingly small.  The odds for them to have all come together in one place are astronomical (pun intended).  The fact that all of these fell into place for our planet is the seventh indication that what we see was orchestrated.

Now our planet is ready to host life.

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