Organism Quotes

Quotes tagged as "organism" (showing 1-21 of 21)
Marcus Aurelius
“Every living organism is fulfilled when it follows the right path for its own nature.”
Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Bryant McGill
“There is a deep interconnectedness of all life on earth, from the tiniest organisms, to the largest ecosystems, and absolutely between each person.”
Bryant McGill, Voice of Reason

Ernst Cassirer
“ would be a very naive sort of dogmatism to assume that there exists an absolute reality of things which is the same for all living beings. Reality is not a unique and homogeneous thing; it is immensely diversified, having as many different schemes and patterns as there are different organisms. Every organism is, so to speak, a monadic being. It has a world of its own because it has an experience of its own. The phenomena that we find in the life of a certain biological species are not transferable to any other species. The experiences - and therefore the realities - of two different organisms are incommensurable with one another. In the world of a fly, says Uexkull, we find only "fly things"; in the world of a sea urchin we find only "sea urchin things.”
Ernst Cassirer, An Essay on Man: An Introduction to a Philosophy of Human Culture


A few decades ago, a woman tried to sue a butter company that had printed the word 'LITE' on its product's packaging. She claimed to have gained so much weight from eating the butter, even though it was labeled as being 'LITE'. In court, the lawyer representing the butter company simply held up the container of butter and said to the judge, "My client did not lie. The container is indeed 'light in weight'. The woman lost the case.

In a marketing class in college, we were assigned this case study to show us that 'puffery' is legal. This means that you can deceptively use words with double meanings to sell a product, even though they could mislead customers into thinking your words mean something different. I am using this example to touch upon the myth of organic foods. If I was a lawyer representing a company that had labeled its oranges as being organic, and a man was suing my client because he found out that the oranges were being sprayed with toxins, my defense opening statement would be very simple: "If it's not plastic or metallic, it's organic."

Most products labeled as being organic are not really organic. This is the truth. You pay premium prices for products you think are grown without chemicals, but most products are. If an apple is labeled as being organic, it could mean two things. Either the apple tree itself is free from chemicals, or just the soil. One or the other, but rarely both. The truth is, the word 'organic' can mean many things, and taking a farmer to court would be difficult if you found out his fruits were indeed sprayed with pesticides. After all, all organisms on earth are scientifically labeled as being organic, unless they are made of plastic or metal. The word 'organic' comes from the word 'organism', meaning something that is, or once was, living and breathing air, water and sunlight.

So, the next time you stroll through your local supermarket and see brown pears that are labeled as being organic, know that they could have been third-rate fare sourced from the last day of a weekend market, and have been re-labeled to be sold to a gullible crowd for a premium price. I have a friend who thinks that organic foods have to look beat up and deformed because the use of chemicals is what makes them look perfect and flawless. This is not true. Chemical-free foods can look perfect if grown in your backyard. If you go to jungles or forests untouched by man, you will see fruit and vegetables that look like they sprouted from trees from Heaven. So be cautious the next time you buy anything labeled as 'organic'. Unless you personally know the farmer or the company selling the products, don't trust what you read. You, me, and everything on land and sea are organic.

Suzy Kassem,
Truth Is Crying”
Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem

John Steinbeck
“A dying organism is often observed to be capable of extraordinary endurance and strength. ... When any living organism is attacked, its whole function seems to aim toward reproduction.”
John Steinbeck, Tortilla Flat

Erwin Schrödinger
“Briefly summarising, we can express the proposed law thus: consciousness is bound up with learning in organic substance; organic competence is unconscious. Still more briefly, and put in a form which is admittedly rather obscure and open to misunderstanding: Becoming is conscious, being unconscious.”
Erwin Schrödinger, My View of the World

Mokokoma Mokhonoana
“The Paradox of Sustenance: For an organism’s life to be continued; another organism’s life has to be discontinued.”
Mokokoma Mokhonoana

“The late Alan Gregg pointed out that human population growth within the ecosystem was closely analogous to the growth of malignant tumor cells within an organism: that man was acting like a cancer on the biosphere. The multiplication of human numbers certainly seems wild and uncontrolled… Four million a month—the equivalent of the population of Chicago… We seem to be doing all right at the moment; but if you could ask cancer cells, I suspect they would think they were doing fine. But when the organism dies, so do they; and for our own, selfish, practical... reasons, I think we should be careful about how we influence the rest of the ecosystem.”
Marston Bates

Frederick Sanger
“A DNA sequence for the genome of bacteriophage ΦX174 of approximately 5,375 nucleotides has been determined using the rapid and simple 'plus and minus' method. The sequence identifies many of the features responsible for the production of the proteins of the nine known genes of the organism, including initiation and termination sites for the proteins and RNAs. Two pairs of genes are coded by the same region of DNA using different reading frames.”
Frederick Sanger

Oscar Hertwig
“The cell, this elementary keystone of living nature, is far from being a peculiar chemical giant molecule or even a living protein and as such is not likely to fall prey to the field of an advanced chemistry. The cell is itself an organism, constituted of many small units of life.”
Oscar Hertwig

“Sometimes, when I'm alone, I wonder if it really counts as being alone, since I am covered in millions of other living organisms.”
Travis J. Dahnke, Write like no one is reading

“The modern research laboratory can be a large and complicated social organism.”
J. Michael Bishop, How to Win the Nobel Prize: An Unexpected Life in Science

“It is the relationship between the physical environment and the environed organism, between physiography and ontography (to coin a term), that constitutes the essential principles of geography today.”
William Morris Davis

“The organism's environment is the sense it makes of the world. This environment is a place of significance and valence, as a result of the global action of the organism.”
Evan Thompson, Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind

“Something acquires meaning for an organism to the extent that it relates (either positively or negatively) to the norm of the maintenance of the organism's integrity.”
Evan Thompson, Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind

“Only by intertwining these two perspectives, the biological and the phenomenological, can we gain a fuller understanding of the immanent purposiveness of the organism and the deep continuity of life and mind.”
Evan Thompson, Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind

Fyodor Dostoyevsky
“Man's nature acts as one whole, with everything that is in it, conscious or unconscious.”
Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Notes from Underground, White Nights, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, and Selections from The House of the Dead

Todd Stocker
“The Church is both organism and organization - Woven together in a beautifully messy dance that stumbles across the stage of a fallen world.”
Todd Stocker

Thomas E. Sniegoski
“The organism - there was no other thing she could think to call it - churned and moved as it propelled itself across the ground, the living bodies of animals briefly appearing before being submerged in a sea of bugs as others rose to the surface.

And then there were the bones.

At first she didn't quite understand what she was seeing. For a moment she believed that they were pieces of wood - limbs of trees picked up by the undulating mass - but when she saw the skull, its jaw hanging open in a silent scream, she understood the horror of what it was.

the remains of victims were a part of its body, flowing within the multitude that made up its mass.”
Thomas E. Sniegoski, Savage

Hans Jonas
“In living things, nature springs an ontological surprise in which the world-accident of terrestrial conditions brings to light an entirely new possibility of being: systems of matter that are unities of a manifold, not in virtue of a synthesizing perception whose object they happen to be, nor by the mere concurrence of the forces that bind their parts together, but in virtue of themselves, for the sake of themselves, and continually sustained by themselves. Here wholeness is self-integrating in active performance, and form for once is the cause rather than the result of the material collections in which it successively subsists. Unity here is self-unifying, by means of changing multiplicity. Sameness, while it last, (and it does not last inertially, in the manner of static identity or of on-moving continuity), is perpetual self-renewal through process, borne on the shift of otherness. This active self-integration of life alone gives substance to the term “individual”: it alone yields the ontological concept of an individual as against a merely phenomenological one. The ontological individual, its very existence at any moment, its duration and its identity in duration is, then, essentially its own function, its own concern, its own continuous achievement. In this process of self-sustained being, the relation of the organism to its own concern, its own continuous achievement.
In this process of self-sustained being, the relation of the organism to its material substance is of a double nature: the materials are essential to its specifically, accidental individually; it coincides with their actual collection at the instant, but is not bound to any one collection in the succession of instants, “riding” their change like the crest of a wave and bound only to their form of collection which endures as its own feat. Dependent on their availability as materials, its is independent of their sameness as these; its own, functional identity, passingly incorporating theirs, is of a different order. In a word, the organic form stands in a dialectical relation of needful freedom to matter.”
Hans Jonas, The Phenomenon of Life: Toward a Philosophical Biology

Alexis Carrel
“A tissue is evidently an enduring thing. It's functional and structural conditions become modified from moment to moment. Time is really the fourth dimension of living organisms. It enters as part into the constitution of a tissue. Cell colonies, or organs, are events which progressively unfold themselves. They must be studied like history.”
Alexis Carrel