The Mind of God


21. Microbes

On p. 8 and p. 216-17 of The Mind of God, the significance of microbes to the existence of our planet is discussed. There are significant implications. For example, the vast majority of cells in your body, by a factor of ten, are not human. They are microbes that live all over and inside you. In the gut, there are an estimated 100 trillion. Jeffrey Gordon from Washington University says: "We're really a composite of species." The human body is like a world ecosystem of its own, each person harboring a unique mix of creatures such that it can serve as an identifier like finger prints. ("Who Knew?" by Joel Achenbach, National Geographic, Nov., 2005, p. 1)

Charles Darwin predicted science would discover that each living creature is a “little universe, formed of a host of self-propagating organisms, inconceivably minute and as numerous as the stars in heaven."(1) In fact, a quadrillion cells make up a human body, 90% of them “non-human” microorganisms."(2)

1.As quoted in Lynn Margulis and Dorion Sagan, Microcosmos, Four Billion Years of Evolution from Our Microbial Ancestors (New York: Summit Books, 1986), p. 18

2.Paul Hawkin, Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement in the World Came into being and Why No One Saw It Coming (New York: Viking Penguin, 2007) p. 169