If Charles Darwin could have peered into one of today’s high-powered microscopes and seen the stunning complexity and function in even the simplest living cells, On the Origin of Species might have been a very different book! On this ID The Future, we go behind the scenes with biochemist Michael Behe to discuss his popular video series Secrets of the Cell. From overseeing intricate animation work to driving off-road in a Jeep through the backwoods, Dr. Behe spills some secrets of his own about his experience getting in front of the camera to bring the wonders of the cell to life.
We’ve come a long way since Darwin’s day, says Dr. Behe. In fact, there’s never been a more exciting time to be a life scientist: “Darwin and his contemporaries knew so little about life compared to what we know now. They thought the cell was like a little piece of jelly. We now know that its this elegant sophisticated factory.” So who can blame Darwin for Darwinian theory? The guy didn’t know the half of it! But what was a mystery to Darwin is now well understood. Darwin’s detour is over. Welcome to molecular biology’s golden age!
Behe also unpacks the latest episode of the Secrets series unraveling the mystery of biological information. He compares the fundamental unit of information to a single decision – like the choice to flip the light switch on or not. And whether it’s one bit or a million bits, information is habitually associated with conscious activity, something humans can intuitively detect: “We are real, rational, thinking beings, and we can recognize the work of other rational thinking beings, such as the designer of the cell and the designer of these complex systems.”
Once you’ve enjoyed this behind-the-scenes look at Secrets of the Cell, watch the full series!
Get your own copy of Dr. Behe’s classic book Darwin’s Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution.
Watch the trailer to the series below: