Life As A Process Of Creating Knowledge And Energy

Yuri Barzov
3 min readFeb 15, 2024


Picture by Dmitry Buterin

Pure wave function of maximal knowledge [1] exists in the space of infinite number of dimensions but appears in our four dimensional world of psycho-physical parallelism [2] through the process of entanglement with the local environment (decoherence) [3].

When new knowledge appears in our world, then an influx of Gibbs free energy also happens in parallel.

Maximal knowledge of the pure wave function does not actually branch into knowledge and energy, but appears to be split into these two parallel branches to a local observer. Since only that part of knowledge that is conditionally entangled with the local environment is locally available [1], the excessive free knowledge (Friston free energy [4]) manifests itself as Gibbs free energy. Knowledge, like energy, cannot be lost. So the free knowledge takes the form of energy where there is already maximal entangled knowledge about the physical branch of the psycho-physical mixed state. As Schrödinger pointed out, the combined knowledge — entangled knowledge plus knowledge in the form of energy — becomes hypermaximal [1]. It is possible because knowledge and energy don’t sum up.

The influx of Gibbs free energy, according to Alan Turing, is necessary for morphogenesis, so that a real horse with balls but not a spherical one, grows from a spherical egg [5]. Turing’s theory was confirmed experimentally [6].

It may be the case that the Gibbs free energy, that is coming into our psycho-physical world from the purely mental world in parallel with knowledge, is used to give a functional form to matter.

The assembly instructions and the energy to implement them come together. The role of DNA in this case is reduced to the production of building blocks for the assembly of the organism. This does not contradict, as I understand, what we know about DNA now.

I saved the most important aspect for the end. It turns out that when we extract new knowledge from the space of pure knowledge, we simultaneously extract energy. Using knowledge is impossible without using free energy.

During the production of work, part of the free energy is dissipated in space. This means the knowledge from which this energy emerged can not be restored to the initial state. So much for the increase in entropy and the irreversibility of decoherence .

The negative heat capacity of stars [7] may be a sign that the stars are mining knowledge and free energy. Stellar nucleosynthesis — the morphogenesis of elements occurs inside stars. Helium forms from hydrogen, carbon forms from helium, oxygen — from carbon and helium, and so on [8].

Every system that converts knowledge and free energy into a desired form of matter is alive. It’s living as long as it maintains this process. I wonder if the Universe is, by any chance, a living organism [9]?


  1. Schrödinger, Erwin, The Present Status of Quantum Mechanics, Die Naturwissenschaften 1935. Volume 23, Issue 48.
  2. Neumann, John von, and Robert T. Beyer. Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics: New Edition. Edited by Nicholas A. Wheeler. NED-New edition. Princeton University Press, 2018.
  3. Zeh, H.-Dieter, The strange (hi)story of particles and waves, 2018, arXiv:1304.1003v23 [physics.hist-ph],
  4. Parr, Thomas, Pezzulo, Giovanni, Friston, Karl J. Active Inference: The Free Energy Principle in Mind, Brain, and Behavior. ISBN (electronic): 9780262369978. The MIT Press. 2022
  5. Turing, A. M. The chemical basis of morphogenesis. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. B 237, 37–72 (1952).
  6. Turing patterns, 70 years later. Nat Comput Sci 2, 463–464 (2022).
  7. Eddington, A. S. (1920). The Internal Constitution of the Stars. The Scientific Monthly, 11(4), 297–303.
  8. Burbidge, E., Burbidge, G., Fowler, W. and Hoyle, F. 1979. 55. Synthesis of the Elements in Stars. In: Lang, K. and Gingerich, O. ed. A Source Book in Astronomy and Astrophysics, 1900–1975. Cambridge, MA and London, England: Harvard University Press, pp. 374–388.
  9. Hoyle, F., Burbidge, G., and Narlikar, J. V., “A Quasi — Steady State Cosmological Model with Creation of Matter”, The Astrophysical Journal, vol. 410, p. 437, 1993. doi:10.1086/172761.