This blog post is dedicated to Goddess Sarasvati, the Goddess of Pure Knowledge and Perfect Wisdom :

WHAT IS LIFE? Goddess Sarasvati symbolizes the pursuit of Knowledge and Wisdom and She helps me to define Life as Knowledge in Action.


Knowledge is defined as the act, fact, or state of knowing a range of information. The act of knowing requires knowledge or information relevant to a particular act. The state of knowing describes the condition that characterizes an object in which such knowledge or information exists. If knowledge is defined as a fact of knowing some information, it describes a clear perception, or understanding, or awareness, or cognizance of information that pertains to that fact. Knowledge can only exist, can only be found in an object which has the abilities of perception, understanding, awareness, or cognition. In other words, knowledge is an attribute of the act, fact, or state of living. A living object is the seat of knowledge and presence of knowledge could be verified or detected in any of the actions or activities of that living matter. The act of living requires a state or condition of knowing information relevant to sustaining life’s functions.

WHAT IS LIFE? If human brain or mind is viewed as the Seat of Knowledge, hands and feet, or the muscles used in vocalization are the sites where Knowledge is transformed into Action.

In common usage, the word knowledge is used to describe all that has been perceived or grasped by the human brain or mind. The learning, the body of facts, principles, etc., accumulated by man is stated as his knowledge. The state of knowing becomes evident only when knowledge is transformed into action. Man displays knowledge in the use of his hands and feet in the performance of his actions. Man can communicate his knowledge in his speech, in his writings, and in his use of a variety of tools, instruments, gadgets, and machines. If human brain, or mind is viewed as the seat of knowledge, hands and feet, or the muscles used in vocalization are the sites where knowledge is transformed into action. Knowledge involves receiving / storing information at one site and using that information in the performance of an action at a different site. The ability and the quality of a man’s function reflects upon his state of knowledge relative to that function. Knowledge is verified during its application to perform functions. This concept or understanding about knowledge in action could also be used in the context of describing functions at cellular level.

WHAT IS LIFE? The Da Vinci Telerobotic Surgical System permits the surgeon to perform operation on patients from a remote site. The mechanical robotic arm could perform tasks with great precision while it has no knowledge of its own.

While information can be found in books, in writings, in speech/ speech recordings, and etc., it should not be described as knowledge. A robotic, mechanical arm could perform tasks with great precision while it has no knowledge of its own. Knowledge, awareness and ability to use information exists only as an attribute of life or as an act of living.    


Anatomy of Plant Cell clearly illustrates that Life exists because of establishment of Knowledge, the source of Information for a variety of biological functions.
Both Bacterial(Prokaryotic), Animal, and Plant(Eukaryotic) Cells share similar Characteristics. The Living Cell functions by application of information contained in its genetic material. Use of information to perform action describes the Knowing and it represents Knowledge in Action.
Virus particles composed of Nucleic Acids either RNA or DNA within a case of Protein, in its Free State the Virus particle behaves like Inert matter and when it infects living cells of plants, animals, or bacteria the Virus starts replicating using the Chemical Energy and Nucleic Acid synthesizing abilities of the host Cell. The Application of Knowledge in Viral Replication is very interesting.
WHAT IS LIFE? The Structure of Influenza Virus reveals its Functional Organization.Each function involves application of Knowledge. This Knowledge is derived from its hereditary information.
WHAT IS LIFE? The Virus exists because of genetic material which provides it the information to perform its functions that are characteristic of its existence.
What is Life ? Life is Knowledge in Action. A living cell performs a variety of functions that are characteristic of its life. The Cell Structure known as Nucleus is the Seat of Knowledge. In structures known as Chromosomes it stores hereditary, and biological information for its growth, development, replication, reproduction, and metabolic functions such as protein synthesis for its growth and maintenance. Protein Synthesis takes place in structures known as Ribosomes that are located in Cytoplasm outside the Nucleus. Nucleus transfers information to Ribosomes by using Transfer RNA. Nucleus provides only information and to use that information for its function of Protein Synthesis, the Ribosome derives Energy from another Cell Structure known as Mitochondrion. This process of Cellular Function describes Knowledge in Action.

Life is described as a state of an organism characterized by certain processes or abilities that include metabolism, nutrition, growth, motion, replication, reproduction, responsiveness to stimuli, and awareness of its own condition of existence or living in an environment. The act of living could be stated by describing the functions that characterize life. Functions depend upon use of information; the information that is stored at a particular site or location is transferred to a different site or location where it is transformed into action which constitutes the nature of functioning. Life is always associated with its living functions and these functions depend upon the use of energy. If Nucleus is viewed as the Seat of Knowledge of a Living Cell, it communicates its Knowledge to another Cell Structure known as Ribosome which is the Site of Action for the Knowledge transferred from the Nucleus. The Ribosome performs its action of Protein Synthesis drawing Energy provided by another Cell Structure known as Mitochondrion. So also the human brain provides information and sends signals to muscles to perform actions. Muscle cells perform actions drawing Energy from Mitochondria of their Cells. This process called Living depends upon the use of Energy. If Life is manifestation of an Energy or Life Force, Life could be defined as  Knowing the Connection between ‘energy-Seeker'( or energy-demanding molecules ) and an ‘Energy-Provider’ or Source of Energy( or energy-yielding molecules ). Life and its functions are evidence of its State of Knowledge. Hence, Life could be defined as “Knowledge in Action.” Life comes into existence or into a state called Living,  and Life begins with establishment of Knowledge in an object or matter that gains  identity of a Living Organism.    

Please also view a related blog post titled ‘Defining Indian Identity – The Pursuit of Pure and Perfect Knowledge.


Rudranarasimham Rebbapragada


Biographical Information :

1. Place of Birth : MYLAPORE, Madras City, Chenna Patnam, Chennai, Madras State, Tamil Nadu, India. Born Hindu( Brahmin, Niyogi, Smartha ), Telugu-Speaking.

2. Date and Place of Marriage : 29 January, 1973. Congregational Town Church, Cuddapah City, Kadapa District, Andhra Pradesh, India.



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