What is an emergent property in biology?

the way emergence is defined on wikipedia and elsewhere is almost like its some magical quality that emerges once certain ingerdients come together in just the right proportions, etc.... also the way this famous scientist described it ( "The emergent cannot be reduced to the sum or their difference.in its... show more the way emergence is defined on wikipedia and elsewhere is almost like its some magical quality that emerges once certain ingerdients come together in just the right proportions, etc....

also the way this famous scientist described it ( "The emergent cannot be reduced to the sum or their difference.in its components." ) seems to me like simply assigning a word (emergent) that conveniently describes a new process/function that we dont yet understand. Then after we understand the new process, we dont call it an emergent property anymore.. lol

For example, when meat is left out, eventually maggots will "appear" on the meat.. They used to think that maggots "spontaneously generated"..but once they saw flies around the meat, they understood the process by which maggots appeared on the meat, so that was the end of spontaneous generation, --a process that emerges when meat is left out in the open air for a long time..

or what about "vitalism" -way back they used to think that some lifeforce entered into inanimate material at some point, but what exactly was this lifeforce, and at what precise point did something become alive? --no one knew, so they called the idea "vitalism"

isnt the idea of emergence just a blanket word for not yet understood things?
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