I read this book about 11 years ago and my take-home message at the time was that living organisms consume negative entropy to stay alive.

After this read, I get a little more. Basically Schrodinger tries to answer three questions:

  • What is the material basis of genes? Note that this book was published in 1944 and DNA structure was discovered in 1953.
  • How does living organisms evade the decay to thermodynamic equilibrium?
  • What is consciousness?

Interestingly, for the third question, Schrodinger takes the view that there is only one mind to reconcile the two paradoxes

  • one world many minds
  • one mind many cells (on an individual level)

(He seems to be familiar with Upanishad)