Ironically, ancient wisdom, much of it presumably discredited by modern science, is making a comeback and vindicating itself.
Consider that living matter was once thought to be fundamentally different than non-living matter. This idea was presumably discredited with the discovery of the chemical synthesis of urea (http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=5905):
Urea is of major historical significance. It was the first organic chemical compound ever synthesized. The German chemist Friedrich WÃƒÂ¶hler in 1828 attempted to make ammonium cyanate from silver cyanide and ammonium chloride and, in the process, accidentally made urea. WÃƒÂ¶hler wrote his mentor JÃƒÂ¶ns Berzelius, “I must tell you that I can make urea without the use of kidneys, either man or dog. Ammonium cyanate is urea.”
This pioneering experiment disproved the theory of vitalism, the concept that organic chemicals could only be modified chemically, but that living plants or animals were needed to produce them.
Yes, some chemicals produced by living systems can be synthesized and modified with purely deterministic chemical processes. But then an unexpected discovery was made.
Functional biological proteins are chemicals, but they cannot be synthesized or modified with purely deterministic chemical processes, and they cannot perform their biologically relevant functions except within a carefully controlled and regulated environment. Information, and an information processing system are required to produce them and coordinate their activities.
It turns out that the vitalists were right in a sense. Living matter is fundamentally different than non-living matter. Living matter requires information.