Don’t misunderstand, life is quite a wonderful thing, but non-life both precedes and outnumbers life.
The intention to describe that there are more non-life than there is life. Is there an appropriate substitute for "outnumber" here? Using "outnumber" for uncountable things seems improper...
List of rejected words:
- exceed--only make sense if it is explicated what is being exceeded, i.e. the quantity of non-life exceeds the quantity of life; therefore, this is not a perfect substitution
- surpass--similar to exceed, but also better suited to human agents' qualities
- eclipse--better describe influence, especially when one overshadows another, instead of comparing quantities
- outstrip--another synonym of "exceed", alternatively, describes rate of change, not quantity.
- transcend/outclass--describes quality rather than quantity
- surmount--implies conflict between compared things, and describes the victory of one over the other in said conflict
- outdo--implies action, and compares extent of success in said action