I wonder if the old chicken and egg conundrum can be changed to did life precede the physical world?
It can. And both conundra can easily be resolved in the light of biological evolution.
All modern chickens are decendents of birds that weren't chicken. Their features emerged from their ancestors' through a continuum of gradual changes. In this continuum, it's essentially a matter of human line-drawing which individual bird was the last nonchicken ancestor of chickens and which was the first actual chicken. But once we draw this line, it's easy to see the resolution of the chicken--egg paradox. There must have been at least one bird we'd classify as a chicken, hatching from an egg laid by a bird we'd classify as a non-chicken.
Likewise, modern life forms consist of material""meat, hair, blood, etc. In a process of gradual change running over billions of years, they have descended from ancient life forms consisting of different materials. These, in turn, descended from materials we wouldn't classify as life forms if we saw them today. We don't know what materials they were, because they didn't leave any fossils behind, but you can find a good number of plausible candidates in evolutionary biology textbooks such as Smith (1999)
. (The book has a chapter on the chicken--egg problem, too.) So the answer to your question is "no". No, life did not precede the physical world. It is part of the physical world.