Gaia philosophy

Gaia philosophy (named after Gaia, Greek goddess of the Earth) is a broadly inclusive term for related concepts that living organisms on a planet will affect the nature of their environment in order to make the environment more suitable for life. This set of theories holds that all organisms on a life-giving planet regulate the biosphere in such a way as to promote its habitability. Gaia concept draws a connection between the survivability of a species (hence its evolutionary course) and its usefulness to the survival of other species. While there were a number of precursors to Gaia theory, the first scientific form of this idea was proposed as the Gaia hypothesis by James Lovelock, a UK chemist, in 1970. The Gaia hypothesis deals with the concept of biological homeostasis, and claims the resident life forms of a host planet coupled with their environment have acted and act like a single, self-regulating system. This system includes the near-surface rocks, the soil, and the atmosphere. Today many scientists consider such ideas to be unsupported by, or at odds with, the available evidence (see Gaia hypothesis criticism). These theories are however significant in green politics.


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