Wednesday, April 21, 2010

reconnecting with earth 2 shifting paradigms

When one tugs at a single thing in nature, 
he finds it attached to the rest of the world.
John Muir                         
The titles of the articles we have been directed to read are in themselves wonderful phrases for contemplation:
               Thinking Like a Mountain
                  The Web of Life
                      Deep Ecology and Lifestyle
                         The Gaia Hypothesis
                            Seeing the Whole at the Center

From the Mother Earth News article (May/June 1986):
              ....over the millennia the earth has somehow regulated its own temperature.  When life began on our planet four billion years ago the sun was 30 percent cooler than it is today.  Yet, from then until now, the temperature of the earth's surface has remained with the critical life-supporting range of 15 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius.  The level of CO2 has dropped a hundred fold in those four billion years, reducing the "greenhouse" heating holding effect of the atmosphere even while the sun was radiating more heat.  The result?
The earth has kept itself at a constant temperature ... just as our bodies do.

I find this astounding, and shows how the interaction of systems produces amazing results.  

Another delightful reaction and example from nature:  In an experiment, damaging bacteria were introduced to a limited number of trees at the far end of a forest.  Almost immediately the trees at the opposite end of the forest, a significant distance from the affected trees, began producing antibodies against that threat.

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