The Gaia Hypothesis: Nice But Unlikely

By Vexen Crabtree 2017


#environmentalism #life #pantheism #religion

The Gaia Hypothesis is the idea that the Earth's biosphere itself is a complex, conscious, self-regulating living being1. It was named by James Lovelock in the 1980s. Lovelock, born 1919, was a British scientist who specialized in atmospheric chemistry and an environmental theorist. The concept of "emergent properties" and our Human (all-too-biological) biases may mean that we are poorly equipped to understand, or perceive, life-forms such as Gaia2. After all, if all the paint daubs of a painting were sentient, they would never be able to perceive themselves as part of a greater living picture. Lovelock writes that the way many parts of the Earth's ecosystem are self-regulating and balanced is so intriguing that it seemed to behave in the same way as a single organism3.

"The Gaia Hypothesis of James Lovelock" by Vexen Crabtree (2015)

Current edition: 2017 Mar 30
Parent page: Anti-Religion Quotes, Memes and Graphics

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References: (What's this?)

Heywood, Andrew
(2003) Political Ideologies. 3rd edition. Originally published 1992. Current version published by Palgrave MacMillan. A paperback book.

Hutton, Ronald
(1999) The Triumph of the Moon: A History of Modern Pagan Witchcraft. 2001 edition. Published by Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK. A paperback book.


  1. Heywood (2003). P275.^
  2. "Consciousness as an Emergent Property" by Vexen Crabtree (2016)^
  3. Hutton (1999). P352.^

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