312

ANNALS NEW YORK ACADEMY SCIENCES

AUTOCATAKINETICS, THE MINIMAL ONTOLOGY, AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF SPACE-TIME

All living things, including cultural systems as well as terrestrial life at the planetary level, that operates as a single system on which the other more ordinarily considered forms depend as component productions or processes, can be seen as part of a progressive (time asymmetric) process characterized by the production of increasingly more highly ordered states-literally, as is illustrated below, the progressive development of space-time itself.1,2 FIGURE I shows the development of more highly ordered forms over evolutionary time as a function of the progressive increase in planetary oxygen levels, a consequence of life itself, and the most obvious prima facie demonstration for operation of the planetary level as a unitary system.(6) Since the emergence of life on the Archean Earth some 4.5 billion years ago, the amount of terrestrial matter has remained roughly constant, and the production of dynamic order constituting the development of life, including human culture, is thus seen a the cycling of this same matter under the impress of the geocosmic gradient into progressively higher ordered forms or dimensions of space-time. Such forms (including us) are, therefore, flow or process structures. They (we) are autocatakinetic systems.
planetary evolution, entropy, rod swenson, spontaneous order and oxygen
FIGURE 1. The production of progressively higher states of order as function of increasing levels of atmospheric 02 in geological time; PAL is present atmospheric level, (From Ref. 12, reproduced by permission of IEEE.)