|Microscopic Life: Survive! Replicate!
All this chemical, nuclear and physical mixing was driven by properties inherent in the matter and spatial location relative to other matter. Importantly, the subsequent organization of all this physical matter was strongly dependent upon the very nature of particles and the forces and energy exchanged between them.
About 4.5 billion years ago Earth 1.0 was transitioning toward a state of higher complexity. One might label these new, underlying, organizing elements as biological properties. Given yet another immensely long period of time, these properties would lead Earth down a path toward an every changing destination filled with diverse, living organisms.
|Macroscopic Life: Survive! Replicate!
Now, one might be tempted to label all the resulting intermingling as random processes; on the contrary, the biological self organization that emerged was simply a tiny bit more stable than the disorganizing forces mustered against it. Over a very, very long period of time this process, now known as evolution by natural selection, dominated. With extremely gradualism engaged a planetary ecosystem of living things systematically coalesced from the mix of physical matter and growing biological detritus present.
These organisms competed with the physical elements and with each other through billions of sunrises and sunsets until an amazing diversity of living things spread across the planet. It is possible life sprung from one or multiple sources, from organic molecules seeded from comet impacts, from the peripheries of active ocean volcano, or from sunlit pools of rare chemical solutions. Regardless, the world of Earth 2.0 thrived with ever changing varieties of prions,viruses, archaebacteria, eubacteria, protists, fungi, plants and animals wherever conditions permitted.
|Megascopic Life: Survive! Replicate!
In fact, Earth 2.0 has been alive now for more than four billion years, thriving continuously changing gradually, and establishing a living layer that raged to be successful biologically. Living organisms alongside physical matter interwove ecosystems that continued if they were holistically stable, and crashed if circumstances were too destabilizing. Some of these destabilizations were local and others resulted in global mass extinctions, nevertheless life persisted.
Terrestrial life flourished upon the physical and biologically complicated Earth hungering to replicate itself without any real conscious reflection on how to adapt for future. Evolution's simple organizing nature was embodied by survival and replication of those organisms who inherently survived and replicated. Then about 40,000 years ago, amidst life's flourishing a unique species of life emerged. This species would usher in a new era, wielding a new organizing element with skill, the meme.
Earth 3.0, here we come!