Consider, gentle reader, the history of life on Earth.
Life has always moved outward into environments previously barren. Life started in tidal pools, spread to oceans, then to land. Now only the most inhospitable places on the planet are devoid of life.
Life has always moved to higher and higher levels of organization. The first life was but a molecule. Molecules organized themselves into cells. Cells organized themselves into organs, organs organized themselves into creatures. Creatures organized themselves into societies. The whole is organized as an ecosystem.
Creatures propagate. Societies propagate. It is man's destiny to be the instrument whereby Earth's ecosystem is propagated in space.
Consider, gentle reader, the way in which the ecosystem is organized, the way that new organisms arise in such a way as to impart a dynamic equilibrium to the ecosystem. Creatures fill niches in the ecosystem. These niches represent opportunities to individual species, but also represent roles serving the whole from the ecosystem perspective. What then is the human's role in the ecosystem? What circumstances gave rise to humans? Could humans be the Mother Nature's response to the damage the Earth sustained when a big rock hit the planet and wiped out the dinosaurs? Is there another species with the potential to protect Gaia from the Trojan asteroids?
The future of Earth's ecosystem will be secured by reproducing Earth's ecosystem in space (as a backup) and by the presence in space of installations that stand sentry over the ecosystem of Earth.
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Last modified 9 April 1999.
Copyright © 1996-1999 by Mark Elrod