Zoom Meeting (please register using the link in the description)

Mind Matters Talk with Dr Tyler Volk

“How Gaia Works”

Gaia Series

In this talk Dr Volk will use several basic principles of systems that he developed to look at essential structures and processes of Gaia. The basic principles come from his book Metapatterns, which he will briefly review at the start. Specifically, he will ask the following questions about Gaia as a coherent system: What are its borders and the nature of the fluxes across those borders? What are its major internal parts or organs? What is the relationship between the evolution of living species inside Gaia and the whole system of Gaia? To hint at one answer, these questions will lead us to a concept of what he has termed biochemical guilds.

Moving to metapatterns of time, he will open up his talk to some larger questions: What is the connection between the cycles of materials within Gaia and long-term trends (the metapattern of arrows) of Gaia itself? Do these trends show major breaks or times of transition?

He looks forward to a lively discussion and will leave a major block of time to answer issues raised by the presentation. His goal in the formal talk will be to set forth some nuts and bolts, or better, the physiology of the biosphere, which can serve as a basis for our subsequent conversation on the meaning of Gaia for us as individuals and for current global challenges.

Watch the full recording here!

Tyler Volk

Dr Tyler Volk is emeritus professor of biology and environmental studies at New York University. He has been a major player in the development of Gaia theory, with invitations from James Lovelock to present at all three of the famous Oxford Gaia conferences in the 1990s, and he organised the opening session on “core ideas” at The Second Chapman Conference on the Gaia Hypothesis, Valencia, Spain, in 2000. Over decades via books and papers, he developed a distinctive version of Gaia (or the “biosphere”). Recently he was invited by a prior MLE speaker (Bruce Clarke) to contribute an essay to his 2022 book, Writing Gaia: The Scientific Correspondence of James Lovelock and Lynn Margulis. His own books include: Quarks to Culture: How We Came to Be; CO2 Rising: The World’s Greatest Environmental Challenge; What is Death? A Scientist Looks at the Cycle of Life; Gaia's Body: Toward a Physiology of Earth; and Metapatterns Across Space, Time, and Mind. You can find most of his Gaia papers via the “papers” link on his personal website (https://tylervolk.wikidot.com).

Event info
Mind Matters Talk with Dr Tyler Volk

20-09-2023 06:00 PM
20-09-2023 08:00 PM
Zoom Meeting (please register using the link in the description)

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