2.c) The freedom of living beings
The previous concept of Life and, consequently, the origin of living beings can be engaging in a personal context but not relevant for the exposition, proof, or validation of the scientific aspects of Conditional Evolution.
As an example, when citing the possibility that energy, or gravity itself, is the origin of living beings because it could have some degrees of freedom, which could be so small that we would not have the means of perceiving them. Therefore, we would not have another alternative than to include in the corresponding model of scientific behavior random components derived from the god of science: Randomness.
A more literal example, as far as evolution and characteristics of living beings, is that we humans cannot perceive suffering or negative feelings from the plants when they die, and we would assume that plants do not like it at all.
We could say the same comment about small animals.
Nonetheless, this concept of life has indeed been beneficial for us, because its generalization allows the mind to meditate about the characteristics of the evolutionary system as a whole, about its objectives, and with a higher degree of trust in applied logic. In short, to think What would we do in its place? Moreover, to imagine that, of course, Life will have done everything that we could imagine or feel and much more.
By placing the debate in a more general context, this elaboration of the concept of Life has allowed us to surpass philosophical positions about the human singularity and the evolution of man with an egocentric perspective, or simple ideas of biological reductionism.
To be precise, we are referring to positions such as:
Man is the only rational being (Plato - Aristotle)
He is a political animal (Aristotle)
He is unique for possessing the gift of language.
He is unique for creating (not using) instruments (Paleontology.)
He is unique for transmitting his culture (Behaviorism –learning in contrast to instinct)
Necessary laws govern nature and the cosmos, but only the man has freedom.
Man is an animal, and in this sense, everything is instinct, that is, the biological pre-determinism, to a certain extent, it is a result of Darwin’s contribution (Innatism.)
From a scientific or philosophical point of view, the human being is one being more, with particular or specific traits, but with the general characteristics of living beings and intrinsic to Life.
The ethnocentrism, the cultural relativism as well as the universalism forget about this last aspect since all of them refer to the human being with unique characteristics without saying it also has common features with the rest of the living creatures.
In spite of this philosophical approach to life that, eventually, would lead to assuming that all beings are living beings, we will continue using the standard definition referred only plants and animals, given that it is a suitable term to speak about genetics.
2.c.1. Philosophy and theory of Vitalism
2.c.1.a) Vital impulse systems
If we had to look for a philosophical antecedent of the Conditional Evolution, we would have to say that the most adequate would be the theory of Vitalism.
The vital impulse systems will be those behaving, for one reason or another, as if they were living beings, or at least have their essential characteristics.
We consider the superior animals as symbiotic macro-societies of more basic units with a life of their own, like cells.
The interrelations have a similar degree of complexity to the structure of the brain. The trends of modularity and connectionism regarding brain functions suppose two thoughtful approaches that could easily be complementary.
By order of intuitive proximity, we can cite the following types:
The first type of vital impulse systems will be those systems whose components are, in turn, living beings –nation, state, beehive, ecosystems.
Another type will be the effect of the activity of groups of individuals with a specific purpose. Therefore, the protagonists will not be individuals but the particular object of their actions –economic markets of products.
Internal dynamics of systems derived from partial qualities of the individuals –languages.
Any company, medium-term work or objective that many beings assign, will have the same evolutionary dynamics as living beings. While developing and achieving the goal, the relationships and conditions make up a vital impulse system –the evolution of computers, a computer program, the construction of a home.
Specific systems without the intervention of the living beings are vital impulse systems to the extent that their internal dynamics are similar enough to that of living beings –hurricanes, ocean currents, volcanoes, galaxies, engines. These models are a common objective for the theory of chaos.
2.c.1.b) Vitalism and characteristics of living beings
The features commented above would be more or less identifiable, but in some way, they will be present in all of them. In fact, more than features of the vital impulse systems, Vitalism defines their attributes in a broad sense.
We can also distinguish between essential characteristics and those derived from the objectives that all vital impulse systems must have. These can also appear with greater or lesser strength.
The vital impulse systems should have the following essential characteristics:
- They should have a decision-making process allowing them to choose between different options to achieve their objective or purpose. On the one hand, it will imply the existence of degrees of freedom in the system and, on the other, operative intelligence.
- The system will take the options according to the information available, for which the existence of an archive will be necessary and will make up part of the system.
- The goodness or good faith of the system can be assumed "a priori" and, certainly, it will always have it "a posteriori."
The system must be a teleological system, that is, with objectives. Even if these cannot be precisely determined, one should always try to identify the intermediate targets of this type of evolutionary systems as well as the methods, processes and specific instruments for obtaining them. These objectives will be:
These objectives will be:
- Improvement of efficiency
- Guarantee and certainty
- Internal coherence and compatibility
- Optimization of the resources
In the extent that a system complies with the necessary characteristics, and we are capable of identifying a sufficient set of these derived elements, we can say that the system will behave as if it had a genuine Life impulse.
As practical methods of identification of these systems, we can mention the two following facts:
Many of the systems that can be conceptually described and delimited according to the proposals of the theory of chaos could enter into this category of vital impulse systems.
Another indirect way of identifying the vital impulse systems can be by obtaining behavioral or evolutionary graphics with the fractal forms. It would not be surprising if the fractal structure had the shape of an arrow tip; the interpretation of this shape would give us some clues about the purpose or objectives of the system.