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How Does Gaia Work?

James Lovelock, in collaboration with another eminent scientist, the microbiologist Lynn Margulis, first explained the Gaia hypothesis as such: “Life, or the biosphere, regulates or maintains the climate and the atmospheric composition at an optimum for itself.” Inherent in this explanation is the idea that biosphere, the atmosphere, the lithosphere and the hydrosphere are in some kind of balance — that they maintain a homeostatic condition. This homeostasis is much like the internal maintenance of our own bodies; processes within our body insure a constant temperature, blood pH, electrochemical balance, etc. The inner workings of Gaia, therefore, can be viewed as a study of the physiology of the Earth, where the oceans and rivers are the Earth’s blood, the atmosphere is the Earth’s lungs, the land is the Earth’s bones, and the living organisms are the Earth’s senses. Lovelock calls this the science of geophysiology - the physiology of the Earth (or any other planet).

Were one to commit to developing homes and workplaces most friendly to Mother Earth, or Gaia, i.e. Gaian Homes and Gardens, the following concepts must be considered:

  • Alternative Energy Sources, e.g. solar,wind, geothermal, etc.

  • Soil fertility and water resource development, e.g. Haiti Soil Project

  • Home produce and fish farming

  • Small is beautiful design features

  • Rain Gardens, roof gardens

  • Historic preservation and recycled material use optimized

  • Exploring “Gaian Values,” e.g. Gaian Habitat Desiderata

A small group is developing that might be the nucleus for the development of “craft homes” and “Gaian Homes.”



Bay View’s Greg Bird has urged a Bay View development to aspire to the highest possible application of sustainable development features.

Gaian Habitat Desiderata

  • Lifelong pursuit of knowledge

  • Deepen Reverance for Good Thoughts and Wisdom

  • Free Use of the Light

  • Exorcism of Toxins from One’s Own Culture Background

  • Loving Trumps Judging

  • Constant Anger Management Experiments

  • Consistent Reflections on Self and Other(s), including toleration of the inescapable imbecilities and constant provocations of family, friends, self, and others

  • Work of Others to Inspire Gratitude More Than Envy or Ranking

  • Quite Times for Self…Alone

  • Prudent Adventures

  • Good work must be smart and graceful work

  • Lifelong Quest for Truth, slowly revealed or discovered

  • Incremental Improvement re Honesty and Trust

  • Care, modesty, and irony with words

  • Quicker Is Often Lesser

  • Mutual Aid/reciprocal altruism trumps individual ambition

  • Lighten Our Presence on Mother Earth

  • Be both master and servant at work and home

  • Each Day Seek Out the Greatest and Most Modest Beings


Last edited by Godsil. Based on work by Donna Elliot, TeganDowling and Olde Prophets.  Page last modified on October 13, 2006

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