Friday, November 17, 2017

Contra Columnis Quintus XIII

The Modes of Life in the Species per  the Specimen

Over the Chiasm of Reproduction/Regeneration

Having found the nexus attribute which enables functional and structural translations between instances of a species, or specimens, and the aggregate forms of a specimen's existence, its species, one can now turn to examine the other attributes that have analogies between them.  Unsurprising, they will be functions of the same sorts of utilities found in the specimen, just as the chiasma that make them cognate must evidence some permutations of the same content and the therefore the same form, or else are derived from the same forms and so yield similar "action-on-content" which manifests some sort of goal-directed, functional utility.

The attributes of the living organism which are most similar to their relevant analogues in the species "as a group" are those which most directly reveal the relations between specimens in such groups, and those are explained best in a different order than with the specimen.  So I will start with the reproductive process and proceed accordingly.  After a new specimen is created by reproduction, it must develop and proceed to act as an adult would.  That requires that it be in a condition, when produced, that is in an environment compatible with development.  As the body grows in its development, the most important aspects of that development will correlate with the need to mature its tissues, grow in size, and develop behaviors of adaptation appropriate for its species.  These all happen in tandem with the ongoing activities of the adults who will rear it.

As that process goes forward, the developing specimen will acquire its respiration on its own from the environment, and in the case of more complex organisms, will in some cases require nourishment to be supplied by the adults of the species.  It turns out that if this is not the case, such as with some insects, amphibians, and reptiles just as examples, then the young will have perhaps some period of being with the parents, if any, and then must simply fend for themselves (as their own parents did, of course). If it is that they are cared for, then their nourishment will come from the parents and other adults of the species within the nearest "group" established around that reproductive occurence (the tribe, pride, murder, brood, etc).  That is the first evidence of what might be called a circulatory aspect of the species.  Nourishment, along with the basic genetic information, are transferred to the youngest members of the species by their elders, and they develop as individuals within the group just as the tissues of the adults are nourished by their own circulatory systems by a system which supplied those materials to them (digestive system, etc).

This is a subset of a larger system of exchanges between the group and the environment, so that they decide among themselves how to go about finding their nourishment in tandem, or in spite of, one another.  This process would have to do with the grazing patterns and formations of the group (vis-a-vis potential predators), or else the way that mature adults will fan out to take over separate areas which confederate into a patchwork of seperate domains within an overall territory belonging to none of them in particular (such as with eagles, who don't flock), and then, within these arrangements it is decided how to go about treating that which becomes their food, so that hierarchies manifest as pecking orders and those who are fed first and best versus those who are fed last and least well.  That reveals a pattern found commonly in nature, here representatively considered in a few forms simply to expose the kind which has the diverse forms within it.

That would be the circulatory system.  As to the digestive system, that would represent the actual systematic relationship to the ecosystem which bears out cycles of predator/prey, forager/foraged, and overall the group of specimens and the resources of the environment. That is where the taking in of the nourishment makes contact with the available supply of it, and that is where the degree of supply, as to abundance or scarcity, will relate to the capacity of the group and its members to obtain, per individual and per group, the needed sustenance that is to be acquired. This is a bare discussion of that attribute in terms of this context, but that should be sufficient to outline how that pattern resembles the pattern of digestion within the organism as an individual in terms of the organism qua species.  It's relation to the "inner" economizing of the gained resources (of whatever kind, but especially of food), will also bear out the same or at least properly analogous patter found between the digestion of food and its assimilation through the circulatory system of an individual specimen.

These are born out first simply because they have the most bearing on the individual in development as it is dependent upon the group.  This is not the proper beginning of the group per se.  It's beginning, as a group beyond the strict process of reproduction, is actually the adaptively communicative mechanisms of the group which bear out the creation of its hierarchies and pecking orders, its forms of relating to the environment, including its directives for nesting, migration, reproductive privileges, etc.  That is correlative to respiration.  Respiration is the privilege of each organism with respect to the same resource, the air (or the water, etc) in which they all participate without it being scarce enough to require a pecking order as would food, or a spot to drink, or a spot to bathe or sun, etc.  As this process becomes more complicated for the organism, as the organism itself becomes more complex, then more forms of communication are developed, some of which involve the "surplus potential" for action which enables the development of meaninful gestures to be evidenced which allow each specimen to suggest to the others what it wants to express and manifest, and they may then take this information into account as they go through all of their other processes.  Just as the "oxygen" of the in-breath comingles with the other processes in a way as to enable and limit, and hence govern their engagements, the species must develop protocols for sharing or refusing to share resources as a species, and one which enables some specimens and their reproductive projects to proceed, whether all do or not, so that the species can proceed (or else this process will end for all concerned).

So as they communicate and relate actively in ways that enable all forms of their cooperation (at least sufficient for mating rituals and not devouring all their young!), so does respiration seem to lay the overall groundwork as a limiting factor of the potential of all cells and tissues, organs and systems, and the organism as a whole to continue with all of its other processes.  It is more than just this sort of "elemental building block" in these processes, on both ends of the analogy.  Yet for now it will suffice to express this much about it. 

So if these organisms can get this much figured out, depending upon their forms of relations as a species, then they can each take care of their appropriate business as specimens yet still not fail to provide for reproductive necessity.  That is why they still exist.  This potential to get along or seperate as necessary, but always communicate these requirements sufficiently as to not require unnecessary loss of resources to disputations, this strategic inhibition of conspecific aggression, is what must be present or else the group and all its future generations will be eliminated from existence (except for the Highlander...).

But for this to occur, then they must acquire patterns of activity that clearly integrate with their different purposive behaviors so that the individuals can coexist within the appropriate boundaries as individuals sufficient to enable the development of a long-term-suvivable group capable of continuing as a species.  This would involve the capacity to find a habitat within which their operations can be successful, as species and as specimens.  So they will have to mobilize as individuals in ways that work as groups for migrations (when that is their custom), or else as individuals spread through territories in ways that, concerning choiceness and fittingness, bespeak yet another form of hierarchical delineation among them.  

These all represent the flux of a species in its existence that is stable and "internal" to it, which is a sort of homeostatic "motility" that expresses all of those features that are expressive of the species, just as would be the integration of all the mechanisms of the organism into a stable form which would represent the entity "at rest in a relatively neutral environment". As to the "mobility" of the species, this would be its cross-adaptability toward varied environments, and would indicate the more complex range of its potential as it would be actuated by those environments which may vary in range widely in some, but probably not all parameters.  These would "select for" specialized expressions of the species so that require the sophistication of an articulation of that species better suited for them.  It would represent the mobility of the organism as species in its ability to navigate an increasingly distal and peripheral set of circumstances with respect to its already expressed baseline of adaptive potential.  Note that in both cases here "adaptiveness" is the key notion that connects the relations of the species within its own frame, and the relations of the species to larger frames of environments that may vary from what is optimal, whether toward or away from it.

The only aspect which remains is one which happens to catalyze all of these other processes with the greatest impact when compared with any of them in that respect.  Both as to developmental processes of the specimen growing up, developmental processes of the entire species as whole, the mobilization of the group or the individual, the selection processes for finding ecosystemic and intra-specific orderings and homeostases, something analogous to a "neuro-glandular" system is involved, and so there must be some comparative systems and structures in place for the species which would embody for that collective organism something analogous to what is embodied in the individual.  That's not too difficult to determine.

What else remains of the species except for its capacity to devise more and more sophisticated means of approaching all of its developmental and adaptive relations to other members of the species and also the environment (to include relations to other life forms in the ecosystems they inhabit).  The accumulated heritage of customs, habits, and other behavioral adjustments that are integrated into the behavior of one generation, and passed on to the ensuing generations by the concatenations of developmental imitation and genetic recapitulation vis-a-vis environmental necessities will ensure this continual regulation and enhancement of those features of the species, just as similar adjustments made by the neuro-glandular systems of the individuals performs a similar role for the individual specimen in its vicissitudes of existence (though always framed in terms of the group at least through reproductive necessity, leaving out speculative worlds other than the one used here, as discussed in the immediately previous in this series).

Yet there is a fundamental nuance here that must be born out.  The individual entity did develop within an environment which enables it to grow into a fully functional, relatively seperate individual within whatever kind of life form that it is a genetic member.  Yet it must encounter all conditions, within its species and which are simply its own response-cycle to its own environment as rooted on its own entity per se.  That is tantamount to individuation as a process usually more fully expressed at more complex and more intelligent levels of life.  That also bears out the potential of the entire species as epitomized in this behavior in the way the species, as grouped forms, economizes individuation across common, bordering, and diverse territories.  And this is the way that individuation literally determines the form and direction of the evolution of the group so that it behaves, qua species, as though it were an individual which seeks to best economize its processes within itself and with respect to its environments.  The difference is that this is an aggregative process taking place over long periods of time, over large areas of space, and in a multi-generational process that cannot, in "non-Methusalean" worlds of life, be achieved by any individual "in itself".  Yet, it will be recapitulated in some individuals more than others, generation after generation, until its legacy develops into further changes in the organism "as a whole".  

And this will all find itself expressed anew in new generations, and most epitomally in certain individuals of those generations, so that we find a more significant meaning of the saying that "phylogeny recapitulates ontogeny".  And while I did not mention it as a fundamental feature of life per specimen, it obtains its best context and demonstration in contrast with the performance of the species per se, and respresents the power of the actual, the existential, and the particular over the potential, the universal, and the general.  The "species" does not live, actually.  The specimen is what lives.  And this is how life is the "practical joke of the particular upon the general".  

Now on to how this process varies in ways specific to the study of what are called, on the human tier of these phenomena, "rackets".  And with this study we will see how life is rather the "practical joke of the general upon the particular" when it reaches a systematic form.  This will start with a study of how such phenomena of opportunistic exploitation are found "in nature" without necessarily any reference to the human variety.

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