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Living and Not-living Matter: Complexity and Self-Organisation in Kauffman


Which is the relation between the living and not-living matter? In this paper I’ll try to give this question an answer and to explore the underlying framework. I think that the theoretical biologist Stuart Kauffman develops an outstanding and interesting approach, which is formulated within the research field of the non-equilibrium chaotic systems dynamics, the theory of complexity and self-organization and the recent debate on the evolution. Therefore, my aim is to show the way in which Kauffman employs the concept of self-organization to build a not reductionist model that may account for the issues concerning the living and not-living matter by integrating physics with biology. In general, Self-organization is a process in which a form of global order or coordination arises from the local interactions among the components of an initially disordered system. The process is spontaneous. It is not directed or controlled by an agent or a subsystem inside or outside of the system. However, the laws followed by this process and its initial conditions may have been chosen or caused by an agent. It is often triggered by random fluctuations that are amplified by positive feedbacks. The resulting organization is wholly decentralized or distributed over all the components of the system.