I made this post because I heard the Gaia theory mentioned in a book called, Free Play: Improvisation in Life and Art, by Stephen Nachmanovich. The book was created to promote and inspire creativity and "play" in our lives no matter what medium. In the part about making art for life's sake, He says, "Creativity like life is a recursive process, involving interactive, interlooping circuits of control and nourishment between organism and environment. If the organism like us, conscious, it may feel it is the tool (or victim) of some mysterious force. But there is no force- just the interconnectedness of the big system, Gaia."
Here is some info about a theory that is gaining momentum - there is a solid foundation really taking root in the science and history fields among others...
The Gaia Theory posits that the organic and inorganic components of Planet Earth have evolved together as a single living, self-regulating system. It suggests that this living system has automatically controlled global temperature, atmospheric content, ocean salinity, and other factors, that maintains its own habitability. In a phrase, “life maintains conditions suitable for its own survival.” In this respect, the living system of Earth can be thought of analogous to the workings of any individual organism that regulates body temperature, blood salinity, etc. So, for instance, even though the luminosity of the sun – the Earth’s heat source – has increased by about 30 percent since life began almost four billion years ago, the living system has reacted as a whole to maintain temperatures at levels suitable for life.
The Gaia theory was developed in the late 1960’s by Dr. James Lovelock, a British Scientist and inventor, shortly after his work with NASA in determining that there was probably no life on Mars. His research led to profound new insights about life on Earth. The theory gained an early supporter in Lynn Margulis, a microbiologist at the University of Massachusetts. In the past 15-20 years, many of the mechanisms by which Earth self-regulates have been identified. As one example, it has been shown that cloud formation over the open ocean is almost entirely a function of the metabolism of oceanic algae that emit a large sulfur molecule (as a waste gas) that becomes the condensation nuclei for raindrops. Previously, it was thought that cloud formation over the ocean was a purely chemical/physical phenomenon. The cloud formation not only helps regulate Earth’s temperature, it is an important mechanism by which sulfur is returned to terrestrial ecosystems.
The Gaia Theory has inspired many leading figures of the past 20 years, including Vaclav Havel, John Todd (inventor), Freeman Dyson (physicist), Al Gore, Joseph Campbell (mythology expert), and Elisabet Sahtouris (microbiologist). These and many other people have written and spoken eloquently about how the Gaia Theory can help us model human activities after the living systems of our planet; the concept offers lessons for the design of economic, energy, social and governmental systems.