it a living thing or a non living thing

@waas94 (10)
South Africa
February 20, 2013 5:31am CST
hi mylotters please tell me maybe earth is a living thing or not and your reason
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1 response
@owlwings (43915)
• Cambridge, England
20 Feb 13
It depends a great deal on how you define "living". Materially, the earth is made up of rocks, minerals, water, gases and all sorts of things which we usually define as "non-living". However, it also supports everything which we class as 'living' from the smallest and simplest bacteria to the most complex and varied animal and vegetable life. Not only does the Earth support them but all life forms give something back to the earth, so the Earth and what we call living things are in a state of symbiosis (which means, literally, "living together") and nothing can really be considered truly independent. In that sense, the Earth is certainly, at least, part of life and some might even think of it as a massive living organism in its own right. The earth may seem to be 'just a lump of rock on which life happens to survive' but, in fact, it has many of the properties of a living thing. It is constantly changing and renewing itself both geologically and chemically and what we call 'life' (all of which is coded by a series of complex proteins called DNA) is part of it in the same way that we, as animals, are a collection of individual cells and chemical processes as well as 'foreign' bacteria without which we would become unhealthy and die. If you define 'life' as 'being able to reproduce', then the Earth (as a planet) probably cannot do that - or, at least, if it can, the life-span and processes by which it might do it are so foreign to us that we cannot understand them. The Earth CAN, however, 'die' if it fails to support life any longer and all of the geological processes stop. This might have happened, or be happening to planets like Mars and Mercury and to our satellite, the moon. One could take the analogy further, however, and argue that all the planets and everything in the Solar System are part of the complex life cycle of the sun.
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