Lee on the NDT Buzz page draws our attention to a science story that affirms my belief in an energy theory of behavior. In the eighties, I was inspired in this direction by reading about “packs” of Wolf Spiders that hunt Musk Ox Larvae, that in response to predation, herd up into defensive circles, hence the need for collective action by the spiders. If insects do it, then therefore it’s not logical that the complex social behavior of wolves would be predicated on an advanced cognitive development, but instead be but a more elaborate expression of a universal energetic principle. Thus, if emotion is energy, an emotional bond between individuals is more than just a source of animation, it is simultaneously a source of information, a means of coupling energies in order to overcome greater and greater sources of resistance. This causes sociability to evolve in both prey and predator species, and turns the environment into a vast interconnect ecosystem. Now in his article we can see this bubble-up dynamic in the collective action of bacteria as well. (In a later post I’m going to show that the calls of Ravens at a carcass is also not cognitive, but an elaboration of the “quorum sensing” phenomenon referred to in the article below.)
To quote from the article:
“Bacteria can launch collective action, pooling their resources to produce light, to hunt or to survive in hostile conditions via an electricity grid.”
“It has long been known that bacteria communicate with each other by releasing chemical signals. Among other things, these signals allow bacteria to sense how many of their kind are nearby and launch collective action once their numbers are great enough – a strategy called quorum sensing.”
“Bioluminescent marine bacteria sometimes use quorum sensing to ensure that they only produce luminescent chemicals when there are enough of them to ensure a worthwhile amount of light is produced, such as the Photobacterium fischeri that provide light for their fish or squid hosts.”
“Slime bacteria called Myxococcus xanthus hunt in packs like wolves, swimming together in huge swarms and rippling back and forth over their bacterial prey, releasing enzymes to break it down. Collectively, they can tackle much larger prey than they could alone – much the same reason that real wolves pool their hunting efforts.”
“It seems that even bacteria of different species are capable of extremely close cooperation. In a recent study, two species of Geobacter were grown in a medium containing ethanol and sodium fumarate. One of them, G. metallireducens, can break down ethanol, but in this medium it had no way of getting rid of the excess electrons this produces. G. sulfurreducens, on the other hand, can offload electrons onto sodium fumarate, but cannot break down ethanol. In theory both species should have perished, but instead they thrived. It turned out that they had grown a network of tiny “nanowires” connecting them into an electron-conducting grid that enabled them to pool their talents. Some biologists think such networks are common in soils and ocean sediments.”
The universal prey/predator duality: one pole has energy to give, the other pole can absorb energy. Emotion is the physical embodiment of the laws of nature so that organisms by dint of their physiology and anatomy, upon which is predicated a neurology in the higher organisms, have a means of evolving AS A NETWORK.