Natural history of life:
History of communication logics and dynamics

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“A full understanding of the dynamics of semiosis may in the last analysis turn out to be no less than the definition of life” (Th. Sebeok)

If rules governing evolution are equivalent to communication rules which lie behind the history of interaction, then we could refer to the natural history of life as a history of communication logics and dynamics. Communication processes are rule governed sign mediated interactions (rsi) which may be described in the evolution of eukaryotic cells as well as - for example - in microbial and plant interactions. The first part of this article supports Margulis theory of symbiogenesis (Serial Endosymbiotic Theory) but questions the use of classical mechanistic language of natural science in describing highly complex interactions of symbiosis and, subsequently, of symbiogenesis. The alternative is to describe these as communication processes which are multi-leveled, regulative, constitutive and generative and whose success depends on sign processes which proceed in a rule-based manner. In my illustrations of rsi, I propose the existence of an innovation code (text-generating code, evolution code), a genome editing (ge) MetaCode hidden in the non-coding DNA. The second part argues that the community of investigators doesn’t consist of ‘pure observers’ but of performative participants of the communicating scientific community which are (a) parts of the investigation itself, (b) parts of the planetary symbiotic interdependence of communicating living nature. I summarize pragmatic turn results which lead to an adequate description of communicative rationality by investigating which formal preconditions must be fulfilled so that rule-governed sign-mediated interactions in and between communicating communities can function. This approach of a pragmatic philosophy of biology enables a three-levelled biosemiotics avoid reductionistic fallacies.

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