Homeostasis n. The tendency of a system to maintain internal stability, owing to the coordinated response of its parts to any situation or stimulus tending to disturb its normal condition or function.
Let’s apply that description to the status and dynamics of that largest of all local systems: the earth. One of the most common topics of discussion among the chattering classes these days is global warming and climate change. Humankind, it appears increasingly certain as the scientific evidence grows, is warming up the earth’s surface by our activities. Foremost among these is our burning of carbon-based fuels. This is causing the earth to deviate from “its normal condition or function” according to this growing heap of historical/geological evidence.