I've been thinking lately about the metaphor that all things are systems completely embedded in an environment which also comprises a system and so on. I read this article which proposes a universal principle which amounts to the opposite of entropy - enformy -:
..and found some interesting ideas which I'll come back to. Here is a snippet:
TES [Theory of Enformed Systems] explains the origin, fundamental properties, and behaviors of holistic systems at all ontological levels. TES does not displace the current scientific paradigms; instead, it forms their foundation. Four statements place TES in the context of the current disciplines: (a) A general theory of systems is necessarily a theory of organization; (b) because TES is a general theory of organization, it belongs to systemics—the science of holistic systems; (c) because organization per se is fundamental to all observable phenomena, systemics is the most basic branch of science; and (d) because TES is foundational to the prevailing paradigms of science, it is outside the prevailing Weltanschauung; i.e., it cannot be understood or interpreted in terms of the prevailing paradigms.
The prevailing paradigms address systems that are already organized, whereas TES addresses organization per se—its origin, elaboration, and maintenance. Organization per se is traditionally assumed to be a necessary precondition for scientific study, and not itself a subject of study. For instance, the standard model of the cosmos holds that the universe consists of (a) matter, comprising fundamental particles such as quarks, electrons, photons, etc.; (b) the properties of these particles, including charge, polarization, spin, etc.; and (c) mass and energy—two fundamental, conserved principles that determine the behaviors of matter. The work of science has been to discover and describe patterns of these behaviors. In physics, this work entails applying the organization inherent in mathematics to map the organization inherent in matter. As a result, the worldview of mathematical physics is blind to organization per se because organization is intrinsic to mathematics.
Systemics radicalizes this. It allows scientists to turn their attention to the question, "What is the origin of organization per se?"