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Self-maintaining is the essential activity of all living forms. For a living form, death occurs when self-maintaining activity stops. To live is to maintain oneself against the entropic forces of the mechanistic universe by projecting goals that seem conducive to the maintenance of self and by exerting control in an effort to approximate the purpose. As objective phenomena, capacities for self-maintaining must emerge from some constitutive indeterminacy of the universe, and all of life’s vast and complicated purposive efforts emerge from innumerable, recursive, and specific activities of self-maintenance that have been taking place over eons through the lives of living forms.