There is a hypothesis that the universe and the human brain have some properties in common which indicate that they are both self-organizing systems. These similarities can be explained by the principle of natural selection, which operates at different levels of complexity and scale.
The appearance of the universe and the brain may seem quite different. However, if we take a deeper look at them, we can see some similarities. In particular, both systems have a structure resembling a neural network. The universe consists of billions of galaxies, each containing billions of stars, planets, and other celestial bodies. They are connected by threads of dark matter and energy, forming a web-like network that encompasses observable space. The human brain, in turn, consists of billions of neurons, each containing thousands of synapses connected by axons and dendrites, forming a web-like network spanning the cerebral cortex.
However, the similarity is not limited to appearance alone. Both systems exhibit emergent behavior, that is, they produce phenomena that cannot be predicted from individual components. The universe produces complex structures such as galaxies, stars, planets, and life forms, while the brain produces complex phenomena such as cognition, emotion, memory, and consciousness. Another common property of both systems is nonlocality, meaning that they can process information in distant regions without any apparent physical connection.
In the universe, this manifests itself in quantum entanglement, which allows two particles to affect each other instantaneously regardless of their separation. In the brain, it manifests itself in neural synchrony, which allows different regions of the brain to coordinate their activities without any direct connection. Both phenomena suggest that there is a hidden level of organization and computation beyond the local interactions of matter and energy.
A third common property of both systems is adaptability, meaning that they can change their structure and function in response to environmental feedback. In the universe, this manifests itself in cosmic evolution, which describes how the cosmos underwent various phases of transformation after the Big Bang. In the brain it is manifested in neural plasticity, which describes how the brain can modify its synaptic connections and neural pathways based on experience and learning.
These similarities between the universe and the brain point to a deeper principle of self-organization that governs both systems. This principle can be understood as a form of natural selection, which operates at different levels of complexity and scale. Natural selection is the process by which variations in a population are filtered by environmental pressures, resulting in the survival and reproduction of those variations that are better adapted to their niche.