Positing complex adaptive systems made of agents with relations between them that can be composed, it follows that they can be described by gauge theories similar to elementary particle theory and general relativity. By definition, a universal dynamics is able to determine the time development of any such system without need for further specification. The possibilities are limited, but one of them - reproduction fork dynamics - describes DNA replication and is the basis of biological life on earth. lt is a universal copy machine and a renormalization group fixed point. A universal equation of motion in continuous time is also presented. ((orig.)).