Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Fractal of Nature, Part 1

Nature seemingly exists as a fractal that builds upon itself at an exponential rate into higher and higher forms of complexity and intricacy.

We can represent this growth curve mathematically via the Fibonacci Numbers, in which the previous two numbers are added to create the third - 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, etc.

These numbers can be extrapolated into the Fibonacci Spiral:

When these numerical patterns and the fibonacci spiral are understood and recognized, we can begin to investigate nature in order to find what appears to be a hardcoded pattern for growth. All one needs to do is go outside and look at a flower or a tree, begin to count the petals on the flower and notice the spiral pattern that they form, or take an evergreen tree and count the lengths of needles from the tip of the branch moving inward - short of wear on the tree, and weather damage, inevitably you get somthing very close to the fibonacci sequence of numbers.

What is most fascinating about this is how all encompassing this numerical forumla becomes when you begin to recognize it, and how precisely it applies to almost everything in nature. The next time you go outside take a few moments to look at the plant life that surrounds you and see if you can spot the sequence in growth, or identify the spirals.

Now, seemingly - what we are seeing here is a hard coded mathematical formula that displays the preponderance of nature to favor exponential growth at a specific rate, and this rate speeds up with each new phase of growth, leading to a more and more complex organism. If one considers the Gaia theory, or any of its variants, to have any sense of legitimacy (and for the record, I do), then one can begin to see nature as a vast living organism - and all life that it spawns exists as a smaller scale fractalized representation of nature itself. Considering that fractals are self-similar across all scales, one could hypothesize that nature itself evolves and grows at an exponential rate consistant with all the life that reflects and mirrors its traits, and this is where this theory begins to become very interesting...

To be continued.

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