Blair D. Macdonald
1.1 The Fractal and Survival
A fractal (in brief) is a type of geometry; it is a structure that is characterised by the ‘same’ but ‘different’ – at all scales. They emerge from the repeating of a ‘simple’ rule. Trees, along with clouds, and waves are often quoted as the classic examples. Fractal shapes are – literally – found everywhere, and are from the insights they deliver – what I believe to be – the foundation of what is called science. They are so universal, that to me, it is more interesting to spot what is not fractal, than what is. I hope that sound's familiar to the scientist reading. So even religions have a branching, hierarchy, evolutionary nature. They also fit same but different.
1.2 What is religion, and what causes religion (or a religion)?
1.3 What is a tree?
Using the above fractal definition (same but different at all scales): the ‘same’ component in this fractal definition, in the tree’s primarily emergent ‘branching/standing structure of plants; and the ‘different’ is to account for all the different variety of trees that exist now, and that have ever existed.
It is to view all the different plants types: the conifers, the mosses, lycopods, and so on; and most recently the flowering plants. They have all repeated the same basic (tree) structure and in so doing forming what we term – in my case the English language, in a four letter word – a tree.