*Gaia, goddess of the Earth
Your children when combined
Provide the seed to give life birth
As we know life defined
Inseparable three children are
Mountain, Sea, and the Sky
For if these three became afar
Earth’s life would surely die
Your children share each others gifts
Exchange these gifts all day
Rotated in unending shifts
So life on Earth can stay*
The Gaia hypothesis is an ecological hypothesis that proposes that living and nonliving parts of the earth are a complex interacting system that can be thought of as a single organism.
Named after the Greek Earth goddess, this hypothesis postulates that all living things have a regulatory effect on the Earth’s environment that promotes life overall.
This fractal artwork depicts this infinite symbiotic relationships that make Gaia, or our Mother Earth, the living and sustainable planet that it is. I have provided cutaways of the artwork below to view as I narrate the significance of that particular segment of the artwork. The cutaways are at 33% to give you an idea as to the complexity of the artwork.
First, the overall shape of the artwork is not completely round. It is ever so slightly elliptical, as is the Earth, which has a greater circumference around the equator than it does across the poles. This is due to the fact that our Mother Earth is not a big rock, but rather fluid and alive under her thin skin called her crust, which itself floats around the globe as moving tectonic islands. Being fluid within, the centrifugal force of the earth’s own rotation causes the elliptical bulge on the plane of the equator.
The lines in the artwork are continuous, with no beginning or end. This represents the symbiotic and cyclic nature of the Gaia hypothesis, whereas, all parts of Gaia are both dependent and interconnected to one another. We will follow these lines as I continue to describe the artwork.
Water – The True Ambrosia
When scientists go looking for life in the cosmos today, they consider first a planet’s ability to sustain liquid water. It is surmised by science today, that usually where you find liquid water, you will have a high probability of finding life. This is the key feature of our Gaia, the water planet, comprising 70% of the planets surface.
In Greek mythology, Gaia gave birth to Pontus (the Sea).
Our own bodies are composed just like the earth, as we are about 70% water, and 30% solids. Water is found in all living organisms we know of on Earth. Our oceans also play a key role in the creation and sustainability of our protective atmosphere, pumping massive amounts of oxygen into the air. Water is the life blood of Gaia.
Land – The Incubator
Where water meets land becomes an ideal place to spark evolution and create the larger and more complex living organisms that inhabit land, sea, and sky. Warmed by land’s ability to absorb and retain solar energy in the form of heat, water becomes an ideal incubator for beneficial microorganisms. These microorganisms then evolve into more complex cellular life forms. So as in the artwork, where water mixes with minerals of the land, the tree of life roots down to bear it’s many varieties of life.
In Greek mythology, Gaia gave birth to Ourea (the Mountains).
We can find most of the natural minerals of the earth within the solids content of our own bodies. We are as tied to the land as we are to the water.
Tree of Life – The Mixer
Life branches out, and an unlimited number of new life forms are created, with each of them forming their own ‘tree of life’ in the process and starting the cycle anew. This also represents the ‘core’ of the Gaia… an infinitely small point in a singularity where gravity is equalized, magnetism is equalized, and even space is equalized. The point at which energies, gravitational and electromagnetic, instantaneously become exact opposites of their previous energy states, this in turn creating enormous amounts of feedback energy in the process, starting the cycle anew.
Breath of Life – The Exchanger
Vegetation exhaling it’s life’s by-products as beneficial gases for the atmosphere, and at the same time, breathing in the by-products of the atmosphere as beneficial compounds to fuel it’s growth. Energy for this entire process is provided courtesy of our local star. This is also the exchange that provides breathable air for most of the animal branch of evolution.
In Greek mythology, Gaia gave birth to Uranus (the Sky).
All life on Gaia, breathe life from the atmosphere, as much as they do from her water.
Lung of Life – The Chemical Matrix
Complex chemical reactions between particles of water, minerals, and gases are fueled by the sun high in the atmosphere creating a transport for water in the form of clouds. The clouds allow water to overcome the problems with gravity that would otherwise imprison it to the seas, and allows water to return back to the higher land, where in turn it nourishes life along the entire course of it’s trip back to the sea. Now the cycle of life on the living planet has come full cycle and is ready to begin another, yet unique, cycle.
Shield of Life – The Force Field
Gaia has two forms of shielding that protect life. The first is her electromagnetic gravitational field, that forms a protective envelope around Gaia as she travels through space, deflecting harmful solar radiation by conducting it around herself. The second is the atmosphere itself, being dense enough to incinerate most of the objects that we encounter on our journey before they can reach the surface. The atmosphere also provides the filter that allows a beneficial amount of solar energy to penetrate the atmosphere, while deflecting the greater amount of harmful solar particles and wavelengths of light back out into space.
All of these components of Gaia are interconnected and dependent on one another. Because of this fact, Gaia, by definition, should be classified as a single living organism. An organism dependent of the health of all its components to guarantee the organisms health as a whole.
The original artwork is 6000 × 6000 pixels at 300 pixels per inch. The gradient was created in ApoMap, a gradient editor commonly used with Apophysis. The fractal was created as a transparency and then used as a separate layer in Photoshop. The background gradient was created in Photoshop.