1. Fruits and Nuts Fruits are ovaries. Ovaries contain seeds. Seeds may be fertilized. Fertile seeds may bear fruit. Most vegetables, such as corn, tomatoes, cucumbers, and peas, are really fruits. They contain seeds. Leafy greens, mushrooms, tubers and other edible root systems, are true vegetables. Nuts, such as acorns and chestnuts, are also fruits. They contain the seeds that replicate flowering plants and trees. 2. Monogamy Members of a species that sing duets, including whales, songbirds, gibbons, and humans, tend to be monogamous. Perhaps this ability is used to attract a mate, which may result in a slight survival advantage. Ron Wallace wonders if there might be a selective advantage conferred upon ‘good listeners.’ 3. Complexity A human brain is a complex system. A hydrogen atom (H1) is a simple system. A galaxy is simpler than a brain, more complex than an atom. Self-consciousness is arguably the most complex phenomenon within the knowable universe. 4. Observation At a local scale of observation, the concept of beginnings, middles, and endings is strictly a perceptual phenomena, a cognitive metaphor that assists our brain in assembling meaningful information about specific events. Viewed from a global perspective, the universe is a continuum of events, a reality of transformational states occurring simultaneously at different rates of change, and at every order of magnitude and scale. Ironically, local observation tends to be explicit and pragmatic, yet is often based on false perceptions, such as believing that a tomato is a vegetable, or that time flows. While our understanding of the universal continuum is often conceptual and idealistic, founded largely on speculation, such as the big bang theory, or the multiverse.
A Collection of Writings on Nature, Science, and Art by John Holland