Design of the Taj Mahal: its Façade

The Taj Mahal is one of the most recognizable buildings on earth. It was built by a Moghul king as a memorial for his dead queen and for love itself. The Mughals became famous for their architecture and the Persian notion of the sacred garden though their roots were in Central Asia just north of Persia.

I had been working on Angkor Wat, for my soon to be released book: Sacred Geometry in Ancient Goddess Cultures, where the dominant form of its three inner boundary walls (surrounding the inner sanctum) were in the rectangular ratio of outer walls of six to five. A little later I came across a BBC program about the Mughals and construction of the Taj by a late Moghul ruler, indicating how this style almost certainly arose due the Central Asian influences and amongst these the Samanids and the Kwajaghan (meaning “Masters of Wisdom”). I had also been working on the facades of two major Gothic Cathedrals (see post), and when the dimensions of the façade of the Taj Mahal was established, it too had dimensions six to five. An online pdf document decoding the Taj Mahal, established the likely unit of measure as the Gaz of 8/3 feet (a step of 2.5 feet of 16/15 English feet; the Persepolitan root foot *(see below: John Neal. 2017. 81-82 ). Here, the façade is 84 by 70 gaz.

Figure 1 The apparent structure within the facade of Taj Mahal as based upon the 6 by 5 rectangle with perimeter 22.

A very significant feature of the six by five rectangle is that its perimeter is 2 times 11 (or 22) and in the Taj Mahal, 14 gaz times 22 equals 308 gaz as perimeter of the façade. Since π (or “pi”) was often taken to be 22/7, an equal perimeter of circle would require a radius 7 to be 22 in circumference or, in gaz, a radius of 49 gaz, again giving 308 gaz (821 + 1/3rd  feet).

With Angkor Wat, this feature of a circle and 6 by 5 rectangle (Ancient Goddess Cultures, chapter 9: The Vedas in Southeast Asia) could be exploited to count time around the walkways of the rectangular walls, just as if time was flowing around a circle but now more conveniently.

In the case of the Taj Mahal, the architecture is taking us on a symbolic journey. One can see how the central façade can “explain” the two further rectangles extending to the towers left and right, and another 6 by 5 rectangle rising to the pinnacle boss of the onion dome synonymous with Mughal architecture. But the basic form of equal perimeter involves a circle diameter 11 whose out-square equals 44, if π equals 22/7. The circle of equal perimeter to the square is then a diameter of 14 since 14 x 22/7 = 44. The circle shown here is obviously intended to be the outer circle of equal perimeter, for which there must be a circle of 11 whose out-square is 44. Seven gaz times 11 equals 77 and this indeed gives the out-square (of EP) as 308. The inner circle (see below) can then be seen to be the size of the onion dome.

figure 2 The Taj Mahal’s implementation of the equal perimeter model adapted to the 6 by 5 perimeter instead of the square.

The equal perimeter geometry is, when magnified by 720, a model of the Earth and Moon in miles and, in Sacred Geometry: Language of the Angels (*pages 41-44 then Chapter 3: Measurements of the Earth ) , it was shown time and again that domed monuments were pictures of the Earth within a strong but hidden tradition. There also seems to be a correlation between the moon circle’s size (of 42 gaz) and the windows of the octagonal outer building surrounding the tomb itself, and also the two visible cupolas. In order to draw the two circles, it was necessary to draw the two diagonals of the rectangle and this gives a central point in the façade as being the upper central window, a phenomenon quite clear in Chartres (post # 3) where the diagonals of its 3 by 4 façade locate the center of the circular rose window.

The elevation of the Earth and Moon above the equal perimeter façade is surely of sublime design to celebrate love and resurrection, in the form of the onion dome as the elevated soul. The octagon design takes its inspiration from the Persian cosmology of Islam and beliefs concerning the afterlife though it may share influences with the Chinese Hall of Light via the Silk Road..

Bibliography of Ancient Metrology

  1. Berriman, A. E. Historical Metrology. London: J. M. Dent and Sons, 1953.
  2. Heath, Robin, and John Michell. Lost Science of Measuring the Earth: Discovering the Sacred Geometry of the Ancients. Kempton, Ill.: Adventures Unlimited Press, 2006. Reprint edition of The Measure of Albion.
  3. Heath, Richard. Sacred Geometry: Language of the Angels. Vermont: Inner Traditions 2022.
  4. Michell, John. Ancient Metrology. Bristol, England: Pentacle Press, 1981.
  5. Neal, John. All Done with Mirrors. London: Secret Academy, 2000.
  6. —-. Ancient Metrology. Vol. 1, A Numerical Code—Metrological Continuity in Neolithic, Bronze, and Iron Age Europe. Glastonbury, England: Squeeze, 2016 – read 1.6 Pi and the World.
  7. —-. Ancient Metrology. Vol. 2, The Geographic Correlation—Arabian, Egyptian, and Chinese Metrology. Glastonbury, England: Squeeze, 2017.
  8. —-. Ancient Metrology, Vol. 3, The Worldwide Diffusion – Ancient Egyptian, and American Metrology.  The Squeeze Press: 2024.
  9. Petri, W. M. Flinders. Inductive Metrology. 1877. Reprint, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.