The egg-shaped stone circles of the megalithic, in Brittany by c. 4000 BC and in Britain by 2500 BC, seem to express two different astronomical time lengths, beside each other as (a) a circumference and then (b) a longer, egg-shaped extension of that circle. It was Alexander Thom who analysed stone circles in the 20th century as a hobby, surveying most of the surviving stone circles in Britain and finding geometrical patterns within irregular circles. He speculated the egg-shaped and flattened circles were manipulating pi so as to equal three (not 3.1416) between an initial radius and subsequent perimeter, so making them commensurate in integer units. For example, the irregular circle would have perimeter 12 and a radius of 4 (a flattened circle).
However, when the forming circle and perimeter are compared, these can compare the two lengths of a right-triangle while adding a recurring nature: where the end is a new beginning. Each cycle is a new beginning because the whole geocentric sky is rotational and the planetary system orbital. The counting of time periods was more than symbolic since the two astronomical time periods became, by artifice, related to one another as two integer perimeters that is, commensurate to one another, as is seen at St Pierre (fig.3).
The Fibonacci series is an ideal pattern, widely found within living systems, in which the present magnitude or location of something is the product of two previous magnitudes or locations of it. The next magnitude will again be the sum of the last two magnitudes in what is, an algorithmic pattern producing approximation to the Golden Mean (designated by the Greek letter φ,’phi’). As the series gets larger, the ratio (or proportion) between successive magnitudes will better approximate the irrational value of φ = 1.618033 … – which has an unlimited fractional part whilst the virtue of the Fibonacci numbers within the Series is that they are integers forming rational fractions.
Ad Quadratum is a convenient and profound technique in which continuous scaling of size can be given to square shapes, either from a centre or periphery. The differences in scale are multiples of the square root of two [sqrt(2)] between two types of square: cardinal (flat) and diamond (pointed).
Recently an “early Ptolomaic” tomb was discovered similar in themes to the famous Egyptian Books of the Dead (Middle Kingdom). Normally written on papyrus, they feature multiple tableau of Osiris judging the dead and other scenes. Osiris is a long lasting and perhaps supreme god whose cult was present throughout 3000 years of Dynastic history. I have previously interpreted his throne through drawings but, in the new tomb, he is painted on the walls at least twice and the design of his throne looks like layers of “eggs”. Below is one of the press pictures taken from the Guardian, and the headline is Mummified mice found in ‘beautiful, colourful’ Egyptian tomb.
Osiris could have been seen as a/the god of Harmony and below I explain why harmony may have been thought technically significant at the dawn of our earliest texts, then found in Sumeria 900 miles to the East. The reason I believe musical ratios were significant at the dawn of history because they had naturally emerged from measuring the lunar and solar year and comparing these with the time between loops of the outer planets Jupiter and Saturn.
Gurdjieff first presented his ideas to groups in pre-revolutionary Russia. Amongst his carefully chosen students it was the habit to reconstruct talks and diagrams as much as possible, an endeavour that gave us a textbook of Gurdjieff’s ideas called In Search of the Miraculous (P.D. Ouspensky, 1950). This early form of the teaching wasradically revised and extended by Gurdjieff, now as an author, during the 1920s, producing All and Everything whose part one was Beelzebub’sTales to his Grandson (G.I. Gurdjieff, 1950). Prior to drawing this diagram just after February 1917, Gurdjieff had been presenting ideas about transformation of energies, human and cosmic, using the musical theory surrounding the octave of eight notes. The Diagram of Everything Living was “still another system of classification… in an altogether different ratio of octaves… [that] leads us beyond the limits of what we call ‘living beings’ both higher [and lower] than living beings. It deals not with individuals but with classes in a very wide sense.”
When understanding the origins of human knowledge, we tend not to look into the everyday aspects of life such as the calendar, our numbering systems and how these could have developed. However, these components of everyday life hold surprising clues to the past.
An example is the seven day week which we all slavishly follow today. It has been said that seven makes a good number of days for a week and this convenience argument often given for the existence of weeks.
Having a week allows one to know what day of the week it is for the purposes of markets and religious observances. It is an informal method of counting based on names rather than numbers. Beyond this however, a useful week length should fit well with the organisation of the year (i.e. the Sun), or the month (i.e. the Moon) or other significant celestial or seasonal cycle. But the seven day week does not fit in with the Sun and the Moon.