Inking up!

Inking up!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Sacred Geometry

This set of geometry drawings shows 3 "seeds of life" on the side - one of each done by Bill, myself, and our friend Don (top from bottom). Don was inspired to overlay the three for this beautiful collaboration.

Every two weeks on a Sunday evening my sweetie Bill and I gather with a group of interesting people to "do" sacred geometry. I am often asked "what is sacred geometry?" and I am often told "I'm in to sacred geometry!" What I have learned over the years is that sacred geometry means a lot of different things to people. So everything I say here is my own experience and understanding only.

Bill studied cosmic mandalas till he learned their geometry. He then taught us to draw them at geometry group one night. All our drawing is done with a compass, straight edge and pencil. And then the coloring!

Cosmic Mandala for sale in Kathmandu market, Nepal.

Bill teaches our granddaughter McKayla to draw a simple form: "the seed of life.".

From Josh's sketch pad: "the flower of life."

Tiling detail on a temple in China.

As I have stated before, I got interested in sacred geometry through plants. It is often easy to see their geometry. I was amazed to learn things about the different spirals and how they grow. And then I started learning about square roots. Wow! I was venturing beyond the plant kingdom into the realm of energy and how it forms into matter (or not). It has been so fascinating.

Printed on a "golden" proportion rectangle of blue paper.

Many of us learn about using sacred proportions like the golden mean for art and design. And this has been a part of my application of the teaching. But I have to say one of the best parts is training your eye and mind to recognize patterns in nature and understand the energy/physics behind them.

There is a very spiritual side to sacred geometry. I have barely scratched the surface of this in my years of study and hesitate to say very much. But here is an idea of what I mean. In Nepal and Tibet there are temples of stacked shapes. If you grew up there you might learn that each shape as it rises from the ground represents water, earth, air, fire, and wisdom/ether and represent stages of enlightenment. The round base also symbolizes the entire world and the mark between the eyes in said by some to mean unity. In Islamic cultures geometric patterns and exquisite calligraphy tell their story. I am learning that islamic tiling patterns hold meaning that teach and inform you as you spend time with them. In Europe, as the churches and temples were being built by those knowledgeable of sacred geometry, some amazing places were created that awe and inspire those whose step inside.

A temple in Tibet

The geometry of a Vietnam War cemetary in the Philippines.

An experimental farming basin built by the Inca, Peru.

A temple in Hong Kong.

Fields of grain, China.

A temple in Patan, Nepal.

(You may have guessed from the pattern - this photo is of the doorway as you step into a great pizza place in Olympia - Old School Pizza.)

In Oakland, California.

The purpose for building in sacred shape and proportion is so a person may wander in, knowing nothing, and be informed through the energy of the geometric construction that was shaped to hold the knowledge and teaching. Of course if you were a mason or like-minded person you could perhaps walk in and take in the teaching on a different level - knowing what the builders were conveying more specificly. Our bodies and spirits are made of energy and there is a resonance that can happen. We all experience this when we walk into a place that is holy to us (be it church, temple, forest or meadow) and we can be moved to tears, hope, joy, and healing. Sometimes the geometry is used because it is beautiful or practical. But it is the element of transformation that defines the sacred, and the sacred creates the possibility of tranformation.

My interest in sacred geometry is very wide, and my application still growing. I am learning all the things I can do with it. And what does it mean to "do" sacred geometry in our group? It can mean anything! We study nature's shapes, we draw geometric designs, we use it for personal growth and understanding, we talk philosphy, astrology, numerology, and even about what sacred geometry means. We have made different sized golden mean calipers and so much more.

Seven is one of my favorite things to study. It's all about mystery. It's angle is an infinite number, and therefore impossible to draw/create precisely. It has magical mathematical principles. Seven is usually the geometry of medicinal/poisonous plants. And seven goes on and on. This drawing is from my sketch book.

So this posting is primarily a show of pictures taken mostly by myself, a few by Bill, and a few by my step-son Josh - showing many of the ways geometry appears in nature and in human designed projects. I hope you enjoy them!

A mandala of Josh's (it wouldn't all fit on the scanner).

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