Friday, September 29, 2006

Feng Shui and Hermetic Ancient Astronomy in China - LexiLine Journal 433

Most of us have heard about "Feng Shui", but did you know that the origins of Feng Shui are found in astronomy?

Indeed, these origins of Feng Shui support our view of ancient astronomy as a hermetic science (as above, so below), i.e. as an attempt to conform the order of things on earth to the order visible in the heavens. This is the cardinal principle elaborated in depth in our book, Stars, Stones and Scholars: The Decipherment of the Megaliths as an Ancient Survey of the Earth by Astronomy .

The excerpted text below is taken from the website page The Great Wall of Knowledge and the Rise of Feng Shui by Feng Shui Master Val Biktashev, as he has taken it from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui (Alpha Books, 2002), by Elizabeth Moran, Master Joseph Yu, and Master Val Biktashev. We presume that this duplication does not violate any copyright provisions since that website page permits the entire text there to be e-mailed to other persons... which we are in effect doing. Here are our selected excerpts from that website page of Val Biktashev, Feng Shui Master Consultant :
"The Great Wall of Knowledge and the Rise of Feng Shui

(From The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui (Alpha Books , 2002, Complete Idiot's Guides) , by Elizabeth Moran , Master Joseph Yu , and Master Val Biktashev )

... The practice of feng shui was born out of China's reverence for nature. The Chinese believed if they could reflect the balance of nature's forces in their daily lives, they could achieve a more harmonious living condition....

Made in China

... China's four most important inventions are the developments of papermaking, printing, gunpowder, and the compass. The compass is the tool of the feng shui practitioner.

China's Greater Nature

The ancient Chinese took what they called "Greater Nature" (Da Zi Ran) very seriously. Its forces inspired, awed, and humbled. It was a favorite subject of artisans. Greater Nature even gave rise to earth sciences like geology, cartography, and chemistry.

Skywatcher for Hire

When Marco Polo visited China in 1275 C.E., purportedly he described Beijing as a city of 5,000 skywatchers. He probably was right. Some of those skywatchers were astrologers, some were astronomers. Both ran flourishing businesses in interpreting and divulging nature's secrets....

Feng shui derives, in part, from astrological observations.... feng shui studies a building's fate....

The Science of Astronomy

Astronomy is based on factual information derived from studying the cosmos. Chinese astronomers dealt with the practical needs of society. They developed almanacs and calendars....

Aided by astronomical instruments, the Chinese also observed and recorded a number of celestial events:

* They began noting eclipses of the moon in 1361 B.C.E. and eclipses of the sun in 1217 B.C.E.
* They recorded a nova (an exploding star) in the area now known as Antares in 1300 B.C.E.
* They witnessed Haley's comet in 467 B.C.E.
* They documented a supernova (a really big exploding star) in 1054 C.E. Their accurate observation allowed modern astronomers to establish that the supernova was the origin of the Crab Nebula.

By 400 B.C.E., the Chinese skywatchers had recorded 1,464 stars, dividing many of them into the 28 constellations of the zodiac....

Change is in the Wind

A lot of misinformation has been written about the origin of the Yijing [The Book of Changes]....

Initially, the Yijing was called the Zhouyi, or The Changes of Zhou. Initiated by King Wen and completed by his son, the Duke of Zhou of the Zhou dynasty (1045-221 B.C.E.), the Zhouyi draws on information gained by some of China's legendary figures. Specifically, the 8 trigrams and 64 hexagrams (composed of 2 trigrams each) are thought to have been devised by Fuxi.

As the story goes, the mythical sage-king Fuxi invented the eight trigrams after observing celestial and terrestrial activity. The idea was to create heaven on earth, to emulate nature's perfection. Perhaps to reward his efforts, Fuxi received a gift from heaven, a diagram of the perfect world. A world that was motionless, void of change. Sometime later, heaven bestowed a gift on another sage-king, Yu the Great. He also received a diagram, but this one represented the world in motion. Called the Loushu, (its parts correlated to the eight trigrams) it provides the foundation for a classical method of feng shui called Flying Star.... [emphasis added by LexiLine]

How Does Feng Shui Fit in?

Classical feng shui combines elements of astrology and astronomy, geology, physics, mathematics, philosophy, and intuition....

Neolithic Feng Shui

Feng shui is a lot older that you might think....

In 1988, a Neolithic gravesite was excavated in Henan province in central China. It revealed that the ancient Chinese were practicing some form of primitive feng shui some 6,000 years ago.

The head of the gravesite is rounded and points toward the south. The grave is squared at the body's feet, facing north. This arrangement conforms to the Chinese view of the cosmos. Symbolically, the sky is represented as round or domed, and the earth as square or flat. On each side of the remains, and outlined with shells, is a representation of two Chinese constellations—the azure dragon and the white tiger. A representation of the Big Dipper (Beidou) lies in the center. These artifacts testify to the fact that the Neolithic Chinese were already orienting their graves with the revolution of the Big Dipper around the North Star, the polestar (in Ursa Minor) in the northern hemisphere toward which the axis of the earth points.

The Form School of Feng Shui


... [A]ncestor worship was an intrinsic and important part of the Chinese belief system.... Fortunes could be made or lost depending, in some measure, on the favorable location and orientation of their ancestors' tombs.

The orientation of homes is also a part of Form School feng shui. Landforms and waterways were intensely scrutinized to determine the location of the dragon's lair (long xue), the place on the terrain where qi converges....

The Compass School of Feng Shui

... In Chinese, the school that uses a compass and analyzes heavenly (time) and earthly (space) forces is called Liqi Pai....

The Compass School is based on the concept that each of the eight cardinal directions holds a different type of qi. Around this central premise, other factors are added, including astrology and numerology. The Compass School method is very computational, relying on intellect, observation, and experimentation rather than intuitive insights.

The tool of the trade is, you guessed it, the compass. An early version dating to about 83 C.E. was a two-part, south-pointing instrument—a metal spoon made of magnetic lodestone and a square baseplate called a sinan. This developed into what is now called a luopan compass used by practitioners today. The luopan has anywhere from 4 to 40 concentric rings of information featuring things like the 8 fundamental trigrams, the 28 constellations, the 5 phases of qi, and the 9 "stars" or numbers of the Luoshu.

Feng Shui Today

Today, both Form School and Compass School methods are used to perform an accurate feng shui reading. For the most part, today's practitioners have combined both schools into one system commonly referred to as "classical" or "traditional" feng shui.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS:

Feng shui master Val Biktashev travels worldwide providing feng shui for individuals and businesses. Several articles have been written about his work in local, national, and internationally distributed newspapers and magazines. Also, Val is regularly featured on television, including being the feature subject on the CBS news magazine program, Sunday Morning. He is the co-author of the highly acclaimed book, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui . Reviewed as "an American masterpiece that tops the lot" by Feng Shui For Modern Living Magazine, the book consistently ranks among the top ten feng shui books (out of 709 entries) on amazon. At the First Annual World Classical Feng Shui conference in Germany, Val was a feature speaker. He can be contacted at GlobalFengShui@aol.com or at 323-810-8180. He lives in Los Angeles.

Elizabeth Moran has studied feng shui and Chinese astrology with a number of classical masters. She is a highly sought lecturer and teacher of feng shui. In 2002, Elizabeth was a feature speaker at the First Annual World Classical Feng Shui Conference in Cologne, Germany. She is co-author of the best-selling books, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Feng Shui (Alpha Books, 2002) and The Complete Idiot's Guide to the I Ching (2001). You may contact her at GlobalFengShui@aol.com. Elizabeth lives in Los Angeles with her husband, feng shui master Val Biktashev.
"
This book looks like a good addition to any serious library on the history of astronomy.

And let us ask a serious quesion. Does anyone out there - except for the misguided mainstream scholars - really think that ancient astronomy in the Western world was that much different from what the Chinese evidence tells us?

And were in fact the megaliths (as also ancient cave paintings and rock art) oriented to the stars, as the Chinese (and Pawnee Indian) evidence would lead us to believe, and as we have alleged all along?

You bet.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

What's the meaning of an ibex in rockart in the Negev Desert, Israel? - LexiLine Journal 432

Yehuda wrote:

A rockart with drawn ibex is very common here in the Negev Desert. It appears in about 60% of the petroglyphs so it must be important symbol, but why? Sometimes it is drawn alone and at other times it appears with a dog to the left or right of it. Some experts here are claiming that it the symbol of an ibex is the representation of the God Sin ( the moon ). I think there is more to this, especially when it appears with a dog and other symbols in the rockart. I'm looking for additional meaning and would appriciate any thoughts you have about it.
_______________

Andis Kaulins replied:

See the article by Kristina Berggren at http://www.svenska-institutet-rom.org/pecus/berggren.pdf titled "When the rest of the world thought male ibex, why did the people of San Giovenale think female sheep?" PECUS . Man and animal in antiquity. Proceedings of the conference at the Swedish Institute in Rome, September 9-12, 2002. Ed. Barbro Santillo Frizell (The Swedish Institute in Rome. Projects and Seminars, 1), Rome 2004, where she relates a mainstream archaeologic theory that the ibex marked Sin, the Moon, which I sincerely doubt, because the many figures of the Ibex found in the Middle East are never found together with a depiction of the Moon at all. This common interpretation by mainstream archaeologists derives from a lack of knowledge about ancient astronomy.

As written by Richard Hinckley Allen in Star Names: Their Lore and Meaning (p. 88):
"[I]n Akkadian times the commencement of the year was determined by the position of this star [Capella in Auriga] in relation to the moon at the vernal equinox".
Hence, the Moon, if significant for the Ibex, was significant only in terms of the stars at the start of season (in the instant case, the Spring viz. Vernal Equinox. The Ibex thus more likely marks stars and not the Moon.

Berggren notes in footnote 13:
"The Hebrew word ayil – used twice more (Gen.15.9 and Ex.29.32) – can mean either male sheep, male goat or ibex."
It has nothing to do with the Moon.

In fact, Berggren writes about the "duality" of the horned ibex in Eastern civilizations and the sheep in Western civilizations.

Elsewhere the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica writes that:
"The ibex is found in the Sinaitic peninsula and the hills between the Nile and the Red Sea, and the mouflon, or maned sheep, is occasionally seen in the same regions. "
The discussion of goats and sheep contains the following observations:
"In many languages, such as Chinese the word for sheep, goat and ram is the same. And most city folk generally are not aware of the distinctions.

This is further complicated by the fact that some species of sheep are quite goatish in appearance, such as the Jacob's sheep. This kind of sheep with its characteristically spotted or variably coloured fleece, is descended from an ancient Syrian breed, and it can have as many as 6 horns.

The confusion of terms is increased further by the fact that in sheep, the females, or ewes, are often larger than males and can have horns -- that is, they may appear to be rams [male sheep. ]
"
Ultimately, the ram or mouflon came down to us as meaning the constellation of Aries (where it marked the Spring Equinox) and the ibex (viz. goat) was seen anciently as the region of Capricorn at the Winter Solstice. However, we may have a shift of positions from Capricorn to Aries over time due to precession of the stars, equinoxes and solstices.

The Journal of Near Eastern Studies
(January-April 1965, Volume XXIV, Numbers 1 and 2, 82nd year), has an article by Willy Hartner titled "The Earliest History of the Constellations in the Near East and the Motif of the Lion-Bull Combat", where he affiliates the ibex with the region of Capricorn and Aquarius.

Similar thoughts are found at http://www.tagnet.org/huntsville/stars.pdf#search=%22ibex%20astronomy%20aries%22

See the following link for a discussion of the horned animals in the early Zodiacs:
http://www.whitestag.org/history/sumerian.html

Gary D. Thompson in Essays Relating To The History Of Occidental Constellations and Star Names to the Classical Period engages in a general discussion of ancient stellar constellations, including the ibex.

See the following LexiLine files for decipherments involving horned-animal-type symbols at the stellar positions of Orion and Aries:

http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/LexiLine/files/Russia%2C%20Karelia%20and%20Eastern%20Europe/Kurgan%20planisphere/
http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/LexiLine/files/Russia%2C%20Karelia%20and%20Eastern%20Europe/Karelia%20%20-%20Staraya%20Zalavruga/
http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/LexiLine/files/Russia%2C%20Karelia%20and%20Eastern%20Europe/Danube%20Scripts%20Deciphered/
http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/LexiLine/files/Egypt/HierakonpolisEgypt/

Add to this the observation that the constellation Auriga above Taurus also came down to us to mean a "flock of goats". See http://www.winshop.com.au/annew/aurigaw.htm . However, Auriga was originally also connected with the shepherd and the not sheep (or the goats) alone.

The presence of a dog (sheep dog) near the Ibex may speak for Aries as the Ibex in Negev. Indeed, in ancient China, Aries was marked by both the Dog (Heang Low) as well as by the White Sheep (Pih Yang).

Also significant is the direction in which the ibex or ram is facing. Aries faces right, Capricorn faces left.

Lastly, one must view other figures which surround the Ibex. A male figure above the Ibex will most likely mark Perseus (with the phallic pulsating star Algol, the demon), which together with Taurus, the Bull, often marks male fertility in the heavens (again, as a sign of the Spring Equinox).

See e.g. http://www.winshop.com.au/annew/Perseus.html , http://66.102.9.104/search?q=cache:_YMfeGfcweMJ:www.us.oup.com/us/ppt/classmyth/myths_of_creation_gods.ppt+perseus+male+fertility&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=13
and
http://www.utexas.edu/courses/bigmyth303/Outline15-Perseus.html

Monday, September 11, 2006

Questions of Proof - LexiLine Journal 431

I just posted the following posting to my LawPundit and Hand Proof blogs and include it here because the subjects discussed bear directly on the area of cognitive psychology which deals with how we view things. It is especially the "entrenched" view of things in mainstream science which is a major problem in getting mainstream scholars to comprehend and accept many of the ideas which we present at LexiLine, and indeed, we generally do not care much whether the mainstream comprehends and/or accepts what we write anyway, for the reasons given below.

Psychoanalysis, Socratic Education, Evidence and Hand Proofs

There are advantages, disadvantages and pitfalls both in the exercise of judgment as well as in the exercise of intuition. Socratic education - in our view - is one method to make students aware of the complexities of thought and to inculcate the ability (viz. habit) to engage in critical thinking in analyzing evidence and in formulating proofs.

In the Abstract to Psychoanalysis and Socratic Education*** by Trevor Pateman (article available as an .rtf document), it is written that:
"A range of concepts are introduced to argue similarities between Socratic Education and Freudian psychoanalysis. The concepts are these: the talking cure; floating attention; knowledge and acknowledgment; judgment and intuition; (prior) theoretical understanding; attending for truth; acting in role; play; negative dialectics; the training of the self ... "
What interests us particularly is Bateman's discussion of judgment and intuition, the former - in his definition - involving what we know or think to to know in an appeal to shared knowledge and the latter - in his definition - involving the subjective expression of how things look or feel to us as individuals. Bateman writes:
"The exercise of judgment involves appeal to what I know or think I know at some articulate level of consciousness. Typically, judgment appeals to shared knowledge: what everyone knows or thinks. So rationalization and self-deception find ready-made support in all kinds of conventional wisdom...."

In contrast, intuition is the expression of a personally experienced connection, drawing on a reservoir of inarticulate consciousness. Intuition is the expression of how things look or feel to me.... [I]ntuition will get us to a (correct) result well before we have the means to judge its correctness ... [M]athematicians have the concept of a hand proof. In a hand proof, there is no (real) proof, just a lot of handwaving. But it gestures to an intuition that if we set out in the general direction indicated by the hand proof, we will get to the proof we want to reach. Intuition is then like a compass. [emphasis added]

But intuition does not always work like this; sometimes it leads us astray. Shown the Muller-Lyer lines, I may intuit that one is longer than the other, but I am actually wrong; judgment is against me. But it still remains that the lines look that way. (The Muller-Lyer lines are the ones placed parallel to each other, but with arrow-heads pointing in opposite directions)...."
To see a graphic of Muller-Lyer lines, see the Epistemology of Perception at The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
*** "Website version 2004. A first version appeared, under the same title, in a 1993 issue of Aspects of Education (University of Hull, England), number 49, pages 76 - 80. A second version, again under the same title, appeared in S.Appel, editor, Psychoanalysis and Pedagogy (Bergin and Garvey: Westport, Connecticut), pages 45 - 51. Copyright material used by permission."

The basic problem with "hand" proofs as opposed to "mechanical" proofs is that, as noted by Neeraj Suri, Michelle M. Hugue, and Chris J. Walter in Synchronization Issues in Real-Time Systems:

"As hand proofs are sensitive to the skills of the prover, mechanical proofs are sensitive to the correctness of the theorem prover and its underlying logic. "
In other words, to employ a phrase used by Thomas Kuhn in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, if the paradigms (viz. "mechanical" proofs) underlying a given view of "shared knowledge" are wrong, then that knowledge is likely also wrong. What this means is that someone along the way has done an intuitive "hand proof" which does not conform to the judgmental mechanical proofs in vogue. A hand proof made by a skilled prover is thus always at the root of progress - in any field.

Another example of "hand proofs" is the method by which our legal system relies upon the opinions of judges, rather than on computer-produced verdicts applying fixed mechanical theorems. Here, "skilled" provers are viewed as superior to a computer theorem.

As concerns the progress of science (and law), Thomas Kuhn's theory of scientific revolutions is thus in our view more accurate than Karl Popper's ideas concerning scientific thought as the falsifiability of mainstream statements because "hand proofs" - also in fields other than mathematics - are generally made to conform to the observations at hand, often initially ignorning completely any presumed attempt to "falsify" existing mainstream ideas.

In law, precedents may in fact have to be overturned, but that is not the main purpose of an opinion which overrules prior judicial decisionmaking. Rather, new rules are being made to conform to new observations and events.

Only after an observation-fitting hand proof is made and then compared with the mechanical proofs in vogue does the battle with the inertia of existing paradigms begin.

Mainstream scientists want the ensuing discussion to proceed under their terms and thus demand that their theories be proven false. This, however, does not accurately describe the process of scientific discovery, nor does it describe the primary motivation for overturning precedents in law - and this constitutes Popper's main error in analysis. Popper, by concentrating on mainstream science, does not actually describe the actual process of scientific (or legal) advance - rather, he describes the process of mainstream resistance to advance and the inefficient mechanisms by which that resistance is or can be broken.

The true pioneers in science (or law), on the other hand, and this is where Kuhn's analysis is the more accuracte, have no interest to waste their time on developing proofs to falsify the erroneous theories in vogue, but rather, prefer to be busy building up their own systems which correspond to the evidence at hand. The falsification process of the erroneous prevailing theories is then later carried out by others, i.e. the innovators and early adopters of new theories.

A good example here are the "hand proof" works of Isaac Newton, which present new interpretations of observed phenomena and spend as little time as possible wasting time in disproving the erroneous ideas of others.

Another example of new paradigms and hand proofs is the Constitution of the United States, which is a "new discovery" that concentrates on new things to be achieved, rather than on old things to be "disproven". This in fact is still the genius of America, several hundred years later. America is a "Kuhnian" world of new paradigms and "hand proofs", whereas the Old World (Europe, Middle East) is in part still caught in a maelstrom of Popperian inertia of resistance to change, functioning by antiquated and long outdated mechanical solutions (unreformed social systems, entrenched social classes, overemphasis on tradition, no longer state-of-the-art customs, deference to nobility at the cost of modern social innovation, and in the Middle East, totally outdated religious dogma, etc.)

As the "hand proof" says, "go for it". That's the American way which is sorely lacking in the Old World.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Cahokia Mounds Earth Sky Map - Updated Decipherment - LexiLine Journal 430

To the LexiLine files at http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/LexiLine/files/ in the directory North America - USA Canada at http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/LexiLine/files/North%20America%20-%20USA%20Canada/ I have uploaded a new graphic cahokiamounds1.png (the graphic below)


presenting my revised decipherment of the Cahokia mounds as an Earth Sky Map based on a new map of the mounds sent to me by Steve Burdic (the old decipherment is here).

The maroon, purple and green elements (mounds and lines) are from Burdic's original map. I have added the blue (arrows), red (constellation lines) and black (text explanatory) materials.

The basic decipherment has remained the same, although there are some small additions, and this map will be much easier for most of you to read and understand than the previous one.

There is now no doubt in my mind that this decipherment is correct, since it fits in a number of new elements from Burdic's new map which I was not familiar with before, but which integrate without problem into the previous decipherment.

Steve Burdic suggests that there may also be solar alignments present, and I do not doubt this, but this is not my major scope of interest and I thus leave that research to others.

The Cahokia mounds are seen as being relatively recent by the archaeologists (ca. 800 to 1400 A.D.), but there is no question that the cardinal stellar positions used for the stars must date back much further in time.

Most Popular Posts of All Time

LexiLine Journal Archive

Our Websites and Blogs

3D Printing and More 99 is not 100 Aabecis AK Photo Blog Ancient Egypt Weblog Ancient Signs (the book) Ancient World Blog AndisKaulins.com Anthropomorphic Design Archaeology Travel Photos (blog) Archaeology Travel Photos (Flickr) Archaeo Pundit Arts Pundit Astrology and Birth Baltic Coachman Bible Pundit Biotechnology Pundit Book Pundit Chronology of the Ancient World Computer Pundit DVD Pundit Easter Island Script Echolat edu.edu Einstein’s Voice Energy Environment and Climate Blog Etruscan Bronze Liver of Piacenza EU Laws EU Legal EU Pundit FaceBook Pundit Gadget Pundit Garden Pundit Golf Pundit Google Pundit Gourmet Pundit Hand Proof HousePundit Human Migrations Idea Pundit Illyrian Language Indus Valley Script Infinity One : The Secret of the First Disk (the game) Jostandis Journal Pundit Kaulins Genealogy Blog Kaulinsium Kiel & Kieler Latvian Blog LawPundit.com Law Pundit Blog LexiLine.com LexiLine Group Lexiline Journal Library Pundit Lingwhizt LinkedIn Literary Pundit Magnifichess Make it Music Maps and Cartography Megalithic World Megaliths Blog Megaliths.net Minoan Culture Mutatis Mutandis Nanotech Pundit Nostratic Languages Official Pundit Phaistos Disc Pharaonic Hieroglyphs Photo Blog of the World Pinterest Prehistoric Art Pundit Private Wealth Blog PunditMania Quanticalian Quick to Travel Quill Pundit Road Pundit Shelfari Sky Earth Drones Sky Earth Native America SlideShare (akaulins) Sport Pundit Star Pundit Stars Stones and Scholars (blog) Stars Stones and Scholars (book) Stonehenge Pundit The Enchanted Glass Twitter Pundit UbiquitousPundit Vision of Change VoicePundit WatchPundit Wearable Technology Wizard WeTechWi Wine Pundit Word Pundit xistmz YahooPundit zistmz