Geometrically Ordered Design: The Great Eight
~ Dustin Pike
This is my eighth article pertaining to the design field and its relationship with mathematics. Design in essence cannot be accomplished without specific degrees of control, and almost always has a definitive point to make. How well the ‘point’ can be made is attributed to how well the design was carried out. This cannot be said about all art-forms. Art can be about anything or nothing at all, which makes art primary, and design secondary. In this respect design can be seen as separate from other art forms, because the designer has a precise goal. In order to understand any design language at its core, the viewer must understand visual acoustics on multiple levels. The level I have chosen to start with is numbers. I will show their relationships with each other through geometric and proportional means, and describe how numbers can be ‘seen’ and ‘produced’ through artistic expression. Design language cannot be truly understood without awareness of this knowledge. Not only is this the groundwork for every art form, but it is also the chosen architectural language of the natural world.
Last article we discussed the number 7 and how it pertains to desire and past experience. The main ideas that came along could not be engaged due to their need to be seen as a group (the seven-fold illusion of a rainbow is such that it cannot be experienced without first dividing of its colors and then grouping them back together as one). This deliberate first act of division upon the whole is metaphorically the primary function that gets carried along with the 7. Division of the whole could be carried on forever without the slightest need to return to its original whole. The fragments created in this manner appear to us as a pool of jigsaw-puzzle pieces, with no apparent order to them at all. An impulse to return the puzzle to its wholeness arises. Here then is the introduction to our number 8.
The pieces of our puzzle are many and seem to have been scattered unto the edges of infinity. To re-assemble them (based on what we have gathered from our experience through the 7) we will see fit to arm ourselves with the ‘eight limbs of the yogi’. Our magician from the last article pertains to this so-called ‘yogi’, whose partnership with the forces of nature tickled our senses. He reveals himself now to be but an enlightened scientist. We have clear conceptions of this aspect throughout history including the Thoth of the Egyptians, the Hermes of the Greeks, and Mercury of the Romans (See Thoth, Hermes, and Mercury Image). These supposed individuals in their time served as wise and rational men who delved deeply into the art and science of ‘magic’. Their apparent powers were seen to encompass both the passive and active aspects of the elements. These elements were often given rudimentary titles such as Earth, Fire, Air, and Water which, if you are counting both passive and negative, equal 8 in total. Eastern teachings of this kind usually refer to the 8 chakra systems of the human energy- field, whose spectrum is not unlike that of the rainbow. Yet how can this be? The rainbow is described as having a seven-fold structure. To explain this in a musical sense we can refer ourselves to the piano (See Repeating Octaves on a Piano Image). The seven repeating notes (white keys) of the piano are C, D, E, F, G, A, B. Going a single step further means repeating the C note upon a higher tonal ‘octave’. This higher repetition of the original sounds much the same, yet it is not. Metaphorically it has been re-born to start the cycle anew.
Having scaled the ladder at least once, we assume our next journey upward will be similar. Reasoning by assumption is the handiwork of the number 8. Yet how are we to assume any different then from what we have experienced in our past? The elusiveness of the present moment (#6) and its beauty (#7) has left us in a silent state of awe. Instinctively, we begin to turn our attention outward. We begin to analyze and investigate. Investigation of our experiences through sharp analysis and measurement leads us to classification. We conclude after longs hours of concentration that if A = B and B = C surely A will find common ground with C, and so on.
All metaphors aside, how can we experience this concept geometrically and/or mathematically? Constructing a ‘double square’ or octagon is easy enough, as we have previously constructed a square in the article on the number 4. This concept, when given an extra dimension, shows our original cube as divided evenly into 8 smaller cubes. A grid in the 3rd dimension must at least consist of these 8 cubes, if not more. A distinct example of this would be the development of the human embryo wherein the single cell doubles to 2, which doubles to 4, and then to 8 (See Dissection of the Cube and Embryo Image). It should come as no surprise to know that our computer technology (being based upon ‘bits’ and ‘bytes’) was founded upon the same principles.
Also in the last article we also described how our original star-tetrahedron within the cube of space (#6) had replicated itself not once, but twice. These dual star-tetrahedrons could be seen as male and female, in the abstract sense. Seen in this way, one should suppose that if the female twin were to spin upon its axis counter-clockwise (past-intensive), the male should appear to be spinning, in an equal and opposing manner, clockwise (future-intensive). An example and image of this was given in the previous article (See Light Body Image). The main point of this is that while our 7 is busy dividing and expanding to the best of her abilities, the 8 is combing and concentrating at his best. The union of these 2 phenomena produce an effect, whose nature pertains to our next number.
At this point we choose a few pieces of the puzzle and begin to visualize their assembly. Our situation now seems to be that we have an abundance of relation. In other words, even though the many pieces seem to be random, they are not. Upon close inspection all matter is made of the same thing: light. In what way we interpret and reflect this light determines our aspect of the number 9, whose nature is that of the Moon.
— DUSTIN PIKE DESIGN:
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