It is said the antient philosophers believed that "3" was the first real number.
The number zero, some claim, was introduced by the Greeks, and the Egyptians didn't have a concept of zero. But, actually, this idea is in error. The
Egyptians represented nothing by nothing. That was purity to them. While the Greeks introduced a symbol, an existant thing, for nothing. That, the
Egyptians would have considered a corrupt idea. The Egyptians did conceptualize the idea of nothing, they just refused to represent nothing by a
symbol of something. The closest they came, was the symbol of a musical instrument, that represented "balance", "harmony", etc..which was used to
indicate the "zero level" on the nile in markings.
Beyond the idea of 0, the early numbers 1,2,3, produced much debate.
1 is not a number, it was argued, because if there were just one thing in the universe, there would be no counting possible.
2 is yet not a number, it was argued, because it was just the first thing possible after one, and didn't represent a plurality of things sufficient to
merit the counting and the application of the term "number."
3 is the first true number, by contrast, because it symbolized a true plurality, as he first real indication of the presence of a "number" of things
So, then, the philosophers argued, number begins with "3".
Whatever the case, 3 is a divine number, the pattern of the universe is based first on the smaller numbers, and only to a lesser degree on the higher
The perimeter of a circle is nearly measured by 3 of it's diameters, and the little bit left over divides the diameter 7 times almost. Thus became the
order of the numbers in design [ 3, 7, 15, 1, ... ].
Measuring that circumference, using the straight line diameter segment, came to be called "squaring the circle", or more precisely "rectifying the
circle", since "squaring the circle" is oft used for the alternate problem of constructing the square with same "area" as the circle, the latter often
distinguished by the special phrase "quadrature of the circle" instead.
One goes from being "whole" -- as in the circle -- to being composed of "a body with sides and parts" -- as in the square.
So the idea of squaring the circle becomes a metaphor for the design of man; who is then seen to consist of 3 parts, and 7 parts, etc...in turn, at
different levels of being.
Even man's moral condition is given a geometric construction along the same pattern again. He is divided into three poisonous pastures "Delusion,
Anger, Greed", that require moral rectification to overcome. This the antient philosophers connected with geometry, once again, by proposing three
The Three Problems of Antiquity:
1) Squaring the Circle -- Delusion
2) Trisecting the Angle -- Anger
3) Doubling the Cube -- Greed
These three "geometric" problems, were intended to teach "moral principles". As geometry was seen to be the key to morality.
The solutions to these problems, if and when found, was supposed to have resulted in the seeker becoming upright in his morals. For if he could
understand these problems, and how to solve them, his intellect must have advanced him beyond the bestial nature that is part of man.
In fact, the third problem "doubling the cube", often called the "Delian Problem", was given by the Oracle at Delphi specifically to solve man's moral
problems of the times. The men sought the cure for a plague, and were given this problem to solve, by which intent the Oracle was suggesting that by
geometry man could solve and correct his moral situation, which would result in the removal of the plague. [ If we remember that famine, pestilence,
plague, etc.. are the Biblical curses for "greed"..we see the universal theme here]
The cube to be doubled was the altar of sacrifice, and by doubling the size of the altar they were supposed to understand they needed to double their
sacrifices, to be more charitable towards others and less selfish and greedy. This problem is solved in the Great Pyramid of Giza by the Egyptians.
Similarly, the second problem "trisecting the angle" was also a geometric way of teaching man about dividing pie into equal measures, so that no man
would feel cheated and become angry that his portion was lesser while others received greater portions etc..the same problem being symbolized by the
"Occupy Wall Street" crowd today...those protesters are "trisecting the angle" in effect with their sit-ins and marches. This problem is also solved
in the Great Pyramid of Giza by the Egyptians, but is very hard for even modern mathematicians to find out how the Egyptians did it.
The first problem "squaring the circle" has been the darling of geometric problems continuously for centuries past, with many a deluded individual
believing he had found the solution and writing a tome on his "discovery". This too is solved by The Great Pyramid of Giza by the Egyptians.
edit on 8-10-2011 by DRAZIW because: (no reason given)