Monthly Archives: December 2012

From Humayun to the Zome

The last post told of how the Zodiac Tent came to us. Now let us take a journey from its origins in the Moghul princely tent tradition to the Zome at the centre of its modern reproduction. The Zodiac Tent was the most glorious palace tent of Humayun, a Moghul emperor who ruled present day Afghanistan, Pakistan , and parts of northern India from 1530–1540 and again from 1555–1556. Son of Babur, father of Akbar, he was an astronomical dreamer, loving splendour and esoteric mysteries, who lived and ruled his court by the stars.

Humayun's Tomb in Delhi, predating the Taj Mahal

Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi, which predates the Taj Mahal

“And among his inventions another is a trellis tent, khargahi, which comprises twelve towers, burj, to the number of the signs of the zodiac, buraj. And these towers are contrived with windows so that the light of the stars of fortune can shine through their holes. And the star of the beauty of its arrangement and form shone on the pages of the events of the universe: The light of fortune shining through its windows, Couriers of power hastening from its doors. And another trellis tent like the sphere of spheres, which encloses the sphere of the fixed stars, surrounded this trellis tent on all sides, so as to fall on it like a cover. ” (This passage from “Felt Tents and Pavillions: The Nomadic Tradition and its Interaction  with Princely Tentage”, by Peter Alford Andrews. Our friends, Peter and his wife, Mughul have researched and documented nomadic tents in meticulous detail).

Moghul Procession

Moghul Procession

There is some debate as to the details of the form of Humayun’s Zodiac Tent, but the general appearance was 12 trellis tents (yurts) in a circle for the 12 signs of the Zodiac, with a central canopy covering all, to be the celestial sphere.

Our challenge in designing the latest incarnation of the Zodiac Tent, was what kind of structure to have as the centre….a giant yurt?, a circus tent-type (big top) structure with a central pole? a geodesic dome? We wanted a framed tent (one where the frame stands alone without the cover) as opposed to a velum tent (where the stability of the frame is dependent on the tension in the cover, like a big top) as we were clear we wanted to eliminate the central support which stands out like a …… in the centre.

Now the meta-level. Around that time an exaggerated number of abstract threads were coming to our story, catalysed by the Scholar. To explain what I mean by this, let me introduce what we call the “HTML”, or ‘living language’. (The name ‘HTML’ comes from the web programming language , referring to a code working behind the scenes). This talks in the messages which come to us from the universe at large, in the form of symbols, seeming ‘coincidences’, omens, or even directly.

We had been working with this force for some time, but what was emerging here, was a living structure in the myths and symbols that were presenting themselves to all the people we work with, seemingly spontaneously across a couple of continents. What we were seeing was knowledge and myth transcending culture and time, parallel structures appearing across disciplines. This is the lingua sacra, alluded to in “The Glass Bead Game” by Herman Hesse.

One such thread, coming independently over a couple of days involved:

stellatum3

The 4 cardinal stars, in Taurus, Scorpio, Leo & Aquarius marking the solstices and equinoxes (from zodiacal research)

Lion ox eagle and man (from Finn's thread on the 4 watchers)

Lion ox eagle and man (from Finn’s thread on the 4 watchers)

4 horsemen of the apocalypse (from Chloe's dream)

4 horsemen of the apocalypse (from Chloe’s dream)

Ezekiel's vision of the chariot of "living creatures"

Ezekiel’s vision of the chariot of “living creatures”

merkaba:metatrons cube

Metatrons cube (in a message from the Peacock)

flower of life

With the Flower of Life underneath

Then along came the zome. ‘Zome’ is a general term for a shelter, the frame of which comes from a family of complex geometrical structures, found in many natural forms such as pine cones, and honeycombs. (For an in depth description of the background and associated geometry, see Rene’s website at http://simplydifferently.org/Zome).

Zome house from Archilibre, France

Zome house from Archilibre, France

helix some

Helix Zome

We then discovered the helix zome, developed by Nicolas Causse, which is basically a curved version of a zome.

The struts of the helix zome, are half helixes.  A helix is a spiral with a constant diameter, like the DNA spiral.

DNA double helix

DNA double helix

And, if you look at a zome from above, you will see the intersecting struts form the flower of life. “That’s it: our central structure!”, declared the Scholar. The zome became our meta-structure, a shape where many disciplines were weaving in and out of each other. How we were going to make it was the next challenge…

Of How the Zodiac Tent Came Into Being

Today’s progress on the zome for the Zodiac Tent, despite the relentless Welsh rain, has been attaching the first and second level struts together with that first connector.

Zome Connector and first level struts

Zome Connector and first level struts

struts for Zodiac Tent

Wales – wild, wet and beautiful

Now is a good time to introduce the story behind the Zodiac Tent, and how its present incarnation came to us…

Like all stories of power, the elements of it are threads in a multi-dimensional tapestry, and any starting point has many associated references. So, for this thread I will introduce us as canvas tent-makers and begin with the tent palaces, which for some time we had been dreaming of: grand nomadic structures, which stand as the heart of a tribal village.

Over the last few years, we have been involved in the making of a few.

Hoopoe yurt Palace, Andalucia, Spain

Hoopoe yurt Palace, Andalucia, Spain

Two-storey Yurt in the Ardeche, France

Two-storey Yurt in the Ardeche, France

Then, a couple of years ago in Israel, The Last Act on Earth, the transformational travelling show, was born.

Later, back in Hungary, we were looking at Mughul palace tents, in particularly, Humayun’s Zodiac Tent, which was a grand 16th century court tent comprising 12 trellis yurts in a circle for the 12 signs of the Zodiac, encompassed by a central structure for the celestial sphere. We then had an enquiry from a guy who wanted to make special tented accommodation for festivals, and in designing his camp and talking to him about the Zodiac Tent, an artist came up with this picture…..

The Oasis

The Oasis

Very soon afterwards, we were contacted by Iwan Brioc from Theatr Cynefin in Wales, with his proposal for an itinerant transformational theatre, with a travelling venue tent complex which looked like this…

Project X: proposed tent

Project X: proposed tent

This was an omen to us, as here was someone, seemingly unrelated to us, who seemed to hear a very similar vision about a travelling court tent, like the grand tents of the Moghuls. So then the structure evolved into this…

Zodiac tent with  zome as canopy

Zodiac tent with zome as canopy

…a story by itself, so we will touch on it later, but what is noteworthy is that as we moved on with this journey, we find more and more people who come to us and say, “I have heard this story” or “I have also been working on this for a while now”.  There are some meta scripts which are out there at large: we do not own them, we simply are helping them come true.

Zome Angels

Zome Connector

Zome connector

If you have read yesterday’s post, you may find this picture strangely familiar, this here is the first connector.

This is a multi level story, and so this connector is represented on more than one level, although it is noteworthy that this is the ground level connector, and we will be building up from here.

As this day has been hyped for quite a while now, coming back from town and after re-spraying the truck bonnet (another story), we knocked it ready just before sunset (hard to weld without the light, as we were doing it outside). This connector then is going to be our introductory point to this project and story, to the living myth.

On one level it is a box section 50mmx 50mm of 3mm mild steel, welded at an angle to another section of the same, acting as a sleeve connector for 4 wooden lengths that come together (they simply insert into it). These are wooden laminated ribs which, in turn connect to other steel connectors just like this one to form ………

Zodiac tent

The zodiac tent 3d

The Zodiac tent.

You can read the background of the original Zodiac Tent and the mythical prince who dreamed it up here…. http://www.lastactonearth.com/zodiac_tent.html and if you press on the gnomad (gnome+nomad) with the camel, you enter the next room where our modern version is revealed.

This tent is going to be the core of this project, and the building of it will, among other things, be the focus of this story, so this is the first layer connection, hope you can follow the idea that life has more than one layer of meaning.

IMG_0440

Zome Angles

Like John Maynard Keynes said about Isaac Newton that “he regarded the universe as a cryptogram set by the almighty………… By pure thought, by concentration of mind, the riddle, he believed, will be revealed to the initiate.”

Here is a picture showing the various angles and the layers of the zome.

A Beginning

cross in the skyMy name is Lucia, and this here is the story of the Last Act on Earth, a story of a journey into a living myth, and to a place where the inner and outer dreams join together.

Today is the day to begin this level of telling the story, as there is a strong idea and intent in the collective mental field that tomorrow, the winter solstice 2012, will be an end and a beginning of sorts. And today is 20.12.2012

The story is of the way a particular group of people come together in a formation, and so doing, form a greater body, more than the sum of its parts: a group body. This meta-being then travels to create a free land, a place that has freedom at its core, not the idea of freedom as licence, the commonly held belief in these times, that freedom is about ‘doing what you want’, but freedom of perception.

In this place, awareness is unmodulated, and the people that dwell there are free to further it beyond the confines of society and across the borders of perception itself. It is called by one of our collaborators “The Republic of the Imagination”, and we believe that it is more than that, this process making it more than just imagination.

As we have been working with this concept for some years now it has become more and more obvious that it is not our personal story, but an impersonal story that is out there at large calling us all to go beyond the usual, or even unusual, definitions of the world, to find that free state with the free people, to find out what freedom is.

I have decided that it is time to share this voyage with the collective that is being called. And in doing so converse with that being who is inviting us all to journey and explore, hoping to convey not just the invitation, but also to catch a glimpse of the spirit itself which calls the shots.