The Mysterious and the Mundane - The Pyramids
"Truth is more of a stranger than fiction." said Mark Twain and I tend to agree with him. Though humanity seems to have climbed the highest mountains and plumbed the deepest depths of the oceans in this world of ours, there are still things which perplex us upon this very earth. The mysterious Yeti or the Abominable Snowman of the Tibetean regions (also known as Bigfoot or Sasquatch in the Americas), the Loch Ness Monster, the unidentified flying objects commonly known as "flying saucers" or UFOs, the ancient story of Atlantis, telepathy and telekinesis are just a few examples of the unknown still present among us. Then there are the more mundane things of day to day life such as astrology, palmistry, numerology which have become part and parcel of our life and yet, make claims of belonging to a higher strata. Wouldn't you like to know more about these things? I know that I would and hence, this column.
The pyramids of Egypt. The only survivor out of the seven wonders of the ancient world (the others being the hanging gardens of Babylon, the statue of Zeus at Olympia, the temple of Artemis at Ephasus, the mausoleum of Halicarnassus, the Colossus of Rhodes and the lighthouse of Alexandria). It is commonly accepted that the pyramids were built by the pharaoh's of Egypt as final resting places for their bodies. All pyramids were filled with great treasures, food, implements and servants (yes, live ones) to ensure the pharaoh all comfort in the afterlife. But the greatest of the pyramids (and the one which was named as one of the seven wonders of the ancient world) is the Great Pyramid of Khufu and it contains no pharaoh's body and nor does it have a treasure chamber or any treasure. So who built it and what is its purpose? That is the question that a lot of people have been asking themselves.
Made of over 2 million blocks of stone each weighing several tons, the Pyramid begs the question of how these stones were transported to the middle of the desert and how they were raised so high. The common answer is that a vast army of slaves was used over a period of 20 years to complete the structure and that the stones were either raised by means of a system of levers or that a spiral ramp was built around the pyramid and that the stones were pushed along the ramp. But there is more to it than that. Being 145.75m high, it stood as the tallest structure on Earth for 43 centuries before finally being dethroned in 19th century AD. The stones of the Pyramid are so closely set that there never is more than 1/50th of an inch of space between any two stones. While each side of the Pyramid is carefully aligned against one of the major compass points, the sloping angle of each of its sides is exactly 54° 54'. Only a person totally devoid of imagination and intelligence would believe all of this to be mere accidents. But these details of engineering and mathematical virtuosity are just the tip of the iceberg.
It has been demonstrated by Joseph Seiss and others that the Pyramid lies at the center of gravity of continents and that it also lies at the exact center of all the land area in the world - thus dividing the Earth's land mass into four equal portions. The north-south axis of the Pyramid lies along the longest land meridian on Earth passing through Asia, Africa, Europe and Antarctica while its east-west axis is right on top of the longest land parallel on Earth passing through Africa, Asia and America. Coincidence? I'll let you decide.
It is also said that Sir Isaac Newton set out to study the Pyramid after being told of legends that said that it contained the knowledge of the Earth, the past and the future and that he came to realize that many key measurements of the Pyramid would be in round numbers if the unit of measurement was just 1/1000 of an inch larger than the British inch. It transpires that this was the exact measurement of the Sacred Jewish Inch which is 1/25 of a cubit. This is said to have revealed many startling mathematical relationships in the Pyramid's design. For instance, it is said that if you divide the circumference of the Pyramid by twice its height that you get the figure 3.14159 - which happens to be the value of "pi" accurate to six digits. (In the case of a circle, its circumference divided by twice its radius gives you pi.) Thus, it is claimed that the Pyramid is a square-circle (whatever that maybe). It is also claimed that each of the Pyramids walls, when measure as a straight line, is 9,131 inches, totaling to 36,524 inches and if you shift the decimal point two places to the left you get 365.24, which happens to be the exact length of a solar year.
All of these facts have made people make some very extraordinary claims about the Pyramid and its purpose. Some say that it might be an astronomic observatory while others claim that it was a place of cult worship. Still others claim that it might be a geometric structure constructed by a long-gone civilization (Atlantis is hinted at here - but more on Atlantis another time -) while some even say that it could only have been built by a space-going race of extraterrestrials who had observed the Earth from space. Scientists however, disregard all these theories as baseless and argue that no new evidence is available to suggest that the Great Pyramid is nothing more or less than any of the other pyramids - a final resting place for kings who are long forgotten by the rest of the world.