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Math For Mystics, Renna Shesso

A large portion of mathematics history comes to us directly from early astrologers who needed to be able to describe and record what they saw in the night sky. Notably, most mathematics history books refer to them as astronomers but in those days astronomers and astrologers were one and the same. Everyone needed maths: whether you were the king’s court astrologer or a farmer marking the best time for planting, timekeeping and numbers really mattered. Mistake a numerical pattern of petals and you could poison yourself. Lose the rhythm of a sacred dance or the metre of a ritually told story and the intricately woven threads that hold life together were spoiled. Ignore the celestial clock of equinoxes and solstices, and you’d risk being caught short of food for the winter. Math for Mystics unveils and demystifies some of the many concepts our distant ancestors knew and used, based on long generations of observation and record-keeping, sky-watching, folk wisdom and ever-more-complex calculations. Shesso’ s friendly tone, delightful maths lore, and clear information makes the maths go down easy in the marvelous book which begins with the simplest lunary and planetary mathematics, and then tackles the most enigmatic of numerical esoterica such as magical squares, Golden Sections, Luna’s Labyrinth, and Benjamin Franklin’s favourite way to pass the time, the Durer Square.

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