The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

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The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed May 25, 2011 2:25 pm

The Rosslyn Code
The real mystery lurking in the chapel where Dan Brown set The Da Vinci Code.
By Chris WilsonUpdated Tuesday, May 17, 2011, at 7:00 AM ET

From the outside, the Rosslyn Chapel does not look like a suitable place to hide Jesus' head. It's not much bigger than a country church, standing inconspicuously on a small hill in the miniature Scottish town of Roslin, a few miles south of Edinburgh. Its Gothic pinnacles, flying buttresses, and pointed arches have been battered by 500 years of capricious weather, and for years it has been encased in an exoskeleton of scaffolding as restoration efforts plod along. Until recently, it was covered by a giant black canopy.

But inside the chapel, beneath the carvings that blanket the walls and ceiling, is a spartan stone crypt that figures into one of history's most famous mythologies. According to legend, the treasure of the fabled Knights Templar is stowed in a still-deeper vault whose entrance is sealed off by a stone wall. Depending on whom you ask, that treasure is the Holy Grail, sacred scrolls from the time of Christ, a fragment of the cross on which he died, or even his embalmed head, secreted out of the Holy Land as the Templars fled prosecution 700 years ago. Rosslyn Chapel as seen from the southwest. .Rosslyn Chapel as seen from the southwest. Repairs have been ongoing for years.
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If any of this sounds familiar, it's because Dan Brown borrowed this legend for The Da Vinci Code. In the book's climactic scene, the heroes race from London to Roslin, tailed by a hodgepodge group of French police and Catholic thugs. (At this point, they're on the brink of exposing a 2,000-year conspiracy to erase evidence that Christ had children.) They discover that the Holy Grail itself did once reside at Rosslyn, left there by the Templars so many centuries back, but has since vanished again.

The Da Vinci Code brought the Rosslyn Chapel to the world's attention. (Note: "Rosslyn" and "Roslin" derive from the same name, but by custom the chapel uses the former while the town and nearby castle use the latter.) While it had been popular among grail nerds and imaginative scholars for decades—Dan Brown didn't invent the Templar legend—the chapel was relatively obscure even in Scotland prior to the novel's 2003 debut. Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou filmed the Rosslyn scene on location for the movie adaptation, further elevating its profile. Visits to the chapel increased by more than 50 percent, boosting revenue needed for the Rosslyn restoration project. (The chapel is still owned by descendants of its founder, Sir William St. Clair, but guided by a trust that oversees the site.)

Inside the Rosslyn Chapel. Click image to expand.The view as you enter Rosslyn Chapel. It is much smaller than it looks from the outside.
You only need to spend a few minutes in the church to understand how it led to Dan Brown's flights of fancy. The Rosslyn Chapel is a conspiracy theorist's playroom, its interior a madhouse of mysterious stone carvings. In the movie version of The Da Vinci Code, Tom Hanks' professor of "symbology" stares reverently at the crowded walls. "Christian, Jewish, Egyptian, Masonic, Pagan," he says, ticking off the influences present in the place.
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This isn't far off the mark, except for the Masonic part. (The chapel was completed more than a century before the founding of the Freemasons, though the order has retroactively claimed Rosslyn as part of its history.) The place is truly cluttered, like a person who's completely slathered with incongruous tattoos. Eight Nordic dragons form a ring around the base of one ornate pillar, while dozens of sylvan pagan deities known as Green Men peer out from the stone foliage. One arch depicts a richly detailed Danse Macabre, in which figures waltz with their future skeletons. A double-humped camel makes a curious appearance, even though such an animal was rare in Scotland at the time. Stories from both the New and Old Testament appear again and again.

Little documentation that might explain what the chapel's founders meant by all these carvings has survived. (Several fires at the nearby Roslin Castle consumed much of the St. Clair family's archives.) This lack of contradictory evidence is quite convenient for anyone who cares to theorize about the church's place in history. Rosslyn Chapel is a trove of mismatched puzzle pieces. The odds that you can find one to fit into whatever legend you're trying to sell are exceedingly high.

The Knights Templar were a real band of well-armored bankers, founded around 1120. The Knights' original detail was to protect pilgrims on their way to the Holy Land. But after the Egyptian sultan Saladin captured Jerusalem later that century, there wasn't much need for their services. No fewer than six crusades in the next 200 years would fail to establish a lasting Christian lease on the sacred territories. The Templars—reinterpreting their calling card as the "Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon"—amassed great wealth and land, which was bestowed to them by European kings. By the early 14th century, they were in the lending business, charging healthy interest rates and milking their political ties to sidestep the church's ban on usury.

Without a large army to defend their great wealth, the knights became an easy target. In 1307, France's cash poor King Philip IV began a relentless campaign to round them up, culminating seven years later when the order's last grandmaster was burned at the stake. Most accounts end here, 150 years before the first stone was laid at Rosslyn Chapel. More creative historians, however, add an epilogue to the story: A handful of knights escaped persecution and fled to Scotland with the Templar treasure, finding succor under King Robert the Bruce—himself an exile from the church after he murdered a Scottish nobleman. Through various assimilations, the story goes, the Templars survived long enough to secret their sacred treasure to the Rosslyn Chapel, which was completed around 1480.
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France's King Philip IV (left) disbanded the Knights Templar in 1307, burning many at the stake.France's King Philip IV (left) disbanded the Knights Templar in 1307, burning many at the stake. Click image to expand.

This is almost certainly untrue for a variety of reasons—it was nearly impossible, for example, to sail from northwest France to Scotland in the treacherous month of October, when the persecution began. But the association between Rosslyn and the grail remains unshakable, and the trust that oversees the chapel does little to correct the record, lest it run off conspiracy-minded tourists. (In addition to the usual run of T-shirts and mugs, the Rosslyn gift shop sells copies of The Da Vinci Code and a variety of other myth-mongering volumes.)

Like the chapel's crypt, Rosslyn's stone carvings are encrusted with dubious stories. One holds that a plant resembling maize, carved over an arch near the crypt, is proof that a Scotsman discovered the New World decades before Columbus and returned with this uniquely American crop. In reality, the cornhusks are probably bundled wheat, in keeping with the carvings' agrarian themes. But any sort of ambiguity is fuel for conspiracy theorists. Even the most outlandish story will persist so long as it meets two conditions: The theory has an ardent spokesman, and it's impossible to definitively disprove.

This is precisely why Tommy Mitchell is so easy to write off as bogus. His theory that there's a secret code hidden away in Rosslyn's stone carvings is outlandish, fantastical, and unfalsifiable. But after I spent a few days in Scotland scrutinizing his hypothesis, I found it increasingly difficult to be a skeptic.

The east end of Rosslyn Chapel sits under 13 crisscrossing arches that run the length of the room from north to south. While plenty of Gothic cathedrals feature a similar architectural flourish, the Rosslyn arches have a distinct feature: small sandstone cubes that protrude at regular intervals, like teeth. There are 213 cubes in all, 17 or 18 per arch. Each one bears a geometric pattern—a diamond, a rosette, an inverted circle. In all, 12 patterns repeat in irregular sequences, some appearing frequently, others just once or twice. At the base of each arch, save for the first and last, is an exquisitely carved stone angel either playing an instrument or singing from a hymnal.
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Left: Arches with protruding stone cubes. Right: A close-up of three cubes.Left: Arches with protruding stone cubes. Right: A close-up of three cubes.

Mitchell, a former cryptographer with the Royal Air Force, first stumbled upon the chapel nearly 40 years ago, when it was largely unknown and in disrepair. He would return to Rosslyn with increasing frequency over the years, always drawn to the cubes and their mysterious symbols. While there was no obvious order to the sequence of the cubes, Mitchell noticed that, as on a strand of DNA, little patterns would repeat. The same sequence of three symbols appears at the base of two of the arches, for instance, and one arch contains long stretches in which just one symbol is repeated.

Mitchell is certain this is no accident. The symbols, he believes, form a 500-year-old code bequeathed by the chapel's founders. And the angels are the key to deciphering it.

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Are the chapel's mysterious stone symbols a musical score?
By Chris WilsonUpdated Tuesday, May 17, 2011, at 10:08 AM ET

Rosslyn Chapel was deserted when Tommy Mitchell's son, Stuart, stepped into the small antechamber one frozen afternoon last December. Savage blizzards had blanketed Scotland for the previous two weeks, and much of the chapel's staff had left early to beat the icy conditions. The cold was marshalling its forces against the scattered heat lamps inside as Stuart walked to the back of the room, where 13 stone arches crisscross along the ceiling.

Stuart Mitchell, who is 45, is thin and spry with wavy brown hair and emits a rapid-fire laugh when he finds something amusing, which is often. Stuart first took an interest in the Rosslyn Chapel when his father, a former Royal Air Force cryptographer, invited him along for a visit about 10 years ago. As a professional composer, Stuart was instantly enchanted by Rosslyn's angelic stone musicians. He has come back often in the years since, but he still can't get inside the chapel without buying a ticket, which he does begrudgingly.

Tommy and Stuart Mitchell in the Rosslyn Chapel. Click image to expand.Tommy and Stuart Mitchell in the Rosslyn Chapel.Once inside, Stuart leads me straight to the far end of the small chapel, which is supported by three broad pillars, known as the Master Pillar, the Journeyman Pillar, and the Apprentice Pillar. The Apprentice Pillar, adorned with beautiful, intricate stone flora that snakes around it like a helix, is a major attraction in and of itself. (A replica is displayed in London's Victoria and Albert Museum, and artists' renderings are sold in the Rosslyn gift shop.) But it's what sits on top of the pillars that interests Stuart—13 stone angels, each one singing or playing an instrument.

The angels, with their childlike faces and great bird wings, are unquestionably medieval. By contrast, the angels' instruments are exquisitely rendered. "Any string instrument you'll see here has pegs for tuning," Stuart says, pointing to the neck of a fiddle. A lutist's fingers are positioned correctly over the frets, the finger holes on the reed instruments are in the proper places, and the pipes on an organlike device descend in length in proportion with the change in pitch they would produce. No sword or farmer's pike elsewhere in the chapel got such attention.

Stone angels playing the drumlike tabor (left) and bagpipes (right).Stone angels playing the drumlike tabor (left) and bagpipes (right).
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The great care that went into rendering this heavenly jam band, Stuart argues, reveals that this is not mere decoration. The instrumentation is also quite modern for 1450. The most remarkable angel is playing a set of bagpipes, one of the earliest known representations of the instrument, which had only started showing up in Scotland a few decades earlier. The hand-held organ depicted in Rosslyn is also unusually complex. The angels' creator, in other words, knew a lot about music, and he wanted the chapel's visitors to notice.

There's one problem with speculating about the intent of Rosslyn's designer: No one knows who carved the angels or anything else in the chapel. While its patron, William St. Clair, clearly spared no expense in bringing in master masons, it's unlikely that he micromanaged the design. When Stuart contemplates the meaning of the angels and the cubes that hang above them, he attributes the creations to a singular mystery man—and he thinks that mystery man was a songwriter. "It's a very neat sound that the guy has put together," he says.

Humans have a long history of conjuring meaning out of noise, particularly when they have decades to gin up a plausible-sounding explanation. But the musical solution the Mitchells believe they have uncovered in the Rosslyn Chapel is so elegant that it's hard to resist humming along. How could something that seems so natural be a fabrication?

There is no one archetype for the natural-born code breaker. Some cryptographic geniuses show an aptitude for patterns and language from childhood. Jean-François Champollion, who published the first translation of the Rosetta Stone, is said to have mastered a dozen languages by age 16. Alan Turing, the most famous member of the World War II-era British cryptography effort at Bletchley Park, was a precocious reader and mathematician—while on a picnic at age 7, he tracked the flights of honeybees to find where they converged. Others, like Revolutionary War-era cipher maker James Lovell or the early 20th-century code breaker William Friedman, stumbled into the field while pursuing other interests. (Lovell was a teacher and member of the Continental Congress; Friedman initially studied genetics.)

If there is any common strain here, it's that codebreakers must be creative, catholic thinkers. Tommy Mitchell's interests are indeed all over the map. He has studied ancient civilizations and Freemasonry and the stages of human evolution. He's a talented pianist and brass player, and he loves the Greek study of sacred geometry. He likes to pore over high-resolution pictures taken by NASA satellites. He also has more than a passing interest in cryptography.

The elder Mitchell first learned how to break codes in his early 20s as a leading aircraftsman in the Royal Air Force. Tommy was stationed in Iraq in the early 1950s as part of a signals-intelligence unit that listened in on encrypted Russian communications. (He was trained for the job at the Government Communications Headquarters, a direct successor to the wartime organization that Turing had starred in.) Iraq was still a monarchy at this point, though it would fall six years later, when forces led by a nationalist general murdered the royal family. (A year after that, a 22-year-old Saddam Hussein would make an unsuccessful attempt on the general's life.)
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Tommy Mitchell. Click image to expand.Tommy Mitchell (right) as a leading aircraftsman in the Royal Air Force.
Sixty years after his stint in the Middle East, Tommy—now 78—credits a single road trip for changing his life. Iraq was relatively easy to traverse at the time, so Mitchell and his comrades were able to drive to the ruins of Babylon. When they arrived, they found the remnants of the ancient city-state deserted, the excavators driven away by the heat. Only a portion of the ruins had been unearthed, but Tommy was still floored by their sophistication. "Most of all," he explains in the introduction to a short book he's written about the Rosslyn Chapel, "I was impressed by the inescapable sense of antiquity, and I came away with a conviction that we in the West, with our technological civilization, had little or no idea regarding the Sumerians and how they lived."

His promenade through Babylon on that scorching day put Mitchell on a quest for hidden knowledge. At the same time, he was receiving extensive training in cryptography—something he will still describe only in general terms, so as not to run afoul of the Official Secrets Act. As he left the military and returned home to Scotland, these two interests synthesized in his mind. History was a puzzle to be probed and decoded.

If the Scottish economy hadn't taken a dive in the 1970s, Tommy Mitchell may never have set foot in Rosslyn Chapel. But when the hotel company he worked for went under, Mitchell made a "right-angle turn," as he puts it, and became a professional musician. Tommy had played music his whole life and was an accomplished brass player—he'd volunteered for the RAF band in Iraq, playing cornet and flugelhorn—but it was a stroke of luck that one of his former colleagues happened to be looking for a pianist just as Tommy lost his hotel job. Within weeks, he was a piano man in Edinburgh.

This was mainly night work, which left Tommy the daytime to continue his spiritual explorations. He knew that God wouldn't lead him to the keys he sought. Mitchell had been to Jerusalem during his time abroad, and the bloody religious conflict left him with a bitter taste for religion. In search of a more satisfying explanation of how the world worked, Mitchell dabbled in Freemasonry before taking an interest in 20th-century English writer John Michell, whose writings cover everything from sacred geometry to the true authorship of Shakespeare's works. Michell was particularly interested in "ley lines"—ethereal routes that connect major ancient landmarks and channel great energy at places where they intersect. In his free time, Tommy began tracing these lines around Edinburgh. One led him five miles south, to the doorstep of Rosslyn Chapel.

Mitchell doesn't remember the precise day he first stepped into the chapel, but he places it around 1971. In those days Rosslyn was in a pretty sorry state, its waterlogged stonework threatening to collapse. The chapel was still open to the public, but you had to get a key from a woman in town to get in. There wasn't a commemorative T-shirt or coffee mug to be found.

Undeterred by the chapel's shabby condition, Tommy believed that great meaning was concealed within its walls. Year after year, he puzzled over the strange symbols on the stone cubes at the back of the chapel. They reminded him of the Enneagram, a geometric symbol he'd come across while investigating the teachings of G. I. Gurdjieff, an obscure mystic who believed in reaching higher planes of consciousness through guided meditation. The Ennegram, a series of straight lines circumscribed by a circle, represents Gurdjieff's teachings about the relationship between the body, the heart, and the mind.

Tommy searched deeper into Gurdjieff's teachings for anything resembling the Rosslyn symbols. He came up empty. He moved on to Freemason imagery, ancient mathematics systems, Pythagorean geometry, and even quantum physics. Still no match. Years would go by during which he wouldn't think about the chapel much at all before some new clue would reignite his fascination. "My wife would say to me, You going to sit there all night?" he recalls.

Tommy talks about his early quest with the awareness that it sounds a little kooky, but he's unapologetic. "I'm not a conspiracy freak, but I have found that after everything I have studied, I have a very open mind now," he says. Tommy's undiscriminating attitude ultimately guided him to a promising lead, some 30 years after he first came across the chapel. The cubes' placement directly above the stone musicians, he hypothesized, could mean that the carvings had some sort of musical aspect. At this point, he recalled an obscure tidbit he'd gleaned while studying the properties of the musical scale years earlier—something to do with patterns associated with notes. Around 2000, Tommy asked his composer son to have a look, and Stuart soon dug up the name of the symbols. They are called Chladni patterns.

The German-born scientist Ernst Chladni had two chief passions: physics and music. (Meteorites were a close third.) Most of Chladni's career was spent studying the emerging field of acoustics, which he is sometimes credited as founding. Chladni wanted to know what happens to materials when they are vibrated to make music. When you pluck a violin, for instance, you don't just vibrate the string; the whole body of the instrument moves, particularly when it has a chamber to amplify the sound.

Chladni came up with a simple technique to deduce an instrument's microscopic movements. First, he spread sand along the instrument's surface. Then he vibrated it with a bow and observed where the sand collected. The resulting pattern revealed the material's minuscule oscillations, previously unobservable to the naked eye.

Using modern machinery, it's possible to cycle through a huge number of Chladni patterns in a few minutes.

Watch the video below, in which sand on a vibrating plate transitions from one pattern to the next. Each pattern corresponds to a specific frequency.

It's easy to see what Ernst Chladni discovered during his experiments: The sand patterns grow increasingly complex as the frequencies get higher. For a low note, you might see a simple diamond. Jump up a few octaves, and you get a rosetta. Go up still higher and you see patterns reminiscent of what a piece of paper looks like when you fold and unfold an origami animal.

About 100 years after Chladni's discovery, another scientist named John Tyndall produced a chart of the patterns that's still in circulation today. Finding Tyndall's chart was a eureka moment for Tommy and Stuart Mitchell. Several Chladni patterns resemble the cubes in the chapel, and others are at least fairly similar. The resemblance isn't unmistakable, but it's eerily close.
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For the Mitchells, the implication was clear: The code in the ceiling of the Rosslyn Chapel was not a message written out in letters. It was a melody, and each cube represented one note. There was only one problem. The chapel was built in the 15th century. Ernst Chladni wouldn't be born for another 200 years.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Nordic » Wed May 25, 2011 3:03 pm

What a great story. And that video is really amazing. It reminds me of what I saw when I did Salvia. It's difficult, maybe impossible, to explain or describe, but I saw our very reality being a pattern like these, what we call reality is a result, a resonance, of something else, something we normally aren't even aware of, but our reality is actually a projection of this and doesn't really "exist" as we think of "existence" (although it's quite real to us because our senses are all normally attuned to only this). I can't even describe it. But those patterns are beautiful and significant.

On edit:

Wow, looking back at that, that's possibly the worst thing I've ever written.

You just have to do Salvia and see what I'm talking about. :)
Last edited by Nordic on Wed May 25, 2011 5:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby alwyn » Wed May 25, 2011 5:01 pm

There are pre-Columbian stones, dating 5-10,000 years back that show similar images. I think that the basic harmonics of form are universal.

On another note, it is interesting that 'the head of Jesus' is supposed to be buried here. In occult literature, 'building a head' meant accessing the immortal body of light, and embodying the intelligence thereof. The sufis also say that reality is a harmonic, and speak of trying to catch the resonance...

These may be physical representations of that harmonic of light :angelwings:
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Bruce Dazzling » Wed May 25, 2011 6:51 pm

Nordic wrote:What a great story. And that video is really amazing. It reminds me of what I saw when I did Salvia. It's difficult, maybe impossible, to explain or describe, but I saw our very reality being a pattern like these, what we call reality is a result, a resonance, of something else, something we normally aren't even aware of, but our reality is actually a projection of this and doesn't really "exist" as we think of "existence" (although it's quite real to us because our senses are all normally attuned to only this). I can't even describe it. But those patterns are beautiful and significant.

On edit:

Wow, looking back at that, that's possibly the worst thing I've ever written.

You just have to do Salvia and see what I'm talking about. :)


I think I get what you're saying, Nordic.

What if "reality" exists as information (possibly numerical in nature) in some central repository, and is broadcast via some sort of divine wifi, and our brains are merely the interface?

There could be numerous, if not an endless array of channels/frequencies/IP addresses, etc, but *someone* (or something) has built firewalls between us and most of the available information -- kind of like when North Korea firewalls off entire sections of the internet.

Think of the fact that we can only see a portion of the color spectrum, or that we can't hear a dog whistle. Well, what if those are only two of millions or gazillions of examples of this type of firewalling that keeps us from experiencing countless other dimensions that are all RIGHT THERE to be seen, in the same way that all of the information compiled on the internet is all RIGHT THERE to be seen if one has the right interface and the right level of access?
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby 2012 Countdown » Wed May 25, 2011 7:05 pm

Great article, thanks for posting. That video clip is impressive.

I didn't know what Nordic was referring to, as I have never heard of it. I did however think your metaphor worked well when I found this.
Per wiki:
Salvia divinorum has a long and continuous tradition of religious use by Mazatec shamans, who use it to facilitate visionary states of consciousness during spiritual healing sessions.[1] Most of the plant's local common names allude to the Mazatec belief that the plant is an incarnation of the Virgin Mary, with its ritual use also invoking that relationship. Its active psychoactive constituent is a structurally unique diterpenoid called salvinorin A,[9][10] a potent κ-opioid and D2 receptor agonist.[11][12] Salvia divinorum is generally understood to be of low toxicity (high LD50)[13][14] and low addictive potential;[11][15] as a κ-opioid agonist


Mary=Grail in this case of course, so pretty good metaphor, intentional or not.

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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Joe Hillshoist » Wed May 25, 2011 7:58 pm

Salvia is wild.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Joe Hillshoist » Wed May 25, 2011 8:12 pm

I've talked about my mate whose family were alleged Scottish Druids/Freemasons who left Scotland at the time of the Highland Clearances here before.

Although his story sounds a bit like the Da Vinci Code, there are a few differences, including the painting his great granddad had that deopicted some hidden code about some secret that had to do with resonance and unlimited amounts of energy and the Mahdi....

I dunno if the painting is still around. He said it was old, mouldering and fell apart when he was a kid.

He's not really into this stuff, just brings it up every now and then if the conversation goes that way.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby semper occultus » Thu May 26, 2011 3:41 am

^^

crikey Joe I must have missed that ..which thread was that may I enquire ?

that ties in to some research I was doing...as does Alwyn's point about the head of Jesus

many thanks SLAD for posting this !
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Nordic » Thu May 26, 2011 3:54 am

Bruce Dazzling wrote:
Nordic wrote:What a great story. And that video is really amazing. It reminds me of what I saw when I did Salvia. It's difficult, maybe impossible, to explain or describe, but I saw our very reality being a pattern like these, what we call reality is a result, a resonance, of something else, something we normally aren't even aware of, but our reality is actually a projection of this and doesn't really "exist" as we think of "existence" (although it's quite real to us because our senses are all normally attuned to only this). I can't even describe it. But those patterns are beautiful and significant.

On edit:

Wow, looking back at that, that's possibly the worst thing I've ever written.

You just have to do Salvia and see what I'm talking about. :)


I think I get what you're saying, Nordic.

What if "reality" exists as information (possibly numerical in nature) in some central repository, and is broadcast via some sort of divine wifi, and our brains are merely the interface?

There could be numerous, if not an endless array of channels/frequencies/IP addresses, etc, but *someone* (or something) has built firewalls between us and most of the available information -- kind of like when North Korea firewalls off entire sections of the internet.

Think of the fact that we can only see a portion of the color spectrum, or that we can't hear a dog whistle. Well, what if those are only two of millions or gazillions of examples of this type of firewalling that keeps us from experiencing countless other dimensions that are all RIGHT THERE to be seen, in the same way that all of the information compiled on the internet is all RIGHT THERE to be seen if one has the right interface and the right level of access?



Well yes, that's partly it I suppose.

But it's more that what we consider a three dimensional reality is, when you step back, actually just one dimension of a polydimensional reality, in which our three dimensional reality looks as flat as a tiny, thin slice of sausage or something.

That's what these shapes formed by the sounds reminded me of. Our reality is like these shapes, what we consider reality is really just a manifestation of an overriding "music of the spheres" type of "vibration".

It's really beautiful, like these shapes formed by the musical notes but on a cosmic and grand scale.

The closest analogy I can think of is visual, this right here. This is a human body. Seen a certain way. I saw "reality" like this, sorta. (let's see if it will embed)



Except our normal sense of reality is just one frame of this film, one slice, a one dimensional slice of it. We don't see this view under normal circumstances, and we sure don't ever look back and see the actual beauty of the entire body from a distance. If that makes any sense.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Joe Hillshoist » Thu May 26, 2011 6:55 am

semper occultus wrote:^^

crikey Joe I must have missed that ..which thread was that may I enquire ?



Honestly I can't remember. It wouldn't have been long after I joined, so in the second half of 2006 I reckon. I can't remember how much I got into it at the time or if anyone remembered.

And I'm half sus that he's pulling my leg, tho I dunno... he told some interesting stories tho.

Its to do with building the grail out of something that those symbols represent.

I remember tripping off my head on shrooms once and seeing a design for something like the power system of a UFO, or more likely the TARDIS. And its reminiscent of those images actually, and anyway we were talking about some wild stuff tangential to that and the grail being a 3D parabola of plasma that this engine generated. I got drunk that day came here and posted about it before I forgot...

Yeah anyway according to the Freemasons or something* its the Mahdi that will unlock this device, and it'll be apocal-epic with everyone recognising him as the anti Christ or the true Christ or some shit. There'll be war and upheaval and business as usual. I dunno its the usual thing. Anyway the Madhi or Jesus or the anti-Christ or whoever its sposed to be, is gonna come from the San Graal bloodline, tho they dunno who it is cos they lost track over the centuries or something.

He reckons every govt and powerful person or organistaion is looking for the Mahdi, even the Chinese spooks. And I've across some weird Chinese people over the years. One for sure (as I can be) I know was one.

He's a good mate, in fact his whole family is, I have coached all his kids in one jr football side or another, watched em grow up, I went to his 50th a couple of months ago. Known him for years, and every now and then we have a bit of a rave about this stuff but never with the time and right company to get into the depth we did that night.

Its one those I'm always meaning to do one, sit down and have a long rave with him, but like so many of those things ... I better make a time to do it soon or it'll be another 5 years gone by.

I dunno. Is that the plot of the Da Vinci Code? I haven't actually read it. But that story has stuck with me all those years.

* His family left Scotland after the Highland clearances. His (n)great granddad was a Druid or something with serious ties to or a high position in what I presume is Scottish Rite Freemasonry. Thats how he got out and came to Australia.

The g-granddad brought some painting, I think it was important, but ended up falling to pieces in the shed in suburban melbourne years ago.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby semper occultus » Thu May 26, 2011 7:35 am

that's brilliant Joe - thanks for that - I'll definitely do some digging back in the depths....

what's interesting is that alot of that actually ties to some equally weird shit I heard from an e-mail contact - ties to Dr Stephen Ward of Profumo Affair fame - that was so f**king mad I didn't even include it in my thread here :- Link
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby seemslikeadream » Thu May 26, 2011 9:18 am

The rest of the story

The Rosslyn Code Unearthing a hidden melody.
By Chris WilsonUpdated Wednesday, May 18, 2011, at 7:01 AM ET


The Rosslyn Chapel's 213 stone cubes were carved when Leonardo da Vinci and Christopher Columbus were schoolboys. Construction on the chapel began in 1456, about 50 years before the printing press arrived in Scotland. The Stewart kings ruled the country at the time, and most historians credit James IV—who took the throne in 1488—for ushering in an era of scholarship and scientific inquiry. By that time, the chapel's founder, William St. Clair, had died, and construction on what was meant to be a much larger structure had come to a halt.

Given the era in which Rosslyn Chapel was built, then, it would be surprising to learn that someone encoded scientifically inspired symbols on the walls. But that's exactly what Tommy and Stuart Mitchell came to believe. The chapel's stone cubes, they were convinced, looked like Chladni patterns, the images that form when musical frequencies vibrate along a two-dimensional surface. Now, they just had to confront the inconvenient fact that Ernst Chladni was not born until 1756.
Image
James IV, who's generally credited as Scotland's first Renaissance king, didn't assume the throne until four years after Rosslyn Chapel's founder died. Click image to expand.James IV, who's generally credited as Scotland's first Renaissance king, didn't assume the throne until four years after Rosslyn Chapel's founder died.
Chladni's date of birth didn't rule out the possibility the Mitchells had a match. Chladni patterns are a natural phenomenon, and it's entirely possible that someone else discovered them hundreds or even thousands of years before the German scientist documented them. All you need to produce these patterns is sand or salt, a flat surface, and some way to make the surface vibrate. You didn't need to be an 18th-century European to make that happen.

Besides, as far as Tommy and Stuart were concerned, they could test their hypothesis without tracking down Chladni's Scottish predecessor. If they could match each of the 12 distinct symbols repeated across the cubes to a Chladni pattern—assigning each symbol to a musical pitch—they would have a 213-note sequence. The proof would be in the melody: If it sounded like something other than an incomprehensible jumble of sound, the Mitchells would have compelling evidence that the chapel's designer had transcribed a song in Rosslyn's stone walls.

But assigning notes to the stone cubes was far from a simple task. Chladni patterns are not universal. They are specific to the shape of the vibrating plate—circular surfaces create different patterns than square ones. So in 2003, Stuart began the tedious process of comparing the designs in the chapel to a variety of Chladni diagrams. As he did so, filling in notes in the sequence piece by piece, a melody began to form in his head.

Creating a melody from scratch is a winnowing process. You have to reduce an infinite number of possibilities into a single line of notes that satisfy an arbitrary sense of what good music sounds like. Of course, the definition of "good music" has changed dramatically over time. If Stuart's melody sounded like Gershwin or Bartók, he could be pretty sure he was not on the right track—no one made those kinds of sounds in 1450. If the Rosslyn melody sounded medieval, there was a better chance he was right.
Image
The “staff angel,” whose tablet resembles blank sheet music. Click image to expand.Top: The "staff angel," whose tablet resembles blank sheet music. Bottom: A close-up of the angel's fingers, which point to the locations for B, A, and C on the staff. The younger Mitchell had one clue to guide him in the process. One of the four angels above what's known as the "Apprentice Pillar" was holding a strange instrument that had puzzled scholars for years. Its design was simple: a series of five strings mounted on a board, like a primitive dulcimer. But if this was a dulcimer, the angel didn't know how to play it. While such instruments sit horizontally, with the strings facing the ceiling, the stone angel holds it toward the viewer, like a guitar. This didn't make much sense, because the other 11 angels all play their instruments quite accurately, down to the violinists' fingering and the bells on the piper's wrist. It occurred to Stuart that maybe this dulcimer-like object wasn't an instrument after all. There's another meaning to five horizontal lines. Perhaps it was a musical staff.

If the staff theory is correct, it's another hint that a melody is concealed in the Rosslyn cubes—and maybe even a hint as to how that melody begins. The index finger on the angel's left hand rests on the center line—a B on a treble-clef staff. The index finger of the right hand stops at the gap between that line and the next one up—a C. The middle finger on the right hand is a bit below the middle line—an A. Even more striking is the fact that the three patterns directly above this angel's head, which are repeated in the same order elsewhere among the cubes, resemble the Chladni patterns for those same three pitches, B, C, and A. If this is a coincidence, it's a tantalizing one.

Now that he felt as if he knew the first three notes of the melody, Stuart had a much easier time extrapolating the pitches for the rest of the cubes. When he was finished, he had 213 notes that broke down into 13 short melodies of about 18 notes—one for each of the 13 arches. Stuart postulated that the angel that stands at the base of each arch is an indicator from the mystery composer as to which instrument should play which melody. That left Stuart with the equivalent of a conductor's score, with each instrument's part laid out on the same page.

Is all of this just wishful thinking? To decide for myself whether the Mitchells were on to something or whether they were just hearing what they wanted to hear, I independently coded each carving while in the Rosslyn Chapel. In all but a few cases, I categorized the symbol on the ceiling the same way the Mitchells did. There are perhaps 10 cubes out of 213 that I do not think were correctly coded, though in some cases it's really a judgment call. (Most of the cubes are remarkably preserved, but a few haven't held up as well.) Regardless, these differences aren't significant enough to make more than minor alterations to the melody. Independently matching Chladni patterns to the symbols was trickier work for all the same reasons it was tricky for the Mitchells, but I was still able to make matches for most of the cubes. In short, I don't think Tommy and Stuart have conjured a tune out of thin air.

Stuart Mitchell, too, was satisfied: After months and months of puzzling through the morass of sandstone symbols, he believed he had unlocked the secret music of the Rosslyn Chapel.

To hear piano renditions of five of Stuart Mitchell's melodies, click on the interactive feature below. These melodies (and eight others) form the basis for Mitchell's "Rosslyn Motet." Each melody was derived from a sequence of sandstone cubes that appears above a representation of an angel. The angels are depicted singing (the second melody from the top) or playing an instrument: the lute (top), the recorder (third), the shawm (fourth), and the bagpipes (fifth).

The Rosslyn Code
Is a Scottish Da Vinci responsible for the Rosslyn melodies?

By Chris WilsonUpdated Thursday, May 19, 2011, at 7:28 AM ET

Gilbert Hay returned to his native Scotland in 1445 after 20 years on the court of King Charles VII of France—the same king who Joan of Arc helped install to the throne. Now, at age 48, Hay had a new assignment. William St. Clair, a wealthy Scottish lord, had commissioned Hay to translate three volumes on chivalry and warfare from French to Scots, a sort of half-brother to medieval English. Hay set up shop in the St. Clair family castle in the tiny town of Roslin, a few miles south of Edinburgh, and began work on what would become one of the first masterpieces of Scottish literature.

Just as Hay arrived in Roslin, St. Clair was embarking on a project of his own: a massive cathedral, which, by one later account, he wanted to erect as a thank-you note to God for all his good fortunes. (Others think he originally intended to build a university.) The first stone would be laid 10 years later, at a site just a short walk up the hill from the castle. St. Clair would only get one-fourth of his cathedral—the top fork of the intended crucifix-shaped floor plan—before money ran out. The result was Rosslyn Chapel, with all its splendorous figures and curious symbols.
Image
Rosslyn Castle. Click image to expand.Roslin Castle, where Sir Gilbert Hay set up shop in 1445, is now largely in ruins. Tommy and Stuart Mitchell believe the Rosslyn Motet—the piece of music Stuart composed based on the chapel's 213 stone carvings—is proof enough that there's a musical code embedded in the cathedral's walls. Nevertheless, the Mitchells cite Gilbert Hay's presence in Rosslyn as supplementary evidence. At some point during his worldwide travels, they conjecture, Hay learned about Chladni patterns and used them to create a musical code in the chapel that his patron was constructing. Without question, this is the part of the Mitchells' story for which there is scantest evidence.

Hay's education was certainly prodigious. He was among the first graduates of the University of St. Andrews, where he would have studied music as one of the classic disciplines, known as the trivium and the quadrivium. As the chamberlain to King Charles VII, he would have had access to the royal library as well as to the king's eclectic brother-in-law, René d'Anjou. René was a fellow poet and patron of the fine arts (as well as the titular King of Jerusalem). Both men had catholic interests: art, language, literature, governance, and history, to name a few. The St. Clair family moved in circles of people like Hay and d'Anjou. Whether the strange behavior of musical plates ever came up is impossible to say.

-

A few months after I returned home from Scotland, I called the cellist Yo-Yo Ma to get his take on the Rosslyn story. I had interviewed Ma a few years ago for a short profile, and recalled that his Silk Road Project has made him an expert on the thousands of musical instruments that have appeared and disappeared over the ages. I was happy to learn that he also knew a great deal about Chladni patterns—also known as "cymatics"— having seen violinmakers study the unique patterns that form on the board of the instrument as it's played.

Ma believes that Chladni patterns must have been discovered before the 18th century. Millennia ago, he points out, the Chinese had already mastered the art of the "singing bowl," a delicate bell made from a specific bronze alloy that could produce multiple tones at the same time. While there's no documentation that Chladni patterns were used to measure the correct ingredients for the metallurgy, Ma hypothesizes that the instruments' makers knew about the phenomenon. There's some evidence, for example, that Galileo noticed the effect while scraping a brass plate about 100 years after the Rosslyn Chapel was built. Whether this knowledge found its way to Hay, either through his travels or someone else's, will probably never be known. But history dangles the possibility just out of reach.

Even if Gilbert Hay knew of Chladni patterns, an overarching mystery remains: Why would he or anyone else go to so much trouble to conceal music in this obscure format? What would compel someone to carve a secret composition into the Rosslyn Chapel's walls?

Ma says he understands the impulse. "A composer is encoding some of the most intimate things he or she wants to say, and often can't say in a social setting," he says. As a performer, he explains, his "job is to try and do forensic musical analysis … to look at this encoding and say, well, who is this guy? What makes this important to him or her? What gives this meaning?"

When Ma talks about "forensic musical analysis," he means everything from seeking out explicit messages to hunting for what the composer wanted to communicate on purely musical terms. Composers do, on occasion, smuggle jokes and messages into their work. Johann Sebastian Bach liked to slip his initials into various motifs by using the sequence B-flat, A, C, B-natural, which is described in German notation as "B-A-C-H." Each variation of Edward Elgar's "Enigma Variations," likewise, is encoded with the initials or name of a friend. (The first movement contains repeated references to "CAE," his wife, Caroline Alice Elgar.) And, like Bach, Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich frequently slipped a four-note sequence into his pieces that, when represented in the German notation, read "D, ES, C, H"—that is, "D. Sch."

The Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich. Click image to expand.The Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich was fond of sneaking his initials into his work in the form of four notes.The study of musical forensics, though, also requires a subtler unraveling of a composer's intent. Here, Dmitri Shostakovich is again instructive. The Soviet-era composer was perpetually in and out of favor with the Stalinists, and he frequently seeded his music with distaste for his nation's regime. Scholars quarrel over exactly where the composer's political feelings rested, but his work is riddled with sarcastic variations on patriotic marches, clamorous imitations of military exercises, and sorrowful eulogies for the motherland. Putting those sentiments in words would have been a death wish; concealing them in music provided him with protective coloration. (The camouflage wasn't perfect—the government banned his work on several occasions.)

The Mitchells are not arguing that a written message lurks inside the Rosslyn Code. Perhaps, like Shostakovich centuries later, Rosslyn's mystery composer felt the need to hide his musical impulses. Doing a bit of freelance composing in a house of God would not have sat well with the 15th-century Catholic Church. The angels and cubes could have been a way of hiding melodies in plain sight.

I prefer a different explanation. In the 1400s, it was impossible to know whether musical notation would still look the same in 100 years, much less 500. In the pre-light of the Renaissance, new cultural ideas were germinating across Europe and rapidly restructuring the arts. By using Chladni patterns—nature's musical notation rather than man's—a composer could ensure that future civilizations (or even an alien one) would be able to decode his notes.

Or maybe Rosslyn's secret sheet music was just a little inside joke among the chapel's designers. Stonemasons were always doing that—endowing an angel with the face of a favorite aunt, or a skeleton with the face of a mother-in-law. They didn't necessarily care if anyone ever made the connection. It was enough to leave a little part of oneself behind.

-

The 13 melodies that Stuart Mitchell derived from the chapel's 213 stone cubes are attractive and intriguing, but they don't form a freestanding piece of music. For the Rosslyn code to become anything other than a curiosity, Stuart had to arrange the melodies into a fleshed-out piece of chamber music.

Mitchell originally experimented with combining melodies in counterpoint—two voices playing at the same time, complementing one another. His fascination with DNA gave him the idea that the melodies from crisscrossing arches might intertwine like a double helix. (This would be the second-most interesting DNA-related discovery to come out of Roslin: Dolly the sheep was cloned down the street.) The result, though, was cacophony, so he scrapped the idea in favor of a simpler one-melody-at-a-time approach.

Arranging and recombining music is a standard part of composition, and the role of the arranger varies widely. In an extreme case, a composer takes a simple theme and builds a whole new piece around it. One of Bach's most-popular works, his "Musical Offering," begins with a 21-note melody provided by King Frederick II of Prussia and grows into a piece that is unmistakably Bach's. At the opposite end of the spectrum, an arranger might take a complex piano piece—say, one of Franz Liszt's "Hungarian Rhapsodies"—and adapt it for an entire orchestra. Stuart Mitchell's composition, a four-part piece called the Rosslyn Motet, rests somewhere between these poles. The music is closely structured around the Rosslyn melodies, but the harmonizing voices and transitional melodies are his own.

"What he's given us is a basic melody to work with," Stuart said one night over dinner, alluding to Rosslyn's unidentified composer. We were eating at a restaurant called The Shore in upper Edinburgh, on the edge of the North Sea—a place he chose because it has a piano. "Some of the exercises I used to get in university and college were where you'd get about eight bars of Bach or Purcell, and underneath it was all blank. And you would add harmonies to this as Bach would have done or as Purcell would have done." Forming a listenable work out of the Rosslyn Code took a great deal of knowledge of musical history, but it was more technical than creative. You could think of it as Stuart taking an ancient strand of dinosaur DNA and mixing it with modern frog DNA to make a Stegosaurus.

Stuart Mitchell's Rosslyn Motet trades off between the instruments carved in stone in the chapel: lute, fiddle, organetto, bagpipes, and shawm (like an oboe). (The motet also includes several singers—a few of the angels are depicted singing from hymnals.) The melodies are difficult to categorize, but they generally resolve to a version of the A-minor scale. There are melodies that repeat the same note four or five times in a row and others that never resolve. The bagpipe line—one of the most moving melodies in the suite—ends on a D, which sounds tentative and incomplete until the next voice takes up the mantle. A G-sharp makes several guest appearances, giving parts of the piece the Halloween sound of a harmonic minor scale. Taken together, it's an elegantly structured sort of musical prayer, with each melody fitting neatly into an overarching voice that is solemn and arresting.

After dinner, we retired to the keyboard, where Stuart launched into an improvisation on the motet. He began soberly, running through the major themes. From there, his left hand propelled the piece into an extended blues solo over the Rosslyn chords, occasionally drifting back to motif. It was like "Fly Me to the Moon" in the hands of Oscar Peterson. From there he lands on "All the Things You Are," which later turned into the fantastically difficult first movement of Rachmaninoff's second piano concerto, followed by "Nice Work if You Can Get It"—an appropriate characterization of the Rosslyn composition, I think.

In his hands, the music of the cubes—whether an actual relic of the 15th century or an elaborate misreading of some wall decorations—sounds like the most natural thing in the world.

To hear piano renditions of five of Stuart Mitchell's melodies, click "Play Notes" on the interactive feature below. To hear the corresponding melody from Mitchell's finished product, "The Rosslyn Motet," click "Hear Motet." Mitchell took a few small liberties when arranging the melodies into a piece of chamber music. For example, he replaced the first note of the fourth melody with a B to match the opening notes of the first three melodies. He also replaced the last note of the fifth melody with a D, instead of an E, to lead more naturally into the next melody.


The Rosslyn Code
Weighing the evidence—is the chapel's code real or fake?

By Chris WilsonUpdated Friday, May 20, 2011, at 6:39 AM ET

The Rosslyn Motet emanates from the crypt as you walk into the chapel. It's playing from a modest little boom box, but the acoustics of the underground chambers are so magnificent that you can hear it clearly from anywhere inside. The already solemn tones sound especially ghostly when the chapel is deserted and you can see your breath, even under the heat lamps.

In the five years since the Mitchells announced to the world that they had solved the Rosslyn code, they've received modest recognition in the media and respectable sales of a professional recording of the work. They shrewdly timed their announcement of the solution to the release of the movie adaptation of The Da Vinci Code, giving reporters and producers a ready-made news peg. Over time, however, their story has faded to a curiosity. Interest in whether it is real has waned.

Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou in The Da Vinci Code. Click image to expand.Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou in The Da Vinci Code. The Rosslyn Chapel scenes were filmed on location.

Stuart and Tommy Mitchell say they don't much care if people believe them. On my last day in Roslin, I met Stuart and his friend Ian Robertson at the chapel. Robertson and his co-author Mark Oxbrow wrote by far the best modern book on Rosslyn Chapel, Rosslyn and the Grail. Mostly, Robertson and Oxbrow debunk the various rumors and legends that have attached themselves to the chapel, including the crazy ones about the Holy Grail and Jesus' head. But when it comes to the Rosslyn Motet, they're more circumspect. "One 'code' that may actually exist within Rosslyn," Robertson and Oxbrow write, "is the mysterious carved cubes that ornament some of the arches in the chapel."

Robertson and Stuart Mitchell became friends after Rosslyn and the Grail went to press, but Robertson remains ambivalent about his buddy's theory. When we met at the chapel, the first thing Robertson asked me was whether I thought the code was real. I said I didn't know, but that it at least seemed plausible.

That's the maddening thing about the Rosslyn code. When you're standing under the cubes, watched over by the 13-piece angelic band, it all seems so obvious that you wonder why it took 500 years for someone to unearth the music. But when you go back to assemble the evidence, you realize that the Rosslyn Motet sits on top of a mountain of shaky assumptions. Is the resemblance between the cubes and Chladni patterns a coincidence? Could any random set of notes start sounding human-made when you hear them hundreds of times? Was it really feasible for these melodies to be produced in the 15th century.

Against these doubts, only the music stands as counter-evidence. The Rosslyn code's highest-profile critic is probably Warwick Edwards, a music professor at the University of Glasgow. Edwards, who attended the first public performance of the Rosslyn Motet in the chapel itself, judged that the final product didn't resemble any medieval music he'd ever heard. To that point, however, I don't believe you can judge the Mitchells' creation based on how medieval it sounds—this is more an issue of Stuart Mitchell's orchestration than it is with how the original melodies have been transcribed.

The code has several online doubters, the most prolific of which is the anonymous author of the blog "The BS Historian," who has written skeptically about the Mitchells nearly a dozen times in the past few years. The author's criticisms cover the gamut of the Mitchells' story, from the historical holes to the matching of Rosslyn's symbols to documented Chladni patterns. Others have parroted this skepticism. A commenter on the website of high-profile skeptic James Randi sums up a common reaction quite concisely: "I strongly suspect that this is yet another case of seeing what one wants to see, with heavy confirmation bias."

If the Mitchells' theory is indeed fabricated, it's still fascinating that they coaxed compelling, nonrandom-sounding melodies out of the Rosslyn Chapel's stone cubes. Whether any random series of notes can sound beautiful in the hands of an expert arranger is a tough question to answer, though one footnote to the Rosslyn story tilts me a bit towards the Mitchells' side.

On my first morning at the chapel, before I'd met Stuart, a tour guide named Roger told me he'd heard that many of the cubes had fallen from the ceiling over the years. A stonemason, Roger believed, had replaced them on the ceiling at random as part of a restoration a few decades prior. Uh oh, I thought—I've crossed the Atlantic to investigate a centuries-old song that's younger than I am.

As it turns out, the stonemason, an elderly man name Joe Lang, still lives a few miles from the chapel. Lang later told me the real story: Just a few of the cubes at the chapel's northern end had fallen—"no more than seven or eight" out of 213. But I didn't know this when I talked to Stuart over dinner that first night. "I absolutely hate the end of the music, because it's the only part that doesn't make any sense," he told me. If, in fact, the last few cubes are out of place, this might explain why.

-

After three days in Roslin, I still wasn't totally convinced by the Mitchells' story. In search of more evidence, I paid a visit to the Scottish National Library in Edinburgh. I wanted to see the manuscript on chivalry and warfare that William St. Clair, the chapel's founder, commissioned from Sir Gilbert Hay—the man Tommy and Stuart Mitchell believe might be responsible for Rosslyn Chapel's carvings. The Hay manuscript is well guarded. To see one of Scotland's most-treasured artifacts, you have to get two senior curators to sign off on the request; at that point, the manuscript must be delivered from a separate location.

Hay's 500-year-old words are penned in the elegant handwriting of a professional scribe, and are more or less impossible for a lay reader to decipher. In many places, the book has been idly vandalized. The Curroy family, later owners of the manuscript, took the liberty of doodling in the margins, practicing their signatures and drawing little hands with pointing fingers.

The very first page in the tome is a half-size sheet with some incomprehensible script on the front. When I turned it over, however, I saw something flabbergasting: a nine-note melody sketched out on a familiar five-line staff.
Image
Was this incredible proof that Stuart and Tommy Mitchell had been right all along? I compared these nine notes to the score of the Rosslyn Motet, however, and I didn't turn up a match. I sent the image to Stuart, and he pointed out that there was a link—the notes in the manuscript pass through the same scale as most of the melodies he decoded. It's not a strong connection, but it's something.

Alas, Oxford University's Sally Mapstone—who wrote her dissertation on Hay's work—told me this was all wishful thinking. The manuscript in the Scottish National Library did not belong to Sir Gilbert Hay; it was copied about 40 years later for a St. Clair descendant. Mapstone identified the script above the music as 18th-century. Unless another detective found himself on the same trail, it's probably just a tantalizing coincidence.

-

More than 500 years after the Rosslyn Chapel was built, codes continue to fascinate and confound us. Back in November, the New York Times ran a profile of Jim Sanborn, the artist responsible for one of the most famous unsolved codes of modern times. It is called "Kryptos," and it lives on a copper sculpture at CIA headquarters in Langley, Va. The serpentine installation contains a long series of letters broken into four parts, with each section encrypted using a different method. The first three sections have been solved, but the fourth has proved to be so confounding that Sanborn felt compelled to give the Times a six-letter clue in the hope that it would hurry along the process. He's sick of dealing with it.
Image
Kryptos code. Click image to expand.Kryptos consists of four different substitution codes, in which each letter represents one letter in the solution. One of the four remains unsolved.

When I got back from Scotland, I showed Sanborn some images of the cubes. He seemed to think they might be the work of a cryptographer. The trouble with the chapel's cipher, he said, was that the act of solving it doesn't prove it was a cipher in the first place. It's virtually impossible to crack the fourth part of Kryptos and get the wrong answer—the odds that the same code could produce two different coherent passages of text is functionally zero. (This hasn't prevented people from confronting Sanborn with outlandish solutions, sometimes on his lawn.) While Sanborn told me that Kryptos has meaning beyond the passages, he verified that—unlike the alleged Rosslyn Code—you don't need any information outside the letters themselves to crack it.

Since there are only 12 unique symbols, it's unlikely someone else will find a written message in the Rosslyn cubes. Anything is possible, but I think the book on the stone cubes is closed. Either the Rosslyn Motet is a 500-year-old musical message, or the cubes mean nothing.

But perhaps that's not the point. The chapel's designer, I'm sure, would be pleased to know that we're still engaged by his creation—pondering what it means and what he wanted us to see. By happy coincidence, I had just finished reading an exquisite little novel by the British author J. L. Carr, A Month in the Country. The narrator, a World War I veteran, is a restorer of medieval paintings that had been whitewashed over by a disapproving churchman. This line of work takes him to a tiny settlement in northern England, where he slowly chips away at a canvas. As he persists, the original artwork—a masterful depiction of the Judgment—comes into focus:

Here I was, face to face with a nameless painter reaching from the dark to show me what he could do, saying to me as clear as words, "If any part of me survives from time's corruption, let it be this. For this was the sort of man I was."


Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Bruce Dazzling » Thu May 26, 2011 10:12 am

The Mitchells have a website, where they sell 'The Rosslyn Motet' CDs.

The Rosslyn Motet - (Complete Version - 2010) Cat:SMMRM432

Music Composed/Realised by Thomas.J.Mitchell

Produced and Scored by Stuart Mitchell

English into Latin translations by Virginia Avalon

This is your opportunity to own the complete version of the Rosslyn Motet as yet unheard in its complete form. The score has been revised to reflect in the greatest clarity the comparison between the cube symbols and the application of Chladni Patterns.

The CD also includes Stuart Mitchell's incredible account of the discoveries made in the 3 years after their translation of the music. Discover the Chladni Sound Patterns that set the score in stone for over 550 years. Musicologist and author Richard Merrick provides some fascinating incites into the natural laws of music and resonance which explains how the ancients knew about and incorporated these sciences of sound and geometry into there lives and art.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby seemslikeadream » Thu May 26, 2011 10:43 am

^^^^
THANKS
Bruce Dazzling
Mazars and Deutsche Bank could have ended this nightmare before it started.
They could still get him out of office.
But instead, they want mass death.
Don’t forget that.
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Re: The Rosslyn Code The real mystery lurking in the chapel

Postby Seamus OBlimey » Thu May 26, 2011 5:11 pm

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