CIRCLE IN AFRICAN TRADITION (1)
“Circle” (C14 ‘small ring’) is from Latin ‘Circus’—referencing an ancient Roman arena where chariot races were run in a round path. For Very Ancient Africans it was the simplest and most useful plane curve—alone possessing the property of being exactly alike at all points. Such is provable by putting a dot on a piece of paper–drawing a line that curves so as to always be the same distance from the dot–and then noting the line finally reaches the place where it started. On the paper, one sees a circle with the dot in the center. Also, any part of the curved line will be exactly the same distance from the center–a distance called the Radius. The Diameter is the distance across the circle through its center. If the curve is turned in its plane about its center, the new position taken up is the same as the original position. This property constitutes the “roundness” of the circle and distinguishes it from other plane curves. How these realizations resulted was by Very Ancient African priest-astronomers mathematically studying the dome of the sky (“Dome” means house of God) in c20,000 BC and concluding the “Circle” is of particular prominence as a major symbol of Naturalness. They charted the steady moving lights among the fixed stars and realized the heavenly bodies moved in circles, thereby establishing Circumstantial Evidence for Cosmic Order. From that they Inferred (intuitive correspondence leaps) this accounted for the apparent “eternal” circles of life on earth. Ancient African Sages symbolized this knowledge into the Circle to stand for the Base of the “What it is,” “What it does,” and “How it appears” philosophical essence of African Tradition.
My interpretation of Ancient African literature is that by being aware of and understanding these sky and earth relationships enabled them to infer that inside these complementary opposites were the essence principles of Feminine/Masculine—principles emanating out of a “ONENESS”. They reasoned that “One” is presumably without gender–neither even nor odd—and cannot be reduced to anything smaller without resulting in fractions. In this context, “One” is Absolute—“One” is ALL—“One” is complete in itself (Wholism)—“One” is the Background for the Cosmos. Thus, they called the Cosmic Organism the first manifestation out of the Background of the Ocean of Nun—the Subjective Realm—in which Feminine/Masculine principles reside in “Transitional Oneness” form. That God’s Divine Plan and the Nun realm of existence are about Spiritual “Oneness” was crystalized by Tehuti saying: “All is One and All is in One” (Ramacharaka, Gnani Yoga p105). Since “The All” is an Ancient African term for God, The “One” and The “All” both equate to God. Yet, in another context of “All is One,” the “All” equates to the circular collection of God’s creatures and creations and that probably refers to the “Transient Oneness” of the Ocean of Nun. However, “All is in One” refers to God’s creatures and creations being a manifestation of God in the physical world and that could be thought of as Unity because it indicates separate things have come together as an interdependent team—with its resultant Harmony and Balance being Unity components throughout its scope. To elaborate, African Tradition says Harmony is achieved through balance of complementary forces, and it is impossible to have a functioning whole without harmonious interaction and the existence of balancing pairs. So, this is the Circle’s “What it is.”
In short, the “Circle” was deemed the symbol of primal unity derived from a “Oneness.” “Primordial” means: (1) first in time; (2) original; (3) elementary (at a Base level) containing “the All in All”; and (4) God’s androgynic protoplast–the ultimate living Spiritual Elements’ metabolic substance in a Spiritual form–itself possessing a Cosmic metabolic nature. This protoplast, being in every living and moving creature, is called Protoplasm. The multiplicity of all these things are differentiations of one Energy/Matter Source and exemplifies correspondence directed by the one Cosmic Consciousness Mind. Thus, the symbolic Circle’s Primordial aspects are complementary opposites which have two fundamental shaping forces. First, “Oneness” corresponds to the Unity underlying the Cosmos. Second is the dynamic forces that differentiate this Unity into apparent multiplicity. Both confirm that whatever springs out of these circles is Natural–from which the Sages inferred that nothing real could exist outside the Cosmic Circle of Wholism. jabaileymd.com