Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Golden Ratio

 The piano keyboard is a repeating pattern of eight white keys interspersed with five black keys. That statement is dull unless you see its association with the Golden Ratio.  Eight and five and their sum, fifteen, are part of a number sequence related to the Golden Ratio, and this numerical patterning is found often in nature. Before you raise an eyebrow at this seemingly numerological statement, take some time to acquaint yourself with the subject.
While it has nothing to do with numerology and is merely an observed aspect of nature, you begin to realize why people would come up with this idea that approaches a superstitious character.

The actual Golden Ratio number (rounded) is 1.618.  The following are called "claims," but so many observations and some undeniable associations strongly suggests the truths of the increasingly popular "Intelligent Design" movement:

  Bees follow it in their reproduction: their male to female ratio is golden.  It is seen in the architecture of flowers, stems and leaves as well as skeletal structures.  The spirals of DNA molecules, cyclones, shells and galaxies follow it.  Polls show a face is more attractive if it reflects the golden ratio.  It was even observed in the shape of  woman's uterus at its most fertile. (!)

Famous artists use it.  Renaissance painters were obsessed with it.  And it isn't a recent discovery: the ancients used it, as seen by the architectural of the Pyramids and the Parthenon.

Read more HERE about The Golden Ratio in music.

The intersection of music and science are fields that I know almost nothing about but find absolutely fascinating.   When it comes to my musical work, I'm more a laborer than a philosopher.  I practice, practice, practice, and then teach how to practice. But here and there I can dabble in musical metaphysics and science, and write a little post to hopefully inspire greater appreciation for the wonderful gift of music.