# The Fibonacci Series, Phi, Shapes, and Numbers: Sacred Geometry in Nature and Culture

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## The Fibonacci Sequence Connection

The Fibonacci Sequence is present in the nautilus shell. Image by jitze

How then is the Fibonacci sequence related to Sacred Geometry? The Fibonacci sequence is a series of numbers in which each number is the sum of the previous two. It starts with 0 and 1,which equals 1. Then 1 plus 2 equals 3, 2 plus 3 equals 5, and so on. Why are these numbers significant? Simply, they are nature’s numbering system and they give rise to the mystical Phi, what is referred to as the “golden section” or “golden ratio.” It should be noted that the ratio of successive pairs from the Fibonacci series tends toward Phi or 1.618 and out of this ratio comes the golden rectangle and the spiral shape, which is the most widespread shape in the universe.

The Fibonacci numbers are represented practically everywhere. In the petals on a flower, or the arrangement of leaves along a stem, you will find this sequence of numbers. The petals on most flowers display one of the Fibonacci numbers. The numbers also appear in certain parts of sea shell formations. Parts of the human body also reveal these ratios, including the five fingers, and a thumb on each hand. Fibonacci also can be seen in a piano that produces harmony through a beautiful music. A piano has one keyboard with five black keys (sharps and flats) arranged in groups of two and three, and eight white keys (whole tones) for the 13 chromatic musical octaves.

The Phi or 1.618 was described in the past as a divine number because it signifies beauty and harmony. Egyptian architects made use of Phi relationships in the construction of temples and the Great Pyramid, and so did the Greeks in their Parthenon in Athens, and the Europeans, for their Gothic cathedrals.

#### The Sacred Geometry

Simply described, the Sacred Geometry arises out of the set of numbers from the Fibonacci series or the “golden ratio.”  Through the years since ancient times, it has been significantly used in the planning and construction of religious structures (churches, temples, mosques, tabernacles, altars and monuments), as well as sacred spaces (like holy wells and sacred groves), and the creation of religious art.

Consciously or not, humans seem to be genetically programmed to respond to these sacred numbers, ratios, and shapes. Thanks to Italian mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci for introducing his famous Fibonacci sequence, its associated mystical ratio, the Phi, and paving the way for the shapes that greatly defined the world’s magnificent structures and amazing wonders.

The Fibonacci Sequence appears in both art and nature. Image by labcstm

Fibonacci numbers, ratios and shapes have been used to explain creation, growth and harmony – from a number of petals on a flower and grandiose architecture, to a spiraling galaxy. And to music lovers, it’s one beautiful harmony of musical scale that pleases the ear and ultimately the spirit.  A sacred geometry!

Sources:

Bradley, P.  Great Mysteries. New Holland (2010).
Calter, P. Polygons, Tilings, & Sacred Geometry. Dartmouth. Accessed September 22, 2011.
Sacred Geometry. Spiraloflight. Accessed  September 22, 2011.
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