Trepidation. Intense trepidation. I feel like packing my stuffs & head back home into my solitude again but that’ll hurt the girls. Today needs to end quick.


There was some confusion in the thread my last facebook post, so I want to clarify a little bit about my opinion on the flower of life.

There is no question that, along with the vesica piscis, the golden rectangle & the pentagon, the flower of life is one of the most important structures in all of geometry. It is the beginning, literally, of almost all geometric design, including at least 50% of my work. It has been used by artists, architects & mathematicians for 1000s of years. One basically HAS to draw it to draw most other figures with a ruler & compass.

However, the nearly religious reverence given to it is relatively new. It was basically popularized in the 90s by the well-meaning but often inaccurate Drunvalo Melchizedek (here’s some good fact-checking by a very accomplished euclidean geometer of Drunvalo’s most popular book: While it appears in decorative motifs back into antiquity, it’s positioning now as a icon or idol worshiped on it’s own has little historical precedent.

I have no problem with people loving the shape, using it in their work, or even worshiping it. What I want people to recognize is that the reasons it was loved and used for 1000s of years is because of what it DOES… it’s practical usefulness for design, architecture, art & mathematics. It was always treated as a MEANS, not an END, and rightfully so. When we make something too concrete, we take away it’s flexibility, it’s brilliance! It’s like when Che Guevara became a t-shirt, and lost his meaning as a revolutionary.

This is the very essence of the zen quote of “If you see Buddha on the road, kill him." Buddha never wanted you to worship him, he only wanted to help you in discovering the essence of reality around us all… He was a MEANS, not an END… a verb, not a noun. A becoming…

So, by all means, make art that moves you, plunk the flower of life anywhere you feel it, and who cares how advanced you make it?! I started out very simply in my geometry.

But know that the power of the Flower of Life is best found by picking up a compass, drawing it, and then keeping exploring! Geometry is a living art, and there is more it will teach us.

The geometric masters of the past didn’t always stop with 7 circles, and neither should we. I’ll keep sharing new tricks I find, and look forward to seeing yours.

image: “Flower of Life Islamic Star Tiling” by Daud Sutton.
Daud’s awesome work is published by Wooden Books.

I know myself better than others [know me], and my Lord is more knowledgeable of me than myself. O God! Do not take me to task for what they say, and make me better than what they think of me, and forgive me for those sins which they are unaware of.

 وَ قَالَ عليه السلام وَ مَدَحَهُ قَوْمٌ فِى وَجْهِهِ فَقَالَ: اللَّهُمَّ إِنَّكَ أَعْلَمُ بِى مِنْ نَفْسِى وَ أَنَا أَعْلَمُ بِنَفْسِى مِنْهُمْ. اللَّهُمَّ اجْعَلْنَا خَيْراً مِمَّا يَظُنُّونَ وَ اغْفِرْ لَنَا مَا لَا يَعْلَمُونَ .

Amirul Mou’mineen, Ali ibn Abi Talib Alayhis Salaam when others would praise him

[Nahjul Balagha, Hadith 100]

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He’s been in this position for the last 15mins & counting. Apa nak jadi anak tiri jantan aku ni… Cats by Isyaffi Md Isah on EyeEm

Model quality… Cats by Isyaffi Md Isah on EyeEm