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Lo Pan and 28Hsiu:

This Lo Pan contains 19 parts (compare the 19x19 Wei-Qiboard).

Beginning at the center, they are:

1. a compass needle in the Central Pool of Heaven;

2. the 8 Trigrams in Correct Needlealignment and Later Heaven sequence (in the above image of the LoPan, the South-pointing compass needle points to the South Trigram ofthe Earlier Heaven Sequence, which is the Northwest IntercardinalPoint of the Later Heaven sequence) (compare the Cliffordsequence of the 8Trigrams);

3. 24 sectors in CorrectNeedle alignment, containing the 9Moving Stars, which are the 7 Starsof the Big Dipper plus 2 Assistants, which are near Mizar,the middle of the 3 handle stars. Mizar is about 88 light years away,with magnitude 2.27. Alcor, the first Assistant, and the 8th of the 9Moving Stars, with magnitude 4.03, appears from Earth to be only 11minutes 48 seconds away from Mizar so that it is hard to see them asseparate stars without excellent eyesight or a telescope. Alcor andMizar are both members of the Ursa Major group, and share the propermotion of the group. They are separated by at least a quarter of alight year.

Mizar is a visualbinary star. The binarystar pair, called Mizar A (magnitude2.27) and Mizar B (magnitude 3.95), orbit each other. Mizar B is thesecond Assistant, and the 9th of the 9 Moving Stars.

Mizar (Mizar A and Mizar B) was the firstvisual binary system to be resolved by Europeans using telescopes, byRiccioli in 1650.

However, the resolution of Mizar A and the9th Moving Star, Mizar B, may have been known to the Chinese muchearlier. As Needham says (vol 4, pages 113 and 114): "... In sum,therefore, we may be justified in concluding that in the+1st century, and probably as far back as the -3rd century, biconvexlenses of glass could be artificiallymade. ... About +520 envoys ofFu-Sang are said to have arrived in China, bringing with them aprecious stone suitable for observation of the sun of the size of amirror, measuring over a foot in circumference, and as transparent asglass; looking through it in bright sunlight, the palace buildingscould be very clearly distinguished. ..." Needham indicates that thelocation of the land of Fu-Sang is not known, and it is not evenknown whether the "palace buildings" referred to buildings on Earth,or to astronomical phenomena such as sunspots.

Both Mizar A and Mizar B arespectroscopicbinary stars, and Mizar B has beenshown astrometrically to be a triple star (comparethe astrometric binary star Sirius),so that Mizar is a 5-star system. As Alcor is a spectroscopicbinary star, the Mizar-Alcorasterism is a 7-star system at the middle of the handle of the 7-starBig Dipper.

4. 48 sectors in Correct Needlealignment;

5. 24 sectors, the Correct Needle EarthPlate Circle, containing the 4 characters of the 4 Trigrams of theLater Heaven Intercardinal Points, 8 of the 10 Heavenly Stems, andthe 12 Earthly Branches;

6. 48 sectors in Correct Needlealignment;

7. 72 sectors in Correct Needle alignment,60 of them containing the Stem-Branch Cycle of 60 = 5x12;

8. 120 sectors in Correct Needle alignment,48 of them containing 4x12 = 48 Stem-Branch pairs;

9. 24 sectors, the Central Needle Man (InnerHeaven) Plate Circle, containing the 4 characters of the 4 Trigramsof the Later Heaven Intercardinal Points, 8 of the 10 Heavenly Stems,and the 12 Earthly Branches, shifted 7.5 degrees East of South fromthe Correct Needle Earth Plate Circle;

10. 120 sectors in Central Needle alignment,48 of them containing 4x12 = 48 Stem-Branch pairs;

11. 60 sectors in the 5 Element alignment, containing theStem-Branch Cycle of 60 = 5x12 in the same order as Circle 17;

12. 60 sectors in the 5 Element alignment;

13. 24 sectors in Seam Needlealignment;

14. 24 sectors in Seam Needlealignment;

15. 24 sectors, the Seam Needle Outer HeavenPlate Circle, containing the 4 characters of the 4 Trigrams of theLater Heaven Intercardinal Points, 8 of the 10 Heavenly Stems, andthe 12 Earthly Branches, shifted 7.5 degrees West of South from theCorrect Needle Earth Plate Circle;

16. 120 sectors in Seam Needle alignment, 48of them containing 4x12 = 48 Stem-Branch pairs;

17. 60 sectors in the 5 Element alignment, containing theStem-Branch Cycle of 60 = 5x12 in the same order as Circle 12;

18. 60 sectors constituting the 5 Element alignment, 58 of themcontaining the 5 Elements;

19. 28 Hsiu, covering 365.25 du (Chinesedegrees),

as shown above in a chart prepared by David B. Kelley (compare the representation of the stars by the Giza pyramids):   Eastern Palace - total of 75 du more or less:1.  Chio, Horn, includes Spica, Arcturus,     and the handle of the Big Dipper, 12 du plus;     in ESE Trigram and Correct and Seam Needle Keng;  2.  Khang, Neck, 9 du plus; 3.  Ti, Base or Foundation, 16 du minus; 4.  Fang, Room, 5 du; 5.  Hsin, Heart, includes Antares, 6 du; 6.  Wei, Tail, 18 du; 7.  Chi, Winnowing-Basket,     includes part of Center of Milky Way, 9 du exact;     (Wei and Chi together correspond to the game Wei-Qi.) Northern Palace - total of 92 du more or less:  8.  Nan Tou, Southern Dipper,     includes part of Center of Milky Way, 22 du plus; 9.  Chhien Niu, Cowboy, includes Altair, Northern Milky Way,     and Chih Nuu, Vega, Weaving Girl, 7 du, 10. Hsu Nuu, Servant Girl, 11 du; 11. Hsu, Void, includes Sal-al-sud, 9 du minus; 12. Wei, Rooftop or Danger, 16 du; 13. Shih, House, 18 du minus; 14. Pi, Eastern Wall, 9 du;  Western Palace - total of 81 du more or less:15. Khuei, Stride, including M31, 18 du;  16. Lou, Mound, 12 du plus; 17. Wei, Stomach, 15 du minus; 18. Mao, Pleiades, 11 du; 19. Pi, Net or Hyades, 16 du exactly; 20. Tsui, Turtle, (extent not stated); 21. Shen, Orion, including Rim of Milky Way, 9 du;  Southern Palace - total of 104 du more or less:22. Ching, Eastern Well, including Rim of Milky Way,     30 du minus; 23. Kuei, Ghost and Ghost-Carriage, including Praesepe,     (extent not stated);24. Liu, Willow, 13 du exact; 25. Hsing, Seven Stars, includes Niao, Alfard, Bird Star,     6 du;26. Chang, Net, 17 du plus; 27. I, Wings, 20 du minus; 28. Chen, Chariot, 18 du plus.   The total stated extent of all Four Palaces is 352 du, but no extent is stated for Hsiu 20 and 23, and some Hsiu are stated to be more (plus) or less (minus), so it is reasonable to say that the total du is probably the traditional value of 365.25 du.   Here is a comparison of the extent in du, Chinese degrees, according to the Lo Pan with the extent according to the Huai Nan Tzu:            Lo Pan         Huai Nan Tzu  1.         12 +             12  2.          9 +              9     3.         16 -             154.          5                55.          6                56.         18               187.          9               11.258.         22 +             26 9.          7                810.        11               1211.         9 -             1012.        16               1713.        18 -             1614.         9                9            15.        18               16  16.        12 +             1217.        15 -             14 18.        11               1119.        16               16 20.  (extent not stated)     2 21.         9                922.        30 -             3323.  (extent not stated)     4 24.        13               1525.         6                7 26.        17 +             1827.        20 -             1828.        18 +             17  East       75 +/-           75.25North      92 +/-           98West       81 +/-           80South     104 +/-          112  Total    352 +/-           365.25 

The Seam Needle sectors are shifted West of South from the CorrectNeedle sectors by 7.5 degrees, or half the 15 degree width of a24-part sector.

Therefore, the total width of a given 24-part sector includingboth the Correct Needle sector and its Seam Needle counterpart is22.5 degrees, or roughly the inclination of the spin axis of theEarth to the axis of the Plane of the Ecliptic of the orbit of theEarth.

The shift of the Central Needle sectors similarly gives a 22.5degree total width of a given 24-part sector, shifted East of Southinstead of West of South.

Perhaps the shifts were introduced to take into account thedifference between the poles of the spin axis of the Earth and thepoles perpendicular to the Plane of the Ecliptic of the orbit of theEarth, with both East and West shifts being needed to take intoaccount all the different directions of the Earth's spin axis polesas the Earth's spin axis goes through the Precessionof the Equinoxes, a 26,000 year cycle stabilized by the Earth'sinteractions with the Moon and the Sun.


The Earth Plate on which this Lo Pan is placed is a circular glasstable top resting on an octagonal base containing an 8-sided mirroredchamber in which a globe of the Earth is placed, and representing the8 Immortals and the 8 Trigrams in theClifford Sequence:

The 8 side mirrors, along with the bottom mirror and the mirror ofthe glass table top, reflect in the 10 directions.

"Fa Tsang (643-712), the Chinese master of Hwa Yen Buddhism,prepared for the Empress Wu an octagonal room completely covered withmirrors, including the floor and ceiling. In the center he placedanimage of the Buddha with a burning torch. He brought the Empressinto this room and said (in part): Your Majesty, this is ademonstration of Totality in the Dharmadhatu. In each and everymirror within this room you will find the reflections of all theother mirrors with the Buddha's image in them. ... The principle ofinterpenetration and containment is clearly shown by thisdemonstration. Right here we see an example of one in all and all inone - ... [The interpenetration is like the NonLocalityof Quantum Theory.]

"The principle of simultaneous arising of different realms is soobvious here that no explanation is necessary. ... [Thedifferent realms are like the Many-Worldsof Quantum Theory.]

"As for the principle of the nonobstruction of space, it can bedemonstrated in this manner ... he took a crystal ball ... Yourmajesty, now we see all the mirrors and their reflections within thissmall crystal ball. Here we have an example of the small containingthe large, as well as the large containing the small. ... [Thesmall containing the large is like the Reflexivityof Octonions and is related to Fractals.]

"As for the nonobstruction of times, the past entering the futureand the future entering the past ... One must reach a different levelto be capable of witnessing a demonstration such as that."[An amplitude from the pastentering into a transaction with an amplitude from thefuture is the structure of Cramer'sTransactional Interpretation of Quantum Theory that isused in the D4-D5-E6 physicsmodel.]

One way to do a different-level time demonstration might be toregard the 8 mirror sides as the 8-dimensional spacetime of thevector space of the D4 Clifford AlgebraCl(0,8). Then 4 of them might be regarded as 4-dimensional physicalspacetime, and 1 of those 4 might be regarded as representing time.The time mirror itself would be the present transaction between thepast inside and the future mirror-image side.

The mirror floor and mirror ceiling would then represent the 9thand 10th dimensions of the vector space of the D5 Clifford Algebra,with signature (1,1) producing a NonEuclidean Hyperbolic LorentzE8 lattice /\9,1.

Since the mirrors produce orientation-reversing reflections, theycorrespond to Spinor Transformations and include, but are not limitedto, Rotations. Just as combining the Spin(0,8) vector representationwith its D4 adjoint representation produces the D5 Lie Algebra whoseEuclidean version is Spin(0,10) and whose Hyperbolic version isSpin(1,9), combining the Spin(0,8) spinor representation with D5produces the E6 Lie Algebra, thus combining all 4 fundamentalrepresentations of Spin(0,8) and completing the Lie Algebra chainD4-D5-E6 of the D4-D5-E6 physicsmodel.


All Lo Pan are not the same. Each has its own personality. Forexample, DavidB. Kelley, who enhanced the above Lo Pan image with Photoshop,has described a different Lo pan in this gifimage.

Sources and References:

Burnham's Celestial Handbook (3 vols.), Dover (1978).

Encyclopaedia Britannica.

8 Immortals Go Across the Sea, Chinese International Video Corp.,Asia TV Limited (1985).

Chinese Astrology, by Derek Walters, The Aquarian Press(1992).

The Living Earth Manual of Feng-Shui, by Stephen Skinner, Penguin(Arkana) (1982).

Chinese Symbolism and Art Motifs, by C. A. S. Williams, Charles E.Tuttle Company (1974).

Chinese Ivory Scupture, by Warren Cox, Bonanza (1946).

The Book of Changes and the Unchanging Truth, by Hua-Ching Ni,Sevenstar Communications Group (1994).

The Taoist Body, by Kristofer Schipper, (English translation of Lecorps taoiste (1982)), Un. of California Press (1993).

Taoism, by Eva Wong, Shambala (1997).

Joseph Needham, Science and Civilization in China, CambridgeUniversity Press. Needham's Science and Civilization in China is manylarge volumes. A somewhat updated introductory summary is Li, Qi, andShu, by Ho Peng Yoke (University of Washington Press, 1987).

The Fa Tsang quotation is from Garma C. C. Chang, The BuddhistTeaching of Totality, Pennsylvania State University Press 1971, asquoted by Saul-Paul Sirag in an Appendix to The Roots ofConsciousness, by Jefffrey MIshlove, Council Oak Books, 1993).

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