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Why Track a Cycle of 7 Days?


By: A-Quest-for-Creation-Answers

Revision/Update: April 8, 2008 (+7)

Copyright © 2007-2016 James D. Dwyer

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Early astronomers--those who flourished in and prior to the second century--left record of a once reckoned circle (or cycle) of sevens.

The ancient practice of tracking time in units of seven (or by sevens) can be especially be recognized from writings left by an Hebrew astronomer and philosopher named Aristobolus. According to this respective author: "All things were made by sevens in the starry heaven; and go round in circles in all the years succeeding one another" (refer to Eusebius's "Praeparatio Evangelica", 13:12,13).

Subsequent sections will attempt to more fully show that some among the astronomers of the past appear to have exactly been on target. It seems that the spin and orbital rates of the Earth, Moon, and Sun literally do interface with cycles of sevens.

Ancient Astronomy

Certain historic documents and various artifacts tend to indicate that the ancients held knowledge of a system for tracking the divisions of the zodiac (12 per year). Significant here is that a cycle, or a circle, of seven appears to have been integral for mapping 12 divisions of the annual zodiac--as is further shown below.

In example, a pictorial calendar used in and prior to the time of Titus (A.D. 79-81) depicts both the signs of the zodiac as well as 7 of the planetary gods (Attilio Degrassi, Inscriptions Italiae, 1963, XIII, pp. 308-309, plate 56). Some historic artifacts additionally indicate that an arrangement of holes (or sticks, or pegs) would have been used to augment charting the circle of the zodiac and the 7 planetary domains. It is here significant that early zodiac calendars commonly contained two vertically positioned columns that contained 30 numbered holes.

photo of a stick calendar
The shown photograph is of a replica largely based upon a stick calendar from Saint Felicity oratory in Rome.

It is clear that time cycles were sometimes tracked by the moving of a peg relative to a specific sequence of fixed markers or holes. (Updating of the location of a peg would have been required on a daily basis).

In exploring more of how the ancients would have used the above shown calendar, a knob or a stick would have been moved in correspondence with the top row comprised of 7 holes. Another knob or stick would have been moved in correspondence with the two columns consisting of 30 numbered holes. Yet a third knob would have been periodically moved around the center circle of holes to track the circle of the zodiac.

From the 30 numbered holes shown on certain among the early used zodiac-calendars, it seems clear that a 30-day cycle might have once been reckoned in association with 12 divisions in each annual cycle.

The cited row of 7 holes that appears on some historic artifacts does almost surely indicate that a planetary cycle of 7 days was simultaneously being time tracked--as is further shown below.

A somewhat similiar interpretation concerning a track of 12 signs of the zodiac and 7 planetary dominions appears to have been held among the early Hebrews. Knowledge of the 12 signs and 7 divisions can especially be recognized from the content of 1st-century texts published by Flavius Josephus. Writings attributed to this respective author have description of the lighting (each night) of 7 lamps by the Temple priesthood. These respective lamps were noted by Josephus to have been held in place by a lampstand that "spread itself into as many branches as there are planets, including the Sun among them. It terminated in 7 heads, in one row, all standing parallel to one another; and these branches carried 7 lamps, one by one, in imitation of the number of the planets." (For more information, refer 'Antiquities of the Jews', Book 3:6,7). Josephus furthermore stated that Moses "secretly intimated the Decani, or 70 divisions of the planets; and as to the 7 lamps upon the lampstands, they referred to the course of the planets, of which that is the number... And for the 12 stones [worn by the priest], whether we understand by them the months, or whether we understand the like number of the signs of that circle which the Greeks call the Zodiac, we shall not be mistaken in their meaning." (ibid, 7,7). "Now, the 7 lamps signified the 7 planets; for so many there were springing out of the lampstand. Now, the 12 loaves that were upon the table signified the circle of the zodiac and the year... " (refer to 'Wars of the Jews', Book 5:5,5).;

Though knowledge of 7 planetary divisions appears to have been held among Middle Easten astronomers prior to the 1st century, the practice of counting the 7 planetary days by Romans probably didn't begin to catch-on until about the turn of the 2nd century. In example, the usage of the planetary week among the Romans was attested to by Dio Cassius (c. 200-220 CE) who wrote: "The dedication of the days to the seven stars which are called planets was established by Egyptians, and it spread also to all men not so very long ago... [This dedication now] prevails everywhere..." (Dio Cassius, Historia 37,18).

Of significance here is that more primal Babylonian and Egyptian priests appear to have reckoned a running cycle of 7 hours in association with 7 planetary gods. The god that ruled the first hour of each new day was consequently honored throughout that respective day. (The god that ruled the first hour of each new night was consequently honored throughout that respective night).

Through this peculiar interpretation of a running cycle of 7 hours, it can be recognized that after 168 hours (or after 7 days) the continuous track of 7 hours would have cycled 24 times. Thus, the once reckoned count of 7 hours can be recognized to have revolved or to have returned into the same alignment with the 24-hour day in a week cycle of 7 days.

The hourly sequence or order by which Romans believed the 7 planetary gods in turn ruled was: 1. Saturn; 2. Jupiter; 3. Mars; 4. Sun; 5. Venus; 6. Mercury; and 7. Moon. Those hours dominated by the god Saturn and the god Mars were considered to be time spans that were not beneficial for engaging in enterprise. Conversely, those hours influenced by the god Jupiter and the god Venus were deemed to promote fortune. (The hours dominated by the Sun, Mercury, and Moon were interpreted as not especially lucky or unlucky).

Thus, by way of example, commencing with the epoch of dawn on Saturn's day, the 1st hour of the cited 7 hour cycle would inherently have rotated into correspondence with the 1st hour of the day cycle. Consequently, the 1st hour (positioned at dawn) as well as the 8th hour on Saturn's day were hours that were not believed to be fortune. The 3rd hour and the 10th hour on Saturn's day (dominated by Mars) were likewise interpreted as unbeneficial. For more information concerning beneficial and unbeneficial hours of the cited 7-hour cycle, refer to 'The Chronography of 354 AD'.

The order of days by which Romans honored the 7 planetary gods began with Saturn's day (the 1st day) and continued with Sun's day (2nd day), Moon's day (3rd day), Mar's day (4th day), Mercury's day (5th day), Jupiter's day (6th day) and Venus' day (7th day). This early interpretation of a 7-hour cycle revolving throughout an ordered 7-day sequence appears to represent the origin of the modern week (a cycle of 7 days). In fact, modern Saturday does almost surely correspond with the rotation of Saturn's day (as it would have been tracked during the 4th century). From this premise it would be a true axiom to state the day sequence that rotates through Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday of the modern week is equivalent to the 7-day rotation of Sun's day, Moon's day, Mar's day, Mercury's day, Jupiter's day; and Venus' day as counted by the Romans.

Regardless of those interpretations held by the pagans concerning the dominion of days under 7 planetary gods, it isn't at all difficult to illustrate that the annual revolution can perfectly be correlated to a time map of sevens. Subsequently presented sections will then attempt to make it clear that each passing division of the tropical zodiac can effectively be measured and metered out (on the average) by simply keeping track of a cycle of 7 days.

Why count 7 days

A calendar that is fully functional for defining each passing tropical year can be formulated from a cyclical count of 7-days.

In fact, 100 percent of the length the tropical year (365.24219 days) can effectively be accounted for by accounting for cycles of weeks across a circuit of only 7 seasons (as further shown below).

The following diagram is illustrative of just how an arrangement of week units can be correlated to the seasons and ultimately to the limits of the tropical year (on average). The subsequently shown calendar (48 weeks) does happen to inherently cycle in perfect pace with the revolution of the annual circle:

------------------------------------------ A CALENDAR OF LUNAR DAYS AND WEEKS --------- ---------- ------------- Lunar Zodiac Solar Month Days Month Days --------- ---------- ------------- 1 1 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 2 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 3 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 4 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 5 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 6 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 7 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 8 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 9 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 10 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 11 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 12 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 --------- ---------- ------------- 6 days 336 days ------------------------------------------ The cited calendar count of 48 weeks does inherently pace the return of each passing year as long as specific additional weeks are routinely intercalated--as follows: 1. At 7th months (+ 1 week). 2. At 7th pentecontads (+ 1 week). 3. At 7th seasons (+1 week).

Note that a grid of 48 weeks (a calendar of weeks as diagrammed) can pace the return rate of each passing tropical year as long as the count of an additional week is routinely included (or intercalated).

Significant about the cited rate of 48 weeks (with added weeks) is that the resulting calendar rate averages out to be equal to 365.24232 days on an annual basis. To be specific, a count of 342 days can be correlated to each annual circle when the other days are accounting for in the context of the following time cycles:

The cited rate of 342 days with additional week cycles is then equal to a composite rate of 365.24232 days per year (rounded from expanded precision).

This all means the shown template of 48 weeks (and 6 days) can be fitted right on top of the span of time occupied by each tropical year. In essence, the weeks grid (as diagrammed) can just about exactly be correlated to each annual return (on the average) in the context of additionally counting a secondary rate of weeks:

-------------------------------------- ANNUAL RATE (48-Week Calendar) -------------------------------------- 336.00000 days (48 calendar weeks) + 23.24232 days (intercalated weeks) + 6.00000 days (lunar days) -------------------------------------- 365.24232 days per year (on average)

Then, to be completely specific about the feasibility of correlating the tropical year to a formal arrangement of days, the modern tropical year can be recognized to inherently revolve in pace with a time span equal to 365.24219 days while the shown calendar model renews (on the average) right in association with a parallel span of time (365.24232 days per year). Each passing tropical year is thus so exactly synchronized with the completion rate of the cited calendar (on the average) that skipping or inserting a calendar day is never required.

The rate of the modern tropical year does however clock at a tiny difference away from the average return of the cited weeks calendar. It is here significant that a difference of less than 1 second per month can be recited. However, it is also significant that the spin rate of the Earth appears to be slowing down by a fractional amount in correspondence with each passing century. The slowing spin factor thus indicates that the return of the tropical year would recently have been EXACTLY synchronized with a fixed count of weeks (as diagrammed and documented).

The Earth inherently spins 365 times per year, and the spin rate throughout recent millennia has slowed down at a rate of between 0.001 and 0.003 seconds per century. A given conclusion from these respective rates then follows: 1. A loss in the annual definition of at least 0.365 spin-seconds has been experienced (a per-century rate); and 2. The rate of 1 second of modern difference per month (12 seconds per year) when divided by a gain of 0.365 spin-seconds per century, points to a time of no (zero) difference with a calendar of weeks at only 33 centuries ago.

Time portal calendar

Six lunar days and 48 annual weeks (zodiac weeks) were depicted in the previously shown calendar grid. This kind of interpretation sees a running tally of weeks always preempted 6 times per year by the inclusion of an additional day (as a single, non-week day). The feasibility of reckoning 6 distributed annual days amid a calendar of weeks is more fully detailed in an online publication entitled: 'Annual Gates or Time Portals'.

The occurrence of the cited 6 annual days per year could be accounted for on a lunar month basis--as cited. However, a plausible alternate interpretation could be on a time portal basis--where a time portal is defined as being equal to the length of 2 zodiac divisions--as follows:

------------------------------------------ A CALENDAR OF PORTAL DAYS AND WEEKS --------- ---------- ------------- Portal Zodiac Solar Month Days Month Days --------- ---------- ------------- 1 1 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 2 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 3 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 4 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 5 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 6 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 7 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 8 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 9 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 10 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 1 11 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 12 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 --------- ---------- ------------- 6 days 336 days ------------------------------------------ The cited calendar count of 48 weeks does inherently pace the return of each passing year as long as specific additional weeks are routinely intercalated--as follows: 1. At 7th months (+ 1 week). 2. At 7th pentecontads (+ 1 week). 3. At 7th seasons (+1 week).

This respective calendar of weeks is identical to the calendar previously presented... with the exception that 6 annual days are determined on a time portal basis (where a time portal is defined at every alternate zodiac division).

Note that 342 days and 12.17473 days and 7.06758 days and 4.00000 days are equal to 365.24232 days per year (rounded from expanded precision).

A calendar of running weeks

The following diagram illustrates that an effective zodiac calendar can be achieved by tracking nothing more than an unbroken cycle of 7 days:

--------------------------------------- A CALENDAR OF WEEKS IS POSSIBLE (48 Weeks per Tropical Year) ---------- ------------- Zodiac Solar Month Month Days ---------- ------------- 1 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 2 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 3 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 4 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 5 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 6 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 7 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 8 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 9 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 10 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 11 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 12 7 + 7 + 7 + 7 ---------- ------------- 336 days --------------------------------------- The depicted calendar of zodiac weeks does inherently pace the return of each passing year as long as specific additional weeks are routinely intercalated--as follows: 1. At 7th months (+ 1 week). 2. At 7th pentecontads (+ 1 week). 3. At 7th portals (+1 week) 3. At 7th seasons (+1 week).

This respective calendar of weeks achieves the same accuracy (in average time) as the two calendars previously presented. Again, the week cycle of 7 days is integral in the defining 12 zodiac division throughout the annual revolution.

The following diagram is illustrative of yet another weeks calendar. This respective interpretation sees the annual return as being subdivided in 7 divisions. Yet again, each tropical year can perfectly be metered and measured out (on the average) by simply accounting for week cycles (where each passing week corresponds to an endless cycle of 7 days):


      (49 Weeks per Tropical Year)

     ---------  --------------------
       Annual          Annual
     Divisions         Weeks
     ---------  --------------------

         1       1  2  3  4  5  6  7
         2       8  9 10 11 12 13 14
         3      15 16 17 18 19 20 21
         4      22 23 24 25 26 27 28
         5      29 30 31 32 33 34 35
         6      36 37 38 39 40 41 42
         7      43 44 45 46 47 48 49
     ---------  --------------------

                      343 days


The depicted calendar of annual weeks does
inherently pace the return of each passing
year as long as specific additional  weeks
are routinely intercalated--as follows:

 1. Every 7 months (+ 1 week)
 2. Every 7th lunar pentecontad (+ 1 week)
 3. Every 28th zodiac division (+ 1 week)

The previously shown calendar of weeks achieves the same accuracy (in average time) as calendars previously presented.

Note that 343 days and 12.17473 days and 7.06758 days and 3.00000 days are equal to 365.24232 days per year (rounded from expanded precision).

The indicated required addition of 7 days at every 7th month, every 7th pentecontad, and every 28th zodiac division then does quite perfectly correspond with a rate that is necessary in defining an annual set of 49 weeks.

Accounting for weeks

Tracking each annual return by accounting for the stated rates of annual and non-annual weeks, as a worse case example, would involve the accounting of 4 different types of weeks progressing at 4 diverse rates. The required weeks accounting could; however; be accomplished by performing only a single count. In example, a number (say N) could be incremented by one count in association with each passing month, pentecontad, portal, and/or season. The intercalation of 7 days would become warranted every time the number N became equal to 7.

The calendar models presented above have considerable merit in regard of perfectly representing the time span occupied by each passing tropical year. Furthermore, a lunisolar system is here defined in the context of very short, yet exactly uniform time cycles. Only the time track of a running cycle of 7 days is required.

It here seems pertinent to note that an accounting of 7 days can also be used to effectively measure and meter out cycles of 7 years in 7 sets. For additional information concerning the feasibility of tracking 7 days and 7 years across great time cycles, refer to the online publication entitled: 'The Significance of 70 Years'.

Revolution of 49 lunar weeks

The spin and orbital phenomenon can be interpreted to represent an interrelated lunisolar system--as documented. One of the primary time units for arriving at a systems interpretation is that of the lunar quarter (or the lunar week).

Significant here is that each lunar quarter is inherently equal to 7.38265 days (on average). Thus, the tropical year of 365.24219 days is equal (on the average) to a span of time occupied by 49.47305 moon quarters (or lunar weeks).

The cited count of an endless cycle of 49 moon quarters (or 7 pentecontads) appears to be absolutely required for achieving an annual count of 7-day cycles. In essence, a template of weeks CAN be correlated to the revolution of the tropical year--but not unless 7 days are routinely added at the turn of 7 pentecontads (or at the revolution of 49 lunar weeks). Thus, one of the weeks that can be identified as completely necessary for defining/delimiting the tropical year into 7-day divisions can be cited to rotate at the pace of the Moon's 49th quarter.

The epoch of each tropical year can thus be cross-referenced to a fixed number of days by simply tracking cycles of lunar weeks and solar weeks. The resulting count of days in correspondence with the length of the tropical year comes to within an average difference of only 11.2 seconds. (The indicated interface is so very accurate in closure that the additional count of a day, or days, has not ever been warranted; at least not within the range of recorded history). For more complete information about the perfection inherent within this day-to-year interface, refer to the online publication entitled: 'Functional Time Design'.

Lunar weeks and zodiac weeks

In summary to the above, an interrelated lunisolar system is easy to document within the context of a common unit of time (7 days).

Significant here is that the time span occupied by each tropical year (365.24219 days) can perfectly be represented by a template of weeks (in average time).

This representation of an Earth-Moon-Sun system (a weeks model) inherently requires the accounting of certain non-calendar weeks. Even so, the annual transit of the Sun (the tropical year) can accurately be tracked (on the average) through nothing more than a running count of 7 days.

Ultimately, the identification of specific week cycles is all that is required to achieve an effective meter of the tropical Sun. Again, the interpretation of a lunisolar system seems completely satisfactory within the context of a weeks interface.


For additional information about functional time design, refer to the following online publications:
  1. A Count of 360 Days
  2. The Jubilee Time Cycle
  3. Chronology of Jubilees
  4. The Significance of 70 Years?
  5. Tracking the Day-of-the-Sun
  6. Looking at Ancient Astronomy
  7. A Significant Circle of Sevens
  8. Time Portals or Annual Gates

Please feel free to download and distribute the current article, or any of the articles and booklets listed above. (Note that the published material is subject to constant revision. Be advised that corrections, amendments, and new interpretations are frequently made.)

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