I recently went on a very interesting and enjoyable “Tower Tour” in Bath Abbey. It was spontaneous, which was a nice untimely sort of way to do it. The Bath Abbey “Tower” is all about TIME and CONTROL, with its clock and bells towering over us. I guess a guided “Tour” is also about time and control, meet at 1230, watch me, listen to me, follow me up the steps, trust me, I know where I am going, you don’t, I have the badge of authority, you don’t. But it was nevertheless a reminder of how much more fun and alive it is to learn from life rather than a screen.
This is my very own version of the Tower Tour….
The tour took us behind the scenes, backstage, at the Abbey. And of course that is exactly what the Abbey is about, it is a theatre. Everything is staged. Shows of various sorts are put on at different fixed times, different programmes. The actors come on stage in their costumes, and the audience are the congregation. They sit in rows and face the front.
Backstage at the Abbey reminded me of the corridors around a theatre, when you get completely disorientated inside, not even knowing which way you are facing, and of course you have no idea if there are any secret spaces or rooms, because you can’t work out the topology of the place. The passageways, doorways and stairs were low and narrow spaces, in stark contrast to the vast chamber of the Abbey auditorium below. It felt like we were little rats scuttling and scurrying around the hidden rat runs behind the skirting board.
The Tower Tour is a total of 212 narrow spiral steps up the turrets. Or are they tourrets? We are on a tour are we not? Tourettes is a syndrome or a sin.drome, which is described by the NHS as “a neurological condition (affecting the brain and nervous system) that is characterised by a involuntary movements known as tics”. Tics? I had a good laugh at this point. Tick Tock goes the clock. It seems that Tourettes sufferers are behaving like a clock, they are ticking, and perhaps Tourettes is caused by an overdose of time control. Tourettes is associated with ADHD and OCD which seem like they are time control overdose problems too.
OCD means you are obsessive at keeping on task, even when the clock or bell does not tell you to, you can’t shake off its control. ADHD is a lack of attention to one thing, you constantly want to move onto the next thing, but not at the time dictated by the bell or clock as you are supposed to. In schools, it is very sad to see kids’ attention constantly disrupted by the clock or the bell, and how they hardly ever finish or complete anything properly. Western society trains people to have OCD and ADHD to varying degrees. We are trained to slot our lives into time slots dictated by something outside ourselves.
Tourettes is so called after a French doctor Georges Gilles de la Tourettes. Take note of that because all three of those names crop up again on the Tower Tour, up the Tourette turrets to the top of the Tower, where we will find a big ticking clock.
And while we are on the subject of tics, this is the Roman City of Bath, a city for Romantics, Roman tics. The Romans introduced the time divisions, the calendars and the hours, and maybe they also caused the tics. The incurable Romantics. There is no cure for Tourettes tics.
Children at school are trained to see a tick or tic as good, well done, you got it right, teacher says you have done what you are supposed to do, you have succeeded. In adult life, this carries on into tickboxes and forms everywhere, and of course the Nike tick logo, because they have got it right, they make loads of profit from slavery. Tick Tock means good and right doesn’t it? Obey the clock everyone.
So let’s start the Tour…
We started in the North East corner, in St Alphege’s chapel. Alphege of Bath died in Greenwich, a very timely sort of place, a sort of Time Zero, where time is mean and average. So up we go, up the first lot of spiral stairs, anticlockwise. Spiral staircases are disorientating, as you are constantly spinning, getting dizzy and losing sense of which way you are facing. Then outside onto the roof, scuttling along the Northern ramparts towards the centre of the cross or crucifix, the CRUX of the matter.
Back inside, duck down low to go through to the Bell Ringing Chamber. This is the heart of the Abbey, surely? The very centre of power, the centre of the crucifix. The centre of death. If you map out the crucifix as a body, the centre point is the heart chakra, and that is where we are. There is a big trap door in the floor of the Bell ringing chamber, cleverly disguised within the Abbey as a part of the ornate ceiling, where bells can be lowered or raised, taken for repairs, or new bells added. It is a perfect circle, big enough for the largest bell, and it is dead centre.
Just East of the Bell Ringers Chamber, we are on a wooden platform above the roof of the famed stone carved vaulted ceiling, this is the oldest part above the Quire where the choir sit. There is a spy hole cut through the stone, maybe two inches across. You can see the aisle below, you can see a carefully positioned mirror reflecting the ceiling back up to you. The bell ringers used this to over see the goings on below, so they knew when to ring the bells for, say, a wedding. See through the Hole, the Holy See. When I checked later from below, I noticed several other spyholes in the ceiling, and I guess there must be other hidden rooms where there is Holy See. The Holy See is a sort of overseeing, but also a sort of spyhole it seems. To See but not be seen.
The Western part of the Abbey is newer, maybe symbolising the newer Western culture over the ancient East. The congregation face East, the Bishop faces West. The bride walks East, is married and altered at the altar, then walks West as the bells ring out. The Western end was built by Gilbert Scott whose grandson Giles Gilbert Scott built St Alphege’s Catholic Church in Bath. There we have our Tourettes doctor name of Gilles repeating. This is also the second reference to Alphege of Bath, and by my reckoning Alphege is linked to time, Bath time perhaps.
There seems to be some sort of special elite quality to the rare and intricate fan vaulted ceiling. The other places it is seen on the scenery are Kings College Cambridge, and St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle, very elite places I would say. The ceiling therefore links up these symbols : Bath, Kings, Cambridge, George, Windsor. Can you see anything familiar in that?
I would say it is Baby George Windsor, Prince George of Cambridge, third in line to be King. By coincidence, the very first King was crowned at Bath, King Edgar in 1073, and I wonder if we will soon see another coronation in Bath.
Back to the Bell Ringers Room… There are ten bells these days. The numbers crept up over time. The biggest is a similar weight to a car. So you can see how expensive and important bells are. Bell ringing is a lot more complicated than I thought….
“Ringing the Changes” means ringing something called a Change. A change is a complex sequence of bells, where no sequence gets repeated, there is always change. This can go on for some time if you are very skilled, maybe FIVE HOURS. Phew ! A diagram on the wall showed a simple “Change”, an example set of numbers that looked like a computer program, or a mathematical sequence. Whatever effect this has in us, we are certainly going to hear it and be programmed by it for miles around. Does that ring a bell? Ding dong in your head, triggering off some distant memory, some buried computer code in your brain, maybe something unique, something that has never before been activated. Something that will set off a CHANGE.
Ringing the Changes is apparently a rather English thing to do. The change is not a melody as such, and it seems to be about creating mathematical possibilities and unique sequences. The change is rung at a time of change, a time when change is dictated upon us. The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2013 for example. We are led to believe it is The Royal stuff that changes things, but maybe it is actually the bells that reprogram us, and shift us to a new part of our program. Computer programs work this way, an external event causing a change in direction or a change in data, so why not human brains?
Just to give you some idea of how Englishy this is…. England has 5750 Rings of Bells, Wales is next with 181, and the rest of the world has less than 200 in total. Most places in England are within earshot of a bell tower, if you are not, you probably have a new form of tower watching over you, the mobile phone mast, with its invisible inaudible signals that probably have an even more controlling effect than the bells. Maybe the bells will soon be obsolete.
Ring ring goes my mobile phone, the bell activated by the call of the nearest mobile phone tower. The mobile phone tower, the modern day tower, rings the bell wherever I am. We all carry our own personal bell in our pocket that tells us what to do and when. (I now have mine permanently on silent or switched off but the inaudible signals will still get through).
The Abbey bells are organised so that the ringers in the chamber stand in a ring. Ten ringers, ten bells, in a ring. Bells are circular rings, circles are rings, rings are circles. So we have ten circles forming a circle. A ring is also the symbol of the marriage exchange that goes on down below, a ring for a ring. And then the bells ring out to celebrate to announce the happy exchange of contracts, rejoice !
There is a Ringing Master. Does this sound like the Ring Master for the Circus? Master is a word I associate with Freemasonry control, and it is also the official title for a son who has not reached the adult title of Mister. The Master is the Son, maybe The Sun, the source of our Roman time that rules our lives. The Ringing Master rules the circle, the circus, the ring of bells, like the conductor of an orchestra, conducting energy from humans to bells to ring and flow out to other humans. And we have some more conducting coming up later on in the Tour…
The Olympics have five rings as their symbol. There is a pub in Bath called The Ring of Bells. It has a ring of five bells, five rings, and it seems that it maybe rather Olympicy. London 2012 had one monstrous bell weighing 27 ton. The biggest at Bath Abbey is only 1.7 tons. According to wikipedia, bells are a sign of peace and unity. And this is how it is explained….. We are UNITED by the bells calling us to work, rest and play at fixed dictated times, all as one amorphous mass. The bells did not ring during the war unless there was an emergency, but they rang out when “PEACE” was declared, when we were told, tolled, that it is now peacetime, the end of match whistle is blown, game over. Don’t you just love these bells? Can you see how they have tricked our brains?
The Olympics was also stopped during wartime which gives it a psychological association with PEACE. Very clever. The five rings of PEACE. And we all KNOW, accepted fact, that the Olympics UNITES the world, everyone watches it in unison, and Nelson Mandela says so, and he is an icon of UNITY, PEACE and FREEDOM.
A big and famous bell is Big Ben. Which sounds like Big Brother to me. Most people think Big Ben is a clock, but it is the bell that is far more important. Because sound is important. Sound programs us. You don’t have to be able to read the clock to hear the bell. You don’t have to be looking in the right direction to hear the bell. Even deaf people will feel the vibration of a large bell. There is no escape from the bell. The bell tower watches and rules over us, a watch tower of control, and maybe that is why a wrist clock strapped to your pulse like a pacemaker, is called a WATCH.
The bell TOLLS for death or other horrors, a slow steady bell which makes you feel like you want to die yourself. We are told, tolled, to mourn. Follow instructions everyone, listen to the bell. A toll. An atoll is a sort of mound or tor, sometimes one that a dead body is buried under. A tor is a word like tour or tower. Or Torettes. The tower and the tour and the tor tower over us, and we are told, tolled, what to do by the bell. Any word beginning with “to” is starting to look suspect.
Back on track with the tower tour…. …in days gone by, the Abbey bells were chimed at 9:01, 1:01, 5:01 and 9:01. To tell the people what to do, a bit like school bells work today, but less often. (Schools get more like 6 or 7 times a day, at least hourly, so things are getting worse for teenagers). The four chime times represent four instructions: START WORK, EAT LUNCH, FINISH WORK, GO TO BED. At exactly four hourly intervals. Very uniting and peaceful.
Four hourly intervals is what mothers are encouraged to stick to when feeding their baby. This trains the baby to have food at fixed times, and also to think in 4 hourly intervals, and it creates a weird time relationship between mother and baby that the baby will equate to love, being protected and being provided for. It is programming baby’s brains from birth to artificial Roman time intervals, subdivisions of Sun time, sixths of Sun Time. And I would say programming baby to love Big Brother and his bells.
The times of the 4 hourly chimes were curiously at 1 minute past the hour to avoid clashing with the Westminster Abbey bells, which did the same thing ON THE HOUR, at 4 hourly intervals. It is like a Mexican Wave going West, just as the Sun moves West. Hello Sun, shall we wave, shall we chime the bells? Hickory Dickory Dock, the mouse followed instructions and ran up the clock to work, then down the clock for lunch when the clock struck one. And what else are mice known for? …walking into mouse traps, enticed by the yummy free cheese.
One minute also means a sixtieth of a degree of longitude. Though Bath is actually 2 degrees and 27 minutes West of Greenwich, and it takes the Sun over 8 minutes to go that far, so it doesn’t precisely fit the Mexican Wave, but it does match the idea of it. But now I see that 2.27 is Pi. 22/7. Just like Pi Day, the day Baby George was born. Baby George Windsor Cambridge symbolised by the famed vaulted ceilings. And was the Olympic 27 ton bell anything to do with his birth? Yes I think it was (See Royal Olympic Fertility Ritual). And that is George, the Tourettes doctor name cropping up again.
The Olympic Bell was the lowest tone bell in the world, and I think it probably lowered the tone of the world when it was rung. The treble (tre bell) is the highest pitch bell in a ring, and the tenor is always the lowest. My guess is that these low tones are pretty effective for a sort of deathly feeling.
There are some elaborate machines and mechanisms in the Bell Tower to ring the bells automatically, or to a tune, or by just one person for occasions that don’t have ten bell ringers. The clock uses the bells to chime its time every hour on the hour, and the quarter hours too, 4 times an hour, that makes a massive 96 times per day, just from the clock ! Do you think you do not get affected by this? Do you find it comfortable and familiar, like I do? In England we are born and bred to it.
Next we head down a little passage way to the Giant Clock. Not a cock this time, no cocks at Bath Abbey, that would be obscene. Just clocks and bells. Though the clock is directly above the ORGAN, and I am not sure what the ORGAN represents. It may be the LIVER as it is to the right of the body in the layout of the Church, or possibly the HEART if the body is face down. I had assumed the body would be face up as on a crucifix or on a coffin to match normal death procedures, but maybe not? The idea of the Tick Tock clock overlaying the pulse rate from the human heart seems to fit quite well in the scheme of things.
The clock used to be higher up the tower, but that caused the tower to lean, we are told it is due to the weight, or maybe the wait (a function of time), but maybe it is due to the constant spin of the clock, creating a torque, or talk, like Tim, the talking clock, Big Ben’s little brother. You ring Tim, time, the talking clock on your phone, ring ring. Rings and clocks always seem to go together.
The Abbey Tower clock is on the North face to watch over the Market place, where it is of most controlling influence to people, and people will look South to see it, just like the Moon and Sun are South of us. The clock is illuminated from inside so it can be seen like a giant white Full Moon. Except that it runs on Sun time, not Moon time at all, clever trick eh? The Moon has a face, the clock has a face. And both have a hidden mechanism behind the scenes on the hidden unseen, unscene, side as they watch over us. The Moon is quarterised monthly as the clock is quarterised hourly, and we too get somehow quarterised by the pervasive control. And like the Holy See spyhole, the bit behind the scenes (seens) is to See and not be seen. Maybe “obscene” is the unseen side, we have no idea what is behind the scenes do we?
It was a curious feeling being INSIDE the giant clock. It was about as tall as me, a little bit Vetruvian Man style, my arms and legs and hands could have been the clock arms and hands. The clock goes anticlockwise from the inside, like going UP the spiral stairs. From the outside, you see clockwise, which is going DOWN the spiral stairs. This also matches screwing a screw in or out. We all watch the clock going clockwise, as the clock oversees us, and so we are programmed to go down, or to tighten the screws, maybe fixing our own coffin to be lowered into a grave.
Back to the Bell Ringers chamber, you can see how central it is as we keep coming back here as if it is a crossroads, or Cross roads, the centre of the cross. All roads lead to the Bell Ringing Chamber, a bit like Rome. The Romans love their time, you would expect all Roman roads to lead to clocks and bells. And now we go up a little spiral staircase in the South East corner, going anticlockwise again. And into the belfry, where hang the bells on a wooden scaffold, a bit like a person might be hung to be executed. And they chime ONE o clock. There is normally some sort of tune automatically played at 1:01, but it unusually wasn’t working, oh did someone jinx it?
From there, up the spiral staircase to the tower roof and the views. There are no golden cocks, but instead there is a golden flag vane on each of the 4 corner spires of the tower, 4 flags. Lots of 4’s in this tour. Two flags are carved with SS (not the Nazis, it means Saints, you wouldn’t have Nazi symbols somewhere where you have bells of peace, surely not?) Peter and Paul, the symbol of the two keys and the sword, Peter has the keys, which means Paul must hold the gruesome sword, the sword of death obviously as he is the Paul Pall bearer.
The other two golden flags are carved with 1906, the date the flags were put up along with the “lightning conductor control”. There we go, conductors again. Conductors allow and direct current to flow. This time it is the metallic conductors that run from sky to earth via the highly conductive gold vanes (veins) and the Tower. They are on everything. Can you remember the lightning that struck when Pope Francis was elected? Churches are deliberately set up to conduct electrical charge. Human energy, metal conductors (gold is by far the best) and tower spires are used to do it. And if the charge can go one way, it can go the other way too, we can feed the sky our charge via the Church, or any other similar place of worship, a stadium will do just as well. The slogan of Bath Abbey is “Where Earth and Heaven meet”. And I would say it is through the bells, the metal, the clock, the tower, and the hole. And not forgetting our human cooperation and obedience in the matter, we are all mini electrical conductors too.
Back down the staircase, clockwise now, which seems to be easier, maybe I am more used to clockwise living. Along the Southern Ramparts, down again, and onto the West facing Bishop’s Balcony over the main entrance to the Abbey. Now I am thinking of the Buckingham Palace Balcony, and the South Africa House Balcony too. The great idols make an appearance and the crowd look up and worship them. The Bishops Balcony is an outside version of the pulpit and pews, it even has everyone facing the right way, Bishop faces West, the worshippers face East and look UP at their idol. The balcony is probably equivalent to the soles of the feet in body layout terms. The sole, the soul, and the Bishop hogs it all.
And a final spiral descent down to the inside of the Abbey. I am sure the tour was carefully timed so that the guide could immediately go on to the next one without any time wasted.
After the tour, I spent some time inside the Abbey auditorium. The major earth energy node just off the centre was covered by some temporary display as is often the case. You can see where the node is, because people are unwittingly drawn to the spot, and the floor has become worn. I wonder if it has somehow chosen to become off centre to avoid the bells? There is often a very comforting feeling of peace and belonging in a Church, partly due to the familiarity of Church surroundings, instilled in us since young. But also because all the Churches are on earth energy nodes, and the nice connection to Mother Earth spirit that we feel is then attributed to be the work of the House of the male Christian God, not Mother Earth at all. Very clever.
I am struck, like a bell, by how ridiculously elaborate the whole thing is, the bells hung up in the tower, shipped up to London for repairs. The building of the Abbey and the intricate stone carving. The massive Tower. How many people died, or were injured, or slaved away to make all this? How many still do that to maintain it in the belief that it serves us. It doesn’t serve us, it serves Time, same as we all do. We serve the Abbey, we serve time. We are slaves to time, the Time Lord who lords it over us in the big tower. We are led to believe time and towers are essential to maintain and rule over us, our centrepiece, our controller to unite us to keep the peace. You can’t avoid it, the Abbey can be seen and heard for miles. And the sound, the ringing and the chiming and the tolling, is as important as the timing.
I reckon there are at least 8 spiral staircases in the turrets, four on the main church, and 4 in the tower. There are also extensive vaults, and every time the place gets rebuilt, or refurbished, to slightly different dimensions, they can build in new hidey holes. The Abbey has turrets, towers and ramparts just like a castle. A castle is for Kings, and the first King, Edgar, was crowned here, so that he could crow over us like a Royal cock. The castle and the Kings rule the roost on behalf of the Time Lord. And the next King will be the King of Cambridge. K O C, a littly bit Cocky sounding do you think?
John of Tours sounds like the guy that set up the Tower Tours. But he is a medieval Bishop who rebuilt the Cathedral at Bath, now replaced by the Abbey, and moved his Holy See there from Wells. ( It is now back at Wells again). So he did quite a lot to ring the changes. He was physician to the first King William, and the second King William gave or sold him Bath and the Abbey, like a medieval game of Monopoly. John was from Tours in France, just like the French Doctor of Tourettes. Another French Connection for Bath, and maybe he paved the way for the Frankish Knights to move in here.
A Church poster near me says “The Lord watches over us”. He is in his Watch Tower isn’t he? With his clock and his bells, and his place HIGH UP there in the sky at the top of the tower, behind the scenes, seeing but not seen. Maybe the “Lord” in the Bible is actually The Time Lord, Master of Son Time, Sun Time. It fits rather neatly with Biblical times being a sort of Time Zero, the year zero from which time is measured, and maybe the point at which the Romans introduced their tics and chimes.
(See also earlier posts: Face the Front, Holy See Over Bath, Jesus da Vinci and Chakra, Godfrey of Jerusalem and Bath, The Vikings and Alf, The Time Lord, Moon Eye Money, Blinded By The Light, Mother Moon Time, Earth Energies, Do As You’re Told Days, Bridal and Groom, Consume Ate, New Roman Times, Bath Keys, Lewis Key, Cull the Queen, Killling Bath, Two Nelsons, Cash on The Nail, Royal Olympic Fertility Ritual, Time and Place, Time Tunnel, Royal Georgian Bath, Romans Remain, Earth Energy, Program Me, The Two Nelsons, Knights Templar of Bath)