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Five carved stone spheres from Scotland held at the Ashmolean Museum

Geometric Stone Spheres of Scotland: Part 2 – Explanations From Platonic Solids to Sexual Healing

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The purpose of these, predominantly Scottish in origin, spheres is unknown, although simple theories range from projectiles to predictive devices and more. But the sophistication of their design and manufacture seems to point us to there being a more intelligent and scientific nature involved. This Part takes us on a more complex exploration of their possible nature from the apparent basis in the Platonic Solids to the hypothesis of sexual healing power.

[Read Part 1]

A Philosopher’s Dimension

With a geometers eye, Keith Critchlow, author of Time Stands Still: New Light on Megalithic Science, saw something in the spheres that no-one had spotted before: sophisticated 3D geometric forms that look surprisingly close to the Platonic Solids. He saw all five Polyhedra, and intricate combinations of them, in a continuous fashion that suggested the designers understood, and excelled at 3D spherical geometry. Critchlow writes, " What we have are objects clearly indicative of a degree of mathematical ability so far denied to Neolithic man by any archaeologist or mathematical historian."

Figure 9. A stone cube-octahedron

Figure 9. A stone cube-octahedron

All five platonic solids are represented: octahedron, icosahedron, dodecahedron, tetrahedron, and cube. There is also a cube-octahedron (see Figure 9.), where both these solids ‘nest’ within each other. “Nesting” was noted by Plato, and is integral in studying the liberal arts, and shows they were experimenting with various geometries. The Greeks taught that these five solids were the core patterns of physical creation. Four of the solids were seen as the archetypal patterns behind the four elements (earth, air, fire, and water), while the fifth was held to be the pattern behind the life force itself, the ‘ether’. The fact that many of them are exactly the same size (with 1mm difference), does also suggest a standard unit of measure was being used, much like Alexander Thom’s Megalithic Yard, but on a much smaller scale. However, many of them were not ‘perfect’ Platonic Solids, rather very close approximations showing obvious variations in the stonemasons’ skills. This variation can be seen on these three spheres on display at the British Museum, London.

Figure 10. Three stone spheres on display at the British Museum, London

Figure 10. Three stone spheres on display at the British Museum, London

Cutting Edge of Geometric Design?

Recently, a stone sphere was found at the Ness of Brodgar on the island of Orkney, Scotland, a Neolithic settlement covering 2.5 hectares (6.2 acres) between the Ring of Brodgar and the Stones of Stenness. York University archaeologist, Professor Mark Edmonds, stated, " The density of the archaeology, the scale of the buildings and the skill that was used to construct them are simply phenomenal.” Other spheres had been found on Orkney previously, but this new discovery made me question if this settlement was the first “megalithic university” of the British Isles (it is at least 500 years older than Stonehenge).  Was it here the megalithic yard was devised, where the stone spheres were manufactured, and a major center of learning thrived in the ancient world?

London may be the cultural hub of Britain today, but 5,000 years ago, Orkney was the center for innovation for the British Isles. Ideas spread from this place. The first grooved pottery, which is so distinctive of the era, was made here, for example, and the first henges – stone rings with ditches round them – were erected on Orkney. Then the ideas spread to the rest of the Neolithic Britain. This was the font for new thinking at the time.”

Figure 11. Stone sphere found on Orkney. (Photo credit: Orkney Archaeology)

Figure 11. Stone sphere found on Orkney. (Photo credit: Orkney Archaeology)

The number of knobs on the objects ranges from 3 to 160 - quite a remarkable feat considering their size. “ All show an appreciation for symmetry in the design” said Alison Roberts, curator at the museum. She is right, because one example is 14-sided, corresponding to a form with two opposite hexagons, each surrounded by six pentagons. However, Dr. Alison Sheridan of the National Museums of Scotland questions the evidence for advanced geometry. She says that the interpretation “ fails to take into account their archaeological background, and fails to explain why so many do not have the requisite number of knobs! It's a classic case of people sticking on an interpretation in a state of ignorance. A great shame when so much is known about Late Neolithic archaeology.”

Alexander Thom disagreed with Sheridan: “ The most perfect proof of the ability of Megalithic Man to understand and use solid appears they had a perfect mastery of their subject.”  (“The Metrology and Geometry of Megalithic Man, in Records in Stone: Papers in Memory of Alexander Thom (Thom & Thom 1986), edited by Clive Ruggles. p148-149). Thom’s work is now being taken seriously, and perhaps these geometric spheres should be too.

A Catalogue of the Spheres

Keith Critchlow looked at as many of these spheres as he could and compiled the geometries into one unified system (see Figure 11.) and concluded that they were… “ for the study, comparison, and analysis of spherically determined systems of geometry”.  Remarkably, the final analysis was an almost perfect match for the controversial ‘Earth Grid’ hypotheses that I cover in detail in my 2008 book.

Figure 12. Unified system of geometries compiled by Keith Critchlow

Figure 12. Unified system of geometries compiled by Keith Critchlow

Earth Grid Theory

Originators of the ‘Earth Grid’ theory were University Professors Bethe Hagens and William Becker. They were the first to see the resemblance, having studied the stone spheres.  They described them as “ planning models, not only for charting the heavens and building calendrical monuments, but were also used for meteorological study; to develop and refine terrestrial maps for predicting major ley lines of telluric energy; and, in conjunction with stone circles, were used to construct charts and maps for worldwide travel long before the appearance of the pyramids.”

This is quite a claim, but the location they were found in is an unusual zone on earth. Northern Scotland and the Orkney Islands, are at latitude where it is ideal to observe the minor and major lunar standstills that stretch across an 18.6 year cycle. I had the pleasure of viewing this in Callanais in the Outer Hebrides in early June 2006 - where I witnessed the moon rolling across the landscape, rather than setting or rising. It moves along what is called the “The Sleeping Goddess” mountain range on the horizon.

"The study of the heavens is, after all, a spherical activity, needing an understanding of spherical coordinates. If the Neolithic inhabitants of Scotland had constructed Maes Howe before the pyramids were built by ancient Egyptians, why could they not be studying the laws of three-dimensional coordinates? Is it not more than a coincidence that Plato as well as Ptolemy, Kepler, and Al-Kindi attributed cosmic significance to these (geometric) figures.”

The earliest written evidence of these geometries goes back (or forward) to the era of Pythagoras and Plato [427-347 BC]. Plato writes in the Phaedo [110b]: “ The real earth, viewed from above, resembles a ball made of twelve pieces of leather, variegated and marked out in different colors...”. In the Timaeus, he also says the Demiurge used a twelve-sided form as a pattern for the World. Both of these descriptions appear to be describing the earth as a dodecahedron.

Atomic Representations

Perhaps the sphere carvers intuited the nature of spherical geometry. When looking at atoms, pollen, viruses and other microscopic phenomena, these geometries certainly pop up. In the work of Hans Jenny, and in his cymatic experiments, droplets of water were played various frequencies and unlikely 3D geometric patterns would form. This principle could be applied to any other sphere, even planets and moons. So if they could somehow see atoms and pollen, why not see the hidden geometries within other celestial bodies? (see my Earth Grids book for examples of these planetary geometries).

Energy Channels

I’ve always been interested in the energetic qualities of rocks and crystals, especially relating to megalithic sites. As noted earlier, many types of rock and even quartz spheres have been discovered. Where these balls were found “ is also the area of good land which today, as well as in antiquity, can support the largest population” (Marshall). Why would this be? Perhaps they were ceremonial objects that would be buried in the fields of crops and were seen as fertility offerings that they believed would help the season’s crops. But is there any evidence to back up this hypothesis?

Figure 13. Two stone spheres found in Ireland

Figure 13. Two stone spheres found in Ireland

In Ireland, two further intriguing stone spheres were discovered (see Figure 12.). One was “ a brown ironstone ball, three inches in diameter, and well rounded.” The other was granite. These perfectly spherical stones were found at the megalithic site of Loughcrew. One is paramagnetic, the other was diamagnetic - opposing forces that can stimulate growth in seeds.

Michael Poynder, author of Lost Science of the Stone Age, suggested the ancient megalith builders had advanced knowledge of magnetism and telluric earth energy currents. The monoliths may have acted as antenna, and the spheres were moved around the landscape to redirect, and even charge up the telluric currents to enable crops to grow effectively, as demonstrated scientifically by John Burke and the BLT Research Team at hundreds of ancient sites worldwide. Similar tests are being carried out to positive effect worldwide where the placement of ‘charged stones’ is increasing growth rates in crops (see Stone Age Farming by Alana Moore, and Seed of Knowledge, Stone of Plenty by John Burke). The lack of balls found in graves may indicate that they were not for ‘individuals’, and were ‘left’ in the fields near the stone circles for other purposes.

Figure 14. (Photo Credit: Martin Morrison)

Figure 14. (Photo Credit: Martin Morrison)

Healing Stones

If they did have energetic properties, could these spheres also have been used for healing? They are a perfect fit for one’s hand, so applying pressure to someone’s body, when the ball is ‘charged’ could have a powerful healing effect. The shapes of them also suggest they would be ideal for working on tight muscles. To push this hypothesis ‘fifty shades of grey’ further, could they have been sex toys? This may have also have had a ceremonial propose, and then placed within fields of crops to imbue them with this ‘fertility’ energy, like an offering to the earth goddess, with the geometric design symbolizing varying aspects of her true geometric nature.

Figure 15. Stone sphere discovered at Lochnagar

Figure 15. Stone sphere discovered at Lochnagar

Interestingly, the spirals could be referencing telluric currents that move in similar configurations, plus geometric shapes in ancient traditions, were thought to have an effect on consciousness. Even modern technology is mostly based on the twin variables of ‘shape’ and ‘material’, where different shapes create different energetic effects, just as different materials offer different useful energy qualities. Like the geometric temples of the megalith builders, perhaps their hand-held ‘devices’ were as powerful then, as modern hand-held devices today. My smartphone has compass, GPS, Theodolite, Magnetic Variation detectors, and give off light and sound - but would be almost useless as a hunting projectile. These spheres could have been the Neolithic elite’s magical device that had hidden knowledge carved on them, been a healing tool, and even guaranteed your crops success.

These spheres certainly cause a lot of controversy, speculation and debate and as yet there are no clear answers. What theory appeals most to you?

Top image: Five carved stone spheres from Scotland held at the Ashmolean Museum (Credit: Ashmolean)

Unless otherwise attributed, all images have been supplied by the author.

By Hugh Newman


Bethe Hagens & William Becker, in Anti-Gravity & the World Grid.  DH Childress, ed. 1986

Bruyn, L. Monsters and Moonshine. Universiteit Antwerpen.

Critchlow, K. (1979). Time Stands Still: New Light on Megalithic Science.

Hart, G. (1998). Neolithic Carved Stone Polyhedra. George

McKie, R. (2012). Neolithic discovery: why Orkney is the centre of ancient Britain. The Guardian

Newman, H. (2008). Earth Grids: The Secret Patterns of Gaia's Sacred Sites.

Poynder, M. (2005). Lost Science of the Stone Age.

Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries in Scotland (1976-77)

Thom & Thom (1986). The Metrology and Geometry of Megalithic Man, in Records in Stone: Papers in Memory of Alexander Thom, edited by Clive Ruggles, 149.



The most complex objects here bear an uncanny resemblance to the SAFIRE Project's images of plasma "tufting" in their high energy discharge experiments.

It seems like they may be related to the mica lined chambers that have been found, as well as the presence of liquid mercury and gold plated(?) spheres found in tunnels below the pyramids. I wonder if they understood how to harness and use the Earths natural electricity, such as lightning which is present in abundance near most pyramidal sites, via water-cooled, heat resistant, superconductor filled chambers beneath these tremendously HEAVY stone structures with minimal entry and exit points. Were these balls, like those golden balls aforementioned, been a type of seismographic system used to measure stability of the overall structure? Wouldn't the water channels found around these areas also help to dissipate any unharnessed electricity in a very safe and efficient manner? Not to mention the potential magnetic anomalies this all would create, such as those found not just in the stone in question, but throughout many ancient archeological areas across the world, including North America. Evidence of the Great Flood can be found on top of some of the lower sites, which would explain the total destruction of those civilizations as well as the technology they used itself. We are left with carved pictographs which probably weren't meant to be the sole means of storing and communicating information, and no one wants to believe that maybe, just maybe, civilizations in antiquity are due far more credit than has been given.

Hugh Newman's picture

Hugh Newman

Hugh Newman is a world explorer, megalithomaniac and author of Earth Grids: The Secret Pattern of Gaia’s Sacred Sites (2008), co-author of Giants On Record: America’s Hidden History, Secrets in the Mounds and the Smithsonian Files with Jim Vieira (2015), and Stone Circles (2017). He... Read More

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