Going deeper and deeper into the meanings she wanted to expound in the movie and refining it stage by stage, Susan M. Griffith-Jones made three versions of her creative artistic documentary, ‘The Circle of Immortality’, over 3 years (2005-2008).
A full description of each and every step of the journey she made in order to create each version of this documentary is written in her book, ‘The Living Pyramid’.
The Circle of Immortality – Version 3 (2008)
English version Subtitles
To read the Narration of the 3rd Version, click here
Shot in three principal sacred locations of Nepal, short revolving sections of visuals displaying aspects of life within varying parts of the country create an outer layer to the movie, especially focussing on the culture of Tibetan Buddhism; at Muktinath (High Himalayas), Maratika (middle hills) and Lumbini (low land – Terai).
However, having condensed Version 1 (1.5 hours) and Version 2 (60 mins) , into this final Version 3 (43 mins), Susan formed an inner layer to this movie by ‘hiding’ a pyramid shape within its structure.
Through dissecting the timeline itself into segments, whereby the timeframe of each location section pivots around central points that can ephemerally fold themselves in half at both the quarterly and midway marks, the strategically placed layout of short sections of each of the three movie locations, show them oscillating as if into and back out of a mirror again, so as to follow the shape of ‘The Circle of Immortality’ art piece, in its seemingly paradoxical ‘Stilled Motion’.
The Circle of Immortality Art Piece
This 3D art piece, ‘The Circle of Immortality’ is the model layout of the structure of the film, which bears the same name. Its entire meaning is expressed in Susan’s book, ‘The Pyramid Spiral, Dance of the Five Elements’.
Following the structure of this pyramid shaped art piece and subsequently embedding it within the movie, each section of the film concentrates on one of the five elements of WIND, FIRE, WATER, EARTH and SPACE.
These are thus skilfully expounded through the timing (speed – WIND), narrative (perception – FIRE), music (sound – WATER), visuals (light – EARTH) as they mix together within the SPACE of the overall movie.
The four elements make up the four corners of the base of the pyramid, whereas the fifth is the space within which they appear in an illusory way inside the mirror. A sixth aspect of CONSCIOUSNESS lies at the apex of the Circle of Immortality Art piece, demonstrating the underlying meaning of the movie, of one’s consciousness being mirrored into the space, arising as a corresponding appearance.
The narration for this version was again entirely re-written and is fully based upon the description of ‘The Circle of Immortality’ art piece.
Cross section view of The Circle of Immortality from below with its actual and mirrored reflection creating an imaginary octahedron
View of the actual art piece from below
‘Crystal of Time’ photo collage art picture holds a further meaning of The Circle of Immortality art piece within it.
Imagined as a physical, 3 dimensional device, the spiralling golden lines of the ‘Crystal of Time’ picture display the process of transference of Hertzian waves into Longitudinal waves. This process occurs when Hertzian waves enter the vortices of 60 degrees from both sides and emerge out of the points that meet at the centre.
This process is exemplified by two of The Circle of Immortality art pieces joining at their apexes.
Two conjoined Circle of Immortality art pieces, creating infinity
When the apex of one ‘Circle of Immortality’ art piece is joined with its mirrored, equal and opposite ‘Circle of Immortality’ art piece, a closed circuit of energy is created, which may be called ‘infinite’, as it is mirrored to infinity by virtue of the two mirrors at both ends of the structures.
Potentially, this is how wave phenomena is transferred immediately as a pulse-like motion when it occurs after being converted from a transverse wave to longitudinal wave within the space between the 2 apexes ‘Diamond Lens, Doorway to Infinity’ . The pulse occurs at the centre, which simultaneously sends a vibration through the two structures, which is instantly reverberated to infinity by virtue of the mirrors, causing everything, everywhere to simultaneously appear within that longitudinal pulse.
There are 2 parts to ‘The Circle of Immortality’ art piece; 1/ the actual structure and 2/ the mirrored structure. The physical part of the structure of ‘The Circle of Immortality’ resembles the process of consciousness coming into being, whereas an exact replica of that conscious state appears inside the mirror, representing the physical manifest appearance.
The apex of the spiral (inside the mirror) will also touch the apex of another spiral (inside the mirror), due to the effect of the mirror at the other end of the second ‘Circle of Immortality’ art piece, which will show an infinite chain of consciousness reflecting into physical appearance.
Other Subtitled Versions of the Film
‘There are also several subtitled versions of the 3rd version of ‘The Circle of Immortality’, please see below for Russian and Italian.”
Russian Version Subtitles
(Translated by Irina Petrova)
Italian Version Subtitles
(Translated by Mike Bortolotti)
The Circle of Immortality – Version 2 (2007)
To read the Narration of the 2nd Version, click here
After the Sakya Monlam Prayer Festival in Lumbini where Version 1 was premiered in December 2006, Susan visited the Caves of Immortality in Eastern Nepal in the January of 2007.
During this extraordinary trip, Susan shot visuals of the place and being so pertinent to the meaning of the movie, decided to add them into the movie, heavily editing the visuals of Muktinath and Lumbini within Version 1 of the film to make place for this third sacred location.
At this time, Susan found herself building a symmetrical shape around the central point of the movie and subsequently discovered that she could fix an underlying shape of the pyramid within its overall structure through careful usage of the timings of each section, as well as the presentations of the elements and their order in relation to music (sound), visuals (light) and narrative (perception).
An entirely new narration sprung forth for this version, encompassing a symmetrical pattern, as described in ‘The Living Pyramid’
The Circle of Immortality – Version 1 (2006)
To read the Narration of the 1st Version, click here
As various causes and conditions came together, Susan found herself on a trip to Muktinath in October 2005, to make a film about life in the valley there. Some months later, she attended the Sakya Monlam Prayer festival in Lumbini, in December 2005, where she also filmed. Weaving these two sacred places together, she then made a movie depicting the nature of the five elements.
Searching the meaning of the union of Relative and Absolute Truths, Susan wanted to embed this meaning into the movie and through drawing a shape with squares encompassing circles, encompassing squares, she ended up making an unusual piece of 3D art, which she also named, ‘The Circle of Immortality’.