But as history has taught us every time, there is no eternal good. Pythagoras was a great brilliant mathematician but he also had some other thoughts. Some weird and crazy thoughts. Unfortunately, these thoughts did not bring a happy ending at all.
Pythagoras was like a mathematics god for the Greeks. He had a great influence back then on his society. But how did he become so great?
It started when he visited Egypt. He decided to leave Samos (his home town) and go to Egypt when his friend Polycrates became the tyrant of Samos and wanted Pythagoras to be involved in politics. He spent 10 years in Egypt gathering as much knowledge as he can. He visited every place, learned from every wise man, teacher and philosopher in Egypt. He was hungry for knowledge and he satisfied that hunger with every possible way he can during his stay in Egypt. Then he was captured by king Cambyses II of Persia. Cambyses had a great kingdom. At one time, it included Egypt, Babylon as well. When Cambyses II invaded Egypt he arrested Pythagoras and moved him to Babylon. In Babylon, he reached the summit of arithmetic and music by the Magi. The Magi were followers of Zoroaster (the founder of the Zoroastrianism religion). He spent 5 years in Babylon then he returned to Samos (his home town) 44 years old.
In Samos, Pythagoras started being famous for his wisdom and knowledge especially in Mathematics and Music. His followers (The Semicircle) almost worshipped him. He was in a very high position in Samos. This is the reason why he was forced to deal with so much non-scientific stuff in his society especially political matters. Polycrates wanted Pythagoras almost involved in every political matter because of his position among the people. Around 518 BC, Pythagoras decided to leave Samos and move to the Italian city of Croton.
In Croton, he founded a school to teach Mathematics and his religious views. This school was more like a brotherhood. It was communist in the sense that the works produced by this school were not credited to individuals so it was very difficult to know which works are of Pythagoras himself and which are of his followers. It was secretive too because the followers of that school were forbidden from transferring anything they were taught in the school to the outside world. They had secret rituals and secret symbols to recognize each other even if they have never met before. Pythagoras forced everyone in the school to be vegetarian and to follow his religious beliefs.
Now the students of that school were divided to 2 groups: The Mathematikoi (Greek for mathematicians) and The Akousmatikoi (Greek for Listeners). The difference was that the Akousmatikoi were the outer circle of the school. They were students who go to the school by day and they leave after that. They didn’t have to be vegetarian. While the Mathematikoi were spending all their lives inside the school and they were the ones who were actually coming up with mathematical and musical theories all the time because they were spending all of their time with the great master, Pythagoras. But both groups were embracing the religious philosophy and the secret rituals of their master. Everyone was looking forward to join that school but Pythagoras had strict selection criteria. Pythagoras had ‘No Exceptions’.
One day, a man named Cylon wanted to join the school. Cylon was a nobleman in Croton. He was rich and had high family reputation in Croton but he was cruel, brutal and tyrant. These were the reasons he was rejected from joining the Pythagorean school. Because of that, all his love towards Pythagoras turned into anger and hatred. He wanted one thing.
Revenge from the Pythagorean school. With ‘No Exceptions’.
(To be continued…..)