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Near the end of the 11th century CE, there was a crisis in China’s Song Dynasty. The imperial calendars were filled with errors. To fix them, the imperial court would have to reform one of the most essential institutions in the empire: The Bureau of Astronomy.

"Deep Patterns" is the second of four episodes airing this week from "Cosmic Visions," produced by the Bay Area's World According to Sound. "Cosmic Visions" is a twelve-part podcast series that explores the spirit of inquiry cultivated by civilizations around the globe over thousands of year. It has been shaped by ways of thinking that may seem at first “unscientific,” but which have led to great leaps in our understanding of the cosmos.

You can listen to all of the Cosmic Visions episodes here or wherever you get your podcasts.