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Thursday, September 3, 2020

Numerology: Meanings And Cultural Significance

Mesopotamian civilizations are the first ones to realize the importance of calculations in grain productivity. This is when numbers started to play its role in human civilization. For thousands of years, the practices of mystics and mathematicians are not far from each other they both study that unknown and infinite.

The ancient meanings and symbolism behind these numbers only shed their light after many studies conducted by archeologists and other researchers.

Both in the Old and New World, civilizations tried to decipher the nature of these numbers and tried to make sense of reality using these abstract concepts. These numbers also represent the deities and metaphysical concepts that the ancient cultures venerate. The mystical representation of these numbers may have died out during the Enlightenment and Industrial Revolution when mathematics and science have gone hand in hand towards the technological progress of mankind. 

Zero Symbol and Meaning
Image: The Jingle Jangled

Zero or Nought is a number shrouded by mystery due to its nature that also represents nothingness and void. The number zero along with one are the foundations of our digital civilization that is based on computers and the Internet. The binary number system isn't complete without zero. During ancient times the number zero symbolizes birth and rebirth in Eastern religions such as Buddhism and its branches.

One Dice, One Symbol and Meaning
Image: Medium

The number one can be represented as 'the self' among all cultures the number one is written in one vertical line. One is often associated with the process of creation, order springing from chaos. Life springing out of nothingness and having a self-identity is also symbolized by this number in ancient cultures.

Yin Yang, Two Symbol and Meaning
Image: CIO

The number two, symbolizes duality, either opposing or symbiotic forces. In Eastern philosophies the number two is well represented in Yin-Yang. In paganism and mythology, two is often used to distinguish the two concurrent forces being Father Sky and Mother Earth. In Abrahamic Religions 'two' also represent the struggle between Good and Evil, God and Satan.

Holy Trinity, Three Symbol and Meaning
Image: Catholic Lane

The share triangle is often hailed as a perfect shape. In numerology, three symbolizes Trinities or Godheads in different religions whether it is Western or Eastern. The Trinity of these religions often have deities who can act as one and unified parts of the whole. 

Four Seasons, Four Symbol and Meaning
Image: Pinterest

The number four in religion and spirituality have a deeper meaning rooted in nature. In the pagan tradition, the shift and transition of seasons are venerated. The number four also pertains to the four directions, four elements and the Four Noble truths;  They are the truth of suffering, the truth of the cause of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering, and the truth of the path that leads to the end of suffering. The number four seems to have more deep meaning in Eastern belief systems.

Five Book of Moses, Five Symbol and Meaning
Image: AbeBooks

The number five means a lot in Hermeticism, Abrahamic Religions such as Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. To prove this, we have the Torah, a holy text with 5 books. There are 5 Pillars of Faith in Islam; ( Belief, Worship, Fasting, Almsgiving, and Pilgrimage). In the occult tradition,  the pentagram is a well-known symbol, it symbolizes the human body and soul.

Seal of Solomon, Six Symbol and Meaning
Image: Wikipedia

The number six is just like five, there is a deep meaning behind this number in the occult and Abrahamic religions. The number six represents both good and evil. This number is often associated with the Devil, evil and malice. It is not always associated with the devil because it is interesting to note that there are 6 Days of Creation and the Star of David is represented as a hexagram.

Seven Wonders of the World, Seven Symbol and Meaning
Image: Daily Mirror

Seven is often considered as a holy number. Its significance in Abrahamic religions is as important as the numbers 5 and 6 preceding it. To prove this note that there are 7 Christian virtues, jubilees, and 7d eadly sins. In the early days of cosmology, Ancient Jewish intellectuals believed that heaven contains 7 layers.

Infinity, Eight Symbol and Meaning
Image: BBC

Like four, number eight is significant in Eastern philosophies and religions. Just like zero this number also represents infinity, transcendence, and eternity. In Buddhism the number eight plays a huge role, we have the 8 Buddhist emblems, the Buddhist Wheel of Life with 8 Parts, and the 8 Fold Path.

Chinese Pagoda, Nine Symbol and Meaning
Image: Roomburgh

The number 9 unlike other numbers is somewhat less prominent in its role in Abrahamic and Eastern Religions. The number 9 may represent gods in Greek, Roman, and Norse mythology. In Norse Mythology there are 9 realms and God Odin represents the number 9 signifying his role in the creation of the known universe. 

Ten Symbol and Meaning
Image: Tonymacx86

Ten is a symbol of completeness, unity, and strength. Formed by one and zero, this number before even binary system became widely shaped our civilization. In Abrahamic Religions there are Ten Commandments, mankind's ancient guide to morality and ethics.

Eleven Symbol and Meaning
Image: SunSigns.Org

Number 11 represents good luck and synchronicity. In the 11:11 movement, a New Age belief system it is noted that this time is more linked to good luck and it is often to be said as Angel's number. This new belief is contrary to what early theologians believe such as St. Augustine who believe that eleven is a number commonly associated with imperfection or sin.

12 House of Zodiac, Twelve Symbol and Meaning
Image: Emily Do

Twelve is a number most often used in Eastern Philosophies and New Age. There are 12 signs of the Zodiac in both traditional and Western Zodiac systems. 12 also correspond with the 12 months of the year. In the Judeo Christian tradition, 12 is a significant number since there are 12 Apostles of Jesus Christ.

Thirteen Symbol and Meaning
Image: Pixabay

Thirteen is often called the unlucky number in many cultures. There is even the dreaded Friday the 13th that occurs in some months of the year. It is said that the maximum number of  Friday the 13 in a year is 3. The number 13 is also significant in the Judeo Christian tradition since it is often linked to Judas, the 13th guest or Apostle. 

These different numbers have meanings more than their use in our daily lives, academics and even careers. It is rooted in our ancestors to contort the meanings of these numbers and give them mystical and metaphysical backgrounds. Today in a fast-developing world we must not forget how these numbers shaped human history and culture. 

Copyright of  IFY Books

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