Symbolism Is Our Source of Knowledge
A previous consideration of the symbolism of numbers had the premise that as knowledge increased, we also advance our ability to observe accurately and analyze. Therefore, as we proceed along this path, we shall eventually come face to face with some very important Rosicrucian principles Ä that we must carefully examine ideas regarding their true merit before passing judgment.
There is a definite purpose for such instruction, the development of reason, which will aid in the unfolding of spiritual sight. Furthermore, as we achieve, there follows the realization that we have, in fact, proven to ourselves how the 1 to 10 cycle, which has been under consideration, does actually contain information, that life is everlasting and that we are spirits with bodies that are but temporary dwelling places and instruments for use.
It is widely recognized that words are but symbols of ideas, while numbers can be shown to be symbols of divine realities, having the key to the evolution of both man and the Cosmos, by symbolizing and illustrating the cosmic principles back of all manifestation. Therefore, when approached from this concept, symbolic messages may be communicated by numbers. This, then, becomes ample reason to study and carefully evaluate this line of thought. Gaskell's Dictionary of Scriptures and Myths contains this statement:
Numbers become symbols because the internal universe is on a definite and co-ordinated plan in which quantitative relations are repeated correspondentially through different states and planes. Number is common to all the planes and thus unites them.
The following statements are from Rosicrucian Teachings: If our minds are occupied with such subjects as mathematics. . . we are in the Region of purely Abstract Thought, beyond the influence of Feeling, and the mind is directed upward towards the spiritual realms and liberation. (Cosmo-Conception, p. 202).
The Father speaks to us in the language of symbolism, which both hides and reveals the spiritual truths. . . . Each occult truth requires examination from many points of view; each viewpoint presents a certain phase of the truth. . . . Any object in the three dimensional world may, or rather must, be viewed from all points to obtain a full and complete comprehension thereof, so all symbols have a number of aspects. Each viewpoint reveals a different phase from the others, and all have an equal claim to consideration.
These statements reveal that the time has come when we must not base our judgments on who said it, but that the most worthwhile conclusions are to be the result of our own investigations into the facts or opinions being presented. Therefore, efforts directed to our most reliable source of information, the study and interpretation of symbols, become our most desireable path. Of the many symbols to be considered, quotations found in the Rays Magazine, printed with approval of Max Heindel, maintain that it is Numbers that become the only absolute science. "Numbers, then, are symbols of eternal principles, and figures are symbols of numbers."1 This, along with Blavatsky's view that "Numbers. . . are the key to the ancient views on Cosmogony (creation and origination of the world, or Universe) in its broad sense, including man and beings, and the evolution of the human race, spiritually as well as physically" gives us an interesting base from which to continue our study of Numbers. Please understand that the objective of these articles is to encourage the reader to carefully investigate points being made. How can we ever expect to make accurate judgments without investigating the subject from many points of view? To that end, in order to have a base to investigate information symbolically concealed within the numbers from 1 to 10, let us briefly consider a few points previously made. The first consideration was that of the dot and circle, with the dot showing the first activity, and the circle the extent of the influence. Within the circle, movement is shown by the line, which reveals the movement of the dot influence. This movement becomes the symbolic number 1.
At this point, Diagram 1 comes under consideration, where number 1 is shown in the upper half of the larger circle. It was previously suggested that the top circle symbolized the spiritual and the lower the physical. Therefore, the first activity of the Creator was in the spiritual world (Remember: "In the beginning was the Word"). Within the top circle are two smaller that show higher or lower (positive or negative) even in the spiritual world. The next action being in contrast to the vertical line, number 1, is shown by the horizontal line. As a result of this division we have number 2 becoming the number of separation, or the number of polarity. "The unity of the number 1 is broken up into its positive and negative aspects, with the upper representing Spirit and the lower matter."2 Another concept is that "number 2 is a symbol of the duality of manifestation, the One becoming Two, Spirit and matter. Also of the relative, the opposites, higher and lower, good and evil, etc."3 With respect to the opposites, Gaskell further states that "These are the positive and negative aspects of qualities, without which manifestation on the lower planes could not occur. The negative aspects imply the absence of the positive, and therefore the illusive."4 Also is noted that once this differentiation takes place, we have a new point to consider: "As above, so below." Therefore, with the division shown in the upper circle, the separation into the positive (upper) and negative (lower) becomes the basis for number 2. With this influence extending into the lower circle (physical) we have the makings of number 3.
We are now concerned with the fourfold nature of man: body, mind, spirit and soul. Spirit and soul from the spiritual plane has now come down into the physical and unites with body and mind, which becomes the square, or sometimes referred to as "four-square." At this state of development man attained the necessary tools for return to the Spiritual World. Numbers reveal this when we add 1+2+3+4=10, the number of completion. Revealed is that number 4, of the physical plane, now becomes the first number to carry this potential.
As pointed out in Article 2, number 5 is the mid-point in the 1 to 10 cycle.
(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10)
In this example, number 5, the number of man, is the only number that cannot combine with another to become number 10. Therefore, this is the reason in Genesis that Eve came into being. At this point 5+5=10. This you will find illustrated in Diagram 1. When Eve, an opposite, is combined with Adam, we have illustrated the circle completed on the physical plane.
With this potential it becomes very interesting to note that number 6 reveals Divine influence coming down into the physical circle made possible when Adam and Eve became one. Revealed is that the Divine influence will provide the stimulus that makes it possible to return to the Spirit World. Note, that when we add the numbers 1 to 6:
(1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 = 21= 3)
The Trinity is at this point revealed, making it possible for man to see and respond to this higher influence.
Beyond doubt, number 7 reveals the Divine influence within the lower physical circle and extending only partially into the upper spiritual. Note that as with number 2, there is still the horozontal, or contrast, as emphasis is to the physical. Spiritual problems will come later.
Now that man has begun to identify some of the problems related to the physical, it is interesting to note number 8 as the number of evolution. Demonstrated is activity around the physical circle and then up and around the spiritual. When, finally, man awakens to his higher potential, number 9 reveals the solution, for here we have the bottom physical circle of the number 8 straightening out into the number 9, revealing a direct path, upward, into the Spiritual World.
As implied, number 9 reveals a different path, as the physical circle of the 8 has now changed into a straight line leading directly into the upper spiritual circle. In this way is revealed the path of Initiation, with number 8 showing the path of Evolution. All this carries implication of definite change taking place as the path of Initiation is traveled and becomes an inner experience that makes contact with the Spirit World a possibility. As stated in the Cosmo-Conception, page 96, "Activity of the spirit in the dense body, which results in right action, promotes the growth of the Conscious Soul."
The intended purpose of this article is to point out some very interesting correlations that tie the Rosicrucian Teachings, the Bible and Numbers together once we have begun to understand the symbolic information that is to be found in Numbers and symbolic writing. For example: "And the Lord God formed man (5) of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." (Gen. 2:7). This takes place in the world of spirit. The "fall" came after Adam's helper, Eve, was created. While Adam and Eve dwelt in the Garden, it was a time when humanity was spiritual and "living" in the Spirit World. Mankind now goes from a state of spiritual consciousness into the physical world with dense physical bodies.
When Cain (that part of the human consciousness which strives to acquire and possess) killed Abel (high mental realm), it meant that the lower materialistic mind was taking over, or another way of stating it is that man was becoming materialistic. Since most of the stories in the Bible are written to portray qualities within each of us, the implication is that there are changes that must be eventually made. Now do you see that most of humanity, at this time, is involved with the problems indicated by numbers 5 and 6?
By the way, have you ever given consideration to the symbols that identify the Earth, Jupiter and Venus Periods, found in Diagram 8 in the Cosmo-Conception, p. 197? Here, the Earth Period is identified by a 5 with the circle. Is not the "5" another way to reveal number 10? Then, in the Jupiter Period we have the symbol of soul above matter. The Venus Period that follows is identified with the cross of matter below the circle, which implies that by that time the soul, or temple within, will have gained control over the lower physical. Is not there a similarity of essential points?
There is to be found, in the Old Testament book of Ezra, an account of how religious reform may be managed. The first verse refers to the goal that:
1. The word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah (religious thoughts in true observance of divine law. Also, an exalted state of consciousness connecting us with Divine Mind, exaltation of Jehovah) might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus (the will ruling in sense consciousness) King of Persia (that which lies between the outer and the true inner spiritual consciousness), that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying,
2. Thus sayeth Cyrus King of Persia, The LORD God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem (abiding consciousness of spiritual peace), which is in Judah (spiritual facultyÄincrease in the mental; prayer and praise).
The key verse (5) states: Everyone whose heart God had moved, prepared to go up and build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem (abiding consciousness of spiritual peace). Chapter 2 begins with the statements:
Now these are the children of the prince that went up out of the captivity, of those which had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar (human will backing itself up by the human intellect; this brings about human judgment which gives full attention to material subjects and feels all- powerful) the king of Babylon (outer, sense, and confused thoughts of the material consciousness) had carried away into Babylon, and came again unto Jerusalem (spiritual peace) and Judah (increase of the spiritual mental faculty), every one unto his city (higher soul activity);
Following this is a long list of the children's names and when checked out every name will relate to some type of progress, or advancement. Next, in chapter 3, the altar is set up, but in chapter 4, the work is hindered, the work is suspended, then work begins again, "and the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid." (3:11) Again, there is opposition to the rebuilding. Isn't all this what we might interpret from number 5, which implies living in physical surroundings. But then comes the influence into the physical from number 6.
Ezra now comes to Jerusalem and the key verse here is that he "had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel (spiritual consciousness)." (Ezra 7:10).
All this leads up to religious reform (Ezra 10:11), the influence of number 6. Now it becomes time for Nehemiah to "rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace." (Nehemiah 2:l7). This wall is representative of our own individual consciousness and mind protecting spiritual substance, which previous error thoughts cannot penetrate. Numbers 7 (Divine influence in the physical), and number 8, will take a period of time, or evolution. But the cycle is broken and the wall is completed as we go up number 9, into the spiritual world. With number 10, the Divine 1 stands with the 0 of number 10 (the wall has been completed). After this completion process, number 11 reveals the new achiever working with the Divine. Number 12 becomes the completion number
(1 + 2 = 3),
the number of the Trinity. Finally, 13 reveals activity in the World of Spirit.
The Cosmo-Conception, page 151, has a comment that will help in our interpretation of the above account:
Evolution is "the history of the progression of the Spirit in Time." Everywhere, as we see about us the varied phenomena in the universe, we realize that the path of evolution is a spiral. Each loop of the spiral is a cycle. Each cycle merges into the next, as the loops of the spiral are continuous, each cycle being the improved product of those preceding it and the creator of those more developed states which succeed it.
Regarding Nehemiah and his efforts to rebuild the wall:
The prophet Nehemiah (Neh. 4:1-20) is the faithful, persistent one within us that believes in this divine possibility for man: the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem, which is a symbolical description of the reconstruction of the soul consciousness so that it will keep out negative and error thoughts and conditionsÄthis of course results in a renewed and spiritualized body.5
1. Rays from the Rose Cross, February 1918, p. 134.
2. Key to The Universe, Curtiss, p. 82.
3. Dictionary of Scriptures & Myths, Gaskell, p. 773. 4. op. cit., Gaskell, p. 551.
5. Metaphysical Bible Dictionary, Unity, p. 476.
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