The Symbolic Meanings of Numbers

Learning numerology involves two stages or phases-learning the meaning of the numbers and calculating the various personal number values. This article is about the first-learning the symbolic meaning of the numbers. Once you learn these symbolic values, you can apply their meanings to number expressions of the numeroscope. These meanings can also be applied to astrology, cartomancy, and metaphysics in general. They can be applied in the course of your daily life to discover the underlying purpose of whatever event is occurring or whatever activity you are performing.

In numerology, every point in the universe, the infinite mind, or divine intelligence has access to information regarding all other points regardless of distance in space and time (past, present, and future). This information is contained in the archetypes of numbers, which are only partially comprehensible to humans. Knowledge of the number archetypes allows a person to align his or her will and ego with the purposes of the universe. Knowledge of number archetypes may also allow one to participate in and direct the ongoing processes of the universe or of his or her life.

Just like the zodiac, every number symbolizes a step in the process of creation. The first step is symbolized by the number one. The second step is symbolized by the number two, and so on. For example, if the numbers of a particular day add up to the number three, you know that this day favors the third step in whatever process you are engaged. If the address of a building you are in adds up to the number five, you know that this building favors the fifth step of any process. If you encounter someone whose name adds up to the number eight, you know that the energies of this person favor the eighth step of any process.

Interpretation by the Numbers

The meanings for the numbers 1 through 10, 0, and the master numbers 11, 22, 33, and 44 are given below, accompanied by personality traits and behaviors commonly associated with each number. Where applicable, the Pythagorean meanings and associated geometric shapes are given. Also where applicable, the planets, urges, and elements of C. C. Zain’s esoteric psychology and the crises and resulting personal power of Erik H. Erikson’s identity development are included. In general, odd numbers are masculine, active, and positive. Even numbers are feminine, receptive, and negative.

Number 1 — Individuality, Purpose

Pythagorean numerology begins with the number 1. Called the monad, 1 is represented by a point. It is the source of all numbers, the origin of all things. It symbolizes the primal state of unity, indivisibility, and oneness. Some say that it is both an odd and an even number. The 1 is the number of God, the Prime Masculine Number, and the Yang. It manifests as the active principle, the number of consciousness, light, the ego, the father, and authority. The Pythagoreans considered 1 to be good, desirable, essential, and indivisible. The 1 is associated with the Px7 primal flow Sun, fire, and the colors red and red-orange.

Wherever the 1 is found in the numeroscope, it indicates the beginning of a new cycle, beginnings in general, creation, individuality, and selfhood. In esoteric psychology, the 1 signifies the Sun and the power urges, i.e., the desire to survive and to be something. In identity development, the 1 signifies the trust versus mistrust crisis from which arises the power of hope.

Personality traits and behaviors associated with 1 include: adventure, aggressiveness, aloneness, ambition, arrogance, assertiveness, bossiness, confidence, courage, creativity, desire, determination, dignity, direction, dominant, egotism, egotistical, false pride, independence, individualism, individuality, initiative, intolerance, leadership, loneliness, masculinity, newness, obstinate, optimism, originality, pioneering, pomposity, powerful, prestige, resistance, self-assurance, self-centeredness, selfishness, solitariness, strength, tyrannical, and willpower.

Number 2 — Polarity, Union

The number 2 is called the dyad and is represented by a line. It indicates the loss of the primal unity. The 2 is duality, and the Pythagoreans believed that 2 is a number of excess, the first feminine number, and a defective number. The 2 represents the principles of matter, manifestation, and material evolution. The 1 has been separated into 2. With the 2, a new relationship is now possible. Something has been created which is external of the 1. 2 is both the forming of dichotomies, the division of things into two categories, and the initial emergence of life. Awareness of the other creates tension and makes union and partnership possible. The 2 is the prime feminine number, the number of polarities, pairs, partners, opposites, and antithesis. The 2 is associated with the Moon, water, the oceans, and the color orange. Sometimes 2 is associated with blue.

Wherever 2 is found in the numeroscope, it indicates externalization, separation, tension, conflict, union, partnership, cooperation, rhythm, attachment, nurturing, femininity, and motherhood. In esoteric psychology, the 2 signifies the Moon and the domestic elements of self-preservation and race preservation. In identity development, the 2 signifies the autonomy versus shame and self-doubt crisis from which arises the power of will.

Personality traits and behaviors associated with 2 include: absorption, adaptability, apathy, appeasement, attachment, awareness, balance, bonding, caution, conflict, cooperation, cruelty, deceit, dependence, diplomacy, emotions, empathy, expedience, feelings, females, femininity, fluctuation, friendship, gentleness, home, instinct, intuition, hypersensitivity, kindness, maliciousness, marriage, mediation, motherhood, neediness, nurturing, obedience, parental, partnership, patience, peace-making, pettiness, petulance, reaction, receptivity, relationship, rhythm, self-consciousness, self-effacement, self-sacrifice, sensitivity, separation, shyness, submissiveness, tension, touchiness, understanding, union, and withdrawal.


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