We have already seen, when considering the principle of enumeration, that numbers express only quantitive relations unless we elect to regard them symbolically, when they assume a significance of an entirely different nature. We have seen that unity = 1 can be expressed in terms of an indefinite state of eternal becoming, as when 1 = .9 to infinity. It is also possible to say 1 = 1 + x, where x is an infinite potential. For aught we know, the amoeba is potential man. Natural history seems to lend colour to the conception of a continual progression in the scale of evolution. We do not know how inorganic matter becomes organic, how the mineral becomes translated into the vegetable and the vegetable into the animal, but here and there we find examples of the transition. We cover the whole ground of manifold creation by a single word when we speak of differentiation, and the whole process of infinite progression of the forms of life when we define evolution. At the root of all is the one Life, the one Substance, the one Great Intelligence, from which all proceeds and to which all aspires.
Quantitive relations have no fixed value. Before we can say 2+ 2 = 4 we have to posit a qualitative value which has regard to the nature of things thus put together. Here we are giving to numbers something more than the power to express quantitive relations, we are giving them a qualitative value. We exercise this discrimination when we seek to form a cricket team or an eight-oar crew. It is not merely a question of 11 men or 8 men, but of 11 cricketers and 8 oarsmen. Hence it is not the fact that 11 men make a cricket team. They must first learn to play cricket.
Moral values attach to numbers quite as much as do exchange values. Shakespeare expressed this fact in the saying: "He is well paid who is well satisfied". One can give a small boy a penny and a workman a shilling and get more work in exchange from the boy while giving equal satisfaction to both. Yet the needs of the man in a given time are not eleven times greater than those of the boy in the same time. Hence the penny and the shilling obtain a moral value in addition to their exchange value. Each is a token, and intrinsically of equal value in certain circumstances, so that 1 = 1 + 11 is a possible expression of fact.
Nature has more regard to potentiality than to potency, to future possibilities than to present circumstance. Consequently, we find that her expressions of value are not fixed, but have always a cumulative adjunct represented by +xn , which we understand to mean indefinite evolution - as, for example, Adam=1+4+4=9+xn
When the poet speaks of "the diapason closing strong in man", we apprehend his meaning but disagree as to his values. He leaves out of sight the fact that Nature as instrument is not affected by the limitations that are imposed upon ourselves, and that the divine harmony is not realised in man as we know him, because he is not a plenary expression of the soul of the Great Performer. The theme, if pursed to its logical conclusion, will bring us again to the fact that all values are relative, and since we are mainly concerned in this place with numbers as expressions of human relations - that is, with their symbolical values - we may pursue the study along these lines to greater advantage.
That perspicuous thinker and fine poet, George Macdonald, LL.D., in his Phantasies, has this pertinent passage:- "They who believe in the influence of the stars over the fates of men, are, in feeling at least, nearer the truth than they who regard the heavenly bodies as related to them merely by a common obedience to an external law. All that man sees has to do with man. Worlds cannot be without an inter-mundane relationship. The community of the centre of all creation suggests an inter-radiating connection and dependence of the parts. Else a grander idea is conceivable than that which is already embodied. The blank, which is only a forgotten life, lying behind the consciousness, and the misty splendour, which is an undeveloped life, lying before it, may be full of mysterious revelation of other connections with the worlds around us than those of science and poetry. No shining belt or gleaming moon, no red and green glory in self encircling twin-stars, but has a relation to the hidden things of a man's soul, and, it may be, with the secret history of his body as well. They are portions of the living house wherein he abides".
This thought is a very vital one. It suggests the concept of the idealist that nothing exists for us save in our consciousness,, all things being related to us through our senses and our thoughts. Whatever affects the consciousness affects the man, and in an intimate sense is man, as Henry Sutton has so well expressed it:-
"Man doth usurp all space,
Stares thee in rock, bush, river, in the face;
Never yet thine eyes beheld a tree;
'Tis no sea thou seest in the sea
'Tis but a disguised humanity.
To avoid thy fellow, vain thy plan;
These lines have the endorsement of George Macdonald, who quotes them in his Fairie Romance with evident appreciation. The idea of all Nature being a "disguised humanity" is excellent, the phrase unique, and we, as students of the book of God's revelation, have to find the story of man's origin, history, and development in the world about us, as well distant as near.
In the sense that Henry Sutton has so well put it, we may infer by human relations all of his powers, needs, hopes, joys, and aspirations that can find sublunary expression; and that which presses him most closely in daily life is his need. It is not what a man has, but what he wants, that shapes his course and determines his efforts. It is man's need that gives to things their market value and makes opportunity for faculty and capital.
Thus we get a new value for the number 8 and the planet Saturn, which stand as symbols of privation. We see them as the cause of all striving, and, in effect, 8 = evolution; and since evolution involves growth, expansion, development, the expression and realisation of potential faculty, we find that 8 is potentially 3.
In a universe where everything is in a state of flux, where the status quo is an unstable equilibrium, we find that reaction is the law. For every rise there is a fall, for every flow an ebb, for every perihelion an aphelion, for every flood a drought. The experience is universal, and so fully recognised by the man in the street as to have given rise to the following jingle, which probably had its origin with some unfortunate speculator on the Stock Exchange:-
"After the rise, the fall; After the boom, the slump; After the fizz and the big cigar, The cigarette and the hump"!
It expresses a recognition of the law of action and reaction, which is responsible for the stability of the universe.
We have already found that 8 = privation. We have connoted death, decay, ruin, injury, maiming, with this unfortunate number. It has been ascribed to Saturn, the planet whose mass-chord of vibration is most inimical to us of the earth sphere whose number is 4 (materiality), and our satellite the Moon whose numbers are 7 (increscent) and 2 (decrescent). Let us trace this influence in terms of cosmic law. The planet Saturn was in the sign Sagittarius in the year 1898. For many centuries prior to this date it had been known by observation that this sign of the zodiac "governed" Spain. Not that any disrespect was intended to the king, or even to Don Caesar de Bazan, but that the fortunes of that country were found to answer to the affections of that sign by the successive incursions of the various planets -as was noted by Kepler, who found it not beneath him to confess that "A most unfailing experience of the course of human events in harmony with the changes occurring in the heavens has instructed and compelled my unwilling belief".
In 1898, therefore, we find Spain, in strict agreement with this dictum, suddenly plunged into a most unexpected and unfortunate war with the United States of America. "Spanish Fours" went down with a run on the Stock Exchange, and thousands of Spanish holders of the Government Stock were ruined. Spain lost her possessions in the West Indies and the Philippines, and a heavy indemnity was imposed when finally it capitulated. Altogether, some 100,000 men were killed during the hostilities. It was a black hour for Spain indeed. Since then the Spanish "Maine" has had a new meaning, for it has been officially ascertained by the salving of the American war-vessel that it was not blown up by any Spaniard, but exploded from its own magazines, the explosion taking place from within and not outside of the vessel. There was, therefore, no adequate casus belli, and if we could eliminate Saturn and the number 8 from the sign Sagittarius in the year 1898 = 1+8+9+8 = 26 = 8, we should find no reason to suspect that there might be one. Yet it is significant that the present writer specifically predicted this great struggle between America and Spain, the concomitant rise in the price of wheat, the loss of life and territory sustained by Spain, and the reconstruction of its Government Stock in the following year.
The Russo-Japanese war took place in 1905, and was similarly attended by the transit of Saturn through Russia's ruling sign Aquarius. The prediction of its defeat was an easy matter to those instructed in natural symbolism, and the revolution, also specifically predicted, was the result of Saturn and Mars being conjoined in Aquarius.
When Saturn passed into Pisces, which rules Portugal, the unrest and dissatisfaction of the populace found signal expression in the assassination of the King and Crown Prince, and was shortly followed by the revolution, due to the conjunction of Saturn and Mars as before, which deposed the monarchy.
Now, if we look at the corresponding values of the chief securities of these countries, we shall find that they reflect the "depression" of the public mind due to the influence of Saturn. Spanish Fours, prior to the war, were in the region of 80. In 1898 they fell to something under 30. Russias show the following remarkable fluctuations:-5 per cent Loan (1822)
1897 =154 1906 =90
4 per cent Bonds
1896 =105 1906 =71
3 per cent Bonds
1897 =103 1906 =60
The figures given are the highest and lowest between the years 1895 and 1907 for the several securities. We thus see that the lowest for the period of 12 years is touched at the time of Saturn's influence.
Portuguese 3 per cent stock stood at 72 in 1906, and the influence of Saturn was such as to bring the value down to 58 in 1908.
Japan, ruled by Libra, shows no corresponding depreciation as did Russia from influence of Saturn, for in 1906 the 4.5% (1905) Bonds stood at the highest point of over 97 since the date of issue, and in 1910, when Jupiter = 3 (increase and expansion) was in Libra, the price went up to over 102.
The evidence is sufficiently marked to dispel all doubt as to the action of the planets upon human affairs, and we may consider the observation of Kepler to be justified.
Now we, as Kabalists, are chiefly concerned with the fact that the integrity of Nature is upheld by this coincidence of symbolism with "the course of mundane events". In these pages I have endeavoured to show that symbology extends far beyond the circle, the cross, or any other geometrical form which ordinarily is employed as such. I have brought in figures and numbers as symbols, and have linked them with sounds and colours. But this does not exhaust symbolism, nor does the application of the symbology of form, colour, sound, and number to individual character and fortune constitute the whole subject. We must extend our symbolism to the entire universe, and our interpretations must have regard to the evolution of the human race as a whole. The Kabalists, following the lines already instituted by the observations of astrologers, have attempted such an universal symbolism.
The twelve labours of Hercules, the feats of Samson, and the progress of Israel from the captivity to the partitioning of Palestine, are so many symbols or ideographs set up to signal the evolutional progress of the race. Each is capable of a zodiacal interpretation (vide Drummond's Edipus Judaicus). Those who would pursue the subject of zodiacal symbolism in relation to the great epochs of human history should endeavour to obtain the works of C.Massey, E.V.Kenealy, J.Mackay, and Capt. Drayton, in each of which some glimpses of the system of interpretation are to be found.
In the present instance, we are concerned chiefly with the kabalism of numbers in relation to the law of values. This cannot be effectively followed apart from a study of cosmic elements, the planets of the solar system, the cycles of the lunations and eclipses, and the divisions of the heavens called the signs of the zodiac. It is the recurrence of these planetary periods and luni-solar cycles that constitutes the ebb and flow of human affairs and the corresponding changes or fluctuations in values. The cycle of Saturn is 30 years, of Jupiter 12, of Mars 15, of the Sun 19, of Venus 8, of Mercury 10, and of the Moon 4. The saros or eclipse cycle is 18 years 10.5 days, which, in 3 cycles, amounts to 54 years 1 month, and in 36 cycles to 649 years, after which the eclipses begin again and recur on the same days of the year. Those who have studied the marked physical effects due to, and coincident with, central eclipse, especially when the Moon is in perigee, i.e. at nearest distance from the Earth, will be prepared to allow that such may also have an effect upon individuals. Tycho admitted the symbolism of eclipses, and has given us examples of his interpretations, while Kepler has argued for their causative relations with humanity. It is an ancient belief, much better sustained by observation than many of our modern scientific theories, and can be accepted on the authority of those who have made the matter a subject of study for many years. Applying this observed malefic influence of eclipses to the problem of values, let A be the place of the sun at the birth of a person, that of a ruler or president; let B be the place of the
Moon; and CC' the meridian; and DD' the horizon respectively.
It will be found that whenever an eclipse of either luminary shall fall on any of these points, a period of sickness, depression of fortune, loss and disaster, will follow, such period commencing as many days from the date of eclipse as the luminary is degrees from the horizon it last crossed, whether E. or W., and the duration being equal to four times the number of days that the luminary is distant in degrees from the horizon to which it is proceeding. Thus, for example, there was a total rd eclipse of the Moon on the night of the 3 June 1909, which accordingly fell on the point A in the horoscope of H.M. King George V, then Prince of Wales; the eclipsed Moon being then about 90 degrees from the west horizon and an equal distance from the east horizon. Then 90 x 4 = 360 days as the duration of this eclipse influence, extending to the end of May 1910, the beginning being 90 days after the birthday, or 1st September 1909.
In the same year and month there was also a considerable eclipse of the Sun, which had place at point D' in the horoscope of King Edward VII. The eclipse took place on June 17th, just before 11.30 at night, and hence the Sun was about 82.5 degrees from the west horizon, giving the beginning of the period of effects on the 7th September 1909, and, as the Sun was 97.5 degrees from the east horizon, and 97.5 x 4 = 390 days, the date of the expiry of the eclipse period would be about 12th July 1910. Within the limits of this period Edward the Peacemaker had passed away.
If instead of an individual we take the horoscope of a nation, we shall find the same rule holds good, but this statement is open to the objection that whereas the individual horoscope is certainly known from the moment of birth, that of a nation has to be empirically determined by a long series of observations. We do not certainly know by what method Nature partitions the zodiac among the nations, or how she determines the destiny of any country from the affections of a particular sign, but we know from experience that in some particular manner there is a correspondence between the signs and the several members of the human body, and between the signs and various countries which are found to answer to them.
The facts cannot be disputed; the reasons are perhaps obscure, and it is therefore convenient to regard the whole scheme as having a human significance and, in a special sense, intelligible only in terms of human consciousness and experience.
Then Saturn, as privation, threatens the life every 7 or 8 years by its quadrature, but more especially every 15 years by its conjunction and opposition; while Jupiter gives increase and expansion every 4th year, and more especially every 12th year.
Events that characterised any particular month are apt to find repetition every 19th year in the same month of the year, because the lunations repeat themselves after 19 years about the same date, and are therefore in the same horoscopical relations as 19 years previously. This law of "correlated successiveness", as it has been called, is the means employed by nature to preserve the equilibrium of things and regulate the law of values. It gives rise to diversity of fortune, and thus fosters inter- dependence among the various sections of humanity. For, while it is true that one governs and another serves, one has wealth and another lack of means, it is also true that nothing is effected save by the consent of that which is below. We see this in horoscopy, where the Sun promises some good by its benefic aspect to some planet in the horoscope, but is unable to bring it into effect until the Moon comes to the same or a similar aspect in the horoscope. The gods will that there should be a beginning of the millennium tomorrow if not today, but humanity does not like it so, and the great day of universal peace and goodwill is indefinitely postponed. A king is ruler by the will of the people, for none can be king without subjects, and therefore we see that it is one of Nature's economic laws that the superior depends upon that which is inferior, while that which is beneath receives the sanction and purpose of its existence from above.
A man whose signature is 3 can become rich by expenditure and the free use of that which he possesses; while one whose signature is 8 can only become so in course of time by frugality, patience, self-denial, privation, and hard saving. For Jupiter demands expansion, liberty, largesse, and generosity from those whom he endows, while Saturn demands a "time contract" and much durance from his subjects. Mars, on the other hand, requires a risk, a hazard, a speculation or daring exploit, something that is "touch and go", as a fuse in a mine or a match to gunpowder. In every department of life it is always the same mandate under a variety of conditions. "Take what thou wilt, but pay the price", as Emerson has wisely said.
A man whose signature is Mars, whose number is 9, will have a positive and forceful nature. He may express it in lawlessness and open violence, and bring himself under the penalty of the law; or he may undertake some great pioneer work in which concentrated energy, direction of force, intrepidity, zeal and intensity are effective characteristics, and so gain honours and emoluments for himself. At quite an early stage in the study of the law of values we find that a number signifies a definite characteristic, but does not indicate anything concerning the manner of its expression. The influence of 8 may operate to produce reservation, conservation, steadiness, or it may tend to deprivation, misfortune, and misanthropy. Character is the expression of individuality as seen through the coloured glass of personality and environment. Numbers are a key to this expression, but they do not inform us as to individual attributes or inherent powers. Nature, however, is jealous of her products, and observes the law of conservation of energy in human destiny as in cosmic operations, and conceivably follows the lines of least resistance by adapting environment to aptitude, or, at all events, affording suitable birth-conditions to every evolving entity.
Similarly, Saturn = 8, may tend to a scarcity of an article by diminishing production or supplies; in such case the price of the commodity will be temporarily enhanced. On the other hand, it may operate to diminish the demand for the article, which consequently falls in value. The key to this interpretation of 8, or any other number or corresponding planet, is one of the arcana of kabalistic and astrological science which have been successfully applied to the question of values for many years past, not only as to the greater periodic movements of the various markets, but also the monthly and daily fluctuations, so that the whole matter is in evidence and in every way confirms the view of Kepler concerning the concurrence of mundane events with changes occurring in the heavens.
The introduction of this subject of the law of values, and the study of it from the point of view indicated at the outset of the present work, is the outcome of an admonition received many years ago from a man of known commercial ability and sufficient common sense to harbour a belief in the solidarity of the universe and the consequent probability of planetary influence in human life. "Make your science practical, and it will be recognised", he said, and in order to do so we must interpret the language of Nature into terms of everyday life. Neither astrology nor kabalism is a religion. They will never save a soul from self- destruction, but they can throw a welcome light upon the dark and narrow paths through which many a starved and belated soul has to push its way towards the place where humanity has set its camp. Where there was tyranny and servitude, oppression and slavery, opulence and indigence, happiness and misery in a world already made, the light of natural symbolism reveals an infinity of changing conditions and a universal service of indefinite opportunity occurring to each and every soul in a world that is for ever in the making. For the teaching of the universal symbolism is a scientific optimism for which we have the warrant of analogy. Whatever may be the sun to which a soul may be attracted, we know that it is answering to a gravitational pull and slowly but surely approaching the consummation of its purpose. At this period in its career it may be in aphelion, far away in the drear wilderness of life, with a minimum of light and heat to cheer it on its way. But the law of compensation is for ever at work, and, as surely as a soul is now in aphelion, it will some day be in perihelion, bathed in the sunshine of a perfect day and as near as the law of his being will permit to the object of his ambitions. Further, we know that at every successive revolution he will come to a place that is a little nearer to the heart of being. The law of evolution is cyclic or periodic, it is never retrogressive, but always progressive. The spiral course of a gravitating body has given rise to the idea among superficial observers that humanity retrogresses or continually pursues the same unchanging orbit. Closer observation will show that, whereas it appears to return to the same place, it is in reality a little nearer to its gravitating centre at every revolution. In a single revolution, the increment is inappreciable; in a thousand or ten thousand it becomes considerable. Today the Earth is neared to the Sun than it was twenty centuries ago, and the Moon is further away from the Earth; but also the velocity of both has changed, and the Earth turns upon its axis in a shorter interval of time. We are getting closer to the centre of gravity; we are, as is our planet, answering to the inward ull. The best of men are deifying, most of us a-humanising, still; but all are gradually, imperceptibly -yet surely - evolving. We need no other argument than that afforded by cosmic law to uphold the doctrine of optimism. The laws of periodicity, of cyclic progress and of gravitation, ensure the working out of the law of compensation, and this is the basis of our law of values which here has been partially considered. We learn from the law of values that rise and fall, increase and decrease, gain and loss, are only relative and at most but temporary terms, having no permanent value in a scheme that demands continual progress. But also it affords us that measure of opportunity which is required for the exercise of our faculties and powers, and the old adage, "Needs must when the devil drives", is only another expression of the fact that "Necessity is the mother of invention", and equally that "Suffering is the cause of evolution", for:-
"Stronger than woe is will; That which is good Doth pass to better, best".
Without restriction and pain, without need and suffering, there would be no sustained effort towards expansion, and without effort no development of power and faculty.
Thus we see how the study of the universe as symbol leads us to a more just conception of the Divine Economy, and how the law of values, when worked out to its last equation, speaks only of the beneficence of God. Incidentally it may serve us to improve our opportunities and make the best of life by timely effort in work that is agreeable to our natures and within the range of our faculties, as indicated to us by the kabala of numbers and other means of interpretation available to us. What I have here tried to show is the fact that 1 = 1 + xn , and 8 = 3. To have succeeded, if only partially, will be to have given to the kabalistic theory a new value, lifting it to the position of a gospel of optimism, at the same time inviting the philosophical consideration of a new law of values, which has regard to the scientific fact of human evolution and the moral incident of individual aspiration.
I have already said that neither kabalism nor astrology is a religion, and I do not see cause to depart from this statement. I am inclined to think, however, that both may contribute something to the structure of a true religion which has regard to the symbolical value of the universe as the revelation of God to man. Emerson, in his essay on "Idealism", has seized upon this idea and embodied it in the following fine phrase, which I venture to quote from memory: "The idealist views the world in God. He sees the whole circle of events, of persons and things, not as painfully accumulated, atom by atom, act after act, in an age creeping past, but as one vast scene painted on the instant eternity by the hand of God for the eternal contemplation of the human soul".
The laws of thought imposed upon us by 22 = 4 (materiality) may be changed by an altered relation to the universe, and it may then appear that the apparent changes taking place in the world about are reflections answering to changes in our consciousness, and that the great picture of man in the image and likeness of God, the "fulness of the stature of Christ", has never undergone any change since the world began.
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