In part 1 of this series, I gave an introduction to the foundations of numerology. In the following parts, I am going to introduce you to three different numerology systems. I’ll start with the one known as the Chaldean numerology system as practised by Cheiro. After reading this article, you will know how to calculate your personal numbers according to this system. You will also get practical advice on how to use your numbers best in daily life.
At the end of the first part, I wrote that in part two, I would introduce you to different systems of numerology. Apparently, the introduction to Cheiro’s numerology system alone is quite a long read with lots of information to digest, so I decided to only introduce one system at a time.
All three systems I’m going to introduce have in common that they include astrological correspondences to the numbers they use, although they differ from each other in the assignments. Differences occur furthermore in their calculations and in what the numbers calculated by each system refer to. Each one of the three systems uses their own conversion chart for assigning numbers to letters.
As already revealed, the first system I am going to introduce is the Chaldean numerology system as taught by William John Warner, also known as Count Louis Hamon and Cheiro. The second one is referred to as the Pythagorean system, which I will introduce based on a book by Faith Javane & Dusty Bunker. The third numerology system was channelled by Frank Alper who himself called it the “Numerology of Moses”. I will introduce this system based on a book by Nicolas David Ngan, who refers to it in his own work as “Soul Contract Reading”. Let’s get started with the Chaldean numerology system à la Cheiro.
- Cheiro and the source of his numerology
- Foundation of Cheiro’s numerology
- Weekdays, planets, and numbers
- Cheiro’s conversion chart
- Calculations in Cheiro’s numerology
- The secret of compound numbers
- What to do with your numbers
- Special cases number 4 and 8
- Number of the birth month and year
- More to read in Cheiro’s Book of Numbers
- Thoughts about Cheiro’s conversion chart
- Pondering Cheiro’s astrological associations
- Final thoughts
- Your turn
1. Cheiro and the source of his numerology
Cheiro (1. November 1866, Dublin – 8. October 1936, Hollywood), born William John Warner, also known as Count Louis Hamon, was a palmist, numerologist, and astrologer. He gives the theoretical background about his numerology system as well as practical instructions on how to use it in his book Cheiro’s Book of Numbers. The book was written by Cheiro “after upwards of fifty year’s study of this subject and after thousands of experiences and experiments”. It was first published by the London Publishing Company in 1926. About the source of his system Cheiro writes:
“During my earlier years, when traveling in the East, it had been my good fortune to come in contact with a certain sect of Brahmins who had kept in their hands from almost prehistoric times studies and practices of an occult nature which they regarded as sacredly as they did their own religious teachings. Among other things, they permitted me to learn certain theories on the occult significance of numbers and their influence and relation to human life.”
Some chapters later Cheiro speaks about the very origin of numbers stating that in the end, it is a mystery. However, he speculates that there may have been a time when “secrets were revealed to man by his then more close connection with the “God force” that called life into being.” Cheiro then refers to the Bible, which states that there was a time when God walked with man (before the Fall). He goes on, pointing out that the Bible tells us God himself had been speaking to Moses. That Cheiro assumed godly revelation playing a part in numerology can also be seen by him next citing a passage from the book of wisdom of Solomon, where Solomon says:
“For God Himself gave me (Solomon) an unerring knowledge of the things that are, to know the constitution of the world, the beginning and the end and middle of times, the alterations of the solstices, the changes of seasons and the positions of the planets, the nature of living creatures and the thoughts of men, all things that are either secret or manifest I learned, for He that is the artificer of all things taught me this wisdom.”
2. Foundation of Cheiro’s numerology
Important to notice is what Cheiro says next because it reveals what he thought is the foundation of his numerology system, which is heavily intertwined with astrology. Cheiro writes:
“I ask, could anything be more forcible or convincing than such a statement (referring to Solomon), particularly when it is remembered that the true Seal of Solomon was none other than the seven-pointed star which contained the nine numbers which constitute the base of all our calculations, and which is the root of the system of numbers as applied to human life.”
3. Weekdays, planets, and numbers
Derived from the seven-pointed star, the numbers related to the seven days of the week are: Sunday 1–4, Monday 2–7, Tuesday 9, Wednesday 5, Thursday 3, Friday 6, Saturday 8.
As for the planets, Cheiro’s assignments are: Sun 1, Moon 2, Jupiter 3, Uranus 4, Mercury 5, Venus 6, Neptune 7, Saturn 8, Mars 9. About the lights, Cheiro says that the Sun and the Moon are the only two planets having what he calls “double numbers”, because the Sun and Uranus are interrelated one to another, so the number of the Sun is written as 1–4. The Moon being interrelated with Neptune is written as 2–7.
Cheiro does not give explanations on what the number assignment of the seven-pointed star is based on. Nor does he explain further (besides what you can find under the graphic with the star) how Uranus and Neptune are related to Sun and Moon or what the original source for this assignment is. I have come along Indian practitioners online who use the Chaldean chart and assign the Nodes of the Moon instead of Uranus and Neptune to numbers 4 and 7. Cheiro must have been aware of this because, as he writes in his Book of Numbers, he had studied the subject in the East. My guess is that the assignment of Uranus and Neptune to numbers 4 and 7 is probably an invention made by Cheiro himself.
Taking into account that the latest discovered planets by Cheiro’s time were Uranus and Neptune, making the scale of nine full, it must have been intriguing to assign them to numbers 4 and 7 instead of the Nodes, which do not have, unlike in Indian astrology, the same significance as the planets in Western astrology. In chapter two of his book, Cheiro writes “There is no getting away from the fact that there are only nine planets in our Solar System, also that there are only nine numbers by which all our calculations on this earth are made.”
Pluto (counted as the 10th planet in modern Western astrology) was only discovered four years after Cheiro’s Book of Numbers was published and six years before Cheiro’s death. I wonder if Cheiro would have assigned Uranus and Neptune (or accepted the assignment in case someone else did) to the system if he would have known of an outer planet more to be discovered? What would he do with Pluto if living in our times?
4. Cheiro’s conversion chart
Cheiro’s conversion chart is based on the Chaldean/Hebrew alphabet (actually an abjad). About the assignment of numbers to letters in his system, Cheiro writes:
“It is the best system I know for this purpose; its origin is lost in antiquity, but it is believed that it was originated by the Chaldeans, who were masters in all magical arts, and by them passed to the Hebrews.”
As mentioned in part 1 of this series, the Chaldean system does not assign number 9 to any specific letter of the alphabet. Cheiro explains: “…for the simple reason that those ancient masters of Occultism knew that in the “Highest Sphere” the number 9 represents the 9-lettered name of God, and for this reason no single letter was ascribed to it.”
5. Calculations in Cheiro’s numerology
Cheiro uses mainly two numbers in his system—the day of birth number and the name number. The day of birth number (aka birth number, birthday number, also “lucky number”) is simply the single-digit, that is the root number of the day you were born. For example, if you were born on the 7th day, then your day of birth number would be naturally 7. However, if you were born on the 24th day, your day of birth number would be 6 (2+4=6).
According to Cheiro, the day of birth number is a key number that is related to the planet bearing the same number, representing a vibration that lasts all through life. This differentiates the day of birth number from the name number, which is calculated for the name you are most known by and may change at some point in life.
That means, in Cheiro’s system, you do not necessarily use your full birth name for calculating your name number. Just take the most used name(s). If your name has changed, then use the name you currently use. For example, if your full name at birth would be Nepumuk Fridolin Goblin, and people would know you only by Nepumuk Goblin, you would calculate your name number for Nepumuk Goblin. If you would mostly be called Fridolin Goblin, or just by your surname Goblin, then calculate your name number accordingly. If you’d be known mainly by a pet name like “Neppe” or “Frido” use these names for the calculations instead. Sometimes people use different names in different circles. Included may also be the usage of prefixes. In these cases, Cheiro advises as follows.
“If, for example, a young lady is always addressed or spoken of as, say, Miss Jones—as is often the case in a large business establishment—then in connection with that business in which she is employed, Miss Jones should certainly take that name as the one she is most known by and work out the number of the name “Miss Jones” and use it, but only in relation to the business she is employed in. It is, in fact, her “trade name”; but for her home life or her private affairs she should work out the Christian name she is called by or the “pet” name she is known under. When the same young lady enters the state of matrimony and becomes “Mrs.” she should then work out the numbers for her new title, but always keeping the numbers of her Christian or “pet ” name for her home and private life. The same rule applies to every woman known and called continually “Mrs. Smith” or “Mrs. Jones,” as the case may be, in the circle of friends or acquaintances in which she is called “Mrs.” Men in business for themselves or in large establishments, who are generally called “Mr.” before their name, should also follow the above rule. […] The same rule applies to every prefix or title a man or woman may obtain by right of birth or as an honour.”
Let us now take an example, and using the Chaldean conversion chart from above calculate some variations of name numbers for Sir Nepumuk Fridolin Goblin. 🧙♂️
6. The secret of compound numbers
According to Cheiro, the single number of a person’s name represents the person as he or she appears to be in the eyes of others. The single number is, therefore, a number of individuality and personality. The double or compound number of the name again represents the hidden influences and forces that use the man or woman as their instrument. Cheiro says, that compound numbers often foreshadow the future or the hidden current of destiny of the individual. In conclusion, numbers 1—9 belong to the physical or material side of things, and compound numbers from 10 on belong to the more occult or spiritual side of life.
Cheiro gives an over five pages long list of the symbolism of numbers 10 to 52 in chapter thirteen of his book. Due to copyright, I kindly refer you to look up the meanings for these numbers straight from his book. About the source of the symbolism of the compound numbers, Cheiro writes:
“The universally accepted symbolism of the compound numbers in ancient times was given in pictures and may still be found in the Tarot Cards which have been handed down to us from the most distant ages and whose origin is lost in antiquity.”
7. What to do with your numbers
Cheiro talks about the laws of nature and everything being vibration. He concludes that a life lived in harmony with the commands of Nature, would lead to happiness, health, and success. Therefore, Cheiro’s advice is to not be ignorant but to take into account your own numbers in daily life affairs. In his Book of Numbers, you can find specific times of the year which would be most preferable to you—based on your day of birth number—for carrying out your plans and ideas. Furthermore, Cheiro lists matching weekdays, colours, and crystals for each number from 1 to 9.
For a quick overview of correspondences to each number, please see the table below. To get a full picture of Cheiro’s assignments, have a look at his Book of Numbers, which is still reprinted and can be purchased, for example, via Amazon.
Cheiro also shows a way how to figure out if a specific day is fortunate for you. In this method, you add the date you want to know about, the total of the compound numbers of your name plus the birth number. Note, that Cheiro uses—as already with the birthday number—only the day in his calculations, excluding the month and year!
For example, if our Sir Nepumuk (let’s say he is known and called by this name), born on January 5th, would want to know if May 23rd is favourable for starting a journey around the world with his ship, he would proceed as followed: add the number for the day he wants to know, which is 2+3=5 to the number of his name, which is 6 (Sir) + 9 (Nepumuk) = 6 to his birth number 5. The result would be number 16, which adds up to 7.
In his example, Cheiro advises to look up the meaning of the compound number. In Cheiro’s list, the 16 is said to be pictured by a tower struck by lightning from which a man is falling with a crown on his head (the Tower card in Tarot). Cheiro writes about its meaning: “It gives warning of some strange fatality awaiting one, also danger of accidents and defeat of one’s plans. If it appears as a “compound” number relating to the future, it is a warning sign that should be carefully noted and plans made in advance in the endeavour to avert its fatalistic tendency.” Based on the symbolism of this number, Sir Nepumuk would be advised to pick another day for the beginning of his journey.
One more advice from Cheiro is to make your birthday number and name number agree, if possible, because the vibrations will then all be in harmony, and will give a greater promise of success if the number is a favourable one. The birthday number cannot be changed, so what you can do is to alter your name number. If Sir Nepumuk Fridolin Goblin would attempt to make his birth number (5) agree with his name number, he could, for example, decide to add a letter B to Goblin, which would then add up to number 5 instead of 3. He then could use “Gobblin” as a stand-alone name or together with Nepumuk (9), which again adds up to 5 matching his birth number 5.
There is still one piece of advice from Cheiro, namely to select a house to live in which number gives the same vibration as the birth and name number. If you live in the country, Cheiro advises you to give a name to your house which produces the same number as your birth and name number.
As a general rule, Cheiro advises employing your birth number, except in the case you were born under the number 4 or 8.
8. Special cases number 4 and 8
Cheiro sees numbers 4 and 8 as problematic. He gives an example where number 8 is the birthday number and the name number. In this case, the numbers are in harmony, and Cheiro does not advise to change the name number. He then writes that in case the name number would be an 8 and the birthday number a 2, he would alterate the name number to match the birthday number 2. He then goes on:
“However, if a person is born under either of those peculiar numbers such as a 4 or an 8, and if the Name number should also total up to a 4 when one is born under an 8, or to an 8 when one is born under a 4, then for material success it would be better if one added some letter, as I explained in the case of John Smith, so that the total of your number is no longer a 4 or an 8, but one with a more fortunate vibration, making, say, a 1, 3, 6, or 9. Such a change in the majority of cases will produce most fortunate results and set up entirely new vibrations, which will change a lonely, unlucky life into one of happiness and success.”
Note: Cheiro lists here number 9 as a possible number for altering your name in case your birthday number adds up to 4 or 8. Later, however, Cheiro says that since number 4 (symbol of Uranus) and 8 (symbol of Saturn) are so antagonistic in their qualities to the 9 (symbol of Mars), that it is better to keep them apart. For selecting a house number in the case a person has a combination of number 4 and 8, Cheiro writes:
“In the case of a person having an 8 for the Birth number and a 4 for the Name number, or vice versa, they should, under no circumstances, live in a house whose number worked out to the single digit of a 4 or an 8.”
9. Number of the birth month and year
Cheiro states that the number of the day of birth is the most important and personal one. In his opinion, the number of the month you were born relates to general matters and the number of the year to the wider current of events/destiny. He advises to not add these numbers together but to regard them as separate and distinct.
Regarding the year number, Cheiro says that when it is totalled and added to itself, it indicates an important year in the destiny of a person. He gives the following example: 1866 = 21, 1866 +21 = 1887.
10. More to read in Cheiro’s Book of Numbers
Cheiro gives a lot of examples to his calculations, and he has many stories on how the personal numbers played out in several people’s lives. He also has a whole chapter on the symbolism of number 13. One chapter deals with periodicity of numbers.
At the end of his book, Cheiro answers common questions dedicating much space for additional and clarifying advice for people born under 4 and 8. He also gives more information about colours, music, probable health issues, herbs, important years, finding the right city to live in and the use of numerology in horse racing. Cheiro also reveals some interesting facts about numerology in the Bible and his concluding words are certainly interesting to read.
As the purpose of this series is to introduce and compare different numerology systems, it is interesting to read what Cheiro has to say about the Pythagorean numerology system as compared to the Chaldean one he teaches.
“To put matters briefly, the two schools of philosophy in regard to the subject of numbers are the Pythagorean and the more ancient one known as the Chaldean. The Greek philosopher, Pythagoras, imbibed all his knowledge of the occult value of numbers during his residence in Egypt. On his return to Greece he established a school of occult philosophy that was eminently suited to the needs of his day. In this school only a very limited number of initiates were allowed to enter. […] …nothing was allowed to be put in writing, knowledge had to be handed down by word of mouth, the most elaborate ceremonials were instituted in which initiates were sworn to secrecy, and the greatest efforts were made to conceal occult knowledge in eyery possible way. After the death of Pythagoras, his many followers started schools of philosophy of their own. All of them differed widely as to what “the Master” really did teach. […] One of the greatest of Pythagoras’ teachings was that of the occult value of numbers. He laid down the axiom that numbers concealed and contained the secret of the universe. In this theory he was undoubtedly right, but his followers so complicated the rules he taught that in the end few could follow the great truth that underlay his wisdom. […] In the study of numbers I advocate that the students should endeavour to get back to the original source; that is why I claim that in returning to the original Chaldean, Hindu, and Hebrew system, which I teach in my books, one has more likelihood of arriving at the real truth of such studies.”
11. Thoughts about Cheiro’s conversion chart
Cheiro works mostly with two numbers, namely the birth number and the name number. No difficult calculations are needed. Still, there’s one tricky thing, which has to do with how to convert names into numbers. Cheiro tells us that his conversion chart is based on the Chaldean/Hebrew alphabet. The sound of the Hebrew language and its letters itself differs from English.
One can find various tables on how to convert Hebrew sounding into English letters. From what I have seen, they agree for the most part with each other but still differ to some significant extent. After all, for calculations in numerology, one letter/number can change the whole outcome. We may also wonder how alike or different the current Hebrew pronunciation and the use of letters is compared to the ancient Paleo-Hebrew. Therefore, I think one has to be aware of the roots of the system, take into account its possible limitations and think about some potential alterations needed to be done for calculating the name number in some cases.
There are letters/sounds in some languages which are not included in Cheiro’s conversion chart. For example, the letters Ä, Ö, and Ü as used in the German language. It is said that the Chaldean system is based on the vibration and sound of the word. I have seen, that some count Ä, Ö, and Ü as A, O, and U as they do have their roots in these vowels, but one could argue that the sound is different and therefore these letters should get a different number associated with them. Some suggest writing Ä, Ö, and Ü as AE, OE, and UE—like it was the case before the introduction of the letters Ä, Ö, and Ü—and calculate the name number accordingly.
Another tricky thing is that some letters differ in their sound from one language to another. That is, for example, the case for the letter Y. In English and German, it usually makes an /i/ sound. In Finnish again it makes the same sound as the German Ü. In Cheiro’s table Y has the same value as A, Q, I, and J and is associated with the number 1. It makes sense to put Y in the same category as I and J if it is pronounced like /i/, as it is the case with the name Jonny. But if we keep in mind, that the system is based on sound and if the letter Y in some language does make another sound instead of /i/ then we may ponder if not to associate it with another number. In the case for the letter Y in Finnish names, like in Lyyli, which makes the same sound like the German Ü, which again has its root in the vowel U, one might find it would be logical to put it in the same category as U, V, and W, which are associated with number 6.
Still more problems arise with sounds that are displayed with two or more letters. This is the case for the sound /ʃ/ which is written as SH in English and SCH in German. If you took Cheiro’s table, you would convert every single letter into a number, although we have only one sound. In English, you would add 3+5, and in German, you would add 3+3+5. Interestingly, in Hebrew, there too is a sound /ʃ/ which matches exactly one letter, which is called ‘shin’ (ש). I wonder if Cheiro did know about this or why does he not mention it? At least I couldn’t find anything in his Book of Numbers about it. Maybe he has some insights in one of his other books?
There are many more such instances than the ones I gave as an example above. Maybe you already have yourself some in mind, or your own name has letters in it not included in Cheiro’s conversion chart.
12. Pondering Cheiro’s astrological associations
For the correspondences of numbers to planets and furthermore to your personality, I would definitely have a look at your astrological natal chart. The qualities of the planets described in Cheiro’s book can be only of general nature. The actual qualities of the planet represented through your birth number in your unique case depend, amongst many other factors, on the sign, the ruler and the configurations of the planet in your birth chart. That is why you may not fully identify yourself with that planet as described by Cheiro. Just keep that in mind when reading the descriptions.
Cheiro writes about the qualities of number 7, which he thinks is ruled by Neptune, that it is very independent in its nature. Usually, independence is not a quality associated with planet Neptune (nor the Moon or the South Node which are also associated with number 7 in this system), quite the opposite. It would be interesting to know where Cheiro picked this quality for Neptune. I think in general the association of modern planets, which unlike the seven traditional planets cannot be seen by the naked eye, to this ancient system of numerology is problematic.
As mentioned earlier, Cheiro only knew of two outer planets (Uranus and Neptune) and did not know of Pluto at the time he wrote his Book of Numbers, since it was not discovered yet. However, modern astrology uses ten planets, of which Pluto is one. Ten again does not fit the sequence of numbers from 1—9 we have in this system. What to do?
I think as the day of birth number is to represent the individual’s personality, it would be reasonable to stick with the seven traditional planets. The whole system is ancient, after all. The outer planets, as they move only very slowly through the zodiac, are said to symbolise the collective. Due to their extremely slow movement, they are also called generational planets. From a traditional standpoint of astrology, there are many reasons why the outer planets are not considered as personal planets. The rulership of the twelve zodiac signs being one of them.
Cheiro himself points out, that every traditional planet (except the lights Sun and Moon) has two signs of rulership—one which is associated with its feminine attributes and one which symbolises its masculine attributes. He gives a great example of Mars, who rules the signs of Aries (masculine) and Scorpio (feminine). The rulership scheme, with its insightful symbolism, is such a fundamental piece of astrological tradition, that in my opinion, it has to be taken into account.
“It will be observed that the Planets have a Positive and Negative quality in accordance with the period of the Zodiac they rule; the Positive giving the more physical and forceful qualities, the Negative the mental. For example, the symbol of the 9 positive in the Sign of Aries is: A man in armour with his visor closed and a naked sword in his hand. The 9 negative in the Sign of Scorpio is represented by a man also in armour, but with the visor up showing his face, and the sword in its sheath, giving the picture of the mental warrior rather than the physical.”
Of course, if excluding Uranus and Neptune, we would have two times Sun and Moon in Cheiro’s system since he doesn’t use the Nodes (like Indian numerologists do). Confusingly, Cheiro still does associate the Sun with numbers 1 and 4 (writing it’s number 1—4) and the Moon with numbers 2 and 7 (writing it’s number 2—7), but he does not give total rulership to both numbers associated with them. He says, that Uranus represents the feminine side of the Sun on the mental/spiritual plane and that Neptune represents the Moon’s masculine attributes on the mental/spiritual plane. Confusing?
I think associating polarity to outer planets is problematic. Some see them as being neuter. Besides based on the symbolism of these planets, one would rather associate feminine polarity with Neptune and masculine polarity with Uranus. Cheiro was also an astrologer, and he wrote some books about his craft. I haven’t read those books yet. Maybe they would shed some additional light on his thoughts. From what he writes in his Book of Numbers, there are definitely some questions left to be answered.
13. Final thoughts
I like the simple approach of Cheiro’s numerology system and its attempt to be of practical help in everyday life. I also definitely see value in the association of planets with the numbers in this system. Although I am not sure about the numbers 4 and 7 and their planetary rulership of Uranus and Neptune for reasons I explained above.
One way to get some more insights would be to look at people’s natal chart who have number 4 or 7 as their birth number and see if Sun / Uranus / North Node or Moon / Neptune / South Node are in a more significant role in their charts. Although the Nodes aren’t ruling planets either, it would be interesting to include them in this kind of study, since Indian numerologists have used them with the Chaldean system for a long time.
Cheiro assures the reader that the employment of their own number will have a positive impact on their lives, increasing health, success and happiness. From an astrological point of view, one must keep in mind that you may not experience the results you may expect if you currently live under challenging planetary influences. That is why I personally don’t like to call the day of birth number “lucky number” because it somehow gives a false impression. Numerology is not a tool which solves all your problems. However, it can be of help in living a more conscious life.
14. Your turn
As you have finally come to the end of this writing (congratulations!), I would be very interested to hear about your thoughts about Cheiro’s system. What is your take on letters not included in the conversion chart—how do you convert them? Do you see your numbers reflecting your personality and life? Which correspondences can you find when comparing with your natal chart? Does the planet associated with your number hold a significant position in your natal chart? And what do you think about the planetary associations? Please leave a comment and let me know.
A tip: if you enjoy watching and learning through videos, you might want to check out Jyotirvid Pawan’s YouTube channel. One of its topics is Chaldean numerology (using the Nodes of the Moon instead of Uranus and Neptune), which he teaches in a clear and easy to understand manner.
This was part 2 of Investigating Correspondences Between Numerology and Astrology. In part 3, you will read about the Pythagorean numerology system as taught by Faith Javane & Dusty Bunker.
Sources and further reading:
Cheiro, Cheiro’s Book of Numbers, Pakistan, 1959, Burma & Ceylon, by D. B. Taraporevala Sons & Co. Private Ltd, by arrangement with Herbert Jenkins Limited.
Jyotirvid Pawan, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvW0nGeZ1fCoZEDGbDCv6PA.
Wikipedia, Abjad, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abjad.
Wikipedia, Shin, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shin_(letter).
Wikipedia, Umlaut, https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umlaut.
Wikipedia, Y, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Y.
Featured Image: Gerd Altmann | Pixabay
11 thoughts on “Investigating Correspondences Between Numerology and Astrology Part 2 — Introducing Cheiro’s Numerology System (Chaldean)”
Yes it would be great to know the origins of these numerical attributes. How they were derived and who first came up with them and how they relate to the planets. Seems 3 would go well with Mercury, thrice greatest Hermes! 7 with Saturn. 8 with Venus. But then there’s the later system of the mystical Hebrews, but that was after Babylonian, etc.
Hi Sailor, thanks for your comment and welcome to the blog! There are some works written that talk about the origins of numbers and their attributes. One book I find very insightful is Christa Zettel’s “Das Geheimnis der Zahl” (1996, Wilhelm Heyne Verlag). The origins of numbers is a multidimensional topic and very hard to grasp. It is like the quest for finding the holy grail. As our solar system symbolizes the reality we live in, it would be logical that the planets and their arrangement carry the knowledge and symbolism of how everything came into being and how every part of creation is related to each other. The Chaldean order, based on speed and distance of the seven traditional planets, is definitely something to meditate on. In this scheme, Saturn is associated with number 7 since he holds the seventh sphere. How do you relate Venus to number 8?
Wish someone would do a good translation of all the works by Christa Zettel as I do not read German. But my question was not about the Chaldean order; that, as you mention, is based on the logic of planetary speed. It was on the order that is used here from an old tradition that somehow has its correspondences: Sun = 1, Moon = 2, so far so good, makes sense, and then Jupiter = 3??? Uranus (obviously a later attribute) = 4, Mercury = 5, Venus = 6, and so on.
We have the more recent Kabbalistic attributions relating to the Tree, which do make logical sense. It’s those other numbers that don’t make sense to me, at least yet. For me, Venus relates to the number 8 because Venus makes an eight year cycle where it returns to the exact same place in the Zodiac in the meantime making a five pointed star pattern from the earth’s perspective. These places are inferior conjunctions with the Sun.
How’s that for geometric beauty and form?
6 goes well with Venus i guess but might even fit better with Mercury since his cyclical conjunctions form a Hexagram rather than a Venusian Pentagram in the heavens. So with that said, just wondering how these particular numbers ever got associated with these specific planets? I use them, many people use them, and have used them for many years, but no one seems to know where they originated from and how they relate. Mars = 9 ? How did they get that?
The mystery continues, and that’s okay. LOL
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Good point taking into account the geometrical form a planet creates on its path. But I’m afraid we would fail if we attempted to associate a number from one to nine to each planet based on this.
A translation of Christa Zettel’s ‘Das Geheimnis der Zahl’ would be indeed welcome. However, the book is written in such a difficult way that I think finding someone who would take the task of translating it is hard.
I have been wondering too about Mars and his association with number 9. It is a bit weird to think of Mars representing “the whole spectrum”, what its association with the number 9 indicates, since number 9 contains all numbers.
Jupiter and number 3 is easier to understand as three is a combination and product of one and two, for example the child born from mother and father. Jupiter is a symbol of expansion, so is the child in some way. Also, Jupiter stands for wisdom and spirituality. Here, number 3 is a symbol of the Holy Trinity, i.e., Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; also mind, body, and soul etc.
Sepharial lists a few numerology systems in his ‘The Kabala of Numbers’ (1920) https://archive.org/details/TheKabalaOfNumbers. One of them is similar to the one Cheiro uses, where 1–4 gets associated with the Sun and 2–7 with the Moon. Sepharial says that his source for this scheme is a guy called John Haydon, who writes about it in a book named ‘The Holy Guide’. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find this work.
Sepharial, however, says that “The values given by Haydon appear to be without any or due foundation, and those who have used these planetary numbers have hitherto offered no reason for attaching particular values to the several planets. In the course of the following exposition I have supplied this deficiency and have given the paradigm from which Haydon derived his values, which are traditional among the Kabalists.”
I haven’t found full understanding yet from what I’ve read in Sepharial. But he gives an interesting association for the numbers and planets based on a rearrangement (which he attributes to the Kabalists) of the numbers contained in the square of Saturn.
In this rearrangement, the planets are divided into three groups: spiritual, mental, and physical. The Sun 1, Jupiter 3, and Mars 9, are the spiritual numbers. The Moon 7, Mercury 5, and Venus 6, are the mental numbers. Saturn 8, Sun 4, and Moon 2 are the physical numbers.
It is interesting that Mars is found in the spiritual group. If one takes a closer look, you see that the two planets besides the Sun in the spiritual group are the only ones that rule both a fire and a water sign. Jupiter rules Sagittarius (fire) and Pisces (water). Mars rules Aries (fire) and Scorpio (water). The Sun himself rules Leo (fire). So it makes sense that Mars belongs to the same group as Jupiter.
May well be that our understanding of the nature and significations of the planets is much different from that of the Chaldeans and other ancient cultures. Fortunately, more and more ancient texts get translated these days. Who knows, maybe we will soon get some more insights into our subject. Until then, the mystery continues… ✨
Fantastic reply Sindy. You’ve given me much to think about… “the planets are divided into three groups: spiritual, mental, and physical…” and by the way, LOVE YOUR BLOG. Keep up the excellent work!
I’ll refer that book in German to some who may be interested in a possible translation. And thanks also for your reference to “The Holy Guide” this one has been added to my list of things to study along with Sepharial’s ‘Kabbala of Numbers’ which I had already begun just before I found your blog. Had it in my .pdf files from years ago and just now getting around to reading it.
Here is a copy rather difficult to read, a facsimile copy, and in old type,
but I will still tackle it, after a few books by Sepharial.
-Thanks again Sindy,
you are brilliant!!! Keep letting your light shine.
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Awesome, you found ‘The Holy Guide’! Thanks for sharing. I see the name is written Heydon (not Haydon as in the copy of Sepharial I read). Probably the reason why I couldn’t find it. I will definitely get into ‘The Holy Guide’ at some point. The subtitle sounds very promising: “Leading the Way to the Wonder of the World: (A Compleat Phisitian) Teaching the Knowledge of All Things, Past, Present, and to Come, Viz., of Pleasure, Long Life, Health, Youth, Blessedness, Wisdome and Virtue, and to Cure, Change, and Remedy All Diseases in Young and Old”. If that is not something worth studying!
And thank you for commenting on the article and for your very kind words! I much appreciate it. I hope reading the blog is useful. Take care! 🕊️
First of all, thank you for writing such a detailed piece, it was very informative and interesting.
I have just ordered one of Cheiro’s books, that I used to own in the 80’s, after re-starting my palmistry/tarot business.
My knowledge of numerology is not as deep as yours, but I had a knack of interpreting other people’s numbers and giving some accurate predictions and advice based on Cheiro’s system.
In my personal opinion, it is the best system to use (compared with other systems that I also looked into over the years), for creating more harmony and success in life. For example, places and areas to live, house numbers to live at, favourable dates etc.
Thank you again for writing such a great article!
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Thank you for your feedback and for sharing your experiences with numerology, especially the type Cheiro practiced! Isn’t it fascinating how we always come back to certain systems? Some call us louder than others. I’m sure you will enjoy re-reading Cheiro’s book after so many decades. I wish all the best for you and your work. May it benefit many. ✨