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Re: On the theme of numerology

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  • Terri Burns
    ... AlchemistRoyalAdvisorDrJohnDee@yahoogroups.com, numberservant ... Pythagorean numerology are ... topic I am suggesting, for ... writing an English paper.
    Message 1 of 4 , May 2, 2006
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      --- In
      AlchemistRoyalAdvisorDrJohnDee@yahoogroups.com, "numberservant"
      <numberservant@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hello,
      >
      > I have for quite sometime held the view that Kabbalistic and
      Pythagorean numerology are
      > dual, via the identification of male and female with 2 vs. 3. The
      topic I am suggesting, for
      > Terri especially, is something I noticed many years ago while
      writing an English paper. The
      > number of poems (not sure on the exact count - my copy is
      unavailable) written by Emily
      > Dickinson is approximately the maximum number given an
      interpretation in Crowley's
      > Sepher Sephiroth, some 1700.
      >

      My copy of her collected works has 1775 poems and some fragments.


      > Coincidence or can there be a correspondence made? I say that,
      going on the work of
      > Dickinson herself, talking of a "broken mathematics." In the paper
      I wrote, again
      > something I don't have access to currently, I suggested that she
      was working some sort of
      > "intuitionistic" mathematics, akin, but not too related to
      Brouwer's intuitionism.


      I'd say that's most likely. If you try to create a "rule" for many
      of the things in her poetry-- her punctuation, dashes especially--
      you can come up with one. Some people have written dissertations on
      just that, actually. But they assume its intuitive, a "music of the
      language" kind of argument, then usually go on to point out that most
      great works of art are this way and I start to yawn. (Okay, sure,
      but some poems also have pretty strict formal requirements that
      precede the content, sonnets most obviously.) She actually does
      write poetry with semi-predictable metering--mostly quatrains in
      iambic trimeter-- but also breaks that pattern whenever she sees a
      need to.

      This is not to say she doesn't follow some form, and has a pretty
      amazingly consistent internal symbolism. She's mainly influenced by
      the English metaphysical poets, whose work is full of green language
      (they're in many ways the inheritors of the green language of
      Shakespeare), so I suppose one could look for much more in Dickinson
      if one wanted to . . . even connect her to the metaphysicals, then to
      Shakespeare, then to Dee and/or the western mystery tradition. I
      just have never done so. She's not a poet I've spent much time with
      in years. You're post makes me want to look over these Collected
      Works again, though.

      I do use her to play a joke on my students occasionally. When class
      is getting a bit too dull and questions have been replaced by rote
      note-taking, I "point out" that you can sing most of her poems to the
      tune of "A Yellow Rose of Texas." Try it. I sing it for the class,
      but you all get to do it yourselves:

      Because I could not stop for Death,
      He kindly stopped for me;
      The carriage held but just ourselves
      And Immortality.
      We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
      And I had put away
      My labor, and my leisure too,
      For his civility.

      etc.

      And isn't this amazing . . . because historians tell us that
      the "Yellow Rose" was really an indentured servant named Emily . . .
      oh, anyone here know the story behind that song? Emily who?

      Of course the above is a joke, meant to illustrate the need to think
      critically about what one is told. Not even a very clever joke. But
      I have yet to have any student call me on it. That depresses me,
      actually.

      The above story has no relevance to your questions at all. I just
      don't know too much about Emily Dickinson.



      >
      > The more puzzling thing is the identity of the character in the
      dialogues of her poetry.
      > What do you know of that Terri? and is there any real possibility
      that is was some spirit, as
      > has been suggested?

      I don't know. I can think of one poem in particular where she
      presents herself in the role of a receiver of supernatural hosts, but
      it seems that what she's talking about is the invention of the
      telegraph . . . or at least, that's one thing. Here's an article
      making that argument:
      http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/american_quarterly/v055/55.4mccormack.pdf

      This fellow does look at her through the "lens" of spiritualism:

      Lease, Benjamin. Emily Dickinson's Readings of Men and Books: Sacred
      Soundings. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1990.


      If so, is there some sort of communication here, through a different
      > medium, that may be related to Kabbalistic numerological codings?
      Further then, if in the
      > context of Enochian, from the perspective I will attempt to write
      about at a future date, is
      > there a more complex level of interpretations, depth, or meaning?
      Is it worth an attempt to
      > look or is it like Terri mentioned, that the interpretations may be
      so colored by personal
      > bias, that it is irrelevant?

      I think you're arguing that the numbers point to universal meanings
      that transcend personalities. My hesitation (actually much more than
      that) is to use numbers to identify personalities without considering
      style, context, symbolism, and how all of the above string together.

      You're also arguing about numbers from the perspective of sacred
      geometry, which is slightly different (or is sometimes different)
      from a cipher argument, which was the type of numerical analysis I
      was responding to. (I know these sometimes intersect as kaballistic
      arguments, so see comments about Dickinson and the Hebrew Bible
      below.)

      I do enjoy cipher arguments, and I agree with many of them when the
      context gives me a reason to. But its also been shown again and
      again how they can, sometimes, be manipulated.



      It is hard to say, for the 3 special numbers that mean something
      > to me, the poetic correspondence with the Hebrew words are
      striking,

      Now you've got me thinking, because I suddenly remember something
      about Emily Dickinson and Hebrew and went on-line to check it. Some
      have argued that her work is heavily influenced by the Hebrew Bible
      rather than the King James Bible. She didn't know Hebrew, as far as
      anyone knows, and quite a few have looked, even to see if she or her
      father could have enrolled in a Hebrew class at nearby Amherst
      college. But, to quote this site, which is summarizing a longer
      article,

      http://www.umass.edu/synergy/synergy99/mathpoet/mp2.html

      "[according to this critic] the poet "committed the supreme act of
      linguistic defiance" by flipping belief in the literal truth of the
      Bible upside down. "Like the Hebrew Bible, her poetry relies on the
      use of paradox, wordplay, and multiplicity of perspective as the most
      effective artifices for manifesting the essential truth about the
      human-Divine relationship. . . . In her work, the human-Divine
      relationship is articulated, not as a fixed body of dogma, but as a
      verb, a field of force, a gymnastic somersaulting that never rests."

      "Consider that in its original format the Torah is a handwritten
      scroll containing only consonants but no vowels or punctuation. The
      reader is thus "empowered and urged to experiment with alternate
      vocalizations and punctuations and thereby discover new meanings in
      the text." Learned Hebrew scholars hold that wordplay "is the trace
      of God's breath in the text." Through wordplay, the reader becomes
      God's partner."

      and so on.

      The person who wrote that article, btw, is a Jewish mathematician who
      seems to have found a second life as literary scholar.



      and at for me have
      > brought new depth on a particular aspect of my experience of the
      divine.
      >
      > Number Servant
      >

      LVX,

      Terri
    • Terri Burns
      ... wrote: Emily Dickinson and Hebrew and went on-line to check it. Some ... summarizing a longer ... That s (duh) the second page . . . the
      Message 2 of 4 , May 2, 2006
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        --- In AlchemistRoyalAdvisorDrJohnDee@yahoogroups.com, "Terri Burns"
        <burnst@...> wrote:
        Emily Dickinson and Hebrew and went on-line to check it. Some
        > have argued that her work is heavily influenced by the Hebrew Bible
        > rather than the King James Bible. But, to quote this site, which is
        summarizing a longer
        > article,
        >
        > http://www.umass.edu/synergy/synergy99/mathpoet/mp2.html
        >

        That's (duh) the second page . . . the article starts here:

        http://www.umass.edu/synergy/synergy99/mathpoet/mp1.html
      • numberservant
        ... For me, the numbers that point to Universal meanings are the naturally occuring types like Pi and E, c, h, etc. Constants of nature, be it mathematical
        Message 3 of 4 , May 2, 2006
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          >
          > I think you're arguing that the numbers point to universal meanings
          > that transcend personalities. My hesitation (actually much more than
          > that) is to use numbers to identify personalities without considering
          > style, context, symbolism, and how all of the above string together.
          >

          For me, the numbers that point to Universal meanings are the naturally occuring types like
          Pi and E, c, h, etc. Constants of nature, be it mathematical nature or physical nature. As
          opposed to Kronecker who claimed that "God invented the integers" and the rest were the
          work of man. I think he has it just the opposite. We, observed the days & nights, and so
          on, learned to count, we made names for one pebble and two pebbles. We did not define
          the ratio of the cir/diam, we discovered it was a constant, etc. I digress.

          In the context I am speaking of there is definitely a context for which any "numerological"
          interpretation is to be made. Yet, I see it more as a method of communication regarding
          something that can't be communicated easily with words, and has a multitude of
          meanings. A painting can communicate to people in many ways, the colors communicate,
          and depend on a context with other colors. Relations. Yet to some extent there is an
          inherent nature that even with minimal relation produces an indication. Those relations
          then are of the "automorphic" kind, the self maps and the invariants under those maps.
          The objects of nature are often denoted "particle" or "wave" but "really" they are
          representations of the unitary group. (whatever that is, right?) And when then understood
          as automorphic representations, there is a deep and rich "inner" structure to things like
          light, ie. photons.

          Number Servant


          > You're also arguing about numbers from the perspective of sacred
          > geometry, which is slightly different (or is sometimes different)
          > from a cipher argument, which was the type of numerical analysis I
          > was responding to. (I know these sometimes intersect as kaballistic
          > arguments, so see comments about Dickinson and the Hebrew Bible
          > below.)
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