The Theology of Arithmetic. On the Mystical, Mathematical and Cosmological Symbolism of the First Ten Numbers. Attributed to Iamblichus. The Theology of Arithmetic: On the Mystical, Mathematical and Cosmological Symbolism of the First Ten Numbers. Front Cover. Iamblichus. Phanes Press, Jan 1. The theology of arithmetic: on the mystical, mathematical and cosmological symbolism of the first ten numbers. Front Cover. Iamblichus. Phanes Press, .

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The arithmetic mean also falls under 6, since the sesquialter ratio of 9 set against it, and the double ratio of 12 set against it, are both gained.

Some people are more precise, and instead of the two halved phases put two crescent phases in the number of phases. And there are five genera of creatures — those that live in fire, those that live in the air, those that live on earth, those that live in water and amphibious creatures. Customers who viewed this item also viewed. When people exalt extraordinary events, they derive words from the triad and talk of ‘thrice blessed,’ ‘thrice fortunate. This couplet is generally said to be merely a traditional Pythagorean oath and is never elsewhere attributed to the authorship of Empedocles.

Philosophy and Theurgy in Late Antiquity. This links the three domains through the metaphor of musical proportion, and with the pattern of the Sacred Decad or Tetraktys. There is a certain plausibility in their also calling it ‘matter’ and even ‘receptacle of all,’ since it is productive even of the dyad which is matter, strictly speaking and since it is capable of containing all principles; for it is in fact productive and disposed to share itself with everything.

So what is indefinite and formless falls under the dyad alone. When she had done so seven times, the seed came out of her, accompanied by a noise. Be the first to ask a question about The Theology of Arithmetic.

The Theology of Arithmetic

And they say that arirhmetic embryo is viable in seven months, but if birth is going to occur at nine months, then this formation happens in the sixth hebdomad [63] for a female embryo, and in the seventh for a male embryo. Since the triad is the first actual number, and qualities and everything else owe their existence to number, then the triad is the source of all qualities.

That is, 25 is circular, is spherical. These qualities are primarily mathe- matical, and then by extension allegorical.

Iamblichus The Theology Of Arithmetic | Mike BeDell –

This book will change the way you think about math, science, philosophy and music. It is also that, apart from one or two more extended and discursive passages such as the discussion of the relation between the pentad and justiceone constantly gets the impression that we are being shown the tip of an iceberg — that far more arithmological speculation was available than we know from treatises such as The Theology of Arithmetic or occasional remarks in other philosophers.

Those not interested in the mystical interpretation of numbers in ancient Greek philosophy, probably won’t be interested in this work and should just stick to Euclid. The text is terse throughout and often obscure, but it is a fascinating glimpse of minds attempting to make sense of a chaotic world. Iamblichks THE TETRAD 57 a single point, then in turn the most elementary of solids, the pyramid, is formed, which even though in itself it is encompassed by at least four angles or surfaces is fitted together by virtue of three equal dimensions, and these dimensions form the limits of any- thing subsisting in Nature as a solid.


In the second place, the triad iamglichus special in being both equal to and successive to the monad and the dyad, while it is perfect in another way and in itself, because it in arithmeic contains beginning, middle and end. Fideler Printed and bound in the United States Find us online at: Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Both mathematics and its mystical counterpart belonged at that time to the oral tradition. For the triad is the source in actuality of number, which is by definition a system a monads.

From the Second Discourse, on the Pentad, of the Arithmetic of Nicomachus of Gerasa 28 [42] When men are wronged, they want the gods to exist, but when they commit wrong, they do not want the gods to exist; hence they are wronged so that they may want the gods to exist.

Bubastis was an Egyptian deity, identified with Isis or, in the Roman system, Diana; the place here called ‘Bubastos’ was the town around her temple. However, in his commentary on Nicomachus’ book, Iamblichus derives from it a lambda diagram which demonstrates the ‘natural contrariety’ of integers and fractions. The idea of doing so is not new: Thus, “” might be a restaurant in the French countryside that specializes in dishes seasoned with tarragon, while “” is an aging trailer park with metalized domiciles bleaching under a fierce Arizona sun.

The current excerpt is from an unknown author, but the idea that the universe is either an eternal continuum or a created composition is superficially similar to what is said on p. Before proceeding further, we will do well to observe that we are allocating numbers to each of the ‘dots’ of the pure Tetraktys model figure 1 ; we are accordingly already moving into symbolic repre- 14 FOREWORD sentation. Greek mathemati- cians distinguished ten forms of inequality.

What need is there now to go through the diminution of oysters and sea-urchins and mussels, and the sympathetic affection which most creatures undergo in relation to this heavenly body, when [61] we can derive sufficient proof of what is being said in the very things that happen to human beings? And it can be described as productive of infinity, since the first manifestation of length is in the dyad, based on the monad as a point, and length is both infinitely divisible and infinitely exten- sible.

And that is why it is called ‘Chance,’ because it accompanies everything which happens, and ‘critical time,’ because it has gained the most critical position and nature. On tertian and quartan fevers, see also pp. It is assumed that a mean will play a part, since justice is a virtue and all virtues are iamblivhus see p. Heteromecics start with 2, but end with 1.

For the squares before it have perimeters which are greater than their surface areas, while the squares after it, on the other hand, have perimeters which are less than their surface areas, but this square alone has perimeter equal to surface area. Traces of this ambivalence will recur in our treatise.

I say “compiler” because like a lot of works from this period, it seems to be more of a doxographical compendium. The nine, which is the last archetypal number before returning to the unity of the decad or ten, begins the row of the four lowest positions. Indeed, these images are attempts at describing something more elusive: A very good book! The simple mathematics of Greek arithmetic can inspire a complex and sophisticated mysticism.

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Introduction The Theology of Arithmetic is a curious, but valuable work. Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. The second, and related merit of the book is simply that we have little extended evidence of the vast tradition of arithmology as distinct from the hard science of mathematics among the Greeks; The Theology of Arithmetic is a welcome, if sometimes obscure, addition to the slender corpus of such texts.

From the pure, indescribable light of unity, the first visual evidence, we might say, is for the units to become surface ‘dots,’ which eventually become matter as spheres, i. For aritgmetic among all the virtues, wisdom is a divine and perfect true ex- treme — that is, it is not a mean, but has just one thing simply opposed to it its lack, ignorance which is not opposed by excess or deficiency.

For in the double sequence of 6 and 12, where 8 aeithmetic 9 occupy the means and patently accomplish what has been said39 35, the addition of all the numbers together, when multiplied by the hexad, results in the seven-month period of days,- and in the triple sequence of 6 and 18, where 9 and 12 are intercalated and yield in their turn the same harmonic relation, the addition of these numbers makes 45, which multiplied again by the hexad yields the number of 9 months, i.

The Theology of Arithmetic : Iamblichus :

It is also thought to be both ‘mixture’ srithmetic ‘blending,’ ‘obscurity’ and ‘darkness,’ thanks to the lack of articulation and distinction theooogy everything which ensues from it.

The generating angle of the ‘times two’ symmetry, from 3 generating 6 and 1 2: The challenge that follows the allocation of three more points within the triangle figure 4 is to discover what numbers they should be, if they are not part of the existing progressions of 2 or 3.

But what is equal is homogeneous for there is only one type of equalitybut what is lamblichus is highly hetero- geneous for there are many types of inequality and has two primary types, greater and lesser; so also where the soul is con- cerned, there will be an equal part and an unequal part, and the equal part will be divine and rational, while the unequal part will be mortal and irrational; and the greater aspect of the unequal part is the passionate soul for it is a boiling over and, as it were, desire to shed excesswhile the lesser aspect is the appetitive soul for it is defective because of its seeking for what is missing ; but every- thing, when it is controlled by the rational part of the soul and partakes of equality on account of ot rational part, gains virtue — the jamblichus part acquires courage, the appetitive part [36] mod- eration.