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Question

Dear Mitch,

I read your post yesterday, and am interested in learning more about numerology.  It's something I've heard about for a long time but never really had a clue what it was based on or if there was any legitimacy to it.  I know you said you didn't want to reveal the person's name or anything who would be doing numerology and relaxation exercises for kids like me who get math anxiety and don't test well because tests just freak us out, but if you have a chance could you at least ask her what she says about today's date, it being the 22nd of February, and what's up with today?  (As you might have guessed, today just happens to be my birthday!)

Thanks, and keep up with these cool new things.  I couldn't find a thing about numerology on any other real math site.

Sincerely,

Herbert (I'd rather not give my last name)

Answer

Dear Herbert,

Sure!

As a matter of fact, I just got off the phone with this new 'mystery person' and we expect to have her photo and bio up within a few days.  (Things have been a little hectic out here in East Hampton, as students are in the midst of seeking and sorting through guidance regarding college applications and SAT prep, both of which have kept me busier than any other season I can recall since my self-imposed break a couple of years ago.)

Anyway, before I tell you what our numerologist had to say, I'd like to add a personal thought on the subject. My guess is that -- like acupuncture -- numerology is something that has been taken very seriously in the East (by this I basically mean Asia), and has only recently started to be taken seriously in the Western Hemisphere.  I suspect it is only a matter of time before it takes on as much respect here as elsewhere -- even if it is integrated as only one ingredient to consider among many, like when a patient goes for a second or third opinion, and then weighs very different options for procedures before deciding which route to take.  Finally, I'd like to point out that numerology has VERY close relatives, so to speak, in cultures as different from the Asian ones as one can imagine.  The Hassidic Jewish community, which is one of the most ultra-orthodox sects of that religion (and can be found in virtually every major city throughout the world, distinguished by their long black coats, black hats and full beards), have long integrated a form of numerology into their own belief system, and plays a vital role in the Kabalah, which is their ancient book of mysticism.

Okay, now, without further ado, here is what our new staff member had to say about today's date, 2/22/2010:

"If today is your birthday, 2010 is a 9 year. 9's symbolize endings, so be prepared to say adieu to romance or a job. . . or to that nasty cigarette habit.  9's are also associated with teachers and with teachings, so don't be surprised if you are the recipient of an important Life Lesson over the next 12 months.  In ancient China, the number 9 was associated with the Emporer, as 9 is the greatest single-digit, hence the grandest, befitting his status. 

"In Christianity, 9 is the number most associated with mysticism (after 3), as it is the Trinity squared. 

"With respect to the alphabet, I and R are your 9 letters.  If your name computes to 9, you are among the altruists and humanitarians of the universe. As my wise mentor, Lucy, told me, 9's give more than they get, and it is their faith which carries them through hardship and ordeal.  They emit a compassionate and empathetic frequency. 

"The number 9 also corresponds to the Hermit of the Major Arcana in the Tarot.  He symbolizes introspection and solitude.  He often serves as a guide or teacher to initiates.  He reminds us that unconscious revelation can only occur after contraction and self-examination."

I hope you found this interesting, enlightening, and intriguing; I did!

Mitch