Let us make digression for the purpose, of enforcing what has been said, of illustration, and of collateral teaching. As has been said, the wise men who enunciated the Cabbalah dealt first with the fact of a primal intell1gence, and its creation, or development, the cosmos. This intelligence, they declared, could not be comprehended at all, — could not be located, — could not be named, though the cause of all. They, therefore, designated it by a term of negation, and called it the Ain Soph, —the inscrutable, the unknowable, the unnameable.
Following this, they desired to place, by accurate limitation, the manifestation of this Ain Soph, as far as it could be brought within the possible embracement of human thought, or mental grasp. Close your eyes, and from your own consciousness of perception try and think outward to the extremest limits, in every direction. You will find that equal lines or rays of perception extend out evenly in all directions; so that the utmost effort of perception will terminate in the vault of a sphere. The limitation of this sphere will, of necessity, be a great circle, and the direct rays of thought in any and every direction must be right line radii of the circle. This, then, must be, humanly speaking, the extremest all-embracing conception of the Ain Soph manifest; — which formulates itself as a geometrical figure, viz: of a circle, with its elements, of curved circumference and right line diameter divided into radii. Hence, a geometrical shape is the first recognizable mean of connection between the Ain Soph and the intelligence of man.
But mental perception, to become physical perception, must have the cosmic principle of Light: —and, by this, our mental circle must become visible through light; or, for its complete manifestation the circle must be that of physical visibility, or Light itself.
Such conceptions, thus formulated, became the ground-work of the philosophy of the Divine manifesting in the universe.
The first step was to so describe this circle as that it would, in its definition, apply to all circles, to the small as well as to the great; —and this was accomplished by finding a definite measure of proportion, or ratio, between the diameter and the circumference, in numbers; which ratio, once found, would be good for all circles.
This ratio was found through this figure, and was made the basis of all Divine mysteries, including those of the Hebrew Bible, especially the Books of Moses, and those of the Christian New Testament, or Covenant. Our word mystery, or mistery, is of Hebrew derivation. The word s-t-r, sâtyr, means to speak in a veiled way, in or by way of enigma. The hifil participle is mis-t-r or mystīr, «causing to be set forth under a veil or enigma.» This ratio, thus found, was lost to the outer world; — if, indeed, it was ever given to it,—and now that it has again (by the late John A. Parker) been discovered, Lo! on search, it is to be found most safely and carefully stowed away in the Sacred Records of the Hebrews, as its chief resting place of monumentation. This ratio was called «Word (cabbalisticé, DBR, dâbār, 206, or 10 cubits) of God (Alhim, or 31415 to 1).» This name of «God» was, in Hebrew, אלהים, whose letters denote the characterizing small numbers, in their order, as 41531; and this number word was selected to annotate one form of this first manifestation of the Ain Soph, in shape and number. For place these 3 numbers on the bound of the defining circle, as (and it is at once to be seen, that as a «round robin,» they can be read as 31415; («there ONE shall be One God and his name One»); which reading we recognize as that of the ratio we have been speaking of, brought into prominent notice by use of the shape sought to be defined, viz: of circumference of that circle whose diameter is One:
— in all which beside, we recognize the foundation of Geometry, and of our modern higher mathematics, —which, in the parlance of the schools, is called Greek π or pi. In Hebrew comments one will find curious remarks on the relative rank of god-names, such as, for instance: The name God (Alhim, Elohim) is not so high and exalted as that of Jehovah, though both are of the same nature. The first is like the Hebrew letters, which are the frame-work for sound or speech, but are dead without the use of the living vowels, or the Spirit, the Bath Col, or Daughter of the Voice. The one is the general law, as it were, while the other is the spiritual use (Al-Chazari). The first is less exalted than the second, and applies more to matter, the latter is the inbreathing of Life. The name Alhim is properly a mode of speech for «men,» nobles, princes, etc., while the other is the Divine Spirit actuating the Prophets. This looks like fine-spun metaphysical distinction until the veil is removed from the mystery, and common-sense takes the place. This meaning of “men” is made use of to insure, to emphasize and confirm a form of definition. The numbers of Alhim are used to secure the geometrical enunciation 31415 to One. But not to leave this as a bald postulate, care is taken to make the statement good by a collateral form of expression; debasing the character of the expression to the word «Men.» This word, in Hebrew, is Anâshim, אנשים characterizing small numbers of which run 41351. Place these numbers on the bound of a circle, in their order, and like Alhim, they may be read 31415, or the same with Alhim. Hence the common quality,— and the «Gods» are «Men» and the men gods, interchangeably; just as in the Gospel of St. John, God is Light, and Light is God, —that Light “by which all things were made,” so that, Light is very God, —and so on, and so on, to the end of the chapter. God (Alhim, 31415 to One) commanded by his Word (dabar, 206, ten cubits) and said Let Light (20612 to 6561) be. Here Either might issue the command to the other, to the same purport and effect. These exalted names are simply made use of to express definitely, so that there may be no room for discussion, man’s possible, proper, conception of the universe in its utmost possibility of embracement, by shape and number.
That ratio of this pi value, which was so used in the ancient divine mysteries, and was so lost, or never openly given out, was, as said, rediscovered by the late John A. Parker, and it is this:
The area of a square whose side is 81, is 6561, and the area of its inscribed circle will be 5153.
Now, by a geometrical truism, such being the fact, if the value of this square area be taken as the length of a right line, then, that line will be the diameter of a circle whose circumference will be 5153×4=20612, or, by diagram. This is but repetition of that which has been here before stated in these articles;—but, as such, it will do no harm, —and, besides, it is now made to open up another field of cabbalistic showing.
As seen, here is a geometrical shape which is the exact sign or token of the extremest possible conception of the manifestation of the First Cause in the Cosmos; and attached to it is the numerical enunciation of the proportional values of the elements of its parts, in definite ratio, viz., 6561 to 5153 and 6561 to 5153×4=20612. On this the idea might be, and was conceived, to make use of this fundamental conception to frame on it a system of measures, —by giving to each unit of 20612 (the old Romans applied the same unit to 6561) a fixed value by some standard unit of length, which, in fact and in truth, is discovered to have been identically the same with the at present Imperial British, or better, the Masonic Inch;— so that 20612 such inches divided by 1000, should become a to be recognized large measure, viz., that which we call the cubit. Certainly nothing could be more symmetrical, of a higher ideal order of invention.
But, suppose attention to have been drawn to this and approval given. It might have been objected that as 20612 was the measure of a curve, it would not seem appropriate to apply it or its divisions to the measure of right lines, —to satisfy which, and at the same time to construct another system of measures, by a further geometrical process, it was proposed, — that 12 such inches should make one foot, in a higher denomination. Thus, to at once satisfy the two conditions, it was determined to transfer this value of a circle, 20612, onto the edges of a cube, a shape fitting to the want, having 12 edges. The result would be to transfer this value onto the edges of the cube, and to make division, without change of the measure value, thus: — That is, the division of 20612 inches by12, without change or value, would be to convert the inches of the cubit into the value of feet;—thus creating another denomination of measure: —and the value of this transfer would be the change of 20612 Imperial British Inches into
1717 British or Masonic Feet.
With this explanation of process, please observe the steps of shapes and numbers by which this has been accomplished: —
(1.) The circle, with its circumscribed square, having the ratio for area of 5153 to 6561.
(2.) The change from area to linear measure, by which 6561 becoming the length of diameter, the circumference of the circle will be 20612, or 5153×4; thus changing the ratio 6561 to 20612.
(3.) The transfer of this 20612 onto the 12 edges of a cube, to create a further denomination of measure, of inches to feet by a division by 12, or
All this having been accomplished, suppose objection was made to the disclosure of so magnificent a system to the public,—to the profane vulgar, —and it was determined to preserve the system as a sacred secret to an Order and to initiates, alone and solely; the Order to embrace the monarch and his school of priests. For this, it would be well to blazon the substance of the system by a coat-of-arms for the Order itself, —by some one grand figure which would in close compass set forth the facts and process. For this purpose, to see the whole, the cube was blazoned as unfolded, with the circle attached, as that from whence the cube was derived; the whole to be displayed as standing on a pedestal, that is on the cube to be unfolded by display, as thus:—The cube having six faces (the cabbalistic shape of the Garden of Eden, under the name Pardés — Paradise — which word means Pârād samech, the division of or by 60 or 6) is displayed unfolded under the form of a cross, to which the circle is attached, which should properly be in (and of itself) a nimbus, or glory of light.
Place the entire showing upon its pedestal, and we have by blazon, The Cross and Crown on the Rock of Ages, as the grand symbol of this system of cosmic Divine mensuration. The like display is made of the cube of the Garden of Eden, — that «cubical city» of the Revelations. That garden grew out of a central germ, viz., a cubical man, and the unfolding of this exhibited the blazon of a colossal cross with a man outstretched upon it. Thus, this symbol of the New—was borrowed from the Old—Testament.
With the Egyptians this symbol was given as ☥ or and by them called ank (I. being, life) being the same word with the Hebrew anochi (the personal pronoun I). As ☥ was the sign of the goddess Venus. Under another presentation it has been modernized as the Fleur de Lys of the French, and the Irish trefoil. Underneath the geometry and the numbers and the measures was another coordinate exposition of the creation of animal life, so that the symbols stood as plainly and instructively for that of procreation as for mensuration, to apply as well to the evolution of man as of the cosmos; —and hence the Egyptian word ank was translated into the Greek as anthropos or man. When the idea of procreation came to be considered, the more general or abstract idea of Alhim (or 31415 to One) had to be brought down to a more definitely vitalizing form. It was found that the phases of the moon run so connectedly with the steps of growth of the embryo man, that it became specialized as the intelligent active cause. This circle (of the moon) was designated as 113 to 355; — 113 being the Hebrew word for man, and 355 being the Hebrew word for the lunar year, or, together, this active intelligent cause. This was the Shechinah, that power of Jehovah which made the barren woman to become the joyful mother of children, that holy 7th day and day of the new moon, as to the worship of which St. Paul enjoins: «Let no man therefore judge you for such worship.» It was this Jehovistic quality of Light and Alhim, which made the name, יהוה, so above all others endeared, cherished, and adored. This ratio of 113 to 355, called the «man even Jehovah» measure, was found to be contained in the name יהוה, and one more an it numbers was to obtain the exact measure in days (the rising and setting of the sun) of this lunar year. I have gone thus far into this mode and form of system and symbolization to show and to exemplify a Masonic usage as to the same mystery by one of its (Masonry’s), own chosen peculiar modes of monumentation ; — which is just as plain as the above when pointed out, though so obscure until attention has been directed to it, that the explanation of the same will most likely afford as much pleased in terest and surprised attention, as has been aroused by the preceding articles on this most interesting subject.
THE MASONIC APPLICATION.
Many great events in the world’s history have been monumented by «Eras of Time» and among others the supposed origin of Masonry, by and in that which is called the «Era of Light.» This is, however, only a symbolical use and style, for Masonry has been accustomed to make use of the current years of other eras, as, for instance, of the Hebrew age of the world, of the Julian period, and of the Christian era, — to, in reality, monument certain salient facts of its occult philosophical or scientific system, while, apparently making use of a year date of an era, as such merely, or as vulgarly made use of. Let us explain this:—
The cycle of Masonry is, as said, called the Era of Light, the symbolism of which has already been referred to, and will be again. This being the case, let us take up a set of famous traditional dates in Masonry,— dates which have been largely and fruitlessly discussed, as to the truth of the ostensible tradition.
(1.) The date of the famous charter of Cologne is given as of the year
As to this, it is said: — » In the document called the Charter of Colne, the following account of the origin of the name of ‘Free masonry’ is promulgated:— ‘It does not appear to us that before the year 1440 the society was known by any other name than that of John’s Brothers.'»
(2.) It is said by legend, that in the year
«Great Light was shed on Masonry out of the East (M — KDM, that is144—4).»
(3) A date most fruitful of discussion, even to causing bitterness of feeling, and a sense of injury and wrong to the Order, as belittling its essential worth by claim of such modern invention and origin, has been made—more famous than any other. It is this, viz., «That legitimate Masonry had its origin only as late as the year
in Great Britain. Thus, these legends combine, in continuous order, the numbers 1440, 1535, 1656 and 1717.
If one will take up these various dates in the Light of symbolic Masonry, to be reinforced and emphasized by multitudes of other evidences of like kind, and in the light already thrown upon the uses of numbers, he will find that the «Era of Light» of Masonry, is derived from the Hebrew word AOR (Light), that illuminated province from whence Abram, «the Measure of heaven and earth; » that primordial light of the starry constellations.
The symbol is this:— and as measuring a circle circumscribing a triangle, the numbers of the letters of the word serve to display (1) the number 9 (1+2+6=9) which is the root of 6561, — and 20612 as read on the circle, as already described.
Such being the case, the dates selected for the promulgation of these legends, are such as contain the salient developments, in continuous order as they take place, of the geometrical foundation of the true philosophy of the Order;—as for example:—
144, is, at the same time, the Hebrew word Adam אדם, or 144, and «East,» KDM,* קדם, or 144. This number is the square of 12, while 1440 is the measure, in minutes, of the sun-circle (light) of 24 hours, the measuring token of which is the 24 inch guage: and every 4 minutes of this measure is 15 degrees of the circle of 360 degrees, whose radius is the Nilometer cubit of 20. inches derived from 206264.7 seconds of the radius. (2) The date of 1535 was selected as monumenting the number 5153, the area of a circle whose circumscribed square is 6561 in area, which last is the next date in order. Besides this 1535 is to monument the use of the
* The Greek Cadmus who introduced letters and this sacred learning into Greece
numbers 135 with the additional 5, as found in the construction of «The Woman» (5135) in the Garden, where the number 135 is found to be twice used so as to form the circular expression 531135, by the separation of which numbers the ratio 113 to 355 is to be had in and by the same figure with that of 5153 to 6561;—which last use will be found further on in the cabbalistic use of the Sephiroth. (3) The date 1656 is the same number with the Biblical space of time from Adam (144) to the Flood and Noah, —and was selected as monumenting the square area, above set forth, containing the circular area of 5153, — while (4) The date 17 17 was selected to monument the transfer of this 20612 onto the edges of a cube, in such sort, that taken in Britain, as British Inches, this transfer will be reduction from the inches of ancient cubit values to the denomination of British Masonic Feet!
And all this is but a detail use of the symbol Light, or 20612 to 6561. The Hebrew word seems to agree with the Hindu use of the famous word Aum, which is characteristically set in a description of splendor or brilliant light. We thus see that Masonry has a mode, peculiar to itself, of monumenting the land-marks of the same system to be found obscured in the «Three Covenants» already set forth. As to the Mosaic books —having thus found such pronounced instances of the use of the Turin and Nilometer cubits, —we can, with this help, find it quite plainly in the Flood picture around Mt. Ararat. From Adam to the Flood, was, as said, 1656 (years, —this word years is shanah, whose number is 355, showing how easily and yet simply and naturally, the Biblical adepts keep the combination of the two ratios of 355 to 113 and 5153 to 6561, as joined and connected, and yet, in another sense, separated and apart). This number as 6561 is radius of a circle whose circumference is 41224, and this is Ararat read on a circle, —while also it is the word DBRIM, Words, 41224, as used about the Ark of the Covenant, —and also in the description of the Sephiroth, to follow. The word is properly אררת, or 4221 (for אררט — the authority for which use can be given), and this value read on the circle gives us the measure of this circle, whose radius is 6561, as the base of this mountain. On this mountain was the Ark, which, as to each of its measures, is but a use of the number 5153 :—for, 300 cubits is 5.153 feet multiplied by 100, —50 cubits is 51.53 inches multiplied by 20, —and 30 cubits is 5. 153 feet multiplied by 10, and so on. The extra cubit in which the height was finished, brings out the height above the ground of the opening of the door or passage way into the Great Pyramid of Egypt. This Ark, with the Tabernacle, is again reproduced in Temple construction;—and more, as to its measures, is set forth in the genealogical table from Adam to Noah.
COMMENT ON THE SEPHIROTH.
The foundation of the mystic books of the Cabbalah, already spoken of, is made to rest upon the Ten Sephiroth, or the 10 Numbers, the picture of which is this:
wherein the circle is the naught, its vertical diameter line is the first or primal One, — from which springs the 2, the 3, and so on to 9, the limit of the digits. This 10 is the first Divine Manifestation, which contains every possible power o exact expression of proportion, — the sacred Jod. By this Cabbalah these Sephiroth were the numbers or emanations of the heavenly Light (20612 to 6561), they were the 10 Words, DBRIM, 41224, the light of which they were the flux was the Heavenly man, the Adam-KDM, (the 144— 144); and the Light, by the New Testament or Covenant (41224), created God; just as by the Old Testament God (Alhim, 31415) creates Light (20612 to 6561). We find disquisitions as to this Light of various kinds, of which this is one:— There are three kinds of light: — (1) clear and penetrating, that of Jehovah, — (2) reflected light. —and (3) light in the abstract. This Light, abstractly taken, (in a metaphysical or symbolic sense) is Alhim (Elohim, God.) while the clear penetrating Light is Jehovah. The light of Alhim belongs to the world in general, in its allness and general fulness, but the light of Jehovah is that pertaining to the chiefest production, man, whom this light penetrated to and made.* To the fulness of the world in general with its chiefest content, man, the term Elohim-Jehovah applies. In extracts from Sohar, the Rev. Dr. Cassel, to prove that the Cabbalah sets forth the
* For the penetrating power of light and its effect, see Inman’s Ancient Faiths under Ancient Names, Vol. 2, page 648. As to the pictures, the author says: «The vesica piscis, Mary, and the female emblem, copied from a Rosary of the blessed Virgin Mary, which was printed at Venice, 1542, with a license from the Inquisition, and consequently orthodox.'»
doctrine of the Trinity, among other things says: «Jehovah is Elohim (Alhim).» At times, he says, «wird das wort יהוה geschrieben, gelesen אלהים. Komm und siehe Geheimnitz des Wortes (Jehovah)! Es sind drei Stufen, deren jede für sich allein in Gott besteht, obgleich alle zusammen nur eine engverbundene, unzertrennbare Einheit bilden.» That is,—by three steps God, (Alhim) and Jehovah became the same, and though separated, each and together they are of the same One. Now Light, as shown, is 20612 to 6561, as the proper enunciation of the integral numerical relation of diameter to circumference of a circle. God (Alhim, that is 31415 to One, a modified form of the above) is the reduction of this, so as to obtain a standard unite One, as the basis, in general, of all calculation and all mensuration. But for the production of animal life, and for especial time measure, or the lunar year, that influence which causes conception and embryotic development, the numbers of the Jehovah measure (the »man even Jehovah» measure), viz., 113 to 355, have to be specialized. But this last ratio is but a modified form of Light, or 20612 to 6561, as a pi value, being only a variation of the same (that is 20612 to 6561 is 31415 to one, and 355 to 113 is 31415 to one, or Alhim or God), —and in such manner that one can be made to flow into and be derived from the other:—and these are the three steps by which the Unity and sameness can be shown of the Divine names. That is, the two are but variations of a same ratio, viz., that of pi. The object of this comment is to show the same symbolic measuring use for the Cabbalah, as taught, with that of the Three Covenants of the Bible, and with that of Masonry as just noticed. First, then, the Sephiroth are described as Light, that is, they themselves are a function of, indeed, the same as, the manifestation of the Ain Soph; and they are so from the fact that «Light» represents the ratio 20612 to 6561, as part of the «Words,» DBRIM, 41224, or, as to the Word, Dabar, 206 (=10 cubits). «Light» is so much the burden of the Cabbalah as to explaining the Sephiroth, that the most famous book on the Cabbalah is called Sohar, or «Light» In this we find expressions of this kind: «The Infinite was entirely unknown and diffused no light before the luminous point violently broke through into vision»— «When He first assumed the form (of the crown, or the first Sephira,) He caused 9 splendid lights to emanate from it, which, shining through it, diffused a bright light in all directions: «—that is, these 9 with his one (which was the origin, as above, of the 9), together made the 1O, that is
or the sacred Ten (numbers, or Sephiroth), or Jod, — and these numbers were «the Light.» Just as in the Gospel of St. John, God (Alhim, 31415 to one) was that Light (20612 to 6561) by which (Light) all things were made.
The Cabbalistic book, the Sepher Jetzirah, that is the Number of Creation, opens with a statement of the hidden wisdom of God (Alhim), in Sephrim, (Sephiroth).
“In thirty and two paths, hidden wisdom, established Jah, IHVH, Tzbaoth, Elohi of Israel, Alhim of Life, El of Grace and Mercy, — exalted uplifted Dweller on high, and King of Everlasting, and His name, — Holy! in Three Sephrim, viz.,
B—S’ph-r, V— S’ph-r, V—Siph-o-r.»
This book Sepher Jetzirah, or «Book,» or more properly «Number of Creation» is a hieroglyph throughout;—and it is well to understand from the start that the word
s-ph-r, is our word «to cypher or cipher,» to calculate and state by figures or digits. There is a running comment on this particular passage in the Book Al Chazari, by Jehuda-ha-Levi;—two very excellent translations of which are to be had in the German, —one by Dr. Hartwig Herschfeld, and one by Dr. David Cassel, —the last having the Hebrew, or modern Hebrew text.
This comment sets forth the “hidden wisdom” of this original text by hidden wisdom, that is, by the use of words carrying a special set of numbers and a special phraseology, which will set forth the very explanatory system which we find to fit so accurately in the Hebrew Bible and in the legends of Freemasonry. In setting forth his scheme, to enforce it, and to finish out his detailed exposition in a general postulate, — viz., the one word «Sephrim» (Sephiroth), of the Number Jetzirah, the author explains the separation of this word into three subordinate ones, a play upon a common word s-ph-r, or number.
The prince Al-Chazari says to the Rabbi: «I wish now that thou wouldst impart to me some of the chiefest or leading principles of Natural Philosophy, which, as thou sayst, were in former times worked out by them (the ancient wise ones);»—to which the Rabbi makes answer: «To such principles appertains the Number of Creation of our race-father Abraham» (that is Abram and Abraham, or numbers 41224 and 41252). He then says that this book or number treats of teaching the “Aihim-ness and One-ness through (DBRIM)” viz., the numbers of the word «Words.» That is, it teaches the use of the ratio 31415 to One, through 41224, which last, in the description of the Ark of the Covenant, was divided into two parts by the two tables of stone on which these DBRIM, or 41224, were written or engraved, —or 20612×2. He then comments on these three subordinately used words, and takes care as to one of them to make the comment, «and Alhim (31415 to One) said let there be Light (20612 to 6561).»
The words as given in the text are—
ספר ספר סיפור
and the Rabbi, in commenting on them, says: «It teaches the Aihim-ness (31415) and One-ness (the diameter to Alhim), through Words (DBRIM=41224), by which on the one side there is infinite expression in heterogeneous creations, and on the other a final harmonic tendency to One-ness» (which, as every one knows, is the mathematical function of pi of the schools, which measures, weighs, and numbers the stars of heaven, and yet resolves them back into the final oneness of the Uni-verse) — » through Words. Their final accord perfects itself in that One-ness that ordains them, and which consists in
ספר ספר ספור»
that is, the Rabbi, in his first comment, leaves the jod, or i, out of one of the words, whereas afterward he restores it again. If we take the values of these subordinate words, we find them to be 340, 340 and 346;— together these are 1026, and the division of the general word into these has been to produce these numbers, — which, by T’mura, may be changed in various ways, for various purposes. One of these purposes is this:—the division of 1026 into halves, will give 513 —513, which as 531 135, refers to the ratio 113 to 335, and to the origin or setting forth of this measure in the Garden of Eden. If the numbers be arranged as 1206, they can be read on a circle as 20612, which is a factor of the number of «Words» DBRIM, or 41224, and as pointing to which this especial arrangement has been made. So “the words” under DBR-I as 206 and 1,which the Rabbi makes use of, exhibit the same numbers; and finally these numbers as 200 and 6 and 1 give us AOR, or that Light, again. But this word s-ph-o-r, or si-ph-o-r, is either 346 or 356, and as the Rabbi uses certain articles with the others, as H-s-ph-r making the same 345, we may see here that he is including a further or more ultimate teaching of his system, viz., in the values of the lunar (354) and the two kinds of solar (364 and 365) year, in days. As to the custom or use of permutation: in one place the Rabbi says: «Daraus ergiebt sich, dass die kӧrperliche Welt in einer Weise, welche dem Kӧrperlichen entsprochen hat, durch der erhabenen geistigen Namen erschaffen wurde, der dem Kӧrperlichen Namen Jhv, Jvh, Hvj, Hjv, Vjh, Vhj entspricht, aus deren jedem eine der Richtungen der Welt entstehen musste—es erstand die Sphӓre.» These are the letters Jod, hé, vav, or numbers 1065 of Jehovah’s name, which as 1056, form the key to the descent on Sinai, and divided by 2 yield 528, the base in feet of the extreme of the British long measures and land measures, —for 528×10 feet is one mile, and 8.25 feet is the half of one rod (in which the value is reversed as -528 and 825); and an area of 5280 feet by 8.25 feet is one acre, —640 of which (320×2) is one square mile. * — As to the subject in hand, the Rabbi says: “Under s’ph-r is to be understood, — calculation and weighing of the created bodies. For the calculation, by means of which a body must be constructed in harmony or symmetry, by which it must be in construction rightly arranged and made to correspond to the object in design, consists at last in number, extension, mass, weight; —co-ordinate relation of movements, then harmony of music, must consist altogether by number, that is s’ph-r. * * By Sippor (s’phor) is to be understood the words of Alhim (206 — 1 of 31415 to one), whereunto joins or adapts itself the design to the frame or form of construction; for example, —it was said ‘Let Light be.’ The work became as the words were spoken, that is, as the numbers of the work came forth. There is also s’ph-r, that is the Writ. The Writ of God, however, are his creations, the Word of God is his Writ, the Will of God is his Word.»
By all this, there is manifestly to be gathered a peculiar setting forth of the system which we have shown develops in the Hebrew Bible and in Masonry.
COMMENTS ON THE MOON AND ITS PHASES.
In trying to get a clear insight into matters of antiquarian lore some very simple rules governing investigation are to be observed.
*This mile measure has a very prominent embracing place in the Great Pyramid, and includes a co-ordinating time-measure.
Among these there may be stated:—(1) There was no mystery that had not at bottom some rational ground, probably quite simple, in place of being far off, and (2) A past age may have had familiar usages of thought and speculation which now, for the most part, have passed away.
One ancient usage was the observance of times, and this involved astronomy, —which we cultivate in a muсh modified form, and astrology, — which we have passed over as a proper vocation of charlatans, —inconsiderately, perhaps, giving it no credit. We are barely out of the time, not much over one hundred years, when astrology was an accepted science, receiving the countenance of the wisest, best, and most learned men. Now, if being orthodox, we refer to our Bible we find that Daniel, the most wonderful of all the prophets, told off God’s providence by set times, and that the Book of Revelations works by set times, and speaks of a carefully measured cubical city descending out of the heavens. We will find that the stars of heaven fought for Sisera, that the sun and the moon and the planets were set in the expanse for signs and for seasons, and that the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to Joseph the son of Jacob. By most ancient re cords, we will find that in the, then, far-past, the heavens had been mapped with a most singular mode of configuration, and made alive with animal forms, that the great circle of the heavens had been divided by the signs of the Zodiac, —a living belt, —as to which, it is averred, the tokens thereof were the character signs from whence the first alphabet,—and that a Semitic one (Seyffarth). This heavenly life bore down upon, and impressed itself upon all, to the least, life on earth, and governed its growth and fixed its quality of condition The compartments of the Zodiac were the Sons of God.—the B’nai Alhim. The powers of the angels of God resided there, as in mansions, and one of such powers would have been sooner with Daniel, «but the prince (of the air) of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one-and-twenty days.» But the vitalizing power of heaven lay chiefly with the moon, and with all people this satellite was held in honor to a degree. In its vitalizing aspect, it was the Hebrew יהוה —and St. Paul enjoins: — «Let no man judge you for your observance of the 7th day and the day of new moon, — which are a shadow of things to come; but the body (or substance) is of Christ,» i. e., Jehovah, — that function of this power that «made the barren woman the joyful mother of children,» — «for they are the gift of Jehovah,» — and which is «the desire of women»: — which is a key to the objection which her husband made to the Shunamite as to her going to the man of God: — «for it is neither the 7th day nor the day of new moon.» The living spiritual powers of the constellations had mighty wars marked by the movements and positions of the stars and planets, and especially as the result of the conjunction of the moon, earth and sun. Bentley comments on the Hindu «war between the gods and giants,» as marked by the eclipse of the sun at the ascending node of the moon, 945 B. C, at which time was born, or produced from the sea, SRI (Sarai, S-r-i, the wife of the Hebrew Abram), who was the Venus-Aphroditus of the Westerns, emblem «of the luni-solar year, or the moon, the goddess of increase.» By configuration the picture of this war, or the aspects of the stars, was «that all the planets, except Saturn, were on the same side of the heavens with the sun and moon.» He says this was the same with the «war of the Titans by Hesiod;»—and by Drummond, the war of the kings in the vale of Siddim with Abraham, was of a like character;—who also says that the Ark of the Covenant was a like «symbol with the Tabernacle and the Temple,» all being types «of the venerable system (of astronomy) of which Moses, who was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, seems to have had a very distinct notion.»
So, with the ancients, the starry heavens were living spiritual influences, —and the times of the sun, moon and planets, marked their especial aspects, favorable or unfavorable. But the phases of the moon, and her orbital periods of 7 days, 126 days (our Light numbers applied to birth), 210 and 280 days, had especial co ordination with the steps of embryotic evolution, for which reason the time of the moon and the moon itself was worshiped and solicited as the guardian genius for the perpetuation and increase of the human race, —and also became the sacred basis for the computation of solar periods. Starting out with the new moon, viz., conjunction, or marriage with the sun, the natural cycle was their coming together again in the same place in the heavens, which would hap pen in 19 tropical years of the sun and 235 revolutions of the moon. As I will show hereafter, the grand monument and land-mark of the exact period of the lunar year and month, by which this cycle could be calculated, was Mount Sinai, —the Lord Jehovah coming down thereon. And this kind of time, being then and there fixed, the regulation of the Hebrew Church as to observations of time, such as the Passover (the Christian Easter) and so on, was based on this especial lunar period and cycle. As to this very fact, that wonderful, grand, and good man, St. Paul, speaks as a mystagogue, when he says concerning the freed woman and bond woman of Abraham:— «For this Hagar (the bond woman of Abraham) is Mount Sinai in Arabia.» How could a woman be a mountain? and such a mountain! Yet, in one sense, she was, and in a very marvelously true one. Her name was Hagar, Hebrew הגר, whose numbers read 235, or in exact measure, the very number of lunar months to equal 19 tropical years to complete this cycle, and make the likeness and similitude good; Mount Sinai being in the esoteric language of this wisdom, the monument of the exact time of the lunar year and month, by which this spiritual vitalizing cycle could be computed, —and which mountain, indeed, was called (Fuerst) «the Mountain of the Moon (Sin).» So, also, Sarai (SRI) the wife of Abram could have no child until her name was changed to Sarah, שרה giving to her the property of this lunar influence;—for these numbers afford 532, which is the great lunar cycle in years, afterwards called the Easter-cycle or Dionysian-period, and 235, which is the measure of this fructifying influence in its lower or 19 year cycle. It is the Church proper that still preserves to itself the substance of this astronomical system as the ground work of her ritual, out of which develops the «laws and ordinances,» as they did with the Israelites from the 1O Words, Numbers, or Sephiroth, on the two tables of stone, contained in the Ark of the Covenant. It is the lack of this feature that characterizes all sectarian denominations as in complete, unfinished, ephemeral, —being subject to change and disappearance;—they have no bottom to stand on. If one will look at the Parliament Scrolls of Great Britain, holding the original of the Book of Common Prayer, he will find that the almanac is as much a Divine part of the same as the oral service. What is strange about the matter, however, is, that the course of the sun through his signs was erased from the parliamentary constituted religious code, leaving the procedure of the moon only and alone. Look in the preface of any Book of Common Prayer, and the tables for finding the times of the Church service will be seen to have the lunar phases as their base. Let us give the explanation of this cycle. Ferguson, in his fine astronomy (because of his simple and plain mode of statement) says: «The cycle of the sun is a revolution of 28 years (founded on the week) in which time the days of the months return again to the same days of the week ; the sun’s place to the same signs and degrees of the ecliptic on the same months and days, so as not to differ one degree in 100 years. The cycle of the moon, commonly called ‘The Golden Numbers,’ is a revolution of 19 years; in which time the conjunctions, oppositions, and other aspects of the moon are within an hour-and-a-half of being the same as they were the same day of the month 19 years before. The year of our Savior’s birth (that is, the year 0) according to the vulgar era, was the ninth of the solar cycle; and the first year of the lunar cycle. The cycle of Easter, also called the Dionysian Period, is a revolution of 532 years, found by multiplying the solar cycle 28 by the lunar cycle 19. This is for predicting what is called Easter Sunday (and could have been used for finding the Passover). By it the earliest Easter possible is the 22d of March, the latest the 25th of April. The first seven (7) letters of the alphabet are commonly placed in the annual almanac to show on what days of the week the days of the months fall throughout the year. And because one of the 7 letters must necessarily stand against Sunday, it is printed in a capital form and called the ‘Dominical letter,'» and so on. The measure is on trial so accurate, that by the correlative calculation of the lunar periods to close 1881 full years, for 99 periods of 19 years each, and 99 periods of 235 lunar months each, the close struck the actual observed fact of new moon, on the eve of the 31st day of December, (Friday evening) 1880, the eve before Saturday, the beginning of the Jewish Sabbath, the beginning of a new cycle starting out with New Year and New Moon, New Easter cycle, and a New Age ; all which times, secular and Divine, for the first time within the knowledge of man start out alike in the signs of the Zodiac. Bishop Brownell, in his Commentary on The Common Prayer, says that the Christian tables for times were taken from the Pagan observances, —which, again, were intermediate, and borrowed, as all their learning, from the Semites. Brownell says: — “The Churches of Asia kept their Easter upon the same day on which the Jews celebrated their Passover, viz., on the 14th day of their month Nisan (which month began at the new moon next to the vernal equinox). This finally became a reproach in the Church, and Constantine” (born in the city of York, in commemoration of which the York Rite in Masonry) «procured a canon to be passed at the Great Council of Nice (year 235?) that Easter should be observed not on the day of the Jewish Passover, but upon the Sunday following. Also, the following paschal canons: (1) That the 21st day of March shall be accounted the vernal equinox, (2) That the Full Moon happening upon, or next after the 21st of March, shall be taken for the full moon of Nisan, (3) That the Lord’s day, next following that full moon, be Easter day, and, finally, (4) But if full moon hap pen upon Sunday, Easter day shall be the Sunday after.»*
So great was the care to make the Times and the «Laws and Ordinances» run together or coalesce in observance. All this pertains to and is a part of Cabbalah.
* Seyffarth says as to the 14th Nisan (the lunar Nisan), that the Jews had also a civil, solar year, in which was a solar month Nisan. In general terms he is supported in this statement by the book Al-Chazari. He says that by the civil calendar, the 14th Nisan was our 19th Julian March. Which shows how astronomy and astrology enter into the Christian scheme of symbolizing. For counting from the 19th March 12 days, then 30, 31, 30, 31, 31, 30, 31, 30, for the following months, to December, then 24 days to the eve of December 25th, or Christ-birth, we have 280 days;—the period settled on by the highest medical authorities as that of gestation. Therefore, this 19th March (or Jewish 14th Nisan, Passover and crucifixion) commemorated the date of conception in the womb as well as of death. But, December 24th being the date of the true winter solstice, from March 19th adding three days brought the count to the period of astronomical equinox; — which shows emphatically the astronomical reason for the use of these three days. The 24th of December is that day on which by true solar movement we have the end of one and birth of another year, as that (following the Sun life) on which Christ was born. It is little thought of that owing to the eccentricity and obliquity of the earth’s orbit, the true solstices and equinoxes do not fall with those astronomically named, the nearest being December 24th;—the others vary as far as to April 15th for equinox, June 14th summer solstice, and September 1 for fall equinox. (See Loomis’ Treatise on Astronomy, 1874, page 72, — and also the alema on the ordinary terrestial globes.