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Sacred Number

1 iNtRoDUCtioN What is number How do we distinguish the one from the many, or, for that matter, the two from the three A crow, disturbed by four men going to hide under its tree, can carefully count them home again from a distance, one by one, tired and hungry, before returning safely to its nest. But five ... We all know certain things about certain numbers six pops up in snowflakes, there are seven notes in a scale, we count in tens, three legs make a stool, five petals form a flower. Some of these elementary discoveries are actually the first universal truths we ever come across, so simple we forget about them. Children on distant planets are probably having the same experiences. The science and study of number is one of the oldest on Earth, its origins lost in the mists of time. Early cultures wrote numbers in pottery markings, weaving patterns, notched bones, knots, stone monuments, and the numbers of their gods. Later systems integrated the mysteries under the magical medieval Quadrivium of arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomythe four liberal arts required for a true understanding of the quality of number. All science has its origin in magic, and in the ancient schools no magician was ever unschooled in the power of number. These days the lore of sacred number has been usurped by a tide of merely quantitative numbers, not covered in these pages. This book is a beginners guide to mystic arithmology, a small attempt to unveil some of the many secret and essential qualities of number contained within Unity.
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