# Sacred Number

19 18 The ennead three threes Cats have nine lives, dress to the nines whenever possible, and seem to spend most of their time on cloud nine, wherever that is. Nine is the triad of triads, the first odd square number, and with it something extraordinary occurs, for the first nine numbers can be arranged in a magic square where every line of three in any direction has the same total opposite, center. This ancient number pattern was first spotted four millennia ago on the shell of a divine turtle emerging from the river Lo in China. Three times three is one more than two times two times two, and the ratio between nine and eight defines the crucial whole tone in music, the seed from which the scale emerges, as the difference between the two most simple harmonies in the octave, the fifth three to two, and the fourth four to three. There are nine regular threedimensional shapes the five Platonic solids and the four stellar KeplerPoinsot polyhedra. Nine appears in our bodies as the crosssection of the tentacle like cilia, which move things around our surfaces, and the bundles of microtubes in centrioles, essential for cell division below. Nine is the celestial number of order, and many ancient traditions speak of nine worlds, or spheres.