God as Geometer

And he said to them, "You have been given the mystery of the kingdom of God, but for those outside, everything is given in parables so that they may see and not perceive, and hearing, they may hear but not understand."

(Mark 4:11-12)

Gematria is an ancient form of Hebrew numerology. It derives from the observation that every letter in the aleph-bet is also a number. Gematria is known as the "spice of Torah", and this tells us two things. It informs us that it is not the main course, but that at the same time, it adds a lot of important flavor.

There are many ways to compute the numerical value of a word via gematria with the simplest being to just add the numerical values of the corresponding letters. The proper way to use gematria is to help you see more clearly those things that you already know to be true. It can help you make connections that previously existed only liminally within your consciousness.

The word “gematria” comes from the Greek word geometria having the dual meaning “earth-measure” and “geometry.” The word “gematria” is mistakenly equated with the word “isopsephia” (equal pebble) but gematria is actually a higher level of isopsephia. Gematria goes way beyond adding up the numerical values of the letters in a word or pointing out that the-number of one word, phrase or verse is the same or so many times more than the number of another word or name.

The power and mystery of gematria is only unleashed when it is used in conjunction with geometry, graphs, and diagrams. Gematria combines the visual imagery and isopsephia value of Greek words with the dimensions of geometric objects such as the perimeters of circles, squares, triangles, or the lengths of symmetrical groups of lines that converge on these objects so that the imagry of the words match the appearance of the diagram.

Known history:

The Babylonian king Sargon II, in 8th century BC, is believed to have been the first to use gematria when building the wall of Khorsabad exactly 16,283 cubits long, because that was the numerical value of his name.

In Jewish mysticism this is a traditional system of associating numbers with Hebrew letters for the purpose of discovering hidden meanings in words. This is accomplished by systematically associating letters with numbers and then finding other words with similar numbers. These latter words are regarded as comments on the original words. Systems related to the Hebrew implementation of gematria are still used.

The Hebrews also used gematria for divination.

The ancient Greeks used gematria in dream interpretation. It also appears in the literature of the magi, and has been used in connection with the Greek alphabet.

The Gnostics applied gematria to names of deities such as Abraxas and Mithras, equating them because both of their names equaled 365, the number of days in a year.

Gematria carried over into early Christianity which helped make the dove a representation of Jesus; the Greek word for dove, peristera, equals 801 as do the Greek letters in alpha and omega, which represent the Beginning and the End.

It was the Kabbalists, however, who seriously studied gematria and developed it into an art form. The Kabbalists of the 13th century seriously believed that the Old Testament was written in a hidden code inspired by God. They used gematria as one of the chief means by which to decipher this code. An example of this is shown in their interpretation of Jeremiah 9:9, “From the fowl of the heavens until the beasts are fled and gone”. This was interpreted as meaning, that no traveler passed through Judea for 52 years, because the Hebrew word for beast, behemah, has the numerical value of 52.

And he was saying to them ... See what you hear! ... By what measure you measure, it will be measured to you!

(Mark 4:24)