TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

by Arturo Perez-Reverte

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TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Thu Jul 31, 2008 7:52 am

Part 2…More interesting things on page 227 – Chaldea and Pythagoras.

Pg. 227 “Torchia chose to live in Saint Mary of the Snows, the district of magic, near Jungmannove Square, where there is a statue of Jan Hus. Do you remember Hus at the stake?”…Prague whose streets still echoed with the steps of Agrippa and Paracelsus, where the last manuscripts of Chaldean magic and the Pythagorean keys, lost or dispersed after the murder of Metapontius, were to be found.”

Chaldean Magic

The land of Chaldea is located south of early Babylonia and borders the head of the Persian Gulf between the Arabian Desert and the delta of the Euphrates. The Assyrians called the area, now known as Southern Iraq, Kaldu and by the Babylonians, Kasdu. Many past civilizations are famous for something, or have a well known trait we all know them by. The Maya have their temples, the Egyptians their Mummys and Ceremonial Burials (think Pyramids), the Chaldeans on the other hand are famous for their knowledge of the Stars and to a lesser degree 'magic'.

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Chaldea


Chaldea and Egypt are the two sources of all learned magic for Greek and Latin antiquity, as well as for Jewish and Arabian tradition. Chaldean magic in its original form was first revealed to the modern world through the discovery of a large tablet in the Acadian language from the library of the royal palace at Nineveh, which contained incantations against evil spirits, sorcery and the timeless misfortunes of daily life. It was characterized by a pervasive belief in the power of demons and malevolent spirits, and a complex system of sorcery and magic to ward them off, along with fatal spells and what the Chaldeans called ‘the evil destiny which issues from the depths of the abyss’.

In Greek, "Chaldean" came to acquire the meaning of "astrologer".
Western astrology seems to have originated in Mesopotamia, and all of the cultures of ancient Iraq and Iran contributed to its creation. Among the earliest records of astrology are the cuneiform tablets from the library of King Ashurbanipal of Assyria (669-626B.C.E.). Astrologers were making periodic reports to Ashurbanipal on such matters as the possibility of war and the probable size of the harvest. Astrology had been present in the region for at least a millennium but was given a distinctive boost by the Chaldeans who took over the Tigris and Euphrates valleys in 606 B.C.E. The Chaldeans mapped the sky, improved the methods for recording the passing of time, successfully predicted eclipses, and accurately determined the length of the solar year (within 26 minutes).

The Assyrians, who came on the scene about 1000 years later, quickly became a leading power owing to their military and administrative skills. Although Babylon remained the cultural center, political power continually shifted back and forth between the Assyrian and Babylonian governments. During the latter years, Chaldean Kings played an important role by ruling and maintaining separate borders between Assyria and Babylon. This period became the Neo-Babylonian kingdom. The Persian conquest into Babylon ended the history of the Babylonians in BC 539.

The Persians continued to rule the Babylonian peoples until Alexander the Great conquered the land in 330 BC. Upon Alexander’s death, Seleucid, one of his generals, claimed ruler ship over the land and began to Hellenize the region. This period became known as the Seleucid Period. During this period, the scribal school at Erech remained active and continued to flourish; collecting ritual text and further developing astrology.

The basic characteristic of Mesopotamian religion was its view of the numina (spiritual force) behind natural phenomena. Each act of nature was believed to be the force of some god who had the appropriate appearance in external form. The pantheon of gods covered everything and extended from the highest god, to the various gods of different winds to even the god of a pickax and shovel.

Omens, as they were known, considered everything under the Sun: wind direction, rain, abundance of crops and cattle, fog, mist and even the coloration of clouds at sunset. Most omens were associated with natural mundane events along with meteorological and celestial phenomena. Omens upheld ancestral beliefs that heaven and Earth were complimentary without one having more influence over the other. Crop failures, pestilence, wars, even the death of a nobleman were thought to depend upon natural events, the Moon and planetary synodic cycles. (The synodic period is the time that it takes for an object to reappear at the same point in the sky, relative to the Sun, as observed from Earth.)

The gods held positions of power in the heavens and each person would serve and petition his personal god who took interest in him and his personal needs and fortune. The gods were expected to take care of immediate problems and sometimes the gods were badgered if they didn’t do so. Through every situation the individual was likely to seek divine guidance through omens, that he might interpret the will of the gods. From the farmer to the kings and rulers, such guidance by divine instruction was sought in all matters of importance. Over time, many records of daily lunar activity and periodic solar eclipses were developed and kept for each and every day of the year along with each omen that accompanied the event. Through their empiricism the Chaldeans developed theories that the same phenomena would recur in cycles.

One of the cycles was discovering seasonal alignments with fixed stars. This discovery marked a turning point in post-neolithic communities. It gave them a sense of religious evidence that the Earth and heaven were complementary. This is the probable basis for their cosmological-religious beliefs.

The usefulness of the fixed star markers must have been discovered early as they are mentioned in the fifth tablet of the creation myth the Enuma elish. It states that the Babylonian god, Marduk, determined the seasonal boundaries and defined the divisions by setting up three constellations for each month for the twelve-month year. The sets of three constellations were set up into four groupings. The four cardinal points came about by using the summer solstice as a mooring peg. Once established, the Babylonians followed the Sun along the ecliptic, referred to as the Way of Anu. The year was divided into approximate 90-day periods, depending on the length of the Moon's lunation. These are recorded on tablets known as "astrolabes", the earliest of these tablets dating around BC 1100. By this, we know that the Babylonians had knowledge of the sun’s motion, phases of the moon and periodicities of certain planets. However, it wasn’t until the Seleucid period that the Chaldeans began to develop their science and religion into an art.

By the fourth century BC, the Greeks were becoming aware of the Egyptian and Mesopotamian cosmic views. At that time, the Greeks were making rapid advances in the field of mathematics and astronomy and were primed for the view that advancing knowledge of the cosmos was identical with a growing knowledge of the divine. By the time of the Seleucid period, many of the renowned Greek thinkers were ready to accept and further the idea that the heavens not only indicated but also might cause terrestrial events. The old Mesopotamian mundane astrology was being transformed into what would become the personal astrology of Hellenistic Greece. The age of astrology was about to be born.

Along with astronomy, the Chaldeans practiced ancient numerology. Chaldean numerology, sometimes known as "Mystic Numerology", is probably the oldest system of numerology known. The Chaldean Numerology system splits an individual’s influences and spiritual aspects into two areas, the inner self and the outer self. They used single digits to represent the inner and double digits for the outer.
The numbers assigned to the letters are not determined by alphabetical order, but instead by the vibration of each specific letter. It differs from Pythagorean numerology in that it does not assign the number 9 to any letter, although 9 can occur as the final sum. The number nine is thought to be holy and sacred and is therefore held apart from the rest of the numbers. Chaldean numerology analyzes both name and date of birth. Rather than analyzing your birth name, however, Chaldean numerology analyses the name you are most commonly known by. It is considered to be more accurate than the Pythagorean system, however, it is less popular because it is more difficult to master.

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Example:
ERIC
5 + 2+1 + 3 = 11 - 1 + 1=2


Pythagoras is considered the Father of Numerology, however he gleaned much information from written texts from the Chaldean Empire as he setup his own system, which we now know as modern day numerology.

Pythagoras

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Pythagoras is considered to be the first real mathematician. He was an extremely important Greek philosopher and mathematician and founder of the Pythagorean School, but very little information is known about him and his life. The Pythagorean view of the world consisted of a belief that numbers were the keys to the various qualities of mankind and matter. In the Pythagorean view, everything was composed of numbers, the explanation for any objects in existence could only be found in numbers. This was a completely novel concept, because at that time, numbers existed for practical purposes only, as a device for solving problems in calendar construction, building and commerce. Pythagoreans were the first who saw a number as an idea, important in itself.

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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby gemini » Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:36 pm

It is interesting that there is a place known for magic and its name means astrologer.
Ok, numerology is something else I thought to be nonsense but after reading a bit about astrology I am not as quick to dismiss things as I used to be. I checked out my name and my number is 7.
Here is a site that will break your name down for you and give you your number if you want to try it.
http://www.paulsadowski.com/Numbers.asp
I also did my birthdate
Not sure about it all but some things are interesting. For those of my seed cycle it mentions- being good to all the pets that follow them home. Well that certainly is me. I think this needs a bit more than a quick read of name and date but its an interesting start.
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Parlez » Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:47 pm

Thanks so much for this tidbit on some of my favorite topics! :cloud9:
In the category of small worlds (or universal consciousness if you prefer), I just watched a travel program on TV about Beijing during which they talked about the symbolism used in the architecture of the Forbidden City. Apparently the number 9 was sacred there too and could only be used by the Emperor. Interesting...! :hypnotic:
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Thu Jul 31, 2008 9:50 pm

Parlez, if you have more to add please do. I find numerology very interesting.
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Parlez » Thu Jul 31, 2008 10:05 pm

Thank you, DitHot! Numerology isn't really my game - not that I knock it; I just haven't studied it as extensively as I have Astrology. And I'll just add that the info in this tidbit clearly and accurately reports that Astrology was founded on observation first; the so-called magic part came later. People who get interested in Astrology usually get into it because of their affection for the night sky. The science and math of how the planets move, etc., are real and quantifiable; there's nothing voodoo about it. However, the interpretation of the data is what gets people weirded out sometimes. :freaked:
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby DeppInTheHeartOfTexas » Thu Jul 31, 2008 10:44 pm

Discovery is one thing, interpretation another? Most definitely. :cool:
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Parlez » Thu Jul 31, 2008 11:22 pm

I just ran my name through the numerology link - thanks Gemini! - and I'm a #6: responsible, community oriented, dependable...NOT! However, my 'dream number' came up a #9, which I like more better for its imperial association. :lol:
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Parlez » Thu Jul 31, 2008 11:52 pm

DeppInTheHeartOfTexas wrote:Discovery is one thing, interpretation another? Most definitely. :cool:

Aye. Most sciences do both, discover and interpret (ie., explain what the discoveries mean), but with this particular science it's been split in two. Ergo, Astronomy does the discovery part and Astrology does the interpreting/explaining.

(ooh! Johnny just popped up on top of the screen again - yea!) :heart:
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby fansmom » Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:05 pm

Parlez wrote:I just ran my name through the numerology link - thanks Gemini! - and I'm a #6: responsible, community oriented, dependable...NOT! However, my 'dream number' came up a #9, which I like more better for its imperial association. :lol:
I was a 3, which had as much wrong as right in the explanation.

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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Liz » Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:43 pm

My dad came up as his number (generally and as the dream number). And the number fit him, as it does me. I guess there is no mistaking that his number is 11. He can't escape it....no matter what. And I had thought I had inherited it from him. And even though the description of number 11 is soooo me, I only came up with it once (as just Liz) and it was merely my dream #. Every other way I plugged in my name (with or without middle, or with maiden name or whatever) turned up numbers other than 11, and most did not fit who I am.
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby gemini » Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:22 pm

Liz, you are not supposed to manipulate the outcome. :grin:
It says use your full birth name from your birth certificate so you can only end up with one number. I considered trying mine a couple ways too but changed my mind.
As fansmom said mine was some correct and some not. I think just doing a quick read is like reading your daily astrology in the newspaper and not very accurate. I read that you use your name and birthdate but I think you would have to learn quite a bit more to even understand if any of it makes sense.
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Parlez » Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:37 pm

Right you are, gemini. It's the same with Astrology. To wit: most people know their Zodiac 'sign' and figure that's all there is to it. But that's just the beginning; there are actually 12 planets and signs that make up a individual's birth chart, and any one of them is influential, sometimes moreso than the Sun sign. So it takes more than just a cursory look at these esoteric practices in order to truly get anything out of them. If/when you do you find there's layer after layer and layer of knowledge to be revealed...great stuff!
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Gilbert's Girl » Fri Aug 08, 2008 3:07 am

I tried them too and as always they get me totally wrong. I did the birthdate thing too and as usual I'm incompatible with my DH but very compatible with Johnny :lol:

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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby suec » Fri Aug 08, 2008 6:31 am

Many years ago, I had my astrological chart done. Every now and then, I look at it again. It is unbelievably accurate in what it says about me. Apart from musical ability, which I have never seen any indication of at all. Then again, I can't say I ever really gave it a chance. Perhaps that is the as yet unrealised potential than one day may be fulfilled. In every other respect, the chart has me nailed.
I had a look at the number site. I also am #11. It describes me surprisingly well, apart from the Inner Dream bit about wanting to be a leader and in charge. But that is probably because I am already that in my job. But I heartily dislike being in charge. What I dislike even more, is people being in charge of me. That brings me out in a rash! :lol:
But I do believe in astrology and use it, not to look at the future, which doesn't interest me in the slightest, but to try and understand others a little more.
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Re: TCD Tidbit #25 ~ More ifrom Pg. 227

Unread postby Parlez » Fri Aug 08, 2008 8:55 am

I completely agree with you, suec ~ what good is knowing the future if you're clueless about how you're likely going to handle it? I do very little predictive (or Horary) Astrology for that reason. I focus instead on the individual's birth chart and the plantary influences that formed the basic template of their personality from the get-go. That part is usually right on. I often tell people who come for a reading for the first time that I'm not going to tell them anything they don't already know, at least on some level. They just need to be reminded sometimes of their basic nature and accept it. Astrology is basically a tool for self-acceptance, IMO, and I love those 'ah ha' moments when a person reconnects with who they are.

My fondest wish is that all parents, educators, managers, and spouses would get some working knowledge of Astrology to use in understanding their relationships with their loved ones, their children, their students, and their co-workers. Doing so would off-set a world of trouble, IMO.
"Belay that! ...Do something else!" ~ Hector Barbossa

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