Human beings have always sought meaning and order in life. We manifest this desire in countless different practices: religion, hobbies, astrology, and more. One of the most lasting and popular of these attempts to understand the meaning of life and the path of our destinies is numerology. Numerology is one of the more widely used practices of the “occult” – and it works on the basic principle that numbers are the basis of life, to the extent that a focused study of them can determine personality, vocation, and fate itself.
Modern numerology is an amalgam of several time-tested beliefs ranging from the Jewish Kabbalah to ancient Egyptian rituals. Ancient scholars such as Pythagoras and St. Augustine assigned divine qualities for numbers, believing mathematics to be the coded language of the gods. Modern numerology works on two major principles: that each number means many things in and of itself, and that numbers put together in a certain way can tell you who a person is as well as divine their future.
The most common way to apply numerology to your everyday life is by “digit summing” your birth date. This popular method can be seen everywhere from numerology enthusiast websites to the pages of Cosmopolitan. Digit summing is the process of adding numbers together until a single digit is left. For example, the number 2,897 can be reduced as such: 2 + 8 + 9 + 7 = 26; 2 + 6 =8. The result of digit summing a birth date is called a “life path number”. Say you were born on November 17, 1976 or 10-17-1976. Simply add 10 + 17 + 1976, coming up with 2003. Add 2 + 0 + 0 + 3 and you get the life path number 5.
The life path numbers reveal personal traits and tendencies, and as we all know there is both a light and a dark side to everyone. For example, a person with a life path number of 1 tends to be voracious and slightly bossy. 2 is an artistic idealist, if a bit dreamy. 3 is intelligent and verbally gifted, but easily wounded. 4 is an engineer and a builder, and perhaps a bit obstinate. 5 is an adventure-seeking free spirit who sometimes loses sight of those around him or her. 6 is loving and empathetic, sometimes at the expense of self. 7 is a cool evaluator, an excellent reader of others, but she doesn’t like advice! 8 is a leader and a hard worker, and often a ruthless social climber. 9 is gregarious and theatrical, and sometimes a bit false. Of course, the life path numbers are much more complex than these short descriptions, and it is fascinating to see how accurate they can be!
There is plenty of skepticism surrounding mystical practices like numerology, but the truth is that it is an integral part of many people’s lives. It is a source of comfort and a divining rod for the future. Many people are simply amazed to see how truthful their life path number is. No matter what you believe, checking out your life path number can only open the door to introspection and thus a deeper understanding of yourself.