Numerology: Comparison of 5 & 8

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Excerpt from “Numerology: Comparison of 5 & 8”

“Seven is such a fun space. The Seven is the place of the seven emotions. The Seven is the place of, as Elisabeth [Rochat de la Vallée] says, ‘Something happens.’ In Chinese texts, what chapter it is, the numbering of the chapters is so non-accidental, what shows up in chapter one, chapter two, chapter three, et cetera, and in chapter seven, something happens. In medical texts, it’s when pathologies start appearing. We’ve stopped talking about the healthy way things work and now—whoomp—now you’ve got pathologies. It’s when, ‘Now you’ve really,’ the plot takes its a-ha [moment]! It’s this sense of, you’ve got all this stuff together, you’ve got this ecology, you’ve got this order, and you’ve got everything running, and then whoop! Something comes out of that! What will it be? The character, you can see, shows something coming out, piercing of the envelope, something rising out of the soil, something appearing. We’ve got all these workings inside of us, and then we have an appearance. We have what actually goes on. Elisabeth Rochat speaks of it as ‘the violent surging of something very difficult to keep in order.’ All the power of life and all the dangers of the power of life, eager to express itself by any means. So it is easy to deviate, because there’s all this happening.

So we speak of the seven emotions, why? Because it’s seven. What are the seven emotions? Pssh. You can make them up. They didn’t care. They just care that there’s seven, and so they make it be seven. So when you look at lists of what are the seven emotions, from text to text they vary. It’s the usual five, plus two. You know, what they think of, to make it seven in order to express the sense of Seven, of, we’ve got these systems going that are orderly, and then whoo—what comes out?

So let’s look at Eight. Oh, there’s been such suspense. We’re going to look at Eight. Which is two times four, or two times two times two. Two was a distinction. Four deepened that sense of distinction. Boy, just think about how much distinction-stuff we’ve got going on with Eight! With Four, we had the four directions, is one way of thinking about it. Here we have not only the four directions, but we have up and down, making all these different quadrants, and we’ve got this, we have this sense of a map. We have the pattern of the equinoxes and what the Chinese call the anchoring points of the wholeness of the year, the procession of the equinoxes and the solstices. There’s this sense of having the whole map, the anchor points of the whole system here, of mastering all the forces that make life. This is where we’ve got eight times eight makes 64 which is the number of hexagrams of the I Ching, which is the sense of the mapping out of the path of yang in the universe.

So there’s this sense in Eight of having a very clear sense of, it’s the solstice, it’s the equinox, it’s the top, it’s the bottom, it’s yin, it’s yang, and having this whole system of distinctions all mapped out, and the Eight Principles—hot-cold, interior-exterior, deficient-excess, yin-yang—are criteria for the mapping out of what’s going on here? What are the forces of life doing? How can we plot this? This sense of making the map, and having the distinctions among distinctions, is a very different way of going about knowing life that the dynamism of the Six, or the ecology of the Five, or the uniqueness of the Four, or the movement of the Three, or the simple contact and contrast of the Two, or the unspeakableness of the One.”