The Unifying Power Of Number – the Zero
In 1971 Thea’s life took a dramatic change, and on 29 September she arrived, with her young son, in Pondicherry India at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. The details of being called there, and her nine month ‘initiation’ with the Mother, are given in her autobiographical account, The Tenth Day Of Victory (2005,Volume one, Part One).
Before leaving Rome Thea asked the Mother about the meaning of ‘the number nine’; she departed before she received by mail the Mother’s reply: ‘The nine signified creation in matter’. It was during her first year in Pondicherry however, that she understood the depth of what the Mother had told her. She entered a world, a realisation, where symbols ‘lived’, they no longer were abstract figures. She was led to the ‘source’ of symbols, to the source of everything in Creation: the Divine Mother was the Circle – the symbol which denotes the All, the essence of unity; and the number of the Circle was 9.
There was more, and so she writes:
‘…But there was the Zero, the Point. This followed the realisation of the 9 and the circle. With the Zero, the knowledge was complete. And out of that came the whole of creation. This Silence was a fullness and no void. The void was an illusion. Only fullness was Reality…’ (ibid, volume 2, pp 206-7.)
* * *
The many intense yogic experiences in Thea’s first years with the Mother in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram, deepened her understanding of the goal of Sri Aurobindo’s vision. The thread that emerges throughout these powerful ‘realisations’ is her search for a ‘workable structure that harmonized the One and the Many’ (ibid, pp 208-209). It was after the Mother’s passing in November of 1973 that an entirely new cycle opened for her. During the first five days of January, 1974, Thea had the complete outline of The Gnostic Circle, and the writing continued throughout that year. Inspiration flowed effortlessly, but she writes, something was different now:
‘… It is clear that what I had received from the Mother while she lay in state instilled me with a new purpose and an increase in energy which would enable me to fulfill that purpose. The Gnostic Circle was its first product. It was to be the first exposition of the fuller lines of the new Seeing and the practical key for witnessing and participating in the Supermind’s action in the world.’ (ibid, p. 321)
The knowledge itself determined the exact structure of the book.
It came to her as four sections, each preceeded by a short description: the first section, The 9, The Transcendent, The Father, the Seed, the Vast; the second section, The 6, the Cosmic, the Mother, the body, the play, and the Third section, The 3, the Child, the birth, the Earth’s realisation.
Thea knew that Sri Aurobindo was the 9, the Transcendent Divine, the Mother embodied the Cosmic Divine, the 6, and that she added the dimension of the Individual Divine, the 3. But who was the Zero, the 0? The progression of numbers not only descended, she writes, but they moved inward like a spiral, with the Zero section as the Point. This fourth and last section was to become the Mother’s inner Chamber of her Temple, and the description preceding this was: The 0, the Womb, the cradle, the upholder, The Centre.
But ‘the cradle’ was empty. The ‘birth’ (in knowledge) had not taken place yet, this was to happen two years later. ‘What occurred in March of 1976 would fill the until-then empty cradle’, Thea later writes, (Ibid, volume 2, p. 320), and quoting from Sri Aurobindo’s Savitri (Book One, Canto 4), she describes her ‘breakthrough’ regarding the Fourth Power, the Zero:
A few shall see what none yet understands
God shall grow up while the wise men talk and sleep
For man shall not know the coming till its hour
And belief shall be not till the work is done.
She knew Sri Aurobindo had written that the square was the symbol of Supermind, along with the Sun, and this new seeing confirmed that the involution of the Supramental to Earth involved a four-fold descent, just as our universe contains four levels of consciousness: physical, vital, mental, and spiritual. With the full descent of all four members, or powers, Thea no longer called the fourth plane of consciousness, ‘spiritual’ ; she now referred to this as ‘The Supramental’.
Part One - The Mathematics Of Unity
Thea presents the foundation for her Indocentric cosmology in a ‘formula’, 9/6/3/0-1. It was the descending arrangement of the numbers that allowed her to verify the credentials of the 9th Evolutionary Avatar:
‘The descent of Vishnu’s 9th has been played out according to a precise formula. Sri Aurobindo was assiduously engaged in rendering it applicable over the final years of his sojourn on this planet. It consists of the numbers 9/6/3/0. As an indication of its importance, he enshrined it in his own symbol in the central square known as the Lotus of the Avatar. In it we find an arrangement of 9 and 6 petals in a descending order, resting on 3 leaves.’ (Thea, Vedic Altar Updated, no 3, 2011, pp 15 – 18).
Using ‘The Mathematics of Unity’ Thea demonstrates both the sublime harmony of the Indian Nation and gives an example of the way the Dharma updates itself. The Solar Line began in 1872, as the Transcendent power, the Nine, Sri Aurobindo took birth on that date. With him came the other two members of the Descent, each having their own role, and power (Shakti). The Mother took birth in 1878, as the Cosmic Divine, and Thea, third in the line who adds the dimension of the Individual Divine, took birth in 1938. These Births are arranged in this manner so that each one can carry out a task allotted to them. Thea draws attention to the Mother’s 1962 Dialogue: she speaks with confidence that it is not one Avatar, no matter how realized, who can bring about the establishment of the Supramental seed on Earth, but it will be a ‘line in time’ or space. (Thea, The Supramental Synthesis: A Third Poise, The Vishaal Newsletter, Volume 0, no 3, February 1986)
The Transcendent, 1872: 1+8+7+2 = 18 (1 + 8 = 9) 9
The Cosmic, 1879: 1+8+7+8=24 (2+4 = 6) 6
The Individual, 1938: 1+9+3+8 = 21 (2+1 =3) 3
This process of reducing a number to a ‘seed digit’ (i.e., adding each number in the date, as above), can only be done if there is the proper Number System and Calendar; and fortunately India has both these in place. The revelation of the ZERO was India’s contribution to mathematics centuries ago, and India at the Time of Independence adopted the current universal Calendar. The Vedic system or the novemal number system, based on the ‘mathematics of unity’ was well known and used, but in the schools of Wisdom that arose after the Vedic Age, such as that of the Greek Sage Pythagoras, there was no place for the Zero (Vedic Altar Updated, no. 3, op cit). That system, in current use, starts the counting process with the number 1 and proceeds through the number 10.
The concept of Zero is Vedic and describes the heart and soul of everything Vedic. It did not arise in the mind of a mathematician, but in the vision of the ancient Rishi (Thea, The Zero, the Veda, and the Divine Measure of the Year, 2006). It came as ‘purnata’, fullness, and all that sprang from that compact Zero seed, was Fullness; ‘something happened along the way’, she states, to allow for the opposite expression, ‘Shunya‘ or Empty Circle.
Part Two - Solving The Puzzle
‘I have finally seen something that I have been missing since the beginning – contraction and expansion are indeed simultaneous. This was a most accurate perception. But they are not happening here at the same time. Contraction is a property of the Zero, not the One. This I know. But my mistake, of sorts, has been a serious one. Contraction is on the other side; and it is constant. It is the cosmological constant Einstein finally disowned. He had the right perception but since the laws of physics and mathematics break down in the singularity, he could not ‘prove’ the point. Indeed, he had always to deal with the Point. He could not ever conceive of the Zero. Therein unity holds – the Mathematics of Unity. There Number IS, whole and complete in itself. Physics, math as we know them cannot explain – much less prove – the elegant simplicity of that Unity. Whole numbers, as number powers, alone ‘explain’ reality.
The Zero-contraction is what holds the universe together. It is the binding force – the eternal all-pervading Centre. Without that there is no universe at all. And those number-powers encapsulate the Transcendent, the Cosmic , the Individual Soul. These are the triadic principles of all creation, of all created things. These principles through the 0/1 are at the root of our universal manifestation – and they are the components of the individual Soul, our vahana in this material creation of 9.
This is the magnificence of the 9 – the number-power of the Divine Mother as India has long understood…’ (Thea, The Miracle of Oneness, Journal Entry, 6 April 2012).
And with these journal entries of 2012, Thea writes that her most important breakthrough finally came, 36 years after the first seeing: ‘the final ingredient has come which has eluded me all along…. it has come’. She had known that ‘contraction’ and ‘expansion’ were simultaneous, but ‘how’ this was experienced in the universe she could not formulate completely (ibid). Science experiences the universe as an expanding world, Thea experienced the universe as both ‘expanding’ and ‘contracting’ simultaneously, and she describes her experiences in this way:
Dark energy or matter, is a property of the Zero, ‘dark’ because it is compacted in the Zero and cannot be seen or heard. It is not really an energy, but a ‘cosmic direction’ or ‘an alignment’ which counterbalances the expanding universe on this side.
‘It is the origin of gravity on this side’, Thea writes. ‘Certainly gravity is the force that resists integration. It must because its own roots or origin on the other side are unknown. Scientists do not know how to approach it…’. (ibid, Journal entry 7 April 2012)
Thea knew her cosmology had to be ‘applied’; she had already written that The Gnostic Circle was the ‘practical key for witnessing and participating in the Supermind’s action in the world’. In both her early experiences, as well as those in the journal entries of 2012, she shows how the new universe works: it is through the world of number and symbol that we are to approach the Divine. Number Power is our ‘vahana’. ‘There, number IS, whole and complete in itself…’ (ibid)
The Trinity of the 9 (the Transcendent Divine), the 6 (the Cosmic Divine), and the 3 (the Individual Divine) are the Supramental ‘seed’ at the heart of creation. Their ‘vertical’ Descent from above, is a process of involution which embeds the ‘seed’ into the Earth /Womb (The 0); this compacted, involved ‘seed’ begins to extend itself into the ‘field’ of our Earth, (the 1,2,3, ad infinitum), via the process of evolution. (Thea, The Supramental Change, The Vishaal Newsletter, volume 0, no. 1, October, 1985)
The 9/6/3/0-1 formula describes ‘the other side’ (of the Singularity) as a compaction of all three Times: the 9 (future), the 6, (past) and the 3 (present). From this compacted trinity evolves the first field of Space, which science calls Gravity, or the binding force of our world, that which keeps our universe of form together. But from her experiences, Thea states emphatically that ‘Gravity belongs to the other side’; without gravity, without the Triad of the nine, six and three, we have no universe’ (ibid).
Science is totally blocked at the Zero (0) threshold, they do not even acknowledge ‘the other side’ or the four planes of consciousness as proper fields of study. They have relegated ‘the other side’ to the yogi, to spiritual matters. In the scientific world of Relativity, ‘this side’ is totally separated from ‘that side’; they only see half of reality (ibid). This split or separation into spirit up there (heaven), and matter here on Earth, has produced a partial vision that continues to plague our civilization.
Part Three - ‘A New Heaven and a New Earth’
In 1956, the Mother told her disciples ‘there is a new world that is seeking to be born’. Thea expresses this birth in a formula that can be visually comprehended. The compacted 9, 6, 3 or ‘heaven’ descends from the subtle world of ‘the other side’, into the Zero, the womb of earth. A reversal takes place, and the Zero gives forth (gives birth to) the One (the 1).
“The Nine, the Zero – There is nothing else that matters – it is all in THAT”
Letter to student, 1986
This Zero, the compacted Trinity of Past, Present and Future Time, extends itself as the first dimension of Space, as 1, 2, 3, ad infinitum. Thea calls this Zero the ‘Integral’; from this compacted centre, TIME unfolds itself, i.e., rolls itself out in our days, months and years, it can be measured by our calendar. For example, using the ‘mathematics of unity‘, first find the ‘seed digit’ of any event, a birthday, or the timing for a festival, etc.; then connect that digit to the ‘whole number’ on the other side. *(see end note)
To illustrate her point, Thea directs the reader to Chapter 9 of The Magical Carousel, the updated Vedic Myth which she wrote in 1970; where the two protagonists of the story gallop off with great speed into Sagitarriusland, the 9th sign of ‘zodiac-land’, a place where very few people consciously enter. This is the region she describes as the ‘threshold’:
A new Earth is expected, Thea says, but what does ‘a new heaven’ mean? Could the ancient ones with this vision have seen the day ahead, of the new cosmos with no separation between heaven and earth…of a new evolutionary paradigm, beyond ‘Relativity’, based on the ‘speed of consciousness’?
Thea uses the analogy of music, calling numbers 0 through 9, as ‘whole notes’, or ‘whole Tones’, pure like the essence of Being, and real, that is, having carrying power: ‘…They are like pulsations – indeed, the pulsations of the Sun, 9 in our 24- hour day, one pulsation each 2 hours and 40 minutes’. (Thea, Miracle of Oneness op cit)
But it is only our third planet in the Solar System that is uniquely equipped to hear these tones or pulsations which come from ‘the other side’; it is only here on Earth they are audible and measureable. (ibid). And when you do hear these ‘tones’, there is no separation between up there and here, the ‘other side’ and ‘this side’; for Thea, this is the meaning of ‘unity’. (The Perennial Dispute, December 2014).
‘… energies are released by speed and exceeding one’s boundaries: this is the release that permits the experience (which) hitherto (has been) a void on earth, referred to as ‘heaven’. The released energy permits that ‘heaven’ to be lived, experienced on Earth. The descent of heaven on earth is really that release or extra quanta of energy hitherto unavailable to the human species due to its physical consciousness binary structure. The binary system cannot experience this speed increase in life. It collapses and dies. The definition of immortality is thus the condition of complete energy transmutation in a properly aligned physical structure that can experience speed (of consciousness) without collapse’. (Marginal notes, Ervin Laszlo, The Creative Cosmos)
‘The matter is so simple’ she writes on the edge of the pages of Laszlo’s book, The Creative Cosmos (Floris, 1993); ‘science is looking for the psi- field, the source, the missing factor. But they also need an applied cosmology, she adds, by which to ‘draw the compressed time energy of the Zero Womb (the psi-field) across the threshold or event horizon (Hawkings) in a manner that allows us to follow the evolution of… what involved , in the zero womb by compression or contraction.’
She sums up her marginal comments by stating she has already demonstrated how to do this, thanks to India’s number system and its incorporation of the Zero: i.e., she shows how to follow the evolving time measure by use of the Calendar, via ‘the mathematics of unity:
‘When the ‘seed’ of the three times, crosses the threshold it begins to evolve linearly…time is then irreversible and forward moving, precisely because once across that 0/1 threshold through ‘reversal’, the link-up with space has occurred and form results with its evolutionary prerogatives. That is why I state that the fourth dimension of time is the point of space and the formula is 9/6/3/0 -1. This is why the One is also known as ‘the fourth’…’
‘The Zero Point = The Zero-Womb, or Transcendence contracted to Immanence’
* End Note: Today is 16 September, 2020 or a 2 number power day: 1+6+9+2+0+2+0=20; 2+0 = 2. Applying what Thea wrote above, the writer has the potential today to be carried into the subtle plane of number and symbol, on ‘the other side’, and to make a connection to the ‘whole tone’ or 2 number power. The planet Venus is the 2nd orb from the Sun, and ‘coincidentally’ today The Indian Express newspaper has sent out a news alert that researchers have been tracking ‘signs of life’ on our neighboring planet (a message of love?).
References: The unifying power of number – the Zero
With the advent of Sri Aurobindo, the 9th Evolutionary Avatar, the harmonization and integration of Being and Becoming is now possible: it can now be expressed as Time in its essence (Being) and Time in its periods (Becoming). Another way to express this concept is: Time compressed to a Seed (Being) and Time evolving out of its seed, carrying evolution along on the spiral of creation.
‘1956, the year of the Supramental Manifestation, marked a new beginning in the unfolding of Sri Aurobindo’s vision and determined a particularly important turning point regarding the action of Supermind (see VISHAAL 0/1 and 0/2). From then onward Supermind crossed a certain threshold and the processes it controls began to overtly bear witness to its upholding power.
From that time onward as well, the Mother’s yoga gradually began to give evidence that it was being carried out in consonance with this new development, that she was in fact the instrument through which that Power was hewing its path and extending its influence in the world. But to be more specific, it was arranging a ‘new language’ for itself, precisely one of the means by which a collective change is meant to come about, bridging the consciousness of the unity and the multiplicity…’
In May of 2006, the Movement for the Restoration of Vedic Wisdom [MRVW] was launched at Aeon Centre of Cosmology via the publication of this Manifesto. Thea shows how the Zero revolutionised mathematics, and she uses the history of this integer to trace the difficult times the Vedic civilization has known , from Fullness/’Purnata’ to Emptiness/ ‘Shunya’.
Thea analyses one of the Mother’s most important ‘Dialogues’ in a very unique way; ‘for the first time, she clearly reveals herself as identified with the Supramental Shakti. . It was coherent and detailed, yet none in her entourage were aware of this action and to this day they fail to realise, much less to accept, what was then being set in motion and since then has been worked upon and solidified to form the core of the new phase of Sri Aurobindo’s work for the world.’
‘This stamp of relativity has plagued the human mind…it explains our civilisational crisis. (Einstein’s Theory of ) Relativity was not incorrect; it was only the result of an incomplete vision and process.
It appears that the genial scientist, Nikola Tesla, stated, “If you only knew the magnificence of the 3, 6 and 9, then you would have a key to the universe.” In view of what is written above, his statement was not an exaggeration: everything essential that we need to know about life is contained in the formula 9/6/3/0-1. But the key to the discoveries, clothed in this extreme simplicity, is a consciousness of unity. This is what is lacking in our world today, in our science and in every aspect of life we have created for ourselves…”
To help the reader understand the new paradigm after Einstein’s Theory of Relativity’, Thea presents an excerpt from her book titled, The Magical Carousel, Chapter Nine – Sagittarius-land.
‘When the Centaur of Sagittarius-land overcomes inertia due to a spell that had been cast over him, he is able to resume his duty and carry the children to the Border, to the ‘higher realms’’.
‘Once again he is Val and Pom-pom’s saviour. They cling to him tightly and with their free arms wave to Heropodus Heronimus, the registrar and the guardians, who have all gathered at the gate to bid the young ones farewell and a safe journey. Heropodus comes close to the children and with a far-away look in his eyes, almost as if he were having a strange vision, he whispers:
‘“You are about to discover the last three realms, the regions very few consciously reach…”‘ (pp 101-2)
The foundation of a true astrologer/cosmologist is a consciousness of unity. Its establishment is the very first step – and it is the longest and hardest. Once attained it becomes the anchor or axis for the seer; he or she can then extend beyond from that innermost centre to expound on the grandeur seen from that tiniest point, ‘no bigger than a thumb’, as the Upanishad describes the individual soul. But this begs for some clarification because the term is not easily understood.
‘Unity’ in the context of a sage or seer of the true Vedic sort involves the ability to expand one’s consciousness to embrace this side and that – i.e., beyond the event horizon of contemporary physics. This is unity for the Rishi: the ability to move across thresholds that science cannot penetrate. This barrier is admittedly out of bounds for the scientist because we know that the mathematical foundation of all contemporary sciences breaks down at that threshold; whereas, the seer crosses over the ‘horizon’ as no scientist can do, precisely because he or she is graced with a perceptive capacity that permits the construction of a bridge between here and there.
That is the true unity-consciousness, differentiating it as we must from the common understanding: i.e., a consciousness that sees ‘the unity between all things’. To be precise, on this side of the demarcation that experience is more accurately known as Oneness. The sage sees this ‘oneness’ upon which basis he or she can say: We are THAT. We are all One in an indivisible unity.