© 2011 Bruce Johnson – Reprinted with permission from Shining Lotus Metaphysical Bookstore Newsletter May 11.
by Bruce Johnson
Light from the lantern of Esoteric Science frees our minds from medieval superstitions connected with the number 13. Let’s review this number that unfortunately is synonymous with death and bad luck for many people in the west.
The mystical meaning of the number 13 was unknown to the uneducated masses of 14th century Europe. Thirteen people were present at the Last Supper which preceded the death of Jesus. The death of Jesus took place on a Friday, rendering it unlucky and negative to early Christians. Thirteen was seen by many European Christians as a number of death, unlucky fate, and treachery.
On Friday the 13th– 1307, Phillip the 4th of France initiated fabricated charges of heresy that resulted in the arrests and tortures of the Knights Templar’s of that country. With the blessing of Pope Clement the 5th, Templar property was stolen and Templar’s were killed and hideously tortured by the” Holy Inquisition”. This tragedy further reinforced the growing superstition that 13 was an unlucky number.
The 13th card of Tarot’s Major Arcana is the death and rebirth card. The death aspect is too often accented by exoteric tarot readers to the exclusion of the equally present rebirth and renewal quality of the card. Occult study shows death and rebirth to be expressions of the continuous motion and change of life.
The Secret Destiny of America by Manly P. Hall $16.95
The Phoenix is a positive example of the number 13, as it symbolizes renewal, and rebirth from the ashes of death. The Initiate who experiences allegorical death and mystical rebirth of the soul, is another example of the positive nature of the number 13. A circle of 12 stones with a central stone in the middle, expresses the number 13, and is a microcosmic symbol of our macrocosm. To the astrologer and occultist, it is a symbol of oneness expressing itself in 12 manifestations.
Thirteen is the number of unity in the Kabalah.
Our Masonic forefathers understood the positive meaning of the number 13, and used it frequently in the Great Seal of the United States. The fact that there were 13 original colonies is not the reason 13 was used so extensively on the obverse and reverse of our Great Seal. The Secret Destiny of America- by Manly P. Hall, examines our Great Seal, along with the founding and important role of the United States.
Bruce Johnson has over 30 years of study in the fields of Ancient Wisdom and occultism. He has taught classes on a wide range of topics, from Atlantis to mediums to Zoroaster. He is also a spiritualist minister, with a background in spiritual astrology. He lives in Colorado with his wife and their cat.