Since the Hebrew numbers are the same symbols as the Hebrew letters (alef represents one), and since both are the same as the sefiroth, the principles of God’s being that mark all the created order, it is not surprising that universal kabbalah connections so often begin with reference to number; in fact, it is surprising that this reference does not happen more often. The fields of kabbalah astrology, chronology, and linguistics all rely on the building blocks of number.
What is kabbalah astrology? It is thoroughly unlike modern “astrology”, wherein, in its best interpretation, all people born during the same twelfth of the earth’s orbit are assumed to have characteristics similar enough to produce reliable cold readings that can be markedly distinguished one from another. This corruption is several levels removed from kabbalah astrology, which begins closer to astronomy and prophecy. In kabbalah astrology, only those underneath the stars are subject to their influence, but the kabbalist, like Avraham Avinu, rises above the stars.
Adam, Avraham, and Moses were each said to have known the fates of all men: Adam by the voice of God, and Avraham and Moses by the finger of God upon tablets. Phenomenalistically, this knowledge is actually extreme attunement and sensitivity of the kabbalist to complex combinations of factors (such as a man’s birthdate, birth order, nationality, position, strength), leading, at opportune times, to strong certainty of the end result of such factors. Knowing when the opportune times will occur is also the result of this resonation or attunement. The harmony which enables certainty of the future is both the gift of God and the result of discipline (which is also a gift).
Kabbalah astrology begins with the early astronomy, reflected in the Book of Jubilees and the Talmud. By strict mathematical calculation rivaling that of modern astronomy, festival dates could be predicted according to preset formulae. The Talmud gives the correct average duration of the moon cycle to the nearest second, baffling modern scientists as to the source of this knowledge.
Kabbalah astrology involved kabbalists calculating automatically which months would tend toward disputes over the date of observation the new moon; which years would have late festivals rather than early; or when the sabbatical and jubilee years would abut, creating two consecutive years of general business amnesty. A kabbalah calculator could then pronounce well or ill in the national affairs.
The process is akin to the savant who can quickly and inexplicably grasp large and complex numbers. When the Egyptian Pharaoh dreamt (unconsciously predicted) of seven-year “weeks” of abundance and famine, Yosef interpreted (consciously predicted), and proclaimed that this knowledge was given by God.
In short, kabbalah astrology, insofar as it proclaims the future, arises only from disciplined pursuit of God through selflessness; modern “astrology”, by contrast, exploits and feeds the undisciplined pursuit of proclamation of the future. The same circumstance occurs with use and abuse of Jewish gematria. When the Bible code was found in Breshith (Genesis), two camps arose: the Orthodox recognized and taught that Breshith had successfully predicted the future at odds of 1 in 60,000, as proven by Jewish researchers desirous to vindicate the text as Torah; while the folk religionists attempted, without similar respect for Torah, to teach that any book of the Hebrew Bible (or Greek, for that matter) could be used as a word-search puzzle to produce meaningful dates for such events as Armageddon.
What is kabbalah’s true use of Jewish gematria? We illustrate by brief examples. King David was proven to be the chosen king of Israel because of the connection that his name (daleth-waw-daleth, meaning “beloved”) totals 14 (four-six-four), and he was the 14th generation from Avraham. The Chaldeans and Babylonians were proven by Jeremiah to be false astrologers because their name, “Chasdim” (chaf-sin-daleth-yod-mem), translates in the gematric athbash cipher into “lev qamai” (lamedh-veth-qof-mem-yod), “heart of rebellion”.
Such “coincidences”, when found fortuitously and sincerely at opportune times, are recognized as actually “God-incidences”. However, they can also be manufactured deceptively by insincere manipulators. The motives of the kabbalah calculator must be constantly tested for purity.