THE OGDOAD. 8.
Is the first cube of energy, and is the only evenly even number within the decad. The Greeks thought it an all-powerful number; they had a Proverb “all things are eight.”
Camerarius, in his edition of the Arithmetic of Nicomachus, calls it Universal Harmony, because musical ratios are distinguished by this number.
The Ratio of 9 to 8 is sesquioctave, this forms a tone and is attributed to the Moon.
12 to 9 is sesquitertian
12 to 8 is sesquialter
16 to 12 is sesquitertian
16 to 8 is duple
18 to 12 is sesquialter.
18 to 9 is duple
21 to 9 is duple sesquitertian
Attributed to Jupiter.
24 to 18 is sesquitertian
24 to 12 is duple.
24 to 8 is triple
18 to 12 sesquialter
12 to 8 sesquialter
32 to 24 sesquitertian
32 to 8 quadruple
Are ascribed to the 8th or Inerratic Sphere which comprehends all the rest.
36 to 24. sesquialter
36 to 18 duple
36 to 8 quadruple
24 to 18 sesquitertian
Hence the Ogdoad was also called “Cadmeia,” because Harmony was looked upon as the wife of Cadmus; and Cadmus meant the Sub-lunary World, as Olympiodorus says. Eight was called also Mother, and Rhea, Cybele and Dindymene, from being the first cube, and a cube representing the earth.
The eight persons saved from the flood of Xisuthrus are synonyms of many octaves of gods, such as the 8 Cabiri great gods of Samothrace; see Bryant and Faber on this myth.
There are 8 Beatitudes of the Christian religion, Matthew, chap. v.
Eight is the number of the Moons of Saturn.
There have been several Masonic orders concerned with this Noachite Ogdoad, as the Prussian masons, Knights of the Royal Axe, or Prince of Libanus, the Noachites, and the Royal Ark Mariners, which is a subsidiary order to the Mark Master Masons.
Macrobius says the Ogdoad was the type of Justice, because it consists of evenly even numbers, and on account of its equal divisions.
John Heydon tells us that 8 Events befall the Damned, and that there are 8 rewards of the Blessed.
The number 8 was sacred to Dionysos, who was born at the 8th month; the isle of Naxos was dedicated to him and it was granted to the women of Naxos, that their children born in the 8th month should live, whereas it is usual for such to die, although those born in either the 7th or the 9th month are usually reared.
The Jews were accustomed to practise Circumcision on male infants upon the 8th day after birth.
The Jews at the Chanucah or Feast of Dedication lit 8 candles, and it lasted 8 days. This is the Engkainia of John x. 22. As to conjuring among the ancient Jews, it is said in Talmud, Succah. 53. 1, that Levi played with 8 knives; Samuel in the presence of the King Sapor of Persia used 8 cups, and Abaji before Rabbi Rava used 8 eggs.
Eight prophets were descended from Rahab the Harlot, viz., Neraiah, Seraiah, Maasiah, Jeremiah, Hilkiah, Hannemeel, and Shallum. Note also that Huldah the prophetess was the grandchild of Rahab.
The last 8 verses of Deuteronomy, The Mosaic Law, The Pentateuch, were written by Joshua. Bava Bathra, 14. 1.
Rabbi Nathan states that there were 8 sects of the Pharisees: but both of the Talmuds (Jerusalem and Babylon) name only seven. It is prophesied that the Harps which will be played on earth before the Messiah will have 8 strings. Erachin, 13. 2.
As seven was the number of the original Creation, so 8, says W. F. Shaw, may be considered as the Day of Regeneration. Eight souls were saved in the Ark of Noah, and Noah was the 8th in descent, his name was NVCh = 8 times 8 = 64.
888 is the special number of Jesus Christ as “He who is the Resurrection and the Life.” He is the great opponent of the 666, the number of the Beast, the number of a Man.
The ancient Chinese writings refer to 8 musical sounds, the Pah-yin. (G. Schlegel.)