The Ancient Greek Esoteric Doctrine of the Elements:

Isopsephia of Elements

Isopsêphia (Greek gematria) is the practice of computing the number denoted by a Greek word, for each Greek letter has an numerical value. The numerical value of a Greek word can be reduced to a single digit by adding the digits of its value. [Here the Greek Words are transcribed in Betacodes, with accents omitted.]
Earth = 1
The words HRA (Hêra), XQWN (Khthôn, Earth) and H GH (hê Gê, the Earth) all reduce to 1. (These are all names used by Empedocles for Earth.)
Water = 3
The words NHSTIS (Nêstis), QALATTA (Thalatta, Sea Water), O PONTOS (ho Pontos, the Open Sea), O OMBROS (ho Ombros, the Water), FERREFATTA (Pherrephatta, a poetic form of Persephonê), AFRODITH (Aphroditê), DUNAMIS (Dunamis, Power) and NEFQUS (Nephthys) all reduce to 3. (Except for Dunamis, Pherrephatta, Aphroditê and Nephthys, these are all names used by Empedocles for Water.)
Air = 9
The words H AHR (the Aêr), O AIQHR (the Aithêr), ZEUS (Zeus) and OURANOS (Ouranos, Heaven) all reduce to 9. (These are all names used by Empedocles for Air.) Related words that reduce to 9 include PNEUMA (Pneuma, Spirit) and TO PNEUMATIKON OXHMA (to Pneumatikon Okhêma, the Spirit Vehicle).
Fire = 12 (3)
The words HLIOS (Hêlios, Sun), AIDWNEUS (Aidôneus, Hades), HFAISTOS (Hêphaistos) and HLEKTWR (Êlektôr, the Beaming Sun) all reduce to 3. (Except for Hêphaistos, these are names used by Empedocles to refer to Fire). A related words that reduces to 3 is TO AUGOEIDES SWMA (to Augoeides Sôma, the Radiant Body).

Notice that the words for Fire reduce to 3 as do the words for Water, which shows their close connection. However, if we sum the digits for the Fire words but do not reduce them, they all sum to 12, which is not in general true for the Water words. Therefore, for the elements Earth, Water, Air, Fire we get one of the forms of the Pythagorean Tetraktus: 1, 3, 9, 12.

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Last updated: Thu Sep 10 17:44:53 EDT 1998