Arithmancy: Definition, Meanings Chart & More

Arithmancy is defined as a method of divination. Arithmancy involves assigning number values to letters. Then, the diviner will calculate the value of words and interpret their meanings. In this post, I am going to show you how to practice Arithmancy.

Numerology is when you assign special significance to numbers, But Arithmancy is when you add up numbers in a date, word, etc. and interpret that resulting number. Essentially, arithmancy is what you do when you put numerology to use. Most diviners use these two phrases interchangeably, but they do differ.

The History of Arithmancy

The history of arithmancy is a long one; its use as a form of divination can be traced back to Babylonian times. The spiritual significance of numbers obviously dates back much further than Mesopotamia, as numbers are a universal fascination. Here are some fun number facts:

  • What can be understood today as the number 0 was first used by the Mayans and possibly invented by them or the Olmecs.
  • The number 8 is lucky in China.
  • The ancient Egyptians considered the number 17 to be unlucky.
  • 108 is a sacred number in Hinduism.
  • In many ancient and modern cultures, 40 is the number of death.

While the above numbers are fascinating, we won’t be diving into any number above 9. However, if you want to look at numbers above 9 in more detail, I suggest you refer to a book on symbols (there are some good ones on Amazon).  

In Western numerology, there’s a standard way to interpret number meanings. However, I should point out that there will be slight variations based on the diviner’s education, culture, and their individual understanding of numbers. However, before you jump into meanings, you have to be able to calculate numerical values.

Arithmancy: Calculating Number Values

The value of each letter in your name (or company name if it’s a business reading) depends on how it corresponds to each letter of the alphabet. Each letter is given a number up to 9, and after 9, it goes back to being equal to 1. So, A equals 1, I equals 9, and J equals 1 again. 

123456789
ABCDEFGHI
JKLMNOPQR
STUVWXYZ
Here are the number values for each letter of the alphabet – feel free to screenshot for your own personal use.

When adding, some people like to add all of the numbers as one then break that down into a signal number, while others like to add each number then break that down.

So, the first step in getting a value for my first name would be to get the value of the letters:

L = 3

I = 9

S = 1

A = 1

For the first method, I would add all of these numbers together. These numbers add up to 14, then 1 + 4 = 5. So, with this method, my life path number is 5.

For the second method, you add each number together in a row, then add them together, and so on. So, I would add the value of L and I, then I and S, and finally S and A. Once I’ve done that, I would add those values together until I got one number and could break that number down into one digit. Here’s a chart that illustrates my point: 

Arithmancy definition and meanings

You can use whichever method you feel called to use – it’s up to you. You can also do both methods with your first name, surname, or both together! Any way is good.

Once you have your number, you can interpret your life path. The numerological value of your name is said by diviners to reveal your personality and can even affect your life path and achievements. British model Agyness Deyn even changed her name to Agyness (born Laura Michelle Hollins) after consulting with a numerologist. A name change obviously served her well, because she went on to grace the cover of Vogue, became the face of Jean Paul Gaultier’s Ma Dame perfume, and appeared as Aphrodite in the movie Clash of the Titans.

Arithmancy Meanings

One Meaning

One is the number of the leader and rulership. If one is your number, you’re a natural-born influencer and would do well in a position of authority. However, you may have a tendency to start strong but end weak, although this can be worked around by enlisting others to do your bidding.

Two Meaning

Two is the number of opposites and balance. If you have received this number, you have a two-way personality and can sway between extremes. You love hard and hate hard. You like dark medieval art and unicorns. Two is also the number of femininity, and if you’re male, you are in touch with your feminine side.

Three Meaning

As two people can make three, three is the number of creativity and groups. If you’ve received this number, you enjoy spending time with others and socializing. You like to have a fun time and bring others together. You have a great imagination and are talented in the arts.

Four Meaning

Four is the number of logic and reasoning. If you’ve received this number, you have above-average intelligence and like to solve problems. Another strong personality trait is that of endurance; you can survive anything life throws at you.

Five Meaning

Because we have four limbs and a head, five is the number of humanity. If you have received this number, you enjoy the pleasures of life and all the world has to offer; good food, beauty, and travel. You are adventurous and like to explore.

Six Meaning

Six is the number of love and is sacred to the Greek goddess Venus, ruler of romance. If you’ve received this number, you’re a loyal lover and are committed to your friends and partners; matters of the heart are of extreme importance to you.

Seven Meaning

Seven is the number of mysticism and the occult. If you have received this number, you have an avid interest in anything related to the paranormal. Your intuition is your greatest superpower, and you can be considered psychic. Religion and spirituality play a huge role in your life.

Eight Meaning

Eight is the number of drive. If you have received this card, you’re a perfectionist who aims to do well in everything you set your mind to. You overachieve in subjects that interest you and pursue the things you want relentlessly. Often, people with the number eight are highly focused on their career or business.

Nine Meaning

Nine is the number of wisdom. Those who receive nine are wise beyond their years. They are charitable and able to look past people’s shortcomings. Number nines also know we are all human; they don’t discriminate against any color, culture, or creed. If you’ve received the number nine, you want to make the world a better place.

Arithmancy and Compatibility 

There’s something else you can do with numbers that you may remember from your schoolyard days, and that’s to work out your compatibility with others based on percentages and calculations using a keyword such as ‘loves’ or ‘flames’.

Yes, this is a form of divination and falls under arithmancy. So, if you have done this, you can tell people you’ve been practicing arithmancy most of your life! For those who don’t know, here’s how it is done.

How to practice Arithmancy divination

The first step is to take the two people’s names. So, let’s say we have a Lesley Stone and a John Dire Smith. You then take a word that represents what you’re measuring such as ‘hates’ or ‘loves’. Then, you add up the amount of letters in each name for each letter of the word. So, Lesley Stone and John Dire Smith have:

L = 2

O = 2

V = 0

E = 4

S = 2

Next, you calculate the number value using the second method outlined above. The final number is given as a percentage because you’re scoring the relationship out of 100. Anything less than 50 is said to be undesirable, above 50 is good, above 70 is very good, and above 90 is fantastic. Lesley and John got 47%, so no luck for them! 

Closing Thoughts on Arithmancy

So, that is how you can practice Aritmancy divination! A lot of people have practiced Arithmancy without even knowing they have done so. What about you? Did you practice Aritmancy at school? Or, are you new to this method of divination? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!