The following is a brief discussion on The Sacred Tetractys. This article discusses a working definition for the tetractys and some basic symbolism associated with the tetractys. References are provided at the conclusion of the article.
The Tetractys Defined
“The Tetractys is an equilateral triangle formed from the sequence of the first ten numbers aligned in four rows. It is both a mathematical idea and a metaphysical symbol that embraces within itself – in seed like form – the principles of the natural world, the harmony of the cosmos, the ascent to the divine, and the mysteries of the divine realm. So revered was this ancient symbol that it inspired ancient philosophers to swear by the name to the one who brought this gift to humanity – Pythagoras.”
The tetractys has graded meanings, some of which are as following:
-The Four Primary Elements – Earth, Fire, Air and Water
-The Harmony of the Spheres and the Cosmos – (1) Unity (Monad/God), (2) Dyad (Power/Otherness/Matter), (3) Harmony (Triad), (4) Kosmos (Tetrad)
-The four rows add up to 10: the symbolic unity of a Divine Order
In addition, the tetractys characterizes the establishment and order of space:
-First Row – Represents the zero dimension in the point.
-Second Row – Represents a one dimensional ray of a line.
-Third Row – Represents a two-dimensional triangular array. (Duality of Manifestation?)
-Fourth Row – Represents a three-dimensional square array, defined by four points – length, width, and depth – a tetrahedron. A tetrahedron is a polyhedron composed of four triangular faces, six straight edges, and four vertex corners.
Within this article some basic aspects of The Divine Tetractys were touched upon. Like most esoteric symbols, the tetractys has many meanings graded meanings depending upon the level of consciousness of the observer. This article provided some basic meanings, but it is up to you to search for deeper and more profound meanings.