Friday, February 23, 2007

Are you a 23rdian?

I once counted myself among the 23rdians, that group of skeptical, inquisitive, literate and credulous readers of mystic significance in the mathematical logic of the physical universe. In short, a few years ago I found the number 23 ubiquitously sequestered in the very fabric of things, stalking me, as it were, like a secret god.

I first encountered the cunning wile of 23 in Robert Anton Wilson's Discordian tract, the Illuminatus! trilogy, wherein he quoted Bishop Unger ascribing the birthday of the universe as being on October 23rd; the patent ridiculousness of the Big Bang being fixed to a Gregorian date should have shown me right away that any further pursuit of the subject would beguile at best some precious hours of thought, and at worst would chain me to a silly philosophy. Being just paranoid enough to taste a hint of sugar in the number -if the universe manifested on the 23rd, it must be of profound significance, right?- I took a candystore approach in my further inquiries and began a long period of confection obsession. Finally, a couple years later, after discovering that if you look hard enough for anything you can find it (or believe you have found it), I ate my last sugar scrap, on the very date of October 23rd, in fact.

October 23rd, 1996: picture a stunning autumn afternoon in the old town square of that jewel in the crown of Bohemia, the ancient, yellow-walled town of Prague. I stood there in the shadow of Jan Hus, a local saint and symbol of the Velvet Revolution four years earlier, in which the poet Vaclav Havel led a non-violent overthrow of communist forces. Already ensconced in a flat for ten days in the northern part of the city, I was at stare namesti (in Czech, literally, "old town") to meet a friend and continue on with her to Budapest; it was a magical time in life, perfectly mirrored in the fall splendor of fractal trees shedding their leaves and blue skies arching over castles. The date was of particular importance. By choosing the 23rd of October, I anticipated that it would have an arcane influence over the rest of my life from that day forward; I believed that every step I took from then on would be resolute, purpose-filled, artistically-pungent, etc etc, and not only would I have a better life but I would also point to the answer to all answers to thank for it: the number 23.

Youthful optimism aside, I was full of crap, as I would soon learn in the ensuing time between then and today. Not to say that I was wrong or even wrong-headed. The experience of seeking importance is a fool's errand, perhaps, and humbling at many junctures, but there is nothing inherently destructive about it. As you inch along the way further, even so, the signposts and tollbooths that were obscure, even hidden, as you encountered them, become apparent and obvious in hindsight. 23, then, looks like one of those waystations.

Why bring this up now? For one thing, it's the 23rd of February, and there is synchronicity; for another, the Hollywood version of the 23 affect (for want of a better phrase) is hitting screens today. Yes, you too can experience the vicarious thrills of fixating on a single number by watching grizzle-cheeked, hollow-eyed Jim Carrey in "The Number 23". Wow, I'm all ashiver already (though I really prefer Mr Carrey in the Eternal Sunshine). Really, how silly can Hollywood get?

Friends have asked me if I'll go see the movie, out of deference for my former sweet-toothed addiction. Invariably I answer, No. I had a slight interest when I first heard tell of it, because there was a niggling allegiance to that magical period in which 23 figured so prominently. But now, with further thought, I've concluded that it won't be worth it to go. Honestly, I'd rather go back to Prague, and if saving the cost of the ticket gets me any closer to doing that, it will be money well-pinched.

8 comments:

Sammie said...

Hello! I am a student currently studying numerology, pseudo-mathematics and natural number phenomenon’s and enigmas for a major work (my cross-cultural perspective being logic versus superstition), and would have been looking for a "Twenty Thirdian" to interview. If you would be interested, know someone that would, or could provide me with SOME information i wouldnt be eternally grateful!
If so, please contact ffriday@gmail.com
Thank you!

p_geo04 said...

Hi , my name is
Prince-6
George-6
Batan -5
Bayeta-6
Total =23

Birthdate: June 04,1994 / 06,04,94.
(0+6+0+4+1+9+9+4=23) (1+9+9+4=23)

my name and my birthdate tells that im a certified 23rdian!!! But im confused, is it a coincidence? Or im a real 23rdian!

Omai "Dr. O.K." Kofi said...

GREETINGS,

I AM NOT ASKING FOR AN INDUCTION, BUT I WILL INTRODUCE MY ENCOUNTER WITH "23" AND 23RDIANOLOGY. IT BEGAN ON 10/02/11, AT CHURCH ON SUNDAY MORNING THE BISHOP HIGHLIGHTED SCRIPTURE:23, I WAS ALREADY ON CACLUATION MODE FROM OTHER SUBJECTS SUCH AS (300) (12)3)& 17). I LOOKED UP TO FIND THAT I WAS SEATED AT SPOT 277 AND AN ACQUAINTANCE HAD A DREAM THAT THIS VERY BISHOP GAVE HIM $300.00 SO IT WAS TITHES & OFFERING TIME AND I SUBTRACTED THE SEAT NUMBER AND THE DREAM NUM TO GIVE AN OFFERING THAT DAY. $23.00 ROONS. NOT THINKING TOO MUCH OF THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE VERSE 23, OR THE $23.00 I LEFT CHURCH. I STOPPED AT THE STORE TO PAY MY RENT AND RECEIVED $23.00 CHANGE. THEN I WAS LIKE WHOA. THAT IS THE 3RD TIME, BUT SHE DID NOT GIVE ME A $20 & $3, SHE GAVE ME TWO $10'S & $3. I KNEW TO GO TO MY JOURNAL ENTRY FOR THAT DATE: 10/03/10 AND WHO! AGAIN... WE WILL NOT GET INTO IT, BUT JUST KNOW IT SPOKE ON "EXISTENCE" AND "EXTINCTION"..., OKAY STILL JUST LETTING 23 BE, I RESEARCHED IT AND FOUND SOME AMAZING THINGS. I MOVE ON TO THE 4TH, AND I AM IN LINE TO HAVE LUNCH WITH THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, AND THE GIRL IN FRONT OF ME IS HOLDING UP HER SEAT CARD LIKE, "LOOK OMAI, I AM STALKING YOU..." AND YES, IT WAS TABLE 23... DUN, DUN, DUNNNNNN! OKAY TOO WEIRD, SO THEN WE ARE LEAVING AND THE PRESIDENT'S WHO'S EVER CAR IS BEING INSPECTED BY SECRET SERVICE AND OTHER ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL AND AS IT DRIVES OFF, LOL, LOL, THE LICENSE READS: "PREM 23"...LOL... SO NOW, IT IS OFFICIAL, THIS NUMBER IS SO SPEAKING TO ME. MY RESEARCH GETS A BIT MORE EXTENSIVE AT THIS POINT (TO LEAD ME HERE). WELL I SAID TO MYSELF, THE WORLD BEGAN ON OCT. 23(NOT KNOWING ABOUT THE GUY YOU SPOKE OF, I WAS JUST BEING SARCASTIC), AND SINCE IT IS COMING SOON... WE BETTER BE READY FOR SOMETHING... WELL IN THAT, I MOVED INTO MY NEW PLACE BACK IN JUNE AND WAS GIVEN DOOR: 1123. LOL, 11 IS MY FAVORITE NUMBER AND I NEVER KNEW THE SIGNIFICANCE OF 23 UNTIL NOW (AND STILL IN REVELATIONARY MODE). ALL I KNOW IS THAT SOMETHING IS COMING AND IT IS NOT COINCIDENCE... BECAUSE ALL OF THIS HAS HAPPENED OVER THE LAST 5 DAYS AND WE KNOW WHAT 2+3 IS...

*MeMe* said...

wel idk yet wat i am but the number 23 is everywhere in my life my birthday 8 23 august 23 da time i was born 10:23 my sis b-day 5 23 my mom 10:23 my brothers 11/1/11 which adds up to 23 da time he was born 10:23 except he was born in da morning n i was born at night n its diz weird thing wen i look at da clock it usually 8:23 or 10:23 my birth n date of brith / so i looked more into my birth found out i was born on a sunday during a full moon but not done yet lol 8 23/ 8 and 5 holy numbers n den back to my sister, mom, n bro's b-day n im also startin to realize everytime sumtin spiritual or weird happen it around 23 but ders more but dont want to continue i honestly think im obess with da number n im not even in my 20's

5DJAQUA5 said...

IMA REAL 23rdian. All that numerology talk most of you are posting about adding up dates and times are rediculous. Its easy to look for something and find it, when you're reading into that much.... Ill keep it simple. I was born on January 23rd, 1984. Growing up in Chicagoland, I joined a nation of brothers, otherwise known as Peoples Nation who all represent 5 principles of life, as well as ALLAH (which also has more symbolism other than muslim beliefs). At the age of 15 I tattooed my beliefs myself on my wrist: a failed attempt to illustrate a die with 5 dots in it, I made the first 2 corner dots too large to fit the rest of the three in, I made another die with 3. First time I was in jail, I believe I was 22, division 2 (I think) for 3 days. Released on house arrest I spent my 23rd birthday. That year the movie 23 came out which I was fascinated by. My 27th birthday I spent 18 days in jail as an innocent man; at first in division 2, set 3 (or whatever other dividend its called [I forgot]) my whole deck was transferred to max security end even though, our cases were all miniscule and misdemeanors. I was in cell 203. During that time there was a white guy who would read psalms before bedtime, and I kind of recall hearing the psalms 21-24 being read while I was in. I read psalm 23 before my court date one morning, and charges were dropped by the state, and I was never convicted.... Anything else in my life I dont relate or read into. Dont make yourselfs crazy by the fascination. The biggest significance to the number 23 is the earth's axial tilt of 23degrees. This I believe is the greatest influence of spirtual awareness and causality of the number, everything else theoretical, and sought after....

5DJAQUA5 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
meh said...

I was born on Feb. 23rd. I have many 23 occurrences happening all throughout my life, even daily, such as seeing the time at :23. It's inscribed in my birth name as well (vowel-consanant ratio). Perhaps before we made the covenant to become human on earth, we were all together in the gathering of souls and we agreed to place or notice these signs of 23 within the fabrics of our lives for some sort of celestial heavenly pastime or game? I'm actually not sure, but it's definitely something that has to do with the unseen. It's the ignition switch of the Merkaba or something.

Diane Cohen said...

what about 39?