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The Hub of the Wheel
In Response To: Are Thirteen months possible? ()

Hi Ron,

Well, generally speaking, thirteen may be seen as the sacred spiritual center, the hub of the twelve spoke wheel, so to speak. Like Jesus and his twelve apostles or King Arthur and the twelve knights. Or King Solomon and his court of twelve nobles, or the Sun and its twelve zodiac signs. Twelve is the number of form and structure, and thirteen, like seven, may be seen as the number of spirit.

The astrological character of the twelve officers of Solomon is quite obvious: "And Solomon had twelve officers over all Israel, which provided victuals for the king and his household: each man his month in a year made provision." (1 Kings 4:7)

Concerning biblical Israel, the book "Twelve Tribe Nations" among other things has this to say:

"The Israelites are not the only 12-tribe amphictyony to have arisen in the Holy Land. In Genesis are mentioned 12 tribes of the Arameans (22:20-24) and of the Edomites (36:10-14), and other such groupings are hinted at... Most important are the 12 sons of Ishmael, Abrahams only son by the Egyptian servant woman, Hagar. Their mother was also Egyptian, and they became princes of 12 tribes whose descendants are the Arab nations." (p. 147).

"The origin and development of the league of Israelite tribes are in many ways similar to those of 12-tribe amphictyonies elsewhere." (p. 148).

and:

"Many people have tried to discover a consistent link between the tribes [of Israel] and the signs [of the zodiac], but the only fixed element in the scheme seems to have been the number 12. Throughout the Bible the tribes are never mentioned more than once in precisely the same order and with the same membership. Levi, which became the priestly tribe, is sometimes included in the 12, sometimes not. Manasseh and Ephraim, both stemming from the root tribe of Joseph, are sometimes counted as one tribe, and there are other variations. It is generally agreed that Judah, Reuben, Dan and Ephraim marked the four quarters, but elsewhere there is flux. This was also the case with other amphictyonic leagues in Greece and Italy. Sometimes the number of their members grew beyond the prescribed 12, but that number was religiously upheld, with some of the tribes sharing the rights and duties of league membership." (p. 150).

As is to be expected, speculations about these things, of course, are endless.

Helge

PS. Certainly, a (lunar) year of thirteen months is possible. 13x28 days = 364 days, very close to a solar year.

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