Significance of numbers (0-5) in Hinduism


Zero:0 Significance of numbers-minZero is a numerical or symbolic representation of Nirguna Brahman or the Brahman who is without a form and without qualities. It stands as a bridge between physical and the metaphysical realms and between reason and faith.

One:1 Significance of numbers-minOne is a symbolic representation of saguna Brahman or Brahman with qualities and form. Saguna Brahman is the awakened Brahman who projects the worlds and the entire creation out of himself. He is also called the cosmic soul or Hiranyagarbha. He creates the worlds and beings by his will and dynamic power. He is the creator of Brahma, Vishnu and Siva and the rest of the gods. He is referred as tadvanam. One also symbolizes atma, the individual soul.

The number one also symbolizes the state of non duality, the oneness of existence hidden in all of creation beyond the veil of delusion

Two:2 Significance of numbers-minThe number two is a symbolic representation of the state of duality which we experience objectively through our minds and the senses.

Three:3 Significance of numbers-minone is God and the second is Prakriti or nature. Together they manifest the rest of the creation. This number is a symbolic representation of the Trinity. It has one aspect of Purusha (number one), one aspect of shakti (number two) and one aspect of their own (number three).

Their third aspect is a combination of their functions, their individual attributes and the universe of things.

The number three symbolizes many other aspects of creation:
• the triple qualities of sattva, rajas and tamas,
• the three layers of nature, light, fire and darkness,
• the three states of being immanent, transcendent and the absolute,
• the triple division of time, past, present and future,
• the three periods of the day, morning, noon and evening,
• the three worlds of bhur, bhuva and the swaha, or the three worlds of heaven, earth and the hell,
• the three phases of life, young age, middle age and old age.

Four:4 Significance of numbers-min4 is a symbolic representation of santana dharma which is the traditional name for Hinduism. It is the solution to the problem of ahamkara or ego, which is the fourth in the 24 tattvas (principles) of creation. The number four is also used in association with many other concepts.
• The aims of life (purusharthas) are four, dharma (righteousness), artha (wealth), kama (desire) and moksha.(salvation).
• The stages (ashrama) in life are four: the age of studentship (brahmacharya), the age of householder (grihasta), the age of retirement (vanaprastha) and the age of ascetic (renunciation).
• The varnas or castes are four based on the four levels of human activity: pursuit of knowledge, pursuit of selfless action, pursuit of selfish action and pursuit of ignorance.

Five:5 Significance of numbers-minFive is a symbol of the physical body and the planet earth. Of the five great elements (mahabhutas), the earth is the fifth element.