Ogdoad the Realm of Eight

Ogdoad the Realm of Eight





"My son, write this book for the temple at Diospolis in hieroglyphic characters, entitling it 'The Eighth Reveals the Ninth.'" (The Discourse on the Eighth and Ninth The Nag Hammadi Library)

Eight. The number eight was also used to add emphasis to the completeness of something (one more than seven, the number generally used for completeness), thus sometimes representing abundance. God reassured his people of deliverance from the threat of Assyria, saying that there should be raised up against the Assyrian “seven shepherds, yes, [not merely seven, but] eight dukes of mankind.” (Mic 5:5) As a fitting climax to the final festival of the sacred year, the Festival of Booths, the eighth day was to be one of holy convention, solemn assembly, a day of complete rest.—Le 23:36, 39; Nu 29:35.


eight; the eighth; octave; aggregation; accretion; increased; fattened; enlarged; excelling;

H8083 shᵉmôneh, shem-o-neh'; or שְׁמוֹנֶה shᵉmôwneh; feminine שְׁמֹנָה shᵉmônâh; or שְׁמוֹנָה shᵉmôwnâh; apparently from H8082 through the idea of plumpness; a cardinal number, eight (as if a surplus above the 'perfect' seven); also (as ordinal) eighth:—eight(-een, -eenth), eighth.


In Hebrew, number eight comes from the root "SHAHMEYN" H8082 meaning "to make fat," or to "cover with fat," to "super abound."


Ogdoad is a Greek word ogdoas, ogdoad-, from ogdoos ‘eighth’, from oktō ‘eight’
3590. ὄγδοος ogdoos og’-do-os; from 3638; the eighth: —  eighth. 


Coptic smoun


Every place the Greek word ὄγδοος is used in the septuagint Genesis 17:14 Genesis 21:4 Exodus 22:30 Leviticus 9:1 Leviticus 12:3 Leviticus 14:10 Leviticus 14:23 Leviticus 15:14 Leviticus 15:29 Leviticus 22:27 Leviticus 23:36 Leviticus 23:39 Leviticus 25:22 Numbers 6:10 Numbers 7:54 Numbers 29:35 1 Kings 6:1 1 Kings 8:66 1 Kings 12:32 2 Kings 15:8 1 Kings 12:33 2 Kings 22:3 2 Kings 24:12 1 Chronicles 12:12 1 Chronicles 24:10 (LXX_WH) 1 Chronicles 25:15 (LXX_WH) 1 Chronicles 26:5 (LXX_WH) 1 Chronicles 27:11 (LXX_WH) 2 Chronicles 7:9 (LXX_WH) 2 Chronicles 16:1 (LXX_WH)

In 2 Chron. 6, there are eight appeals of Solomon for his prayer to be heard. Seven times, "hear thou from heaven" and once (v. 21) "hear thou from thy dwelling place from heaven." Notice also the parallel passage in 1 Kings 8.


Circumcision, (that which typifies the cutting off of flesh or mortality), was on the eighth day, pointing forward to the eight thousandth year, when death shall be swallowed up in victory.


The feast of tabernacles, that which points forward to the great harvest of flesh was kept eight days: Lev. 23:39; cp. verses 34-36; Num. 29:39; Neh. 8:18.


Hanukkah The celebration lasted eight days from Chislev 25 onward. (1 Maccabees 4:59) There was a great blaze of light in the courts of the temple, and all private dwellings were lighted up with decorative lamps. The Talmud refers to it as the “Feast of Illumination.” Later on, some had the practice of displaying eight lamps on the first night and reducing the number on each night by one, others starting with one and increasing to eight. This is the Engkainia of John x. 22.


Eight is double four, and the city that "lieth foursquare," the New Jerusalem, refers to man perfected, fully rounded out on every side and in every way. 


Barnabas 9:7 For the scripture saith; And Abraham circumcised of his household eighteen males and three hundred. What then was the knowledge given unto him? Understand ye that He saith the eighteen first, and then after an interval three hundred In the eighteen 'I' stands for ten, 'H' for eight. Here thou hast JESUS (IHSOYS). And because the cross in the 'T' was to have grace, He saith also three hundred. So He revealeth Jesus in the two letters, and in the remaining one the cross.


As an introductory gem of intrigue we find the numerical value of Jesus = 888.


888 is the special number of Jesus Christ as “He who is that Resurrection and the Life.” He is the great opponent of the 666, the number of the Beast, the number of Man.



Just as 666 speaks to us of the ultimate in that for which six stands, even the man of sin; so eight, the number of immortality represents the ultimate in the first begotten of the new creation.

The number of the physical world is six, the number of the spiritual world is eight.

600 is the number of "COSMOS", while 800 is the number of the lord of the cosmos.
The Eighth Day of the Week 
In the 2Enoch 33:1 Enoch is told by the Deity that the eighth day is the beginning of the Ages of the Ages: 1”On eighth day I likewise appointed, so that the eighth day might be the 1st, the first-created after my week, and that it should revolve in the revolution of seven thousand, so that at the beginning of the eighth thousand there should be a time of not-counting, endless, with neither years nor months nor weeks nor days nor hours.

63 Now the repose of the spiritual elements on the Lord's Day, that is, in the Ogdoad, which is called the Lord's Day, is with the Mother, who keeps their souls, the (wedding) garments, until the end; but the other faithful souls are with the Creator, but at the end they also go up in the Ogdoad. Then comes the marriage feast, common to all who are saved, until all are equal and know each other. (Theodotus: Excerpta ex Theodoto)


80 He whom the Mother generates is led into death and into the world, but he whom Christ regenerates is transferred to life into the Ogdoad. And they: die to the world but live to God, that death may be loosed by death and corruption by resurrection. For he who has been sealed by Father, Son and Holy Spirit is beyond the threats of every other power and by the three Names has been released from the whole triad of corruption. “Having borne the image of the earthly, it then bears the image of the heavenly.” Theodotus: Excerpta ex Theodoto


God created the world in six days and rested on the seventh, which was a Saturday. Jesus rose from the dead on a Sunday, which for the early Christians became the "eighth" day, symbolizing the new spiritual creation and the regeneration of time. 


The number 8, the Ogdoad, symbolizes the new order of Christianity, and Jesus, 888, was known as the Ogdoad to the early Christian Gnostics.


In relation to the first day of the seven, the law says, "it shall be a holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein." This was what we call Sunday. The statute then continues, "on the eighth day," also Sunday, "shall be a holy convocation unto you, and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein." Again, "on the first day shall be a Sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a Sabbath" (Lev 23:34-43).


As seven was the number of the original Creation, so eight may be considered as the Day of Regeneration.

Ogdoad in Clement of Alexandria

Seven symbolizes for Clement of Alexandria a place of rest and completion, and eight a higher state wherein the divine presence resides. Many times, when Clement invokes a symbolic seven, he then notes the need to transcend it to reach the number eight. The hebdomad symbolizes rest, but it is surpassed by the ogdoad, wherein is the promise of gnostic perfection. For example, in Book 6 (108.1), Clement says that those who reach the highest levels of perfection have not remained in the hebdomad of rest, but have advanced into the inheritance of the benefit of the ogdoad 


It was only, then, when a father and mother, a son and daughter died, that the priest was allowed to enter, because these were related only by flesh and seed, to whom the priest was indebted for the immediate cause of his entrance into life. And they purify themselves seven days, the period in which Creation was consummated. For on the seventh day the rest is celebrated; and on the eighth he brings a propitiation, as is written in Ezekiel, according to which propitiation the promise is to be received. And the perfect propitiation, I take it, is that propitious faith in the Gospel which is by the law and the prophets, and the purity which shows itself in universal obedience, with the abandonment of the things of the world; in order to that grateful surrender of the tabernacle, which results from the enjoyment of the soul. Whether, then, the time be that which through the seven periods enumerated returns to the chiefest rest, or the seven heavens, which some reckon one above the other; or whether also the fixed sphere which borders on the intellectual world be called the eighth, the expression denotes that the Gnostic ought to rise out of the sphere of creation and of sin. After these seven days, sacrifices are offered for sins.

Clement of Alexandria Quoting from Clement of Rome, the Apostle Clement also, 

"Now all those things are confirmed by the faith that is in Christ. 'Come, ye children,' says the Lord, ' hearken to me, and I will teach you the fear of the Lord. Who is the man that desireth life, that loveth to see good days?' Then He subjoins the gnostic mystery of the numbers seven and eight. 'Stop thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good. Seek peace, and pursue it.' For in these words He alludes to knowledge (gnosis), with abstinence from evil and the doing of what is good, teaching that it is to be perfected by word and deed. ' The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are to their prayer. But the face of God is against those thai do evil, to root out their memory from the earth. The righteous cried, and the Lord heard, and delivered him out of all his distresses.' ' Many are the stripes of sinners; but those who hope in the Lord, mercy shall compass about.'" "A multitude of mercy," he nobly says, "surrounds him that trusts in the Lord."

The number eight is referred to perhaps in the last verse, in commands to turn away (ἔκκλινον), seek (ζήτησον), and pursue (δίωξον), presumably the realm of the ogdoad.


Ogdoad, the realm of eight aions.
The realm of eight recalls the seven archangels (hebdomad plus the eighth the Monad. The realm of eight is beyond the universe it is the eighth heaven is the realm of light above.

hebdomad meaning the seven heavens symbolized by the the seven planets ruled by the seven archangels


Above these heavens is the Ogdoad, also called he mesotes, and Jerusalem above, the abode of Achamoth, who herself also is called Ogdoad (Iren. I. v. 2, p. 24; Hippol. vi. p. 191). Over the Ogdoad is the Pleroma, the abode of the Aions

Heracleon makes six, seven, and eight the symbols of material evil, the aionic realm, and spiritual perfection respectively.
Six represents the created, material world; and eight, spiritual perfection, the divine realm.

Valentinus divided his Pleroma into three parts, an Ogdoad, a Decad, and a Duodecad.

The Ogdoad, as the name suggests, is a group of eight Aions.

The emanation takes place in the following manner: Depth-and-Silence gives birth to Mind-and-Truth (Nous and Aletheia), who gives birth to Word-and-Life (Logos and Zoë), who gives birth to Man-and-Church (Anthropos and Ecclesia). These Aionic pairs comprise the Fullness of Godhead (Pleroma), and the first eight Aions that have been expounded here are the Valentinian Ogdoad.

The Only-Begotten, perceiving with what intention he had been produced, on his part projected with his consort the pair Word (m.) and Life (fem.), respectively father of all things coming after him, and beginning and form-mother of the whole Pleroma.
From them came forth Man and Church (Ecclesia: female), and this is the original Ogdoad. These Aions, produced to the glory of the Father, wished to glorify the Father by their own creations, and produced further emanations. From Word and Life issued ten additional Aions, from Man and Church twelve, so that out of Eight and Ten and Twelve is constituted the Fullness (Pleroma) of thirty Aions in fifteen pairs.

The Apocalypse of Paul

The Spirit spoke, saying, "Give him the sign that you have, and he will open for you." And then I gave him the sign. He turned his face downwards to his creation and to those who are his own authorities.

And then the <seventh> heaven opened and we went up to the Ogdoad. And I saw the twelve
apostles. They greeted me, and we went up to the ninth heaven. I greeted all those who were in the ninth heaven, and we went up to the tenth heaven. And I greeted my fellow spirits.

Paul gives a sign the spirit opens for him the doors of the eighth heavenly realm


The Discourse on the Eighth and Ninth:

"My father, yesterday you promised me that you would bring my mind into the eighth and afterwards you would bring me into the ninth. You said that this is the order of the tradition."

This refers to the eighth stage of ascent to the divine. Prayers to God opens the Nous (that is the mind of the believer) to spiritual vision.


"My son, what is fitting is to pray to God with all our mind and all our heart and our soul, and to ask him that the gift of the eighth extend to us, and that each one receive from him what is his. Your part, then, is to understand; my own is to be able to deliver the discourse from the fountain that flows to me." 


By praying (that is joining the "powers" in silent praise) we can ascend to the eighth: 

"Lord, grant us a wisdom from your power that reaches us, so that we may describe to ourselves the vision of the eighth and the ninth. We have already advanced to the seventh, since we are pious and walk in your law. 


I am Mind, and I see another Mind, the one that moves the soul! I see the one that moves me from pure forgetfulness. You give me power! I see myself! I want to speak! Fear restrains me. I have found the beginning of the power that is above all powers, the one that has no beginning. I see a fountain bubbling with life. I have said, my son, that I am Mind. I have seen! Language is not able to reveal this. For the entire eighth, my son, and the souls that are in it, and the angels, sing a hymn in silence. And I, Mind, understand."

"What is the way to sing a hymn through it (silence)?"
"Have you become such that you cannot be spoken to?"
"I am silent, my father. I want to sing a hymn to you while I am silent."

"Then sing it, for I am Mind."


No hidden word will be able to speak about you, Lord. Therefore, my mind wants to sing a hymn to you daily. I am the instrument of your spirit; Mind is your plectrum. And your counsel plucks me. I see myself! I have received power from you. For your love has reached us."


From that place, the three powers came forth, the three ogdoads that the Father brings forth in silence with his providence, from his bosom, i.e., the Father, the Mother, (and) the Son. (The Gospel of the Egyptians)


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