Genesis 5:28 “And Lamech lived one hundred and eighty-two years, and became the father of a son.”
Lamech is the second duplicate name, ‘person,’ personified idea, to appear in the two genealogies from Adam. Both are spelled the same in Hebrew versions, subsequently they have the same gematria with similar, meaningful suggestions. However, this Lamech has included additional numbers which add considerable information and ideas behind the name.
There are extraordinary differences implied between the two Lamechs descending from Adam’s genealogy. The fact that the name Lamech appears in both genealogies is indicative that we, all of us, harbor the tendencies of both descriptions of this character within us. Please keep in mind that the two genealogies from Adam are esoterically delineating the two Pillars of the Tree of Life. And the Pillars reside within us.
The one side, the Pillar of Severity, attributed to the descendancy of Cain, describes aspects of consciousness that are necessary for the propagation of life in a physical world when that world is perceived as a hostile, harsh environment inimical to existence. The other side of The Tree, the Pillar of Mercy, described as Seth’s descendancy, evokes consciousness inherent within each of us which demonstrates the fundamental unity of all life. To live in the former manner is to struggle for existence by the “sweat of our brows,” while the latter offers methods of a peaceful co-existence with Nature and the Inner Self. The Pillar of Severity seems to denounce the Spirit within while seeking happiness ‘out there,’ as the Pillar of Mercy seems to deny life in a sensory environment while seeking union within.
The central pillar, the Pillar of Mildness, is the Qabalistic explanation for living life in a physical world by intelligently blending the two aspects of consciousness of both ‘outer’ pillars.
In ‘Lamech’ the initial information for the blending of these elements within us is hidden. We can begin with exploring the temurah of the Hebrew word Lamech, למך. The one side of Lamech (us, collectively) is explored under the descendancy of Cain. Its temurah, כיל, is our ‘other’ side that calls for effort on our part if we are studying Qabalah, or some other spiritual discipline, and are making that a primary focus for our development.
The word כיל, khil, means ‘measure, measurer or surveyor’. Its gematria is 60, which opens a labyrinth of ideas. For one, by the interchange of the same letters and also summing to 60 is כלי, kli (klee), meaning ‘vessel, receptacle’. Other implications of kli suggest anything completed, prepared or made, like a vase or vessel. Then, from Hermetic Alchemy is another term summing to 60, balneum, ‘the bath’.
Assembling these initial ideas points to us as ‘measurer,’ the one who ‘prepares’ our kli, or vessel. For the ‘vessel’ is none other than the human aura, the sphere of Light encompassing our physical body. It is invisible to all save the very clairvoyant among us, and is the body of our sub-conscious mind (the astral body or body double, depending upon the discipline followed). This sub-conscious body must be carefully honed and shaped into certain proportions achieved through meditation, specific sound and color exercises, and prayer over a protracted period. All this is in the Order of the Great Work of Alchemy, the Chemistry of Consciousness. One of its primary procedures is to prepare ‘the bath’ within the limits of the kli, wherein the chief operations of the Great Work are performed. Please refer to Balneum in the Glossary section of this site. On the Tree of Life that arena is named Yesod, Foundation, the ninth sphere.
“And Lamech lived one hundred and eighty-two years, and became the father of a son.”
By now readers are very aware of the methods used to explore hidden meanings behind numbers. Number 182 can be investigated many ways. Again, the multiples of 182 shed some interesting suggestions for the Literal Qabalist. There are at least three: (2x91), (7x26), and (13x14). Numbers 7 and 26 come up frequently in occult science.
Number 7 at once points to the seventh sphere on the Tree, Netzach, Victory. This sphere represents the seat of the Desire Nature in Qabalistic psychology. The alchemical symbol for Sulfur (a ▲ atop a ┼), which sums to 7 (3+4) by occult geometry, is one of the Three Principles symbolizing Desire. The Hebrew word בדא, bada, meaning ‘to form, to concoct, to fashion, to produce,’ also sums to 7. And, of course, the seven major Metals of the alchemists, the chakras or seven centers of spiritual power, would not be overlooked.
Number 26 is instantly recognizable by all Qabalists as the number of יהוה, YHVH, Jehovah. And, since the middle pillar is being hinted here, it might be worth mentioning that the sum of the spheres of the Pillar of Mildness: 1, 6, 9, and 10 add to 26. The circle surrounding an equal-armed cross, which sums to 26, is the Rosicrucian symbol for the Central Self.
Pulling the subtleties implied by 7 and 26 together suggest that the work of the Middle Pillar begins with the concoction, the fashioning, of the seven spiritual force centers within the Glass Vessel, the Kli. “Making Mercury of the Seven Metals,” with the Spirit of Jehovah shining through all seven, (7 x 26), requires disciplines in meditation with sound and color techniques to hone and balance the powerful energies flowing through each. These strengthen and form the Yesodic Aura, the principle arena of the Great Work.
One can readily see that by working the various number methods surrounding 182, or any number, would take several pages of type to uncover. An ardent, determined Literal Qabalist would pursue all the avenues. To learn and truly understand the covert principles behind number requires that the practitioner perform them for oneself. Merely reading about them has no lasting effect, so writing out every detail here does not help an aspirant. Much has been shown how to go about it. We must desire it and work for it. The rewards cannot be adequately expressed.