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Number 40

Heliona

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So, it is quite interesting to mark number 40 whole your life without really knowing what it is. Asking a priest you get answer that is really true, but that is all, no further explanation. What I mean is:
I am from Serbia and we mark 40 days after birth and 40 days after death.
40 days after birth it is considered to not be good for a family that had child gets visits from other people (family, friends and so on). It is believed that baby needs to be adjusted to this life and that any disturbance from outside may damage that (damage health and so on).
Another number 40 is after death of person. And what priest would say is: that is the period for a soul to calm down. For us 40 days after death is maybe even more important then 40 days after birth (parents usually chose not to believe in "old wife tales").
Only recently I actually learned that number 40 is alchemical number and very important. 40 days is needed for the soul to travel through the layers and come to the Earth (some would say soul is 40 days in dark in new body before it sees light) and 40 days is needed for soul to travel from Earth into the Source. On 40th day after death, it is considered as a burial, marked as same (minus laying body to the earth, obviously). It is still every important ritual in Serbia (unfortunately as many traditions today it is more about food, then ritual per se, but still respected).
 

SkullTraill

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This is actually the first time I'm hearing about this. In my culture, we mark 1 month after someone's death for a memorial/charity. Of course, 1 month/the lunar cycle is something observed throughout human history. But I have not heard of 40 anything, except perhaps the 40 years of exodus Yaz mentioned.
 

Heliona

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This is actually the first time I'm hearing about this. In my culture, we mark 1 month after someone's death for a memorial/charity. Of course, 1 month/the lunar cycle is something observed throughout human history. But I have not heard of 40 anything, except perhaps the 40 years of exodus Yaz mentioned.
Serbian Ortodoxy is very specific, literally no one in Ortodoxy (Russians, Greeks) don't do anything similar as we do.
 

Yazata

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This 40 days somehow did remind me but I wasn't sure, so I looked it up:
Here in the Netherlands in the Southern parts (where I live) the Catholics celebrate Carnaval which marks the start of 40 days of "fasting".
At the end of those 40 days, Easter is celebrated. Easter of course is the celebration of the resurrection of Christ. So that is one connection with death and life and 40 days.
I'm sure more could be found.
 

Heliona

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This 40 days somehow did remind me but I wasn't sure, so I looked it up:
Here in the Netherlands in the Southern parts (where I live) the Catholics celebrate Carnaval which marks the start of 40 days of "fasting".
At the end of those 40 days, Easter is celebrated. Easter of course is the celebration of the resurrection of Christ. So that is one connection with death and life and 40 days.
I'm sure more could be found.
We have 40 days of fasting before Easter and another before Christmas (that Serbs celebrate on 7th of January), but I will have to look it up if that one lasts 40 days to.
 

SkullTraill

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We have 40 days of fasting before Easter and another before Christmas (that Serbs celebrate on 7th of January), but I will have to look it up if that one lasts 40 days to.
This is lent and it is based on the 40 days Jesus spent in the desert avoiding temptation by satan. This story from the new testament may itself have something to do with the 40 years mentioned above.

So there we go, another mention of 40 in the bible. This one's even in the new testament.

Cool.
 

SkullTraill

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Wait you guys do it before Christmas too?
 

Heliona

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Wait you guys do it before Christmas too?
Yep. We have 2 great fastings. Before Christmas and before Easter. But yes, New Testament mention a lot number 40 and Torah too (old testament). I did listen to some podcasts and to some other videos (podcast- Know Thyself, which I recommend to everyone and Damien Echols, they do mention 40 as alchemical number and what I already mentioned earlier.
 

Heliona

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We have 40 days of fasting before Easter and another before Christmas (that Serbs celebrate on 7th of January), but I will have to look it up if that one lasts 40 days to.


I just looked it up and yes, Christmas fasting lasts 40 days, Easter may last 48 days, but those 8 days are adding of one part, normally it lasts also 40 days.
 

Scottish_Pride

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Damn, that's actually very interesting! Like others may have mentioned, 40 is also a biblically significant number. The whole 40 days and 40 nights of Noah's flood, pretty sure it was 40 days that they say Jesus fasted? Could have been an influence, if Serbia's a very Christian country. (I don't know if it is, but you probably do)

I honestly think it's cool that your culture has something like that, though. People do need time to focus on their newborn before much added stress is introduced, as well as take time to truly grieve loved ones. My country doesn't have that, and if we did, it wouldn't be practical sadly. You're expected to come back to work ASAP after giving birth or someone dying, no matter what state your mind or body may be in. Many folks don't even get the luxury of maternity/paternity leave, and have to pay out the ass for infant daycares to watch the baby. Then it's back to work.
 

Heliona

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Damn, that's actually very interesting! Like others may have mentioned, 40 is also a biblically significant number. The whole 40 days and 40 nights of Noah's flood, pretty sure it was 40 days that they say Jesus fasted? Could have been an influence, if Serbia's a very Christian country. (I don't know if it is, but you probably do)

I honestly think it's cool that your culture has something like that, though. People do need time to focus on their newborn before much added stress is introduced, as well as take time to truly grieve loved ones. My country doesn't have that, and if we did, it wouldn't be practical sadly. You're expected to come back to work ASAP after giving birth or someone dying, no matter what state your mind or body may be in. Many folks don't even get the luxury of maternity/paternity leave, and have to pay out the ass for infant daycares to watch the baby. Then it's back to work.
Well after death we have 7 days off of work, but still 40th day after death is observed. And yes, after birth, moms stay with child for about a year or so. Yes, fathers go to work.
 

Merlinscloak

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I have observed: a mage when young goes off to preform a year of what some cultures call a walk about, the pulpous varies in degree with the main goal being to dig down (metaphorically speaking), to the roots of the tree of life, to establish a space for his ethereal domain. Then years later, the 40 days is accomplished, leaving friends and family safe, at home. the mage sets out on a harrowing experience to firm up the ethereal domain connection to the physical plane, and among other things to accomplish/survive what is called the dark night of the soul.
 

Roma

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Long ago I lived in a spiritual community. One time I was one of the facilitators for the 3 month induction course.

One new member was a blacksmith. For some reason I told him that it took 40 weeks for the gestalt of the community to accept a new member - if it did at all.

Some months after the course finished he came up to me and told me that acceptance by the gestalt (deva of the community) had occurred at 11:50 pm, 1 day before the 40 weeks.

He said that he had been so filled with the energy of the group being that he had not stopped running since that time.

Certainly I noticed that community members running on personal will ran out of energy quite quickly while those running on the deva's energy experienced the wind in their sails.

40 weeks is also close to the standard gestation of an Earth human.
 

William

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The Number Forty
 

Heliona

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I have observed: a mage when young goes off to preform a year of what some cultures call a walk about, the pulpous varies in degree with the main goal being to dig down (metaphorically speaking), to the roots of the tree of life, to establish a space for his ethereal domain. Then years later, the 40 days is accomplished, leaving friends and family safe, at home. the mage sets out on a harrowing experience to firm up the ethereal domain connection to the physical plane, and among other things to accomplish/survive what is called the dark night of the soul.
The dark night of the soul is the part of spiritual alchemy and if I am not mistaken it happens after 6th step of alchemy.
 

Merlinscloak

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The dark night of the soul is the part of spiritual alchemy and if I am not mistaken it happens after 6th step of alchemy.
I don't have words sufficient to actually describe the dark night of the soul that I mentioned, having observed in my post.
But just a hint, even on a warm summer night while standing near a mage who was completing the end of it, I could feel the burning cold waves within the atmosphere that seemed to project dark clouds that were swirling around him as he passed by me, on his way to a successful initiation.
So have you experienced what you call the 6th step of alchemy?
 
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