How Numerology Works: What You Can Learn Through Numerology

Everything around us has energy, including objects, animals, and people. That energy can be described as a vibration, which can be further transcribed into a numerical value. There are numbers everywhere in life and numerology is one way to interpret those numbers to make sense of current events.

Numerology takes numbers associated with your birth date and name and translates them into readings that give some insight into your life and personality. It includes things such as your life path number, soul urge number, expression number, and other elements that describe who you are meant to be.

Numerology is a very complex practice that is based on simple principles. In order to truly understand how numerology works, you need a basic understanding of what it is and how it came to be. From there, you can start to understand the different calculations, how to do them, and what they represent.

What is Numerology?

Numerology is any belief in a divine or mystical relationship between numbers and events that occur in reality. It is used to determine why certain events take place and offer an explanation that is more than just a coincidence. It can also be used to define, anticipate, and interpret various characteristics in human beings.

There is more to numerology than algorithms and formulas, though. There are various numbers and elements involved in the study and practice of numerology. Some of it is specific to your name, birthdate, and other data points, while the rest is based on the elements of Earth, wind, fire, and water.

Key Readings in Numerology

There are several key factors that are included in a numerology reading that will provide insight into your life, personality, and tendencies. It is similar to astrology but comes to conclusions in a different way. Here are some of the numbers and how they are used.

Life Path Number

The most critical number in a numerology reading is your life path number. It describes the path that your life could take and the opportunities or challenges you might face along the way. It is reflective of who you are meant to be in character attributes and traits.

Here’s how to calculate your life path number:

  1. Write down your birthdate in this format: mm/dd/yyyy (month, day, year)
    1. We will use this example for simplicity: 10/15/1981
  2. Add the two numbers of the month: 1+0 = 1
    1. If the numbers equal a 2-digit number, add them together until you get 1 digit
  3. Add the two numbers of the day: 1+5 = 6
    1. If the numbers equal a 2-digit number, add them together until you get 1 digit
  4. Add the four numbers of the year: 1+9+8+1 = 19
    1. Since this number is two digits, add those digits together: 1+9 = 10
    2. Since this number is two digits, add those digits together: 1+0 = 1
  5. After all calculations are narrowed down to one digit, add them together:
    1. 1+6+1 = 8

Your life path number is 8. There is a different set of characteristics that goes along with each of the life path numbers, much like the signs of the zodiac. There are also a few exceptions to the single-digit rule.

If your life path number, after adding the 3 numbers (month, day, year) together equals 11, 22, or 33, you DO NOT add them together to get one single digit. These numbers are considered amplified versions of other life path numbers. They are magical and should be left as so.

How Numerology Works


Expression Number

Also known as your destiny number, your expression number will provide information about your desires and personal goals for your life. It is less about your life’s path and more about specifically what you want to accomplish.

This number is calculated by taking your full name, including first, last middle, and any other names, and assigning a number to each letter by using a Pythagorean chart. You continue adding the sum total until you are once again down to a single digit. That single digit is then interpreted.

Soul Urge Number

This number represents hidden desires that you may or may not know you have. For example, your life path number might indicate that you are spiritual and introverted, but your soul urge number could express that you secretly crave power and charisma. It can identify desires that you didn’t know you had!

This number is calculated in much the same way as your expression number. Each letter of your name is assigned a value based on the Pythagorean chart. However, you only add the vowels together. Keep adding until you reach a single digit and this will reveal your soul urge number.

Personality Number

This can be one of the most enlightening numbers in a numerology reading. It will reveal what your personality is and your personality is usually only what you show to others. However, there are many people who get their numerology reading only to discover they have been hiding their true personality without even realizing it.

This number is calculated exactly the same way as the soul urge number, but with your consonants instead of your vowels.

Birth Number

This represents, quite literally, the meaning of life. The meaning of YOUR life, that is.

Your birth number is based on the specific day on which you were born and reveals your talents and gifts that you are destined to share with the world. This is your purpose while on Earth.

This number is the same as your life path number, but when it is interpreted in harmony with the other numbers listed here, can give you an accurate reading of who you are and what you are meant to accomplish while on this planet.

A Brief History of Numerology

Numerology can be traced all the way back to ancient Egypt and Babylonia, where the earliest records of it exist. There are also records of it in China, Greece, Rome, and Japan. Although it was being practiced thousands of years ago, it was not actually called Numerology until the early 1900s.

Modern-day numerology is typically credited to Pythagoras, an Ionian Greek philosopher who is considered the Father of Modern Numerology. He believed that all elements of life could be traced back to numbers. He believed that the number 1 represented the origin of all things, the number 2 represented matter and the number 3 was the perfect number because it has a beginning, middle, and end.

The true origin of numerology and its history remain cloudy for a variety of reasons. Pythagoras did not allow the majority of his students to document or discuss his teachings, so they were not recorded in written form until after his death. To this day, scholars debate his actual contributions to mathematics and numerology, but no one debates his influence as a philosopher and charismatic teacher.

Final Thoughts

Numerology has roots in ancient cultures across the globe and is attributed mainly to Pythagoras and his teachings. However, there are other theories that use different calculations such as the Hebrew numerals and Abjad numbers in Arabic. It is primarily Western cultures that utilize the Pythagorean numbers for these calculations.

A numerology reading can provide insight that is reflective of who you are and what you are meant to accomplish during your life. You can do the calculations on your own and research their meaning, or you can go to a professional numerologist for a reading. Either way, you are bound to learn a great deal about yourself and your gifts!