After the bin fire that was 2020, it's pretty apparent that we're itching to sprint into the New Year at full speed. Luckily, in the spiritual world, 2021 is already shaping up to be a much better 365 days than 2020 — although, that's not a very high bar. Specifically in numerology, 2021 appears to be giving us new, positive vibes.
A quick refresher: Numerology is a belief system that numbers (from 1-9) have spiritual significance and symbolic meanings. And in numerology, there are things called Universal Years — aka the number that correlates with the year we're currently in or the one we are going to be in soon. Felicia Bender, numerologist and author of Redesign Your Life: Using Numerology To Create the Wildly Optimal You and The Ultimate Guide to Numerology, tells Refinery29 that the Universal Year number is an energetic presence, support system, or theme that all of us experience globally in a specific year. You can calculate these by adding up the digits of a year: 2021 would be 2+0+2+1=5. So, we're heading into 2021 with the magic number 5 leading the way. And the main theme of that particular number? Freedom.
"The thematics here are freedom, risk-taking, adventure, escape," Bender explains. "It's also the number of excess. It's about sensual experiences, fun, freedom, socialising, adventure. It's very, very catalytic."
After a year like 2020, these words may have you breathing out a sigh of relief. But, as we know, there's still a pandemic going on — so we're not off the hook just yet. "We walk into this year and it's going to be a roller coaster," Bender says. "We're going to be breaking free of some old paradigms. We saw that crumbling last year that was all about the 4, which is structure, and everything was disintegrating. Now that things are dissolving, what are we going to put in its place?"
Becker says that 2020's Universal Year number, 4, was a sobering number of limitations as well as foundation; only for last year, it was more about the crumbling of our foundation than the building of it. "Usually it's a matter of checking the foundation, seeing what needs to be bolstered or strengthened or dealt with," she says. "But this time it was like, 'Oh, we need to demo this building.'" Aligning that theme with what we went through in 2020 — a global pandemic that has killed almost two million people, the disparities in our healthcare system, the racial injustice and inequality that perpetuates in our country — it all kind of makes sense. We do need to dismantle the foundation that our country and its systems were founded on.
So, how do we move forward into this year ruled by the number 5? Becker says to embrace the change and uncertainty that's coming out way — we should be pros at it by now. Open up and lean into new ideas this year. Have fun, but be responsible (remember, pandemic). Attempt to focus on what's important and prioritise your actions. Be curious. "Everything is up for review," the numerologist says. "It's not going to be an easy-breezy, we're going to find the answer and go back to normal. Uncertainty is the new normal right now."
Whether you follow numerology or not, it's a positive message to follow as we head into 2021: Be open, be curious, and say goodbye to 2020.