Some ancient cultures, especially the Roman one, were known for flipping the sacred names or at least the names that had to remain secret for reasons of unassailability from external agents. For example, it has been handed down to us that the secret name of Rome could be Amor. However, in this case, we do not know if it was a real inversion of the name of the city, or the tout court adoption of the name Love since Amor in Latin means precisely Love. in fact, it should be remembered that mystery world was hidden into the symbolism of romantic themes (see also Il Mistero dell’Amor Platonico nel Medioevo, Tome I ). Also in magic squares, we have combinations of names and their inverses. In any case, I would like to get to the heart of the matter, I’m not interested in making a case study on the subject.
Why were sacred names reversed symbolically? We have mentioned above the Alexandrian school of the fifth century, let us now call into matter the school of Athens, Iamblichus to be precise. And I will quote from an essay by Gregory Shaw Iamblichus and the Foundations of Late Platonism: “… Without the Many, the One could not be one, as Plato’s Parmenides taught. This essential Pythagorean principle, that higher beings must be inverted – in some sense negated – and thus veiled, to reveal themselves, underlies all Iamblichean metaphysics and helps to explain his embrace of the senses in theurgic ritual. In his discussion of Egyptian and Hermetic theology Iamblichus maintains that the material principle of divinity extends into sensible existence. He says: God produced matter (hulê) out of the division of materiality from substantiality, which the Demiurge, receiving as a living substance, fashioned into simple unshakeable spheres and organized the last of this into generated and part of myself that is the living mortal being is made complete.”
Iamblichus’ doctrines are very complicated, certainly at a less philosophical level than Porphyry, but more theurgic. I won’t mention them.