By: Jessica Moorely
As a child, I was forced to go to Catechism. My parents were of Catholic nature and grandparents Orthodox. I was asked to go firmly, to learn then make my own choice about Religion. I didn’t fare very well. With my first few sessions scaring the hell out of me, literally. Talk of good vs. evil. Satan was an Angel but cast out. God is Love. I have Sinned. All Sins forgiven. It all seemed so conflicting. I chose to believe in One God, but shunned the Bible.
Later in life, I realized, there weren’t many strong female influences in the Bible or Spiritual Studies. The Old and New Testaments were written predominantly, if not exclusively by men during a time when women were essentially marital property, with their status and moral worth often linked to marriage and to childbearing.
Not until I began searching did I find mention of Lilith. The Original Mother. For 4,000 years Lilith has wandered the earth, figuring in the mythic imaginations of writers, artists and poets. Scholars are not certain where the character of Lilith comes from, though many believe she was inspired by Sumerian myths about female vampires called “Lillu” or Mesopotamian myths about succubae (female night demons) “We are bombarded with stories of God(s), or of strong masculine figures, but rarely do we see strong women. If we do, their stories are demonized or the credit for their strength is given to the man or a masculine power,” says Jaclyn Cherie, a Luciferian Witch who runs the blog The Nephilim Rising and works with Lilith in a spiritual context.
Her dark origins lie in Babylonian demonology, where amulets and incantations were used to counter the sinister powers of this winged spirit who preyed on pregnant women and infants. Lilith next migrated to the world of the ancient Hittites, Egyptians, Israelites and Greeks. She makes a solitary appearance in the Bible Isaiah 34, as a wilderness demon shunned by the prophet Isaiah. In the Middle Ages she reappears in Jewish sources as the first wife of Adam created from the earth like Adam.
Lilith was very strong willed, independent, and wanted to be equal with Adam. She did not accept being subservient and refused to lie beneath Adam for copulation. She boldly left Eden because she didn’t want to be treated as man’s inferior.
Over time, people throughout the Near East became increasingly familiar with the myth of Lilith. While Lilith is not mentioned again in the Bible, she does resurface in the Dead Sea Scrolls found at Qumran.
Lilith, Lillith or Lilit is depicted as a female demon of the night who supposedly flies around searching for newborn children either to kidnap or strangle them. She also sleeps with single men to seduce them into propagating demon sons. She is lust. Legends that told about Lilith are ancient and some consider her the first vampire.
Lilith means “the night,” and she embodies the emotional and spiritual aspects of darkness: terror, sex, sensuality, and unbridled freedom.
Later legends characterize her as a beautiful woman who seduces men, Lilith is the Queen of Demons.”Even if we accept Lilith’s vengeful activities… we can regard them as having originated in self-defense against male domination and as a consequence of having to fight on alone.” In 1972, theologian Judith Plaskow helped this interpretation reach a cultural apotheosis by writing a parable entitled “The Coming of Lilith.” Rather than portraying Lilith as an unruly, evil, child-snatching entity, Plaskow sought to explain her side of the story: Lilith simply didn’t want to be bossed around by Adam, whom she viewed as an equal, so she fled, only to be virulently slandered in her absence. Plaskow’s account ends with Lilith meeting Eve and helping to expand her perspective “till the bond of sisterhood grew between them.”
Lilith has become an ubiquitous yet oddly elusive pop culture figure in the past century, appearing everywhere from Ulysses (where she is described as “the patron of abortions”) to the many sexy vampire television series. But there are those who still revere her as a powerful—if misunderstood—spiritual being. Today, many pagans, witches, and other magical practitioners who work with divine female forces use Lilith in their own practices; she’s typically invoked in rites involving sex, power and the dark side of the divine feminine archetype…
Lilith is a powerful figure with a continued relevance for women today. She is the Symbol for Independence and Freedom amongst women. “She fought for her individual sovereignty, for the right to make her own choices.” “She fought for the right to own her body, her pleasure, and her destiny. I don’t know what is more commendable than that.”
As for pregnancy and stillbirth, it is Lilith that is the protector and guardian, whom will escort any good soul back to heaven.
There are many more Female presences in the Spirit world that may be misunderstood. Goddesses such as Hekate, Kali, Morrigan, Brigid, Hel, Baba Yaga, Aradia, Isis, Persephone, and Ereshkigal; that are rising from their dark abodes and daring us to jump into the Abyss.
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