Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

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jaybirdblue
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Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by jaybirdblue »

I've been reading up on Lilith quite a bit the past few days and I haven't really been able to get a clear answer.
I feel a very strong pull to her and I've meditated and reached out a bit. I'm under the impression that she is inviting me to follow her but I don't know what her intentions are. I've read up on her Babylonian, Jewish, and biblical origins and I'm conflicted. The one with her as the first wife of Adam makes me respect her (except for the baby eating of course :/) but everything except the Babylonian reference makes her seem very...you know...evil.

As far as the feeling I get from her, she seems like an incredibly powerful Goddess to me. One that deals with night animals, darkness, equality between the sexes, and gives off a general vibe of bad ass. But that is just one humble witch's feelings. I dont know if that's true. And I certainly don't want to get tricked.
My point is, I don't want to start accidentally worshiping a demon or highly negative spirit. I know most deities fall within the "grey" area of morality but I don't even know if she is a goddess at all.
My heart is saying "take me you beautiful woman" but my brain and lots of online articles are telling me to hold up.
Any ideas?

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mrsdavid1975
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by mrsdavid1975 »

That whole baby eating thing is kind of silly to me. .. I think it's just something folks threw out there when the question of her arose. .. Fear factors. .. These types of things are rampant in abrahamic religion.. But .. The mother / wife/ daughter... HUMAN in me sees her as strong and empowered. .. I mean she's that evil ex and look at eve. .. It's all blamed on the women. Adam did no wrong. He just followed along like some lost goober.

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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by Kassandra »

jaybirdblue wrote:Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?
Some might consider her both, as there are many who consider demons worthy of worship as gods and goddesses (I'm not one of those people, btw). Remember, humans will pretty much worship anything. And I've never seen an entity, whether human or otherwise, dislike being worshipped; rather, adoration and allegiance seem to always be welcomed.

But, just because something could be worshipped, and might enjoy being worshipped, does that mean one should necessarily worship it? And just because one feels drawn to something, does that mean that attraction should blindly be acted upon, and not examined as to whether it may actually be in one's best interest? (think of all the times you may have been attracted to someone, and it turned out the person was totally cray cray, and you couldn't run away fast enough!)

Follow your instincts and intuitive guidance on this one, jaybirdblue. It will not fail you. Second-guessing and left-braining a thing to death, I wouldn't advise. I think it's very healthy that you are hesitant to blindly hand your personal power and energy over to something. Trust your built-in guidance system, your spiritual GPS. We run into trouble when we don't.

What doesn't feel right, don't bring into your life; what does feel right, investigate further.



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mrsdavid1975
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by mrsdavid1975 »

That's a great point too. Who's to say which is good or bad? Just like that old question of " is God good and Satan bad?" Is God ego? Is lucifer enlightenment? I absolutely agree. It's all about what your heart tells you. ...

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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by Becks »

I'm drawn to Lilith and I don't think the energy is demonic. I get the strong indomitable vibe from her. I think she was demonized for not submitting to Adam's will and that's where the Sumerian trashing and the upturned bowls under the foundations of bowls came about. She's intense yes, but not a baby eating demon in my mind. More info here. http://witcombe.sbc.edu/eve-women/7evelilith.html

Historically, men don't like it when we tell them we don't want to play their way. Men also write the books. Get my drift?

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jaybirdblue
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by jaybirdblue »

My intuition tells me that she isn't "evil" just extremely intense. Like, she knows what she wants and doesn't mess around with it. I guess I'm just naturally reluctant because of the lore, the word 'demon' coming up on half the searches, and the fact that I've never worked with a specific deity before. I wasn't even looking for one O-O

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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by SnowCat »

In my view, any deity worth working with will not be offended if you research before making any kind of commitment. That's just basic common sense. I know some people are of the "have faith" school of thought, but I like to err on the side of caution.

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jaybirdblue
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by jaybirdblue »

So, overall, what is the everyone's opinion? I know it's my choice in the end but, yea or nae?

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HopefulChild
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by HopefulChild »

I've been researching Lillith for about 20 years.

She has always intrigued me because based on 2400 years of tradition, she is the very first woman...and the very first ex-wife and the first "spurned" creature in all of creation. That is a pretty powerful position to find one self in...Can you imagine. You know G*D intimately...you were just created, and within a short period of time, because ONE GUY thinks you are too independent, you are literally, thrown out of the world... Sheesh. Talk about having issues.

Remember, Lucifer wasn't spurned.. Lucifer rebelled. The fallen, all of the angels that followed Lucifer, they weren't turned away, they left...the Nephelim, the titans, so many things... Lillith was the first thinking, feeling, being, whom G*D looked at and said, My buddy don't like you...get lost!!!

She is a fascinating facet just from a purely Sociological standpoint, let alone a humanist, and humane standpoint.
There are so many stories.. I am going to completely ignore the Sumerian, and Akkadian version...It is much more likely that the creatures discussed in those stories were a Species, and not an individual.

Now purely for the individual known as "Lillith", the greatest reference is still the Talmud.
If you don't know the Talmud, isn't like the bible. The Talmud isn't the "cliff's notes" of the original bible...some people think the Talmud is the short version....

Really the Talmud is more like watching a movie, with the directors commentary turned on. That is what the Talmud is. It is thousands of years of oral tradition ABOUT the specific components and passages of the Torah...the original bible.

Now this is also deferring the concept of the Androgyne...Even if that version was literal, then Lillith was still given her own body and was replaced by Eve. So No Buenos.

I'm also discounting the entirety of the Kabbalah. Lillith was just a justifying vehicle for male dominance in that system.

Now lets walk it backwards : 17'th century, she's eating peoples babies and making men unfaithful in their sleep and she is a "queen" of demons and in absence of heavens grace will she dwell for ever.

12'th century Lillith left the Garden of Eden and made her own kingdom, a kingdom of monsters..she is the mother of monsters and she is cursed by G*D to rule a dead land and have no effect on the world and this she is punished to do , so when Cain slew Able, she was waiting for him when he was cast out, and she helped teach him how to raise a new nation and to become his consort and mentor...so her curse is forever.

5'th century Lillith was the first wife, and she when she was replaced, by a more appropriate helper she went off quietly and lived alone in exile... Forever.

2nd Century BC Lillith is punished by god to give birth to a 1000 offspring each night, knowing that all of them will die during the day... Her punishment is to LOSE...everything...over and over and over...forever.

The Torah originally says that Lillith is made from the same clay, at the same time, so Adam and Lillith are equals. So she will not "submit" to him, on his terms alone. So Adams god banishes her and she is forced to make her own kingdom and she rules over beasts and monsters and Adams god sends mating pairs of birds and animals to taunt her....so that she can see that all of these simple creatures have a mate...and she does not....FOREVER.
Adams god decides that she needs to have it thrown in her face, every moment of every day, forever...because sometimes..she wanted to be on top LOL..

Another version says that she went out and created her own kingdom and then G*D smote that kingdom and laid it to ruin and so on.

Here is the one thing that is consistent. G*D condemned Lillith to whatever punishment or banishment...forever! This goes so far beyond the realm of other things, it's almost certainly an oversight just continuously repeated, and never considered.
If you really look at the Talmud, and Torah, nothing is forever except for the kingdom of heaven itself...and Lillith.

Is she a goddess? In as much as one religion states that she was the owner of the very first vagina in all human history... I'd say yes. That makes her a goddess.

Is she a demon? Well..consider the source. The people who decided she was a demon, were the ones who decided that "independent" women were so bad, that their god needed to make a new one, as a servant and a helper and a submissive sex toy.

If you want to look at it that way.

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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by Becks »

Awesome. Glad we're on the same page. ;)

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jaybirdblue
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by jaybirdblue »

Wow Hopeful! Thank you so much for your really thorough and thoughtful reply! I definitely learned a few things I didnt learn before. Thank you so much!

samarrin
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Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by samarrin »

i worship her as a goddess. She is so empowering to me because, as mentioned above me, she wouldn't simply submit to Adam like god and Adam wanted her to. she was independent and self aware so she was outcasted and punished, i have a very profound respect for her.
ill go find the sources i have on her and edit in links for you when i find them! <3

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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by Lady_Lilith »

Lilith is not a "demon" in the sense of the word. But she was regarded as a malevolent owl woman and name for a class of spirits called Lilitu in ancient Mesopotamia. <Babylon and Sumer> Lilitu is pre-Abrahamic. She was minor. She was not a goddess, and the first figure to appear of her class was Lilu who was male. They were thought of as anthropomorphic owl people. First they were storm spirits, later they were more like sucubi and incubi. Ardat lili is pretty much the Akkadian form.

She is not related to the goddess Ninlil or Belili. These figures are unrelated. "Lil" is a word that means air or more specifically wind. It also has night connections. So, mamy figures such as Enlil have "lil" in their name and are not related to Lilith. Likewise, air and breathe is connected to the spirit, so it has to do with that as well.

By academic standards demon means malevolent spirits. But Mesopotamian demonology is not like Judaism. In Mesopotamian demonology, demons work for the gods including Lilitu. All demons have good and bad sides. For Lilith this is being a seductress of men and child killer, although child killing is mot emphasized in the Mesopotamian lore. (Lamashtu is the only exception to this.)

Lilitu is sent by Ishtar, as her handmaiden, to lead mean astray. In fact Lilith resembles Ishtar's kilili aspect which is why the Burney Relief was mistakenly connected to Lilith. She is described as a barren maiden or young lady with no milk in her breasts.

The Hebrews got Lilith from Babylonian captivity. The stories of her being Adam's wife and what not are tecent editions to her mythos from folklore and then into Kabbalah. It is from Medieval European Jews. The owl connections to Lilith have been lost by this time and instead of a bird woman, she is more connected to snakes here and the fruit of knowledge. She is somewhat a female version of Satan here, who Jews treat differently. In folklore she is married to another demon named Ashmodai who is as ancient as she is and from Persia. In the Zohar, she is married to Samael who is the Satan of Job.

There is a lot of misinformation about Lilith in the pagan community and I hope to dispell it. Lilith has a good side if we follow the pre-Abrahamic model, where she has a good side. But as far as history is concerned, we just don't know what it is. (Example is Pazuzu a Babylonian demon said to protect children whitlist causing famine and diseases as a Babylonian demon.)

A few common mistakes:

-"Lilith is a Sumerian or Babylonian goddess" this is not true and there is no evidence of worship. Quite the contrary.
-"Lilith is Ninlil/Belili" neither figures are related to Lilith other than a common usage word. Lilith is related to Inanna/Ishtar.
-"Lilith was demonized by the patriarchy/Jews" No, she wasn't. This is historical revisionism. Lilith was however, used in both Mesopotamian and Abrahamic philosophy as the dangers of an independent woman with a wild nature, so she was used as sexism against women and this is unfortunate. It is way she is such a good symbol of freedom and liberation for women.
-"Lilith as Adam's first wife is canon" No. It is not. The text this story appeared in is not canon at all and she is hardly mentioned in canonical texts. The connection between her and Adam stems from folk stories and mysticism. It is not recognized officially by the religion.
-"Lilith was anciently worshiped" she was never worshiped by ancient people. That shouldn't stop anyone from worshiping her though.
"Often I will spin a tale, never will I charge a fee. I'll amuse you an entire eve, but, alas, you won't remember me. What am I?" -Sloth

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Becks
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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by Becks »

This is fascinating. Can you please point me in the correct direction for primary sources so I can educate myself? This is so cool. I've not come across this and would love to clear up any misconceptions I might have! Warm welcome by the way. :)

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Re: Is Lilith a Goddess or a demon?

Post by Lady_Lilith »

Yeah, the 3 main books are the Hebrew Goddess by Patai which covers Lilith fairly well especially, anciently, Lilith: The First Eve by Hurwitz who goes into a lot of detail, he also covers some psychological interpretations, and Lilith's Cave: Jewish tales of the supernatural which is Jewish ghost stories pretty much with a slant towards Lilith. In the folk traditions Lilith is heavily connected to witchcraft. It is pretty interesting. The Hebrew Goddess is pretty useful outside of Lilith too.

There's also some online sources as well if you would like them. I wrote some articles about her ancient and Jewish myths. While I posted them on my blog, I am waiting for witchvox to approve the revised ancient myths article. I have some follow ups to do which included personal interpretations and how she evolved into a modern goddess.

For resources Alan Humm's site is easy to find on Google. But I will leave you with this which some of the books I listed unfortunately don't cover, (Mostly her involvement in the art world and being picked up by feminism.)it is all backed by evidence: http://feminism.eserver.org/theory/papers/lilith/

When I am on a computer I will post my articles on her. :)
"Often I will spin a tale, never will I charge a fee. I'll amuse you an entire eve, but, alas, you won't remember me. What am I?" -Sloth

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