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The Devils and Evil Spirits of Babylonia, Vol. 1: Being Babylonian and Assyrian The Devils and Evil Spirits of Babylonia, Vol. 1: Being Babylonian and Assyrian

The Devils and Evil Spirits of Babylonia, Vol. 1: Being Babylonian and Assyrian The Devils and Evil Spirits of Babylonia

The object of the two volumes which form the present work is to supply the student of Assyrian Demonology withE nglish transliterations and translations, with the necessary notes, etc., of the documents printed in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Parts of Cuneiform Texts fr07n Babylonian Tablets, etc., which have been recently issued by the Trustees of theB ritish Museum. An examination of these two Parts will show that they contain copies of all the Tablets belonging to theS eries Utukki Limnuti, A sakki Marsuti, and Ti i, i.e., Evil Spirits, Fever Sickness, and Headache, which have now been identified, together with the texts of a considerable number of compositions of a similar character. These collections of Evil Spirit Texts form large and important sections of the native literature concerning Babylonian and Assyrian Demonology, and there is reason to believe that the material now published represents about one-half of that belonging to the threeS eries mentioned above which was known to the scribes of Assurbanipal.

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Paperback: 276 pages
Publisher: Forgotten Books (May 27, 2012)

Semitic Magic: Its Origins and Development Semitic Magic Its Origins and Development

Semitic Magic Its Origins and Development Semitic Magic Its Origins and Development

Excerpt from Semitic Magic Its Origins and Development

The theories put forward or maintained in this book are based on a study of that intricate demonology which has gradually developed throughout the lands of Western Asia. The earliest written records of this magic are found in the cuneiform incantation tablets from Assyria; and, aided by the various stepping-stones afforded by Rabbinic tradition, Syriac monkish writings, and Arabic tales, we can trace its growth and decadence through three thousand years down to its survival in modern Oriental superstition. Furthermore, the parallels afforded by Aryan and Hamitic nations show how close the grooves are in which savage ideas run, and that the principles of magic are, broadly speaking, coincident in each separate nation, and yet, as far as we know, of independent invention. All these superstitions combine to throw light on many of the peculiar customs of the Old Testament, and help to explain the hidden reason why these customs existed. From a study of the characteristics of the evil spirits, which the Semite believed to exist everywhere, certain deductions can be made which bear intimately on our knowledge of the origins of certain tabus and the principle of atonement.

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Paperback: 360 pages
Publisher: Forgotten Books (November 16, 2016)

Babylonian Magic and Sorcery: Being The Prayers of the Lifting of the Hand, the Cuneiform Texts of a Group of Babylonian and Assyrian Incantations ... and Full Vocabulary From Tablets of the K Babylonian Magic and Sorcery: Being The Prayers of the Lifting of the Hand, the Cuneiform Texts of a Group of Babylonian and Assyrian Incantations ... and Full Vocabulary From Tablets of the K

Babylonian Magic and Sorcery: Being The Prayers of the Lifting of the Hand, the Cuneiform Texts of a Group of Babylonian and Assyrian Incantations ... and Full Vocabulary From Tablets of the K Babylonian Magic and Sorcery: Being "The Prayers of the Lifting of the Hand"

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Paperback: 394 pages
Publisher: Andesite Press (August 22, 2017)

The Urantia Book The Urantia Book
The Urantia Book The Urantia Book

Love

Love is truly contagious and eternally creative. (p. 2018) “Devote your life to proving that love is the greatest thing in the world.” (p. 2047) “Love is the ancestor of all spiritual goodness, the essence of the true and the beautiful.” (p. 2047) The Father’s love can become real to mortal man only by passing through that man’s personality as he in turn bestows this love upon his fellows. (p. 1289) The secret of a better civilization is bound up in the Master’s teachings of the brotherhood of man, the good will of love and mutual trust. (p. 2065)

Prayer

Prayer is not a technique of escape from conflict but rather a stimulus to growth in the very face of conflict. (p. 1002) The sincerity of any prayer is the assurance of its being heard. … (p. 1639) God answers man’s prayer by giving him an increased revelation of truth, an enhanced appreciation of beauty, and an augmented concept of goodness. (p. 1002) …Never forget that the sincere prayer of faith is a mighty force for the promotion of personal happiness, individual self-control, social harmony, moral progress, and spiritual attainment. (p. 999)

Suffering

There is a great and glorious purpose in the march of the universes through space. All of your mortal struggling is not in vain. (p. 364) Mortals only learn wisdom by experiencing tribulation. (p. 556)

Angels

The angels of all orders are distinct personalities and are highly individualized. (p. 285) Angels....are fully cognizant of your moral struggles and spiritual difficulties. They love human beings, and only good can result from your efforts to understand and love them. (p. 419)

Our Divine Destiny

If you are a willing learner, if you want to attain spirit levels and reach divine heights, if you sincerely desire to reach the eternal goal, then the divine Spirit will gently and lovingly lead you along the pathway of sonship and spiritual progress. (p. 381) …They who know that God is enthroned in the human heart are destined to become like him—immortal. (p. 1449) God is not only the determiner of destiny; he is man’s eternal destination. (p. 67)

Family

Almost everything of lasting value in civilization has its roots in the family. (p. 765) The family is man’s greatest purely human achievement. ... (p. 939)

Faith

…Faith will expand the mind, ennoble the soul, reinforce the personality, augment the happiness, deepen the spirit perception, and enhance the power to love and be loved. (p. 1766) “Now, mistake not, my Father will ever respond to the faintest flicker of faith.” (p. 1733)

History/Science

The story of man’s ascent from seaweed to the lordship of earthly creation is indeed a romance of biologic struggle and mind survival. (p. 731) 2,500,000,000 years ago… Urantia was a well developed sphere about one tenth its present mass. … (p. 658) 1,000,000,000 years ago is the date of the actual beginning of Urantia [Earth] history. (p. 660) 450,000,000 years ago the transition from vegetable to animal life occurred. (p. 669) From the year A.D. 1934 back to the birth of the first two human beings is just 993,419 years. (p. 707) About five hundred thousand years ago…there were almost one-half billion primitive human beings on earth. … (p. 741) Adam and Eve arrived on Urantia, from the year A.D. 1934, 37,848 years ago. (p. 828)

From the Inside Flap

What’s Inside?

Parts I and II

God, the inhabited universes, life after death, angels and other beings, the war in heaven.

Part III

The history of the world, science and evolution, Adam and Eve, development of civilization, marriage and family, personal spiritual growth.

Part IV

The life and teachings of Jesus including the missing years. AND MUCH MORE…

Excerpts

God, …God is the source and destiny of all that is good and beautiful and true. (p. 1431) If you truly want to find God, that desire is in itself evidence that you have already found him. (p. 1440) When man goes in partnership with God, great things may, and do, happen. (p. 1467)

The Origin of Human Life, The universe is not an accident... (p. 53) The universe of universes is the work of God and the dwelling place of his diverse creatures. (p. 21) The evolutionary planets are the spheres of human origin…Urantia [Earth] is your starting point. … (p. 1225) In God, man lives, moves, and has his being. (p. 22)

The Purpose of Life, There is in the mind of God a plan which embraces every creature of all his vast domains, and this plan is an eternal purpose of boundless opportunity, unlimited progress, and endless life. (p. 365) This new gospel of the kingdom… presents a new and exalted goal of destiny, a supreme life purpose. (p. 1778)

Jesus, The religion of Jesus is the most dynamic influence ever to activate the human race. (p. 1091) What an awakening the world would experience if it could only see Jesus as he really lived on earth and know, firsthand, his life-giving teachings! (p. 2083)

Science, Science, guided by wisdom, may become man’s great social liberator. (p. 909) Mortal man is not an evolutionary accident. There is a precise system, a universal law, which determines the unfolding of the planetary life plan on the spheres of space. (p. 560)

Life after Death, God’s love is universal… He is “not willing that any should perish.” (p. 39) Your short sojourn on Urantia [Earth]…is only a single link, the very first in the long chain that is to stretch across universes and through the eternal ages. (p. 435) …Death is only the beginning of an endless career of adventure, an everlasting life of anticipation, an eternal voyage of discovery. (p. 159)

About the Author

The text of The Urantia Book was provided by one or more anonymous contributors working with a small staff which provided editorial and administrative support during the book's creation. The book bears no particular credentials (from a human viewpoint), relying instead on the power and beauty of the writing itself to persuade the reader of its authenticity.

Leather Bound: 2097 pages
Publisher: Urantia Foundation; Box Lea edition (August 25, 2015)

The Hebrew Goddess The Hebrew Goddess

The Hebrew Goddess The Hebrew Goddess

"The Hebrew Goddess" demonstrates that the Jewish religion, far from being pure monotheism, contained from earliest times strong polytheistic elements, chief of which was the cult of the mother goddess. Lucidly written and richly illustrated, this third edition contains new chapters of the Shekhina.

Series: Raphael Patai Series in Jewish Folklore and Anthropology
Paperback: 408 pages
Publisher: Wayne State University Press; 3 edition (September 1, 1990)

Lilith's Cave: Jewish Tales of the Supernatural Lilith's Cave: Jewish Tales of the Supernatural

Lilith's Cave: Jewish Tales of the Supernatural Lilith's Cave: Jewish Tales of the Supernatural

Once upon a time in the city of Tunis, a flirtatious young girl was drawn into Lilith's dangerous web by glancing repeatedly at herself in the mirror. It seems that a demon daughter of the legendary Lilith had made her home in the mirror and would soon completely possess the unsuspecting girl. Such tales of terror and the supernatural occupy an honored position in the Jewish folkloric tradition.

Howard Schwartz has superbly translated and retold fifty of the best of these folktales, now collected into one volume for the first time. Gathered from countless sources ranging from the ancient Middle East to twelfth-century Germany and later Eastern European oral tradition, these captivating stories include Jewish variants of the Pandora and Persephone myths and of such famous folktales as "The Fisherman and His Wife," "The Sorcerer's Apprentice," and "Bluebeard," as well as several tales from the Middle Ages that have never before been published.

Focusing on crucial turning points in life--birth, marriage, and death--the tales feature wandering spirits, marriage with demons, werewolves, speaking heads, possession by dybbuks (souls of the dead who enter the bodies of the living), and every other kind of supernatural adversary. Readers will encounter a carpenter who is haunted when he makes a violin from the wood of a coffin; a wife who saves herself from the demoness her husband has inadvertently married by agreeing to share him for an hour each day; and the age-old tale of Lilith, Adam's first wife, who refused to submit to him and instead banished herself from the Garden of Eden to give birth to the demons of the world.

Drawn from Rabbinic sources, medieval Jewish folklore, Hasidic texts, and oral tradition, these stories will equally entrance readers of Jewish literature and those with an affection for fantasy and the supernatural.

Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Oxford University Press; Reprint edition (December 12, 1991)

Gilgamesh And The Huluppu-Tree: A Reconstructed Sumerian Text Gilgamesh And The Huluppu-Tree: A Reconstructed Sumerian Text

Gilgamesh And The Huluppu-Tree: A Reconstructed Sumerian Text Gilgamesh And The Huluppu-Tree: A Reconstructed Sumerian Text

This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern editions that are true to the original work.

Paperback: 72 pages
Publisher: Kessinger Publishing, LLC (September 10, 2010)


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The Story of Lilith

The Alphabet of ben Sira Question #5 (23a-b)

Translated by:

Norman Bronznick (with David Stern & Mark Jay Mirsky) (Stern90)

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Lilith Adam Eve
Lilith Adam Eve
Lilith Adam Eve

The Alphabet of ben Sira is the earliest form we know of the Lilith legend familiar to most people (that is, to most people who are familiar with Lilith at all). It is here that we find Lilith as Adam's first wife. Scholars tend to date the Alphabet between the 8th and 10th centuries, CE. Whether the story itself is older, or, if so, how much older is not possible to say. Amulets like the one described in the first paragraph are, of course, much older. The author of the Zohar, R. Moses de Leon, was aware of the Alphabet's version of Lilith, at least according to Gershom Scholem (Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism, p. 174), but he also knows other, probably older, Lilith traditions which do not mesh well with this one. No attempt is made, apparently, to harmonize them. For one of these other traditions, and comments on whether the author was familiar with the Alphabet, see  Treatise on the Left Emanation. The idea of Eve having a predecessor is also not new to ben Sira, and can be found in  Genesis Rabbah. But those traditions make no mention of Lilith, and, in fact, do not mesh well with ben Sira's version of the story. [AH]

Soon afterward the young son of the king took ill, Said Nebuchadnezzar, "Heal my son. If you don't, I will kill you." ben Sira immediately sat down and wrote an amulet with the Holy Name, and he inscribed on it the angels in charge of medicine by their names, forms and images, and by their wings, hands, and feet. Nebuchadnezzar looked at the amulet. "Who are these?"

"The angels who are in charge of medicine: Snvi, Snsvi, and Smnglof. After God created Adam, who was alone, He said, 'It is not good for man to be alone' (Gen. 2:18). He then created a woman for Adam, from the earth, as He had created Adam himself, and called her Lilith. Adam and Lilith began to fight. She said, 'I will not lie below,' and he said, 'I will not lie beneath you, but only on top. For you are fit only to be in the bottom position, while am to be in the superior one.' Lilith responded, 'We are equal to each other inasmuch as we were both created from the earth.' But they would not listen to one another. When Lilith saw this, she pronounced the Ineffable Name and flew away into the air. Adam stood in prayer before his Creator: 'Sovereign of the universe!' he said, 'the woman you gave me has run away.' At once, the Holy One, blessed be He, sent these three angels to bring her back.

"Said the Holy One to Adam, 'If she agrees to come back, fine. If not she must permit one hundred of her children to die every day.' The angels left God and pursued Lilith, whom they overtook in the midst of the sea, in the mighty waters wherein the Egyptians were destined to drown. They told her God's word, but she did not wish to return. The angels said, 'We shall drown you in the sea.'

"'Leave me!' she said. 'I was created only to cause sickness to infants. If the infant is male, I have dominion over him for eight days after his birth, and if female, for twenty days.'

"When the angels heard Lilith's words, they insisted she go back. But she swore to them by the name of the living and eternal God: 'Whenever I see you or your names or your forms in an amulet, I will have no power over that infant.' She also agreed to have one hundred of her children die every day. Accordingly, every day one hundred demons perish, and for the same reason, we write the angels' names on the amulets of young children. When Lilith sees their names, she remembers her oath, and the child recovers."




Eliezer Segal's  Critique of the Alphabet as a Lilith source.

Looking For Lilith


The feminist critique of conventional values has not overlooked the Jewish tradition. Whether or not one acknowledges the validity of all the charges that have been leveled against the treatment of women in Jewish law and theology, it is hardly possible to ignore these issues.

As one who is normally sympathetic with feminist aspirations, I have often been disappointed with the scholarly standards of the debate, especially when it has been directed towards the classical texts of Judaism. In the course of polemical ideological exchanges, I find too frequently that sweeping generalizations are being supported by flimsy or questionable evidence, with a disturbing disregard for factual accuracy and historical context.

As an example of this sort of scholarly sloppiness, I wish to discuss an intriguing Hebrew legend that has found its way into dozens of recent works about Jewish attitudes towards women.

The legend in question was inspired by the Bible's dual accounts of the creation of the first woman, which led its author to the conclusion that Adam had a first wife before his marriage to Eve. Adam's original mate was the demonic Lilith who had been fashioned, just like her male counterpart, from the dust of the earth. Lilith insisted from the outset on equal treatment, a fact which caused constant friction between the couple. Eventually the frustrated Lilith used her magical powers to fly away from her spouse. At Adam's urging, God dispatched three angels to negotiate her return. When these angels made threats against Lilith's demonic descendants, she countered that she would prey eternally upon newborn human babies, who could be saved only by invoking the protection of the three angels. In the end Lilith stood her ground and never returned to her husband.

The story implies that when Eve was afterwards fashioned out of Adam's rib (symbolic of her subjection to him), this was to serve as an antidote to Lilith's short-lived attempt at egalitarianism. Here, declare the feminists matronizingly, we have a clear statement of the Rabbinic Attitude Towards Women!

There is only one slight problem with this theory: The story of Lilith is not actually found in any authentic Rabbinic tradition. Although it is repeatedly cited as a "Rabbinic legend" or a "midrash," it is not recorded in any ancient Jewish text!

The tale of Lilith originates in a medieval work called "the Alphabet of Ben-Sira," a work whose relationship to the conventional streams of Judaism is, to say the least, problematic.

The unknown author of this work has filled it with many elements that seem designed to upset the sensibilities of traditional Jews. In particular, the heroes of the Bible and Talmud are frequently portrayed in the most perverse colours. Thus, the book's protagonist, Ben-Sira, is said to have issued from an incestuous union between the prophet Jeremiah and his daughter. Joshua is described as a buffoon too fat to ride a horse. King David comes across as a heartless and spiteful figure who secretly delights in the death of his son Absalom, while putting on a disingenuous public display of grief. The book is consistently sounding the praises of hypocritical and insincere behaviour.

So shocking and abhorrent are some of the contents of "the Alphabet of Ben-Sira" that modern scholars have been at a loss to explain why anyone would have written such a book. Some see it as an impious digest of risqué folk-tales. Others have suggested that it was a polemical broadside aimed at Christians, Karaites, or some other opposing movement. I personally would not rule out the possibility that it was actually an anti-Jewish satire--though, to be sure, it did come to be accepted by the Jewish mystics of medieval Germany; and amulets to fend off the vengeful Lilith became an essential protection for newborn infants in many Jewish communities.

Eventually the tale of Lilith was included in a popular English-language compendium of Rabbinic legend, and some uncritical readers--unable or unwilling to check after the editor's sources--cited it as a representative Rabbinic statement on the topic. As tends to happen in such instances, subsequent authors kept copying from one another until the original error turned into an unchallenged historical fact.

Certainly there are volumes of real texts and traditions that could benefit from a searching and critical feminist analysis, and it is a shame to focus so much intellectual energy on a dubious and uncharacteristic legend of this sort.

 



Footnotes

[1]
First publication: Jewish Free Press Feb. 6 1995.
Bibliography:
J. Dan, The Hebrew Story in the Middle Ages, Jerusalem, 1974.
J. D. Eisenstadt, ed., Ozar Midrashim, Israel, n.d.


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Disclaimer

Disclaimer:
Some material presented will contain links, quotes, ideologies, etc., the contents of which should be understood to first, in their whole, reflect the views or opinions of their editors, and second, are used in my personal research as "fair use" sources only, and not espousement one way or the other. Researching for 'truth' leads one all over the place...a piece here, a piece there. As a researcher, I hunt, gather and disassemble resources, trying to put all the pieces into a coherent and logical whole. I encourage you to do the same. And please remember, these pages are only my effort to collect all the pieces I can find and see if they properly fit into the 'reality aggregate'.

Personal Position

Personal Position:
I've come to realize that 'truth' boils down to what we 'believe' the facts we've gathered point to. We only 'know' what we've 'experienced' firsthand. Everything else - what we read, what we watch, what we hear - is what someone else's gathered facts point to and 'they' 'believe' is 'truth', so that 'truth' seems to change in direct proportion to newly gathered facts divided by applied plausibility. Though I believe there is 'truth', until someone celestial who 'knows' all the facts parts the heavens and throws us a scroll titled "Here Are ALL The Facts And Lies In The Order They Happened," I can't know for sure exactly what "the whole truth' on any given subject is, and what applies to me applies to everyone.
~Gail Bird Allen

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