Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thursday's Truths - The Mythical Lilith

Many of you are familiar with the "new" Lilith Fair, which has it's roots in the very popular women's concert series of the late '90's. While many believe the newest incarnation does not live up to the original conceived by singer/songwriter, Sara McLachlan and others, her choice to name this event after the so-called "second woman created in Genesis" , is a fascinating one.

Whether you believe in the Bible or not, the fact that such a powerful influence has left some doubt as to the truth regarding the equality of Woman and Man, is disturbing. The representation of Lilith as "evil" based on her refusal to be subservient to her husband, Adam points to a long history of discrimination and "untruths" that have vexed women as they seek to get ahead in a male-dominated society.

As put forth in Jewish Folklore, Lilith is represented as a powerfully sexual woman against whom men and babies felt they had few defenses and, except for a few amulets, little protection. Much more so than Eve, Lilith is the personification female sexuality.

But it is for her independence from Adam, her position beyond the control of a male, that she is most remembered.

She is disobedient and like Eve, and indeed all women who are willful, she is perceived as posing a constant threat to the divinely ordered state of affairs defined by men.

In yesterday's Wednesday's Women of Courage post, I gave some background on the efforts of women to overcome the myth that they are "the weaker vessel" dating as far back as the French Revolution.

The truth is not always apparent. Man-made myths like the one that vilifies Lilith only serve to perpetuate the falsehood of gender inequality.

The truth is, both human manifestations of life need to be working together to solve the problems that face us and future generations. A spirit of "diversity and inclusion" must be fostered among our youth if substantial progress is to be made.

No comments:

Post a Comment