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Near Eastern Goddesses and Mother Eve


Olavarria

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In Ugaritic, Asherah along with her daughter Anat are the "wet nurses of the Gods".

Eve is "the mother of all living" (Genesis 3:20).

Eve and other Near Eastern Goddesses both have "X of Y" titles related to their fertility.

What are you suggesting is the implication? I can assume that you are inferring that Eve is a creator figure in many of the Mesopotamian cultures?

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Dunno; maybe once Asherah got espunged from the record someone like Eve or Lady Wisdom had to fill the gap. I just think its interesting. I dont know.

Well, you are on the right track, but I think you are trying to place an ancient paradigm into a contemporary mode of thought. It can't be done. What and how the ancients thought is unrelated to any modern frame of mind. If you consider that all femininity was consistent with fertility of the land, fecundity of the beast and continuation of the race and species then you can understand the need for a 'mothering' goddess which is one of the earliest representations of ancient deities predating even the more visible and aggressive sky gods such as Ba'al or El. Eve in many ways was a continuation of this thought. I am not sure that Asherah was a proper continuation of this archetype having instead a different purpose and representation. I think a proper continuation would have been the person of Mary. Whatever the case humans seem to need a feminine component of God.

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Interesting observation. It brings up the question what the book of Genesis means by "all living." It's a unique phrase that appears only seven times in the Hebrew Bible and clearly does not refer to non-human "living" species.

Just a note to David's observation, but I found this on perusal of the NET Bible,

"The explanation of the name forms a sound play (paronomasia) with the name. â??Eveâ? is חַוָּה (khavvah) and â??livingâ? is חַי (khay). The name preserves the archaic form of the verb חָיָה (khayah, â??to liveâ?) with the middle vav (ו) instead of yod (י). The form חַי (khay) is derived from the normal form חַיָּה (khayyah). Compare the name Yahweh (יְהוָה) explained from הָיָה (hayah, â??to beâ?) rather than from הַוָה (havah). The biblical account stands in contrast to the pagan material that presents a serpent goddess hawwat who is the mother of life. See J. Heller, â??Der Name Eva,â? ArOr 26 (1958): 636-56; and A. F. Key, â??The Giving of Proper Names in the OT,â? JBL 83 (1964): 55-59."
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Interesting observation. It brings up the question what the book of Genesis means by "all living." It's a unique phrase that appears only seven times in the Hebrew Bible and clearly does not refer to non-human "living" species.

Hey David!! Its actually an observation I stole from the NRSV footnotes that says her title is similiar to that of other Near Eastern goddesses. So I wanted to see which ones. Could it be that one of Genesis's writers saw Eve as being created in the image of a mother-goddess? Or is Eve, like Lady Wisdom, a sub-divine substitute for the recently expunged Asherah?

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Hey David!! Its actually an observation I stole from the NRSV footnotes that says her title is similiar to that of other Near Eastern goddesses. So I wanted to see which ones. Could it be that one of Genesis's writers saw Eve as being created in the image of a mother-goddess? Or is Eve, like Lady Wisdom, a sub-divine substitute for the recently expunged Asherah?

Here's a partial list...

Mesopotamia

Ishtar (Inanna) was the main goddess of Babylonia and Assyria. Other Mesopotamian goddesses include Ninlil and Antu. Of particular interest is Ninhursag.

Canaan

Ba'alat Gebal, Astarte/Asherah, Anat.

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