Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

Interesting Friends

Originally posted on July 27, 2018

I have some heavy-duty friends I mainly communicate with via email. I just reflected that I’m honored to know these people. There are many—women and men. We talk of many things, not like Alice in Wonderland, but of theology and personality development. For example:

One friend writes: “As to the authorship of the Bible scholars of previous ages have convincingly proved it was written by many men of many years. Did you see the wonderful documentary by a woman scholar/archeologist about the rediscovery of Yahweh’s wife? Anat-Yahu?

Check wikipedia…In Elephantine (modern Aswan) in Egypt, the 5th century Elephantine papyri make mention of a goddess called Anat-Yahu (Anat-Yahweh) worshiped in the temple to Yahweh originally built by Jewish refugees from the Babylonian conquest of Judah. These suggest that "even in exile and beyond the worship of a female deity endured."[4] The texts were written by a group of Jews living at Elephantine near the Nubian border, whose religion has been described as "nearly identical to Iron Age II Judahite religion".[5] The papyri describe the Jews as worshiping Anat-Yahu (or AnatYahu). Anat-Yahu is described as either the wife[6] (or paredra, sacred consort)[7] of Yahweh or as a hypostatized aspect[8] of Yahweh.[9][10]

Adam writes in a manner dismissive of scholarship: “I have checked with Yaweh’s assistant secretary to the fourth assistant secretary’s junior support agent and that’s what Yawheh said when this was brought to his almost omniscient attention: Who in heaven cares?”

Adam’s scholar friend, writes, “You are always one to send such simple questions. I mean, if Yahweh was married, who performed that ceremony? And if not, was Yahweh living in sin? What’s going on here? What kind of example is being set for us?

On the other hand….  I seriously doubt that God’s "Name" was ever pronounced "Yahweh" or "Yahveh" before it was replaced in the reading with Adonai. The language just doesn’t work that way — the letter vav is much more of a vowel letter than a full consonant. From the names of the prophets, it is far more likely that the first two syllables of the YHVH "Name" was Yahu — just as is preserved in the name of the Goddess. (Elijah is Eliyahu; Jeremiah is Yirmiyahu; etc.) The scholarly "Yahweh" is just not reflected anywhere else in the language or in the Scripture, and seems very unlikely. In my own research, it seems to come from some Greek texts that seem to have that sound for the YHVH. But that is a topic for another time.

In Scripture, YHVH clearly has both masculine and feminine characteristics, so it is not surprising that there was an earlier time when the polarity was actually expressed in a dual godship. As time went on, and consciousness evolved, the text evolved, as well, and the words were connected with that evolution of awareness. I believe that this is still happening — my own relationship to those ancient words is, I suspect, far different from most who encountered them in the past. That the words still "work" reflects their essential spiritual nature — not simply because they are the "words of God," but because we human beings are spiritual beings, and, like us, those words have many levels of meaning and of purpose.

Thus the rabbinic teachings about the four levels of Torah meaning: P’shat (simple, surface, literal), Remez (allegorical, legendary, teaching), D’rash (metaphorical, group-dreaming, inner drama), and Sod (the mystical non-path awakening that does not "evolve" the way the other levels do). So the next time we invite YHVH for Shabbat dinner, we’ll set two places, and see if He will bring his She to complete the I Who will join us.

The first guy wrote: “Why this female aspect of the Yahweh deity matters is the suppression of the female which has been and still is such a disaster for the semitic religions and humanity. The patiarchy that emerged in Babylonia (see the Descent to the Goddess by Sylvia Perera) and led to the denegration, even demonising, of the female distorted human consciousness. I am convinced that the garden of Eden myth was likewise distorted and misinterpreted as scholars put a false layer of meaning onto it: beneath the blaming women and arrival of sin theme there is a more ancient strata shamanic myth about the kundalini/shamanic serpent energy rising up the spine (tree) to bear fruit in consciousness (the apple) and human beings realising they had choice and could achieve wisdom.

The disaster in Islam that is currently being played out with the oppression of women (which is a tribal throwback and not at all authentic to early Islam), the  horror of sex (and consequent attacks of gay people and the stupidity of female circumcision) and the persuit of violence by men as a way of being in charge or  control all this needs to be analyzed in the light of the suppression of the female, the softer, gentler, more relational consciousness mankind needs to survive. Mahatma Gandhi gave us a way forward….

Adam Blatner said, “My name for God is Becoming Everything,  which transcends male or female. Maybe next week or year I’ll have another one. Right now that works for me.
     Your answer also reflects a deeper reaching past the tendency to project our own consciousness (a consciousness in which everything is imagined to be a he or a she!

My friend the Rabbi dug a bit deeper—beyond even the Kundalini tree— to layers beyond metaphor and legend and sexual differentiation. But historically, I tend to agree with you. My own spirituality takes off from the now and reaches into the future and I use this or that image or story from the past, but give no authority whatso-ever to those past writers.

They didn’t know that the universe has trillions of galaxies that we can see (with, say, Hubble telescopes), over billions of light years away… That kind of information throws local human legends into the ashcan of triviality unless it is recognized that it’s all metaphors that try to grasp at the ineffable quality of "higher" or "deeper" consciousness.” 

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