Author Topic: Judeo-Paganism and the goddess  (Read 1240 times)

Nakhash

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Judeo-Paganism and the goddess
« on: August 06, 2012, 06:01:07 PM »
Asherah as the sister/wife of El is Queen of the Heavens. She has become associated with Talmudic literature and Kabbalah with Shekhina, the feminine aspect of divinity. Synagogue services on Friday night (which is Saturday or Shabbat as the Jewish day begins at sundown) still consists of welcoming the Sabbath Queen by facing the entrance and singing her praises.

She is a Fertility Goddess – as Queen of the Heavens, Asherah is mother to the gods of the Canaanite pantheon. She is depicted with the Tree of Life and is usually flanked by two lions and is appealed to for fertility of mankind, crops, and domestic animals.  Families prayed to her for blessings, protection and healing. In this guise she is depicted with snakes.
As Goddess of the Sea she was asked to protect sea travelers and to guide ships to safety. She is sometimes shown with dolphins.

The legends of Asherah are nearly impossible to find. As patriarchal monotheism became the norm of the region, great pains were taken, as documented in the Jewish scriptures, to suppress all worship of the goddess.  She seemed to remain a popular deity despite the prohibitions on her worship. It’s possible to link her with the first creation myth in the Jewish Torah (there are actually two mentioned). Temples often had extensive and elaborate gardens (such as the Hanging Gardens of Babylon). The myth was written until after the Babylonian exile and destruction of the first Temple. Adam and Eve were thrown out of the Garden of Eden when they ate from the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge which was offered to Eve by the Serpent (associated with Asherah). They were forbidden from partaking of the Tree of Life (also associated with Asherah) and exiled from the garden as punishment. This story could be taken as the rise of patriarchal monotheism forbidding the worship of Asherah and linking the Babylonian exile as punishment by for the people’s continued polytheism.

Asherah is best suited to be called up for fertility, planting and harvesting, healing, and safety while traveling on water. As a fertility goddess of the pantheon, her offerings were most likely grains, domesticated animals and incense
Nakhash Mekashefah

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