[b-hebrew] re: their altars

Jack Kilmon jkilmon at historian.net
Sat Mar 5 15:52:33 EST 2005


Dakma daEBadton l'chad min hoLEYN AHi zeUOreh ly haw EBadton

Jack Kilmon
San Marcos, Tx
jkilmon at historian.net


sharing a meal for free.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jim West" <jwest at highland.net>
To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Friday, March 04, 2005 10:16 AM
Subject: [b-hebrew] re: their altars

> Dora Smith wrote:
>> Just one thing it sounds like you may not be aware of;
>> Asherah was Yahweh's wife.  She was also Ba'al's wife.
> Hold up there Dora.  You make it sound like the "popular" religion of the 
> folk at Kuntillet Ajrud represented the same religious sensibilities as 
> those held by the priests and prophets in Jerusalem.  Just because some 
> "am ha-aretz" hold an odd and aberrant view of Yahweh does not mean we are 
> allowed to make such a stunning blanket statement as "Asherah was Yahweh's 
> wife".  That's rubbish.  At most what can be said is "some folk in some 
> parts of Palestine thought that Yahweh had a consort- but this was clearly 
> not the view of the establishment".
> Jim

Yahwism was not a monolithic belief.  It is common in many belief systems 
that some sectors maintain a more primitive and ancient form.  In the case 
of Yahweh, there are some in ancient Palestine who held on to the primitive 
"bull" and his heifer consort, Asherah.  The names EL (also Ba'al) and YHWH 
may have been merged as an hypocoristicon. The Qal  of hwh taken from a 
TITLE phrase as a hypocoristicon of EL, ala Albright and Cross?  A title 
like "El causes something to come into
being".  The use of HWH, therefore appears to be WAY down on the trunk of 
the NWSem tree where it became a loan word from Aramaic to early Hebrew.

The bull YHWH of the pithoi depicted with his heifer consort Asherah 
probably reflects the early hypocoristicon of EL.  I believe the ashes of 
the red heifer are related to this very early form and to Asherah.  Asherah 
continued to be special to women even into late 2nd temple times.  The 
Yahweh of the Bronze Age Canaanites and the Yahweh of the Rabbis may have 
had a common ascendancy but were no longer the same.

Jack Kilmon


Dakma daEBadton l'chad min hoLEYN AHi zeOreh ly haw EBadton

Jack Kilmon
San Marcos, Tx
jkilmon at historian.net

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