Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Reclaiming Ourselves by Trista Hendren

Art by Arna Baartz




How do we even begin to reclaim ourselves when so many of us have been so badly wounded by patriarchy? By uncovering the truth about Lilith, we can reclaim our own divinity—and learn how to resist effectively and overturn patriarchy.

So where do we start? We first must begin to understand who Lilith really was—beyond what the patriarchal narrative told us.


This anthology has been a starting point—but I believe we can all dig deeper and go further in our personal lives. Whether you end this book believing Lilith was a strong archetype of the first woman—or a Goddess in her own right—there is no denying Lilith has much to teach us.

Alice walker noted that, “The God of woman is autonomy.”1 I have made it my God recently—but it is something I have had to work hard to reclaim. The last decades have been an intense process of digging up every single thing I have been taught and examining it for what it really is. Lilith is an archetype that ditches conformity and tramples on the status quo. She teaches us to refuse to play a game that was set up so we would fail. Lilith was maligned as a demon killer of babies. But what if—as Monette suggested in My Name is Lilith—She is intimately known to us.
“You may think I’m a stranger, but—truth be known—we met long ago, when you were still in a cradle. I came to you and tenderly rocked you, singing lullabies to calm your soul so new to this earthly realm.”2
It is my belief that Lilith has always been with us—and within us—and she is asking us to sing the world anew with Her. It belongs to all of us, and it about time we reclaimed it. Andrea Dworkin words hang over my head every day of my life.


“I have to ask you to resist, not to comply, to destroy the power men have over women, to refuse to accept it, to abhor it and to do whatever is necessary despite its cost to you to change it.”3

The cost of reclaiming our Lilith-selves is often rejection, which can be painful. The cost of dismissing our true selves is higher and more painful. We must no longer participate in the rejection or subordination of ourselves or any of our sisters. This means we must also listen to each other in a deep way, heal the hurt—and break through the maze of patriarchy together, joyously.

There is a reason most of us didn't grow up knowing about Lilith. It is time to radically reconsider Her now—and Eve too for that matter. They are Divine Sisters and Goddesses—as we all are.

The truth is, there was never anything sinful or wrong about being female. In fact, the divine was always feminine. The Original Sin was in fact the lie of a white male god—a reversal that has caused unfathomable damage to the world. However you view Lilith, there is no doubt that if you embrace Her, She just may well change your life.

May reclaiming Lilith bring healing to each and every woman and girl-child—and and restoration to our broken world.

An excerpt from Original Resistance: Reclaiming Lilith, Reclaiming Ourselves.


Notes:
1 Walker, Alice. Possessing the Secret of Joy. The New Press; 2008.
2 Chilson, Monette. My Name is Lilith. The Girl God; 2016.
3 Dworkin, Andrea. Life and Death: Unapologetic Writings on the Continued War Against Women. Simon and Schuster; 1997.

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